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.
Can it be fixed again?Can I love him again?(21 Posts)
I've been with my DH for 15 years since I was 16. Married for 12 years with 3dc who are 10,6 and 2.
We have never had what I would call a great relationship tbh. At the beginning we were both jealous and he was controlling. He never spoke to me in a good way and I always felt like I was on the defensive. When I had my oldest dc I told him enough was enough sort it or I was leaving. I then told him this again in 2011 and 2015 and then things were better but still not 100%.
He wasn't there emotionally or physically when I was suffering badly with PND after my 2nd child and trying to run the business we had. I don't suppose he's ever been there until he's issued with an ultimatum then he'll be supportive but I don't feel it ever lasts. I feel he nit picks me and has called me names in the past and what I wanted from my career has been put on hold because of the businesses he wanted. Although I suppose having kids young maybe put my career on hold anyway. I feel I've lost my confidence :-(
To put it bluntly we always have ups and downs and I have no respect for him and do resent him now for things that have happened in the past. I don't enjoy sex nor do I enjoy his company and am happier when he is away with work.
I am trying to put all the above and more to one side as what's happened before can't be undone and we are in the position we are now. I told him on Thursday that I can't try anymore and I don't love him. He's devastated and tells me he loves me and will do anything to make our marriage work. He wants to go back to counselling (we went to one session in Feb 2014 but he decided he knew what he needed to do and we never went back) and see if we can be saved. I'm willing to do counselling regardless as it'll help either way. He hasn't been at work now since Thursday whereas normally he'd have been at work most days (he's self-employed). He's talking about buying tickets and events for next year etc. It's like he's just ignoring what I said on Thursday.
I'm just not sure where to go. I do feel some relief since Thursday as he's not wanting kisses or sex as often. We do get on really well and I would like to try and keep it like that for the sake of the kids.
Can I love him again and make it work? Has anyone ever felt like this and managed to love them and enjoy their company again and want to be intimate with them? Or do I just give up and stop flogging a dead horse as the saying goes? I've felt like this for a long time and have tried to ignore it but it's not working anymore :-( I feel like I'm living a lie. If it wasn't for the dc I would have gone long before now.
What do you get out of this relationship now?
How is this going to work now?. There is really no way back from this and the two of you need to be apart. You and he do not work together as a pair.
Is this really what you want to teach your children about relationships, just what are they learning here from the two of you?.
Please stop flogging the dead horse here. You said it yourself; if it wasn't for the children you would have gone by now. You've tried ignoring it all and unsurprisingly it has not worked. You were only 16 when you got together and you had no real life experience behind you.
Staying in a relationship purely and simply because of the children now teaches them that your relationship was based on a lie. They are not going to say "thanks mum" to you for staying with him. Better to be apart than to be together and miserable as you are now, that is what you are modelling to them currently. Would you want this sort of marriage for them too?.
If he is a decent sort with regards to his children then he will co-parent with you amicably post separation.
Go to counselling and take it from there op.
He sound bullying and a man that is controlling very rarely changes; I think you should this opportunity for a trial separation and see how you feel, you should not have to ASK your partner to speak to you with respect and you should not be having SEX if you don't want to; it all sounds like the relationship has been on his terms.
Take control, try going it alone, you said yourself if not for the kids you'd have been long gone, that means a lot OP.
Sounds like my relationship to be honest. They never change though, I'm sorry to say. If you really want it to work, then go to the counselling sessions. Make it clear to him though, that you are going along with it to see if it helps but it won't necessarily change your mind.
He might say all the things you want to hear in the counselling sessions, then revert right back to his old ways later on (they usually do).
Try to imagine what sort of relationship would make you happy. How would your other half treat you? Then compare this to your DH.
Thank you for your replies.
If I'm honest I'm not 100% sure what I get out of the relationship. He isn't violent or abusive like my father was and I trust him and when he's being 'normal' like he is now we do get on really well.
No I wouldn't want my kids to feel like this in a marriage definitely not. I do know staying together for the sake of the kids is not good. I begged my mum at 10 to leave my dad and she did eventually.
I will go to counselling but I'm not sure it will work to help the marriage. I'm starting individual counselling sessions next week as I do have my own problems I'm aware of.
I don't communicate as effectively as I could and just wait for ages and then just blow up. But I do feel he is selfish and just takes and rarely gives. He is doing now but then he's done this before and it doesn't last. He'll be calling me a fucking idiot before long. Although it is very rare he calls me names it sticks in my head for a long time.
I have nowhere to go as I'm 200 miles from any family. The house is in both names.
Is it best we're still 'together' for counselling or could I ask for a trial separation to give me some breathing space. I cope fine with the kids on my own and deal with all the finances etc so I know deep down I could manage on my own but then the thought terrifies the life out of me 😔
I never ever wanted to be in this situation which is why I suppose I've refused to give up.
Well I'm still here.I am not happy at all and even trying to be nice and pleasant is hard and I certainly don't want to kiss him or anything else. We have had two counselling sessions and although I have been completely honest during these and have felt relief coming out of them from getting everything off my chest it's like he ignores everything I've said.
I have no respect or love for him and I certainly resent him and I am turning into a bitter person I don't even recognise. He's not listened to anything I've said from the trial separation to not having sex to giving me some space. He's buying me things and bringing me breakfast in bed and letting me have lie ins and things and being an all round nicer person. I still think it's too little too late.
I was reading a thread on here from 2012 and someone said 'relationships are like a garden and you have to nurture and look after it but if you don't you can't then go and water the dead plants because the gardens already dead.' It's stayed with me and I'm sure no matter what he does now won't make a difference.
But then life on the other side is such a scary though but then to be honest the thought of living my life like this is even scarier. Has anyone ever had a 'happy' ending after feeling like this with their partner? I already know the answer but I live in hope miracles might happen.
What do you mean he's not listening to "not having sex"? Is he raping you?
"But then life on the other side is such a scary though but then to be honest the thought of living my life like this is even scarier".
Precisely. So do not live your life like this any longer. Better to be apart and happier than to be together and miserable as you are now.
The late great Robin Williams once said this:-
"I used to think that the worst thing in life was to end up alone. It's not. The worst thing in life is to end up with people who make you feel alone"
Have you started counselling on your own? It sounds like you need to work through the changes that are coming and come to terms with a major life change.
He's eroded your love and respect. Why would you stay with someone you neither love or respect? Pointless and miserable.
Start planning the next phase of your life. Talk to friends. Play the long game
No category12 he's not raping me!!Nothing like that. It's mostly he starts indicating he wants sex and I say no but then end up giving in for an easy life as otherwise he'll just moan.
I do know deep down it's over and as much as I wished relationship counselling I would help make everything better I think it's too far gone for that. He just keeps wittering on about how much he's changed and it's permanent this time. Maybe it is but I've asked for years for us to sort ourselves out and he's never listened. The counsellor thinks I'm not curled up like a hedgehog with my prickles out to stop myself from getting hurt anymore.
I never thought in a millions years I would end up feeling like this towards him but I can't even stomach kisses or hugs and just about manage to have a polite conversation. How did I get here
Even though the relationship is over it could still be worth going to counselling so that the split is more likely to be amicable /civil, which is best for the children.
Thank goodness for that.
If you are finished with the relationship, then you don't need him to agree with that. You don't need him to listen or acknowledge, it just is. And you move into a different bedroom and start making plans to divorce, and you don't go along with his breakfasts in bed or sex, you say no and go to your own space. It's no good saying you want space or to stop having sex or you want to separate, if you then just keep having sex and don't enforce any of your boundaries.
It only takes one person to end a relationship.
Thank you for your responses.
I told him last night I wanted a divorce as I am done now and got nothing left to give. I've asked for trial separation or for him to give me some space but he hasn't listened.Think he has just ignored me in the hope I'll change my mind and everything will go back to normal but I've tried that in the past and it doesn't work.
I seen a glimpse of the way he used to be last night and his mask slipped a little and he was aggressive. He said a divorce would kill him and in fact he's just going to kill himself as it'd be easier. Then said he was done with the business and it was for me to sort work and to sort out someone for his shift as he wasn't going. He then said he would go to his brothers for a few weeks and give me space but then rang me earlier and said he was coming home tonight to talk and then go tomorrow but he just moves the goalposts all the time.
I've had this indecisiveness about our relationship for so long now that I can't carry on like this anymore so why do I still have doubts and feel like I should be trying harder?
why do I still have doubts and feel like I should be trying harder?
Because change is scary. If you think it through though i suspect you'll conclude that another 50 years of what you have now is a hell of a lot scarier.
The suicide threats are manipulative. If you genuinely believe at any time that he is suicidal, then call 999 for him. You are not responsible for his mental health or happiness.
He met everything you said with aggression, emotional blackmail, manipulation and passive aggressive behaviour.
As I said before, you don't need his agreement to a divorce or separation. You just need to make that decision and follow through.
Change is scary and you're used to him controlling and manipulating you, and hope is sometimes a horrible thing - hope he can change, hope you can make it work, hope that things can be the way you wish they were instead. But he's had plenty of chances. He's had plenty of time. He's had 15 years. How many more are you giving him?
Thank you for your replies :-)
Change is scary and I think that's what's held me back as I've never known any different but then change can be better too.
Thanks @category12 I don't think he would take his own life and I do think they are just threats.
He has given me space and not come back today and says he'll stay away for three weeks. Like a miracle is going to happen in that time! I still can't relax as I'm still expecting him to walk through the door and start an argument. He has taken the front door key out as we usually use the side door so whether that's so he can come in the front door and check up on me at any point I'm not sure tbh.
My mil was on the phone before and she asked how things were and I didn't want to answer fine as that's a lie so I said we'll see what happens. She told me I can't leave him as he'll be lost and probably do away with himself and she can't see him moving on. He doesn't even have that close of a relationship with her tbh. Now she's making me feel guilty and like shit.
On the plus side I've scrubbed the house from top to bottom,my 3 beautiful dc are sleeping and aren't bothered by the fact he's not here as they're used to him not doing much with them despite his efforts over the past few months and I'm relaxed for now! Thank you for your replies and I know I've still got a long road ahead
Don't let either him or his mum guilt trip you! They are effectively saying you should stay with him, what, because he can't cope without you? You are not responsible for his happiness. Remember that.
And as the poster above said, you don't need his permission to end the relationship. I know it's hard, and difficult and scary to make such changes, but you can do it!
His mum is on the side of the status quo - lots of people are, sometimes friends, very often family. Because they don't like change either and, unlike you, things are comfortable for them as they are. He's a grown man, he's perfectly capable of managing his life if he wants to.
Put a bolt on the inside of the front door, or a chain.
Well I'm still here. I told him at our last counselling session it was over. He agreed to move out on the Friday once my dsd had gone home. That was 3 weeks ago and although he has been away during the week he is still coming back at the weekends.
I have told my solicitor too begin divorce proceeding based on unreasonable behaviour. I need to tell him this as even though I've said I wanted a divorce I've not told him I've gone ahead.
He keeps begging for another chance and telling me how I'm the love of his life and he can't live without me etc. The emotional rollercoaster is honestly killing me and I feel so drained with it all. I'm so so tempted just to go back and pretend everything is fine and just play the act. But I know this is no way to live the rest of my life.
How does anyone stay strong at this point and potentially leave someone they did love for a long time. And leave them with basically nothing. I know it's for the best but I never expected it to be this hard once I'd made my decision. Don't really know why I'm writing for just struggling tbh
Just get him gone and then you will have the space to think clearly. I found the hardest part was getting my stbxh to move out, he followed the classic pattern of ignoring the problem, assuming I didnt mean it, emotional blackmail etc. As soon as he left it was scary but like a huge weight lifted from my shoulders.
As others have said before, keep repeating that you no longer love him and he has to go. He can still see the dc whenever he wants and that is down to him to organise, be steely, op. You can do this
Join the discussion
Please login first.