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So worn down and fed up

(31 Posts)
ColdAndSad Mon 04-Dec-17 09:47:49

I can’t do this anymore.

My son rolls his eyes and complains whenever I ask him to do anything around the house. And even then he does the bare minimum, and has to be reminded several times to even put the dishes away.

He goes out every night, in the car we bought for him, and complains when I ask him to do anything to help clean and tidy the house. We have mice in the house and his bedroom is badly infested because he takes food in there and leaves it lying around, but he won’t sort it out. He interrupts and argues with me whenever I ask him. He has learned this from my husband, who is often very dismissive of me.

Neither of them make any effort to tidy up after themselves. They bring things into the house, put them down, and rarely put them away. They never tidy up or clean unless I ask them to do specific things, and then they only do them after several requests and several reminders.

We bought our house many years ago and it’s still a building site. Three years ago, my husband got builders to strip the plaster from the hallway walls the week before Christmas and it's still all unplastered. Four years ago, we bought a stair carpet which has still not been put down because my husband insists we need to do other building work first so we have bare stairs. I used to try to get builders in to do things but my husband was critical of them, and blamed me when things went wrong with them. I couldn’t stand the shouting so now I leave it to him—and nothing happens.

The house is huge, and every room is full of mess and untidiness and dirt. I can’t stand it. A month ago I told my husband and son that I wasn’t going to do anything for Christmas unless they stepped in and helped me clean and tidy so it was nice. They have done nothing. I reminded them both on Saturday and they looked blankly at me. My son has since done nothing. My husband put the kitchen bin out yesterday and scooped out the cat litter tray while I was out, but only because I asked him.

Last year my husband pushed me into agreeing to remortgage our house in order to buy a business that he said would make us hundreds of thousands of pounds every year. We bought the business but he has done nothing with it in the year since (it involves heavy manual labour, which is beyond me, otherwise I’d do it). It has earned us very little. I don’t know how much because he makes excuses when I ask him.

Yesterday I went to the optician to get my glasses adjusted and they told me I might be losing the sight in one eye. I came home and told my husband and he didn’t even comment.

My husband snores very badly when he drinks. He now sleeps in another room away from me, because he’d rather drink and snore than remain sober and sleep with me. He’s drunk almost every night but denies it and gets angry with me whenever I try to speak to him about it. He shows signs of alcohol dependency (sweating heavily in the mornings, hands shaking, looking pale). He drinks at least four times the maximum recommended amount, usually more, and he drinks every night, but insists he doesn’t drink too much. Three times in the last year he’s pissed himself in the bed at night, and not even noticed. He denied it when I told him last time, and got angry with me for washing the bedclothes and cleaning up after him. He said he wants to see evidence of it next time it happens. He obviously doesn’t believe me that it’s happening.

I cannot bear the mess and squalor in our house. I really can’t. The entrance hall is caked with mud from everyone’s boots (we live in a farm). There are coats all over the place, and shoes and boots. Tools all over the floor. There’s a generator, a workshop heater, and lengths of cast iron guttering in the entrance hall which my husband put there over a year ago and hasn’t moved since. I have panic attacks when I think of how much work there is to do, and how little help I have with it. I want it to be nice for Christmas, as our eldest will be coming home from university. It wasn’t so bad when he was at home because he would help me clean and tidy. I am going to have to tell him not to come home because of the state of everything, because I am going to stick to my guns and not do anything until my husband and younger son put some effort into cleaning—and I know they won’t.

We have had numerous discussions over the years about how things have to change, how I can’t live like this anymore, and they always end up with me in tears and my husband shouting. The only time he didn’t end up shouting at me he went downstairs and told my son he wasn’t going out and had to help with cleaning because I was upset. They swept out the hallway and tidied it up a bit (ignoring the guttering, heater and generator), and that was that. Nothing else happened, and nothing changed.

I feel like driving off to a hotel somewhere and not coming back until it’s done, but I know my husband will just be angry with me if I do. And that they’ll not do anything to the house anyway. I will just come back to a house which will be even worse than it is now, because they’ll not do anything while I’m gone.

And I can’t even leave him because we can’t sell the house as it’s in such a state no one will buy it. And if we sell it, we lose the business we’ve invested in so heavily (it’s in our outbuildings, lots of heavy machinery that can't be moved easily). And if we don’t sell the house, I can’t afford to live anywhere else.

Also we earn money through the companies we own. We are paid minimum wage, and then get dividends. I am certain that if I leave my husband he will be difficult about paying maintenance, because he controls the companies and has made sure I am not very involved. I am in my late fifties and in poor health and gave up my career to bring up our children and move to the country, where I’ve become more and more isolated and friendless (I can’t invite friends here because it is so awful and couldn’t work in the industry I trained for because it only exists in London).

I just don’t know what to do. I can’t see a way out and even if there were one, I’d be alone and friendless and homeless, with no money and no chance of working. I don’t know what to do. I just know I can’t do this anymore.

TammySwansonTwo Mon 04-Dec-17 13:20:35

Oh sweetheart - I am so sorry. What you've described sounds like a living hell. I'm so sorry you're having to deal with this.

I don't think there's an easy solution to this because it involves them changing and that will be an uphill struggle. I can also see that you're very financially trapped with the house in this state.

I would say you need to make a list of everything that needs to be done before your house is saleable / all the work is completed. Write out everything, even things like "hire a plasterer" and ideally a date by which things need to be done. Assign tasks to people. Take some on yourself, delegate some to your son, assign some to your husband.

Make sure that "gain an understanding of the company finances" is on this list and insist on a meeting with your accountant and sight of all the company accounts. Personally I would also include "action plan for businesses" on there - time to be ruthless - if something isn't profitable, can it be made profitable. If not, you sell it. If so, what needs doing and by whom.

Prioritise the tasks that need to be done by Christmas and sort the list by date order. Colour code it by who is responsible for each task.

Call a family meeting with DH and ds. Don't blame them (even though you should) but say you've all let things get massively out of hand with the house and you can't go on like this and you've made a plan to get it all sorted. This is more than reasonable and if you are completely reasonable about it then it's harder for them to argue. Give them copies of the list and stick one on the fridge and tick off what you do as you go. They need training up to be responsible family members!

ColdAndSad Tue 05-Dec-17 07:04:08

Thank you so much, Tammy. I read your comment yesterday and was in tears, you are so kind.

I've tried putting lists up of all the things that need doing, and telling them that things need to change, and that we all need to work together. They agree, and might do one or two things on the list; but then they slip back into their old ways and get resentful again.

I don't think they're going to change. And I don't think I can go on like this.

category12 Tue 05-Dec-17 07:48:38

Tbh I would get financial advice on the quiet, see if you can work out something. Even if you walk away with very little, a small place on your own whether renting or bought, that you can keep nice - and just leave them to it.

Teensandfuture Tue 05-Dec-17 08:19:57

But meantime get miceinfestation sorted and hire a team of cleaners,Bill it to your husband and son equally. They have to pay it ! No excuse! Maybe that way they'll realise being scruffy costs a lot!

calzone Tue 05-Dec-17 08:26:20

Could you have a room to yourself and make it nice?

Put a lock on it but have a sort of bedsit?

The wetting the bed would have finished me off. Disgusting behaviour.

rizlett Tue 05-Dec-17 08:32:18

Before you make any decisions about exactly what you want to do op perhaps consider contacting Al-anon for families of alcoholics. It is hard to acknowledge that we need help but they will truly understand where you are. They won't tell you what to do but will help you work out the best way for you to be where you want to be.

al-anon.org

grobagsforever Tue 05-Dec-17 08:33:34

This sounds horrible. I would make the list of everything that needs to be done and do it myself- your husband and son are lost causes. Then I'd leave him and sell the house.

merrykate Tue 05-Dec-17 10:43:29

I found your post quite upsetting to read. You are an absolute saint for putting up with all of that for so long.

Obviously the house is an issue but so are the relationships between you, your husband and your son; they have no respect for you.

Have your eldest over for xmas so that he/she can see how bad it's got. It will do you good to spend time with someone other than your DS and DH whose behaviour towards you is actually appalling.

I would make steps to leave. You deserve to be free from this nonsense. Good luck.

haveacupoftea Tue 05-Dec-17 11:20:59

I think you need to go to CAB and talk about what benefits you would be entitled to if you left.

GreenFingersWouldBeHandy Tue 05-Dec-17 11:34:27

Oh sweetheart, I hadn't even got to the bit where you said I feel like driving off to a hotel somewhere and not coming back until it’s done which is exactly what I was going to suggest, even if for a couple of nights to give yourself a break from this selfish pair of twats.

Agreed, it sounds complicated, but there must be someway to leave... it sounds AWFUL and you have my totally sympathy. Sorry if that doesn't offer much practical help, hopefully someone with more useful information can post?

Bringbeboback Tue 05-Dec-17 11:40:26

This sounds awful. Are you able to have your own bedroom? If so, maybe make that room really nice and clean and your own little sanctuary. Sleep there to get away from the snoring. I would also look into moving out. Is there anyone you could stay with even for a month like a family member? Maybe once you've gone your family will realise how much they took you for granted. Could you afford the mortgage if your husband moved out?

LastOneDancing Tue 05-Dec-17 12:07:58

This sounds so awful OP. You're being treated like staff, not a wife and mum.

You're going to have to be really, really brave to change any of this. I'm sure I'm projecting but I can feel that churning dread of shouty confrontation coming from your post - sorry if I'm wrong. Are you concerned your DH might become violent if the shouting escalates?

Could you go and visit your older DC - at this time of year there might be a spare room in their house/halls for a couple of nights and you could get some headspace?

God I hope someone comes along with an amazing advice and a solution. For what it's worth I think you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by getting out of this situation.

TammySwansonTwo Tue 05-Dec-17 12:15:08

I'm sorry that you've already tried this and it didn't work out. In that case it's really tricky. It sounds like if you left they'd live in absolute filth and not even notice. No wonder your son is like this with a role model like his father - would your husband respond if you came at it from this angle?

How about money - is there money to get in some help? Would your DH be more likely to help if you tell him that either he does stuff or you're paying someone else to do it?

I wish I had a magic wand for you as this sounds so awful. Huge hugs to you flowers

mumofthemonsters808 Tue 05-Dec-17 12:30:04

What an awful situation, such a sad post. I'm so sorry for you OP, I'd rather live alone in a one bedroomed flat in a dumpy town than like this. I just hope 2018 could be the year things are turned around for you

Oliversmumsarmy Tue 05-Dec-17 13:27:30

How old is your dh?

Can I ask what happens to your house and the businesses if your dh suddenly died or became incapacitated as it doesn't look like your dhs health is in great shape.

You say you are not really involved with the business side of things. Is it just that your name is on the business but you are not allowed to get involved

Would it be possible to look at the business that you just remortgaged the house for and see if the figures added up that you could employ someone to do the heavy lifting side of things and you run that business.
In the meantime get rid of the mice. I would seriously consider getting a cat or 2.

Then like others have said make yourself a bedsit.
At some point you can make a huge list of things that need doing in each room to make the house better.

If you stay at some point your dh will not be around. You can't abuse your body the way your dh is and think you can live to a ripe old age.

At the moment it must feel like you are thinking through treacle.

What your dh and ds needs to realise is if you decide to pull the plug on everything there won't be a house or farm or business. You will need your half of everything and you would need to be paid. Either that or your dh will need to pay you off in which case you can start again somewhere else.

Anonagain2017 Tue 05-Dec-17 13:38:56

Make selling the house an absolute priority then. Is there much equity in it? Could you just tidy it up a bit and sell it for less than its worth?
First thing I would do is to tell your husband you have had enough and that you want out of the marriage. Tell him the house will have to be sold and get an estate agent round to value it. Then let your husband see how low the value is in its current state. Maybe that might spur him on to help get it sorted.
Please go and see a solicitor too. Family solicitors are used to hearing about difficult living arrangements and can tell you your rights.
Please don't put up with this anymore. Take a stand and steps to change it.
I think you sound like a wonderful lady who deserves SO MUCH better than this.

Butterymuffin Tue 05-Dec-17 13:44:26

Do you have friends anywhere else who could have you for Christmas? Or maybe you and your son at uni could find somewhere to go together?

calzone Tue 05-Dec-17 16:18:58

I honestly think I would take a room for myself as a haven......bed, armchair, heater, kettle, microwave and TV.

Decorate if necessary and nice curtains. Make it cosy with tea lights and fairy lights.

Leave them to their mire.....

And never sleep with H again.

RatherBeRiding Tue 05-Dec-17 16:47:13

Time to harden your heart OP. Father and son are lost causes and the father at least will not change and at the moment the son has no reason to. Your H is an alcoholic. Your only way is out the front door straight to a solicitor.

I get that the house is a tip but if there is any equity in it at all then it needs to be sold. You say you and your H own some companies - doesn't matter if he "controls" them if your name is on them.

You need legal advice, and fast. What on earth is there to stay for? You seem to be focusing on the state of the house, but that's a symptom not a cause. The cause is your husband's utter disregard for you and his alcoholism. Which won't change any time soon, if ever.

ColdAndSad Tue 05-Dec-17 18:12:59

So many of you have been so kind. I can't begin to tell you how much this means to me. Thank you, all of you. I am a bit embarrassed now.

I'm estranged from my family, and over the years the friends I had have drifted away because I've not wanted to ask them round to our house. So I don't really have anywhere else to go. Otherwise I would probably have gone by now.

I do feel heartened by all your advice and kindness. I am going to talk to them tonight, and tell them once again how I feel, and say that if they don't sort out the house in the next couple of weeks they will HAVE to sort it out in the new year because we'll be selling it. It is in joint names, mine and my husband's, so I am not entirely powerless in this regard.

If they pay no attention to me I'll go and stay in a hotel for a week and see if that helps.

I do feel better having read all your kind words, and know that I'm not being unreasonable in asking for them to contribute to the tidyness of the house. Thank you, thank you.

I'm a bit overwhelmed.

Doublemint Tue 05-Dec-17 19:57:51

Could you go and spend Christmas with your DC in their university city? Get an air bnb or hotel? Treat it like a holiday and leave DH and your son to their booze and squalor

calzone Wed 06-Dec-17 23:38:36

How did the chat go OP?

LastOneDancing Wed 06-Dec-17 23:39:41

I have been wondering how you got on too cold. Hope you're okay.

RunRabbitRunRabbit Wed 06-Dec-17 23:49:04

You can leave him. You really can. The machinery can be sold. The house can be sold. Yes, you'll get less money than if it were lovely, but you'll still get money. See a divorce lawyer.

You could be living in a lovely little flat on your own. With plaster and carpets and everything.

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