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Worried about my relationship for the first time(17 Posts)
Tonight I've had serious reservations about my relationship for the first time since we've got together.
We've been together 6 years, have a 2 and 5 year old and we got married this year.
He's always been really affectionate and loving. He works 50 plus hours a week and still does more than his fair share of housework and childcare. I work 30 hours a week.
Recently I've had a really difficult time in relation to my mum and dad both falling seriously ill separately. His dad died not long after we got together after 30+ years of being ill and his mum has had very serious illnesses and maybe has 2 years left with us. He has also had serious family issues to deal with since he was 16.
I feel he has not been supporting me emotionally since I found out very recently about my mum being ill. He argues that he has. I feel that every time I am having a hard time emotionally that I can't rely on him to be supportive. He strongly disagrees.
The thing is that normally I feel so loved by him and feel he does everything for me and our children. But when it comes to my parents becoming unwell I feel he checks out completely. He never ever comforts me when I cry. This is the complete opposite to his "normal" character. He is so loving to me normally, I don't understand.
Tonight, for the first time, it came to a head. I an really struggling with the news that my mum is seriously unwell. His mum has been unwell for a long long time so I thought I would get understanding from him. But no, he's a completely different person.
He says maybe he's shut off. I don't know. All I know is that I have to go elsewhere for comfort i.e. friends/other family etc. But I feel I should get the support from my normally loving, caring and affectionate husband.
Tonight, for the first time, I feel like I don't know him at all.
Does anyone have any advice?
Get your emotional support elsewhere. That might sound cold but it seems like he's having a hard time dealing with this for himself and he probably doesn't have much left to give/can't face those feelings.
Don't destroy what otherwise sounds like a great relationship. It's hard for both of you but I think you need to respect his boundaries on this.
I'm sorry for you.
I agree. Sounds like it’s too close to home for him. Has he had any counselling?
And I just wanted to say how sorry I am to read about all your families illnesses. Sounds like a really hard time for you both. Big hugs.
Sounds like a great guy and normally for guys when it comes to their mums it's hard to even think about
He hasn't had counselling but it is something I have been tentatively broaching and he did agree that it might be a good idea. This doesn't mean he'll go though!
He is very close to his mum and is finding it very difficult. He doesn't talk about how he's feeling very often.
I have been really wrapped up in my own thoughts and emotions lately as it's very recent with my mum.
Maybe I should cut him some slack over it. I was being very me me me and rather accusing of him not being supportive.
I feel awful now. I've never been in this situation before, with illness so close to home, so I'm finding it really hard to navigate.
What a sad and difficult situation for you both
He works 50 plus hours a week and still does more than his fair share of housework and childcare. I work 30 hours a week.
Plus serious family issues since 16, his dad has passed away and his mother is terminally ill...
I think he sounds like a good guy but he has a lot on his plate already and no one person can be everything to everyone.
I agree with iwasjustabouttosayth
you need to seek emotional support elsewhere - do you have siblings or an aunt/uncle or friends you can turn to?
Alternatively think about ways you can support each other in this - he is clearly struggling a lot with his mother...
As a question, Do you think you have offered the same level of support to him as you are now expecting from him?
@trojanpony That is a very good question. I think I've been supportive but maybe not as much as I could be retrospectively.
I'm most hurt that he doesn't give me a hug when I'm crying. It doesn't happen very often but when it has he acts oblivious.
He sounds lovely. Sorry you are both going through this. As soon as I read your post I immediately thought he has unresolved issues with his mum being Ill and maybe too close to home your mum being ill also, he maybe doesnt want to/cant confront his feelings about his mum and you are dealing with your feelings maybe all he knows how to do is shut down? Unfortunately that's how some people deal with situations they feel they can't confront.
From what you have said I don't think you have reason to question your relationship, you need to support each other and he maybe needs counselling?
I hope it works out. Look after each other
It's difficult to be objective when it's my relationship so I appreciate the comments, they have resonated with me.
I think I may have been taking him for granted without realising it.
My mother died of a terminal illness three years ago, she was only 63. I am now completely useless at dealing with other people talking about their own illnesses, I'll relatives etc. I just don't care anymore and have no compassion, sometimes I pretend but I hate it and often want them to just shut up. And if someone is old and has a usual old person complaint then my sympathy level is 0 on the inside, maybe shows as 10% on the outside. I am fully aware that it's not normal to feel this way. Your dh has a lot on his plate so I agree with others, try and seek support elsewhere.
So sorry to hear about all of that.
If his character has suddenly changed, maybe some things are happening his end. He's working 50+ hours, doing his fair share of house work, 2 children under 6 and his partner is in distress. This sounds like a very demanding and stressful situation he's in too.
I'd make some time for the both of you that doesn't involve work, kids, stress or grieving as hard as it may be. Find support and comfort in friends/family for the mean time.
It sounds like you take take take and only notice to complain when he runs of out stuff to give. That's not great, really.
Sorry about your situation but...you sound like a needy child in constant need for emotional support and interaction. Your husband knows your mum is ill, he acknowledges it, he still helps out in other ways, so what else do you want? And what does emotional support mean? Every time you get upset he should hold your hand and wipe your tears away? Most men are not like that, so please don't expect them to react in a feminine way with putting the kettle on and having a good cry. They usually deal with emotional stuff differently.
My DP recently lost his sibling and parent. He can't deal with other stress at the moment. I have a lot of stresses of my own and I've realized he just can't deal with it.. As I can't deal with extra stresses being piled on top of my stress.
Also what seven201 said.. I thought it was just me! I lost my dear dbro in very traumatic circumstances many years ago. I find it really hard to emphasize in some circumstances now; I feel like a bit of a cow but Its how it is.
He keeps things bottled up until eventually he breaks down over it and I never realise how bad he's been feeling until he shocks me with his emotions over it.
Fuck I think I'm the one with the problem. I take for granted his support and how strong he is and is always there with a smile on his face. Until the times he's not and then I feel guilty that I've not noticed he's not okay. He's not been properly okay in a long time but puts an act on that he is until he can't hide it any longer. After a good talk he goes back to his "usual" self for another spell. He was always so patient and laid back but lately he has been irritable at times which isn't like him and is short on patience sometimes.
We are both so wrapped up with work, the kids, housework, ill parents etc.
This morning the argument was ignored and we cuddled as usual and he was his usual sweet self. He was heading to work so didn't want to start a heavy conversation that we wouldn't be able to finish.
We are going away for a few days next week with the children which will be a good opportunity to have time together as a family having fun as we really don't get much time at all.
I actually never thought about the points you have been making about how he might not be able to deal with it due to everything he is going through himself. That never crossed my mind. I didn't know that was a thing.
As his reactions are so out of character for him it has taken me by surprise as I haven't really need support in this sense before so it's never really come up. In the past I've found it strange he hasn't always comforted me when I've been upset but have brushed them off as isolated incidents.
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