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Is it normal for a guy to act different around his friends and brothers than around his wife?

(24 Posts)
Snafu1988 Sat 04-Nov-17 01:36:11

Does your husband ever do that or is it just me who has a husband like that?

clownfaces Sat 04-Nov-17 01:56:56

My brother will always put me first. He has been with his partner for 34 years. I love her and she knows how much my DB means to me. He doesn't act differently around us.

MrsTerryPratchett Sat 04-Nov-17 01:59:34

I have different conversations with different people.

I'm sensing this is more than that? Is he acting poorly around them?

clownfaces Sat 04-Nov-17 02:00:12

What is the problem you have OP?

MyKingdomForBrie Sat 04-Nov-17 02:15:36

Clown your brother puts you first above his DP? That doesn’t sound right.

Snafu1988 Sat 04-Nov-17 02:16:02

No, not really. He just acts like another person.
To give an example... dh is unhappy at his workplace because trying to lead the people there is like trying to herd cats and there is one man who is like a diva... long story... I have a thread about this.

He tells me about this every day... but it seems he never told his brothers... or his friends...

When he is with them he is always smiling, like jolly and jovial... and when he is with me he is complaining a lot... not about me (only a small fraction of his complaints are about me) but mostly about his coworkers, his health, stuff like that.

No he is not acting poorly but sometimes I wish he would have some of his jollyness for me.
In our relationship I am happy if I am around my friends, his is happy around his friends (and avoids my friends whenever possible); but when we are alone he is in a sullen mood.

Snafu1988 Sat 04-Nov-17 02:16:38

I basically just wanted to know if this is normal. Maybe it is.

BitOfFun Sat 04-Nov-17 02:18:46

This sounds normal to me. People put on a bit of a front to outsiders. Unless you mean that he is unpleasant to you, and doesn't treat you with respect?

Snafu1988 Sat 04-Nov-17 02:22:03

No, not unpleasant, but I wish he would be a bit more jolly around me.

Snafu1988 Sat 04-Nov-17 02:23:10

I mean his brothers are not really outsiders, are they. But maybe men are different around other men then they are around women.

clownfaces Sat 04-Nov-17 02:46:10

MyKingdom Yes. My brother has known me for all my life <53 years> He has been with his wonderful partner for 34 years. I have alway been close to DB (and his partner) and although my DH is my best friend and the first person I talk to, DB is the second in my life. His partner also knows this. I would never test the relationship in asking who was more important, he probably would pick his DP I hope but we are very close.

I have an adult DS who has had many serious relationships but it doesn't interfere with my relationship with him.
What's unusual in that?

clownfaces Sat 04-Nov-17 02:51:39

Are you saying that he is happy around his brothers but miserable when he is with you?
Maybe he is being false around his brothers but being his true self when he is with you?

Oblomov17 Sat 04-Nov-17 04:01:35

I thought this was actually quite normal. Dh and I have a good moan to eachother about his job etc. Things that have got on my nerves. Daily.
But when we go out, to a party, dinner with friends, you don’t moan about it then, do you?
I whataspp my 3 friends with funny bits, but also moans aswell. Thus I get it all off my chest. Is that more female? Is this a man bravado/being jolly thing?

MistressDeeCee Sat 04-Nov-17 04:54:49

Its very rude for a man to be sullen and unhappy around his wife yet jovial with his friends. As if she brings him no joy. A relationship is a love partnership, not one person there to be a vent for when you're pissed off. Yes that can be part of a relationship, even acceptable as long as not too often. But regularly? No.

Too many excuses are made for men's poor behaviour on MN. Someone will likely come along in a minute with "is he depressed? Stressed at work? etc etc - you know, anything to explain away his treatment of you. It can never be that a man is just rude, or insensitive or uncaring. Out comes the online medical diagnosis

Why don't you address it with him OP, see what he says? Tell him exactly what the issue is and also how it makes you feel

Its hard to live with a person who doesn't laugh and banter and share with you. Have it out with him and I hope he takes on board what you say, because at the very least it must be boring in the extreme.

Do you laugh together, sometimes? When its the 2 of you only? I hope you do

ElsieMay123 Sat 04-Nov-17 05:02:22

OP are you my mum? grin

That sounds a lot like my dad. I was genuinely shocked as a child when I saw him laughing and singing (!!) at the pub with his mates 'cause he was the biggest grumpy bum around the house with barely two words for any of us. In hindsight I think my folks weren't happy back then (not suggesting this is same as your situation) as now he's a lot better but still has quite different personalities. I used to think he was 'faking' with strangers and friends, but it's totally genuine he just behaves totally differently with different people. I think in a way he sort of relaxes at home, and forgets that being a bit nicer to people closest is a good thing to do. My mum still gets frustrated with it, and I can understand why.

So yeah, I'd say it can be quite normal, but it can also be a drag to listen to someone's whinges. Maybe you can suggest that he finds another kind ear to listen to all the crap since it makes his problems yours?

fia101 Sat 04-Nov-17 05:25:15

Yep - my husband never complains around his family “everything is great” smiley happy. I’m not allowed to complain or moan either - may be that’s manners but I’m really open with my family. At home he can be tired and grumpy working full time and small kids. Change from grump to smiler when his parents walk through the door amazes me.

BarbarianMum Sat 04-Nov-17 06:01:09

Men are taught from a very young age that expressing any weakness (inc sadness, vulnerability, uncertainty) around other men is a big no-no. So they don't.

mindutopia Sat 04-Nov-17 06:39:47

Yes I think that’s probably normal for most people. We tend to show how we really feel with the people we’re closest to and put on a bit of a front with everyone else. He obviously feels he can share that stuff with you and frankly you’re just around day to day. The friends and family aren’t so he pulls it together around them and probably adjusts himself to their moods, not wanting to bring anyone down or talk about serious stuff with them. I think most people are like that.

We’ve had a serious incident in the family in the past year and we are now nc with MIL and her partner. It’s been really distressing and painful and like literally our dd no longer has a grandmother and my husband has lost his mum. Somehow he has still NEVER even mentioned this to his friends. Like no one has any idea we’ve gone through this hell. He sad he ‘doesn’t want to ruin their day’ by bringing it up and being such a downer. I don’t think it’s healthy but I do think it’s a fairly normal reaction.

Changedname3456 Sat 04-Nov-17 08:05:48

As a guy myself I can tell you that neither my brother nor my close male friends would want to listen about how shit I was finding work. Certainly not more than once or for extended periods. So I wouldn’t broach it.

I also went nc with my Mum for a period of about six months following her complete inability to comprehend the problems she was causing my then wife (I don’t think she’s ever actually accepted she was in the wrong, but that’s a whole other subject). The point is that I didn’t mention that to any of my friends, some of whom I’ve known a very long time and who are (what I’d consider) close. And my brother didn’t find out from me either.

Maybe I’m not the norm in this regard. But if I’m not, then almost every bloke I have ever known is not either grin

madwoman1ntheatt1c Sat 04-Nov-17 08:10:14

I spent 16 years managing (mostly) men in the air force and don't know a single man that behaved the same way in front of his wife and family as he behaved with his peers. (I would see them in all contexts, work, socially with and without wives, drunk, sober, at family events etc.)
I found it enormously frustrating, but grudgingly admit that, well, if all of them doing it means it's 'normal', then, well, yeah, it's 'normal'.
but normal.

Snafu1988 Sun 05-Nov-17 00:04:11

Thanks for the answers.

MyKingdomForBrie Sun 05-Nov-17 00:25:50

clown are you really asking me what is unusual about a man prioritising his sister above his DP? As that is what ‘putting you first’ means. You cannot seriously tell me you think that is normal.

Yes he’s known you longer.. but ffs his partner should and must come first other wise what the hell is their relationship.

Thinkingofausername1 Sun 05-Nov-17 14:13:32

Get you op. My dh completely different with people at work. Very confident and chatty. Completely different story at home. People have advised me that you do, have to have a different approach at work. Especially in senior roles. Not sure if that’s helpful

SandyY2K Sun 05-Nov-17 15:08:24

I think it's normal not to moan about your job or be miserable with siblings it friends.

Having said that ... I'm more likely to complain about my work to my sister and vice versa.

Her DH would find a way of making it her fault.

I would have to tell my DH to make some changes or stop moaning about it.

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