Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
Help me articulate to DP just how very wrong this all is...(76 Posts)
...and exactly what I want to change. Need advice from feisty ladies because am feeling a bit defeated by it all.
It's not LTB quite yet but gosh we're close. And this will seriously out me to anyone who knows me IRL but, you know what, give me a call .
Been with DP for 7 years. I have an older DD from a previous relationship. DP and I have reception age DTDs. We both worked and met in high earning roles in London, but moved north with his job when the DTDs were only 6 months. I cannot do what I did here. But also I want to be more present for them than I was for DD, so not on a plane all the time, particularly given DP is. Am therefore retraining in something which will mean ultimately I can have a part time that can fit around them. I also love it. And it's 'worthy' (relevant later). My retraining is salaried ie I am earning while doing it.
DP's job got relocated quite soon after we had moved to another European country so he commutes Mon-Fri and then there are intercontinental trips and ones which eat into the weekend. And he hates it. And it is the opposite of 'worthy'. But 5x my current salary.
We haven't had sex for 3 years. He told me it was because his job had made him fat (it has) and he felt unattractive so hard to feel sexy. I have been patient, I thought. His weight has also lead to v heavy snoring, to the extent we no longer share a bedroom, even on holiday. Go figure.
And I have been getting increasingly resentful of what I perceive as inequity in the relationship. I know I am at home, but I work too, and yet I do everything related to the DTDs, all the business of managing the house and the family, including at the weekends when he's back. He will do his best Disney Dad impression and take them to the sweetie shop and off swimming and to McDonalds and then ask me if I enjoyed my rest when he gets back. Getting him to supervise their homework is almost as hard as getting them to do it. I know he has a hard job but when he finishes he goes to a hotel room. I put the DTDs to bed, run up and down the stairs about 5 times to yells of MUMMY, do the washing, stitch name tapes, order presents online for their friends' parties, do the garden, change the beds, plan the menus, grab some porridge for dinner...I think you all know what I mean.
Money-wise he resisted getting a joint account for ages. We now have one. I put all my salary into it. He puts in a set amount. Which we always go over. So I have to write begging emails justifying why we've gone over to e.g. buy a new mattress or the water bill was higher (because he left the hose on) or contents insurance or whatever. It's never that I had me nails done!!!
That's the background.
Yesterday, with depressing inevitability, I found an email thread with a woman he knew from Uni. Very flirty, offering to meet near hers, ours or his European base. Sex was mentioned. She then cancelled.
I took a screenshot (thanks MN!!!) which was as well because he then deleted them from Trash. He went through the usual script - minimising ('nothing happened'), blaming her ('she's mad!'), and me ('we both know something's wrong, I guess I should have spoken up') etc. But then he did retreat quickly to a 'maybe it's good you saw it, maybe it's the wake-up call I need'. That it had forced the issue etc. He suggested couples counselling and has taken responsibility to sort it. I told him if he was honest NOW there was a tiny % chance we could salvage something. But if he wasn't, and I later found something, which I would, then that was that. He admitted that maybe he was a 'bit overly familiar...inappropriate with women at work...but they're all married, pregnant...nothing serious, all banter'.
He has been offered a job based near home and is resigning tomorrow so that he can be with us. He said I should look at his actions not his words, and that is evidence that we are the most important thing for him and how serious he takes the need for him to change.
But then we also had a screaming session with him saying he resented 'funding the family doing something that makes me miserable' and me screaming back about how you don't effing 'fund' your own family, like he's giving us some kind of philanthropic grant or something, that it's a bloody partnership, that they're his children too, that if I didn't exist he'd be 'funding' a full time nanny and housekeeper and gardener and cook and PA and...He just can't see it. He equates being at home with having an easy life. But I work at work during the day, and then work at the family by night. And the weekends. He works during the day, and then apparently just sexts people in the evening and spoils the DTDs at the weekend.
This is too long already, sorry. I just can't seem to get my words right anymore on this or to him. It seems all too depressingly like the countless threads on here when I want to yell at somebody to stop being a mug. But now it's me.
My questions are:
1. How do I get him to see it doesn't effin' matter that nothing happened. Only because she cancelled. It's just complete betrayal. I get miserable/bored/lonely too. I haven't had sex for 3 years. But I don't do that.
2. How do I get him to see the inequity in terms of work-work and house/family-work?
3. How do I get him to see the financial inequity? I just feel utterly precarious. I screamed at him yesterday that if he felt so hard done by he could bugger off and then would only have to give 10% of his precious money to the CSA and could hoard the rest. I give everything. All my savings have gone into the house.
4. What should I insist on as demonstration of his fidelity and commitment? Passwords? A ring?
Thank you to anyone who has read this far. Hopefully I have cured your insomnia .
1. Couples counselling might help him to see that. 2. Not sure, sorry. 3. Insist upon his salary going into the joint account, along with yours, and you each take out an equal (relatively small) set amount each month to your own accounts. 4. You shouldn't need to insist on anything as demonstration. So don't, and see if he shows you, to your satisfaction, in his own way. Set a reasonable time limit to yourself (e.g. 9 months, a year) and if you're not convinced, leave him.
How do you get him to see? He is living it. He sees it. He just thinks it is OK. That's a moral judgement. Not an eyesight failure.
Decide what you want out of life. Then work out if you can have it with him.
Tbh, I think that if you want to stay together equality would have to come from work too. If he has to step back then you would have to step up or massively curtail your lifestyle. Feeling trapped doing a job you hate, working all hours, so someone else can do the worthy thing they love, is a recipe for resentment.
I think I would say to him and mean it that I am just not prepared to continue in something if he can't see the obvious - meaning everything that you mentioned abut the financial and domestic inequalities.
Ignoring the fact for the moment that he has was nearly unfaithful, if he genuinely believes that BS then there are two possible outcomes - either you tow his line and learn to hate him and your life and he tows your line and becomes more involved and free with his money and eventually he'll resent it too because he'll only be doing it to keep the piece after you found his secret, not because he sees he should.
Then I would also think very carefully about his disloyalty. And his admission that he is "overly familiar" with female colleagues? Really? So a sleazeball then? Do you actually want to stay with the office perv?
I think call it a day I really do. If it jolts him awake and he does enough for you to want to try again then do it, but it doesn't sound like you want to?
I don't think it sounds like he is genuinely fearful for the marriage
1) get a good lawyer
2) stop putting all your salary into the joint account and build up toe own financial reserves
3) tell him he's done and he can go sext as many ladies as he likes in his shiny new single life.
Rabbit, OP gave up her "equal" job so he could do his, with the silver lining of being able to look after their children.
If it was as easy as building up my toe, I think we'd be fine
We're not married, no. Initially I didn't want to. Had been before and it was a disaster. He was v briefly married too (no DCs) and she took him to the cleaners which I think is behind some of his money attitudes now.
But am kicking myself as therefore I am now in a right pickle. My savings are all in the house. We're both on the deeds and the mortgage (now paid off last month) but I can imagine him saying as his salary paid the bulk of it and he was able to put more savings in -
because I have, you know, been off growing humans and following him up and down the country - that it shouldn't be a 50:50 split.
I even said at one point yesterday that this is why marriage was invented. To protect the woman, and recognise her contribution in kind. And he muttered 'yeah, I know, it's a partnership, I get it'. But if he did he wouldn't talk about 'funding' would he?
How did your money situation come about? i.e. Why don't you have a more usual joint account funding situation? You're unmarried but own a house together, yes?
Is he depressed? Not excusing, not at all - sexting is awful. And completely awful for you given the lack of sex sounds on his part. But that ego-stroking stuff (sexting) is presumably what he's missing from his relationship with you - because you are exhausted and resentful (rightly) and he feels unattractive and unable to shake himself out of it. Work stress leading to depression and very very (monumentally) bad judgement would not be uncommon. He needs his own insight into that, though.
You need counselling quickly - together, but also perhaps alone too?
I'm really sorry. You don't deserve this.
I would just walk away from the marriage. Your post is eloquent and I can't match it by explaining I would why but he sounds like he checked out ages ago but
for his own ends puts on a veneer when he is home. He is not present in any meaningful way and hasn't been for ages. The messaging other women and his half confession about other dalliances with work colleagues would have me saying, "I'm done". He admits he has watched the gradual decline in your relationship and yet he has done fuck all about it. Just made an effort to find another playmate. He has let you take up all the slack. He sounds like a turd OP.
And rabbit, yes, I could. I actually used to earn more. And could again. But we'd have to move, again, get a nanny (unless he stopped working) etc. I am more than happy to curtail our lifestyle. I buy my and the girls' clothes on ebay but then I see endless deliveries of luxury brand name work clothes for him, and he has a boat which is a swamp for money and his leisure time (whole other rant!)
Didn't want to read and not comment. Am sure wiser folk than me will come along. Totally understand your perspective - maybe he needs to. Leave him home alone for a few days. Not a weekend or holiday days, proper full on routine, need your shit sorted days. That might help 2.
For me 1 and 3 go together. We are not pay per view- boo-hoo to hating your job and getting to do all the fun guy stuff (does he think you have a party every day??).pitch in or feck off.
4. I don't know, sorry. I would want proof over time of 1 and 3 (pretty deal breakerish!!)
Am sure you'll get more wise words but good for you OP, sounds like you've put up with loads don't take more of the bs X
See so many wise words while I slowly tapped my phone!!
X-post on bank account stuff.
Only you know if he is the office sleaze, or if he's a good bloke having a crisis who needs a huge fucking wake-up call to adulthood and being responsible for his actions and life...
If you own the house jointly you're entitled to half of it, doesn't matter who paid the mortgage/deposit unless you have something drawn up legally to protect part of it (which I'm assuming he hasn't?)
From what you've said I think it's likely it'll fall apart at some point sadly unless you're prepared to put up with his arsey behaviour. So better to start getting your ducks in a row.
If what you do at home isn't work, then surely he can easily take it all over.
Unless it's not actually that easy, in which case, he'll need to concede that it IS work.
But that's not the real issue here, is it? I'm sorry OP
Oh ladies. This is all very sad. And predictable. And deflating. But you are being very wise and kind. Which is what I want and need.
I think I need to get myself to a lawyer. What a tw*t.
In nicer news one of the DTDs told me tonight she loved me to the end of her heart, and the other one retorted with 'I love you to the end of the days'. And that's all that matters really .
1- agree that counselling might help him see that
2- Seeing that he doesn't want to have a joint account (you still don't have one btw. Atm, it's your bank account and him putting some money in it as it please him), you need another arrangement finances wise.
I would do a budget with all the stuff coming out so he can see numbers in real. Then agree on how much he will put in and how you will. Don't try and put the same amount but look at the disposable income you both have left at the end of it. Including the fact that you BOTH be able to hold some savings or a pension as you are not married (so you'll end up with nothing and he will have all his savings nicely in the side)
3- is very much linked with 2- TBH.
4- A ring would solve some of your issues with 3- but it won't solve anything linked with point 1-.
I think he is trying and showing you he does care and wants to work on your relationship.
He does have a lot of issues with work and how would destroying it is. He also clearly has no idea of the work involved with looking after twins, both in a physical way as well as the amount of mental energy required to keep a house running. That, ime, is best solved by leaving him with his dds for the weekend and expecting him to take responsibility (something he is more likely to do if he is there during the week rather than just the weekend).
I also think you probably have deeper issues going on there re the lack of sex.again counselling would probably help but he might need counselling for himself too.
See I'd be tempted to get the ring and give yourselves 3 years to work through the issues...
Buy "wifework" and make him read it.
Make a detailed log of your and his "leisure time"
Insist on financial equality, get him to start paying for a cleaner!!!
Shit - it's a shame you aren't married but you are entitled to half the house.
Are you in the UK now? You said you would get 10% of his net pay but with twins you would get 20%.
If you love him then I think counselling should be your first port of call. If not then probably call it a day. He doesn't really seem to appreciate you and is keeping you short of money. Plus he is sleazing over OW and trying to meet up with them.
I don't think I would stick around but that's your call.
💐I'm sorry things are so crap 🙁
I get you having given up your extremely well paid job to move with his job & spend time with the girls - head v heart decision & we can't have everything, BUT how did you allow this stupid situation to arise where he only puts a bit of his money into your joint account & keeps the rest for himself? It's not on in any situation, but it's definitely not on when you gave up your to so he could change jobs and you've been looking after the kids.
You need to decide if you want to try to sort things out or if you want out.
I think you'd be better out of it because I don't believe you can change who someone is - and frankly, he appears to be a selfish wanker.
Brief interlude while we exchanged emails. He is just on a totally different page. Has looked into counsellors but in 'diary meltdown so let's just have a great time on holiday [we're off for half term with the DTDs, arrgh] and sort afterwards'. Followed by 'was talking to X and he is off to bridge tonight and woodwork class on Thursday...I aspire to have that much time at home when my job changes!'
To which I replied that what he aspired to about coming home seemed to be about being away from home. And gave him a list of everything I have done tonight since coming home. Which oddly hasn't included bridge or woodwork.
You know what. 99% of me just can't be arsed. Too old for this. And I know you can't argue someone into being something they're not. But DD was very, very, VERY affected by the divorce. And the thought of doing that to the little ones...
And yes I did let everything slide with the money. Stupid stupid stupid. Partly it's just that the time he's been here has been so limited because of work, and then we always have people staying, or we're with the twins, or...lesson learned.
Join the discussion
Please login first.