DH's bad temper has really got to me this morning. He gets quite cross a lot. He was shouting st the kids earlier and just being so horrible I asked him to stop. Then he got really moody with me, told me to fuck off & stomped out the house. (He was supposed to be doing the school drop)
To give some context we have been struggling with our relationship for the last year or so. Small kids, lack of sleep, moodiness. We do have good times but it just seems that he can't see how his moods affect everything.
We're both quite strong characters and I'm used to some arguments and accept that this is all part of the rough & tumble of family life. He's just SO horrible sometimes it's making me wonder when I'm going to have had enough. I just feel so sad and like nothing I can say to him makes any difference.
For eg: He agrees with me when we talk things through calmly, that he needs to make more effort to cheer up... do some exercise, drink less, go to bed earlier & maybe get some counselling for his anger / childhood issues... but then he never does any of these things and we're back to square one. I just don't know what to do just feeling sad & exasperated
What does love do? IMO love respects, love nurtures and is not selfish. People sometimes wear each other out, think of the old saying 'familiarity breeds contempt'. When a person truly loves you it is hard to doubt.
Have a look at the Theory of Sunk Costs here and on the internet, it may help you look at your relationship from a different viewpoint.
He definitely wanted children. He comes from a barmy family and has issues with his own father. I feel that he's struggling with lots of things. We just don't seem to react to stress very well. Him especially. We're neither of us the very calm quiet type. When it's good it's fantastic. When it's not it's just so sad and frustrating. I love him and I love our boys. And I don't want to break up our family.
This sounds exhausting. On a practical level, can you find a suitable counsellor for him that specialises in anger issues? If he's previously acknowledged he needs this, but doesn't organise it himself, I would book an appointment for him. Do you think this would work and he would attend?
What you describe is not part of the rough and tumble of family life at all; he is verbally abusive and uses that and moodiness (which is really another form of emotional abuse) amongst other control methods to keep you all in line. Such men like you describe will never sit in front of a counsellor and if they did they would require years of therapy. He does not want to do that work on himself because he also feels entitled to act as he does. His own family of origin taught him all this crap and he is simply acting out what he knows, they likely feel they have done nothing wrong either.
I can see why he does not want to split up with you; he would then have to find some other woman to look after him and put down as you have been. That all takes time and work.
What is in this relationship still for you; why have you stayed with him?. You state you love him, is your love for each other really based on codependency?. I would reiterate the suggestion to read up on the sunken costs fallacy in relationships.
Counselling for you is essential to be able to talk in a calm and safe environment. Do not find a counsellor for him; he is not your responsibility when all is said and done.
What do you think your children are learning about relationships here from the two of you; would you want these young people to repeat similar in their relationships?. I would think not. But you are currently teaching them that their dad's treatment of you, and in turn them, is acceptable to you on some level.
You don't get anything out of this relationship with him do you?.
He will simply continue to wear you, and in turn your children, down by words and his own innate selfishness. He is responsible for you feeling tired and sad. Your boys pick up on all the vibes, both spoken and unspoken at home, and internalise it as well.
He won't change but you can change how you react to him.
Have you considered seeking legal advice re separation; after all knowledge is power and you could really do with taking some of the power back. I would also suggest you have a chat with Womens Aid and see what they say too.
So if it is affecting your children in such a negative way - why do you stay? And you are tired and sad. Well - do you not think you deserve better than this? Do not martyr yourself to being his verbal punchbag with the misconception that you staying with him is in any way good for your children. You are just teaching them that men can abuse women and women will stay and tolerate that treatment.
"I would like to work together to madge things better"
It won't happen and it takes two also to make a relationship. In a marriages like you describe you as the non abuser co-operates. The abuser never co-operates.
"Just wondering ... has anyone ever been to relate and it actually saved their marriage?"
Why is saving this seemingly so important to you?. Can you see him going to Relate, it will likely be a no from him as well.
Some relate counsellors can be pretty much useless when it comes to abuse within relationships and no decent counsellor worth their salt would ever see you in the same room together. Joint counselling also is never recommended where there is abuse of any type within the relationship.
Counselling for you alone would be helpful if only to work out properly why you have stayed to date.
Do not do your bit here to keep showing your children that his treatment of you is somehow acceptable to you.
Most people do not get married with the intention of getting divorced. Sometimes things need working on. He has agreed that counselling would be a good idea. He has his own complaints with me. As I said I'm not perfect either. I really don't feel that ripping our family apart would be the best move here. I think we would all suffer. Thanks for your replies. But I'm not just going to walk out without trying to see if we can fix things. That's just how I feel.