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How to make things better with my husband(44 Posts)
Sorry for the long post. I suppose I'm just writing to get some release. I'm worried for my marriage and don't know how to make things better.
My husband has a strong personality which was one of the attributes that I was attracted to when we first met 10 years ago. He was charming, polite and very complimentary. Fast forward 10 years and we bicker every day. I find myself isolated as we have a very small immediate family (they don't know what is going on" and I have no close friends. We both are professional working full time.
My husband is very vocal about things. An example if I've put on too much weight he will tell me. If I'm wearing something unflattering he will tell me with out being asked. He often tells me that I'm "doing things wrong" and of course he states our sex live is boring and virtually non existent as we argue a lot. His new comment is "I moan at him all the time", "I sulk","other wife's don't do this", "i cant wait to get back to work away from you" my list could continue for many hours. He constantly states that he works long hours, is trying to renovate our house and do child care and that he does "everything". The thing is he doesn't, I also work full time, with a long commute in a stressful job and take as much responsibility with childcare yet I don't feel the need to constantly shout about it. I cook, clean, (which he states I don't do properly), washing shopping, homework and help with DIY when I can. We both pay the bills. What I don't understand is that he wont accept the hurtful, comments he makes cannot be swept under the table. If I bring them again when he calms down again "I'm whinging". He constantly makes loud "sighs" to things he disapproves on such as house being untidy, my driving etc If I comment on it "I'm starting an argument".
We tried marriage counselling last year for 6 months but had to stop due to work commitments. On a couple of occasions his charming façade slipped and he said some hurtful comments which the marriage counsellor stated were unacceptable.
I'm sure I'm not the easiest person to live with and have many annoying traits. Yet my husband calls me volatile, spoilt, demanding etc. Yet I have never ever be called this by anyone other than my husband in fact its the way round as people tell me m too generous and too soft. It is like having a relationship with a sulky teenager! Yet when he meets other people work colleagues etc you would never know, he is Mr Charming!
I feel when I look at him now he has already given up on us. He seems to have lost interest in me. Yes I've put on weight since we have met and don't feel so attractive but so has he, yet I still love him dearly. I have said so many times to him that I do not want to separate which feels ironic to me because he's so demanding and shows little interest in saving us. I worry he has interest in some one else as he is so critical of me. My self esteem is so low.
I don't know what I'm asking for on this forum, I know there is not a magic answer. Sorry for the long post but I needed to vent.
He sounds awful OP. Why do you love him when he is constantly pushing your buttons?
I'd agree that your self esteem is low, you cannot be enjoying this life with him.
He sounds like a bully
I don't know what advice to give you. I don't think you alone can make things better because nothing you do in his eyes is good enough. He has to want to do this too and see he is wrong.
Do you think he would listen if you told him that if things don't change you would leave?
Awful. Listen to your instincts. This isn't right.
I feel terrible posting the message and feel like deleting it. Maybe I made him sound worse that what he is and I'm sure I'm to blame for some of it to. We have talked about separating but it seems like I'm always the one "trying to make it better" and saying "I don't want to separate". Sometimes he says "let me know what you've decided or today was "don't dare me to leave". It made me feel so sad. We didn't speak for a couple of hours and then he just acted like nothing had happened. I have said to him in the past that he acts like a bully. He turns it around and states no that's me!
He's manipulating you. Stop being so nice (I mean that in a nice way ! )
My husband is exactly like this too. I am sorry for you, it is tiresome and wears you down. I know how it feels to be emotionally tripped up too - everyone I know describes me as soft and good naturee, but he says that I am whiny, lazy and too messy around the house and when I get ill (run down with a cold for instance) he makes digs at me. I cant give you any advice as I have struggled with this for six years, but I will say that you mustn't loose your identity. Hold on to your values, ambitions, kind natured behaviour and your integrity. That will see you through to an entend and whether you stay together or not, dont let his unkind wordw break your spirit.
What you were saying about you 'trying to make it better'... that is exactly what you're thinking of doing again by deleting your message.
You cannot moderate or edit another person. They have free will. Any time you attempt to reclaim the situation by offering a resolution or trying to find common ground he throws it in your face and makes you feel like the shit one.
This very much reminds me of someone I dated for a while (he turned out to be married which is a whole other story).
I'm afraid that this is probably just his genuine character. He was able to hide it from you in the beginning because he wanted to....he no longer cares about hiding it from you.
You can't fix him or make him be the
fake charming person he is to other people and was originally with you.
Since you've already tried marriage counselling I'm inclined to say LTB.
He's not a nice person.
You cannot make an abusive situation "better"
All you can do is get away from it
He sounds horrible. He wouldn't talk to you like that if he loved you, he would want to make you feel good, not bad. This is no way to live, and no way for you children to grow up- thinking this is either normal or acceptable.
You are in a state of anxious panic about how to fix this because you believe that you are the problem and/or your perception of him is wrong. This is what being bullied does to you over time.
He is abusive and an awful bully. You deserve more than this. You need to re evaluate whether the marriage is worth saving. To be honest, you can do better than someone who enjoys bringing you down. Xxxx
I think that because I'm so desperate to save the marriage, I convincing myself it can be saved. In my heart I know its not right but I'm pretending its normal because I do not want to face facts. I think I'm going to try and get him to marriage counselling again. I don't know what this is going to achieve because he cannot see that anything he does is wrong but I don't want to give up yet.
Abusers often project their traits on to their victims - all the things he's saying about you are actually relevant to himself
I think you need to work on building yourself up rather than trying to fix the marriage.
get a hair cut
Join a gym - go in your lunch break or go for a 30 min jog if you have a shower at work
Book a holiday that you want to go on - go with friends if he's not interested
Get a cleaner for the house work
Buy some new clothes
Start a new hobby or meet. Friend every week
You'll feel better and he might start to be more attentive!
Ps not that anything you do will change his behaviour - I've said this wrong - just that he might be - what's going on with my wife?!
Then leave him when you are ready to
Sounds just like my one week old ex. Together 21 years. I'm in my own space and starting to realize quite unhappy I have been for atleast three years. Quite probably on and off for 21 years. Really think about how happy you are. He's abiding you mentally, verbally and emotionally. I wrote I here about two years ago, got similar advice to you and then felt like I was betraying him. Been back in here a few months and everything is much clearer. It's not easy to leave, but put yourself first for once. You don't deserve it. End of.
I agree with what the others have said.
Just a way off idea -
- every critical comment he makes write them up on a noticeboard at home somewhere, let him see how much he criticises you
- every bit of housework or childcare he does, write that up too
I'm sure which list will be far longer.
This may be too awful to do if you have DC that can read!
Pudding21 that exactly how I feel that I have betrayed him. I also worry that he will see this message I posted. I don't know how unless he has a secret mumsnet fetish! I used to be a strong person I had a very abnormal childhood yet I fought against the odds to take the right path in life. When we met I was independent person with a professional job and confident. I wish I could get a bit of the old me back.
You are being bullied and you think this is your fault.
A break up would be painful for you because you're so attached to him, but once you have successfully split up you'll feel amazing.
If your child was being bullied like this at school, you'd take them out of the school. If you had a daughter with a boyfriend like this, you'd tell her to get the hell out of the relationship.
You're too close to this to see what's going on - when you do split up you should get counselling as the shock of what's been happening to you will hit you hard.
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