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Just expressed to DH that no, he can't take DCs for a walk whilst on holiday.

(301 Posts)
Spatime Mon 27-Jul-20 11:59:59

Sat here crying at this situation.
We're on holiday and I'm unwell (stomach related). DH has said he's going to take our 2 almost 3 and almost 5 year old DCs for a walk.
I nodded and got back in bed, before a wave of panic came over me. He can't actually watch them when we're somewhere different. Every family day trip, outing so far has been me keeping the kids safely in tow whilst DH stares, dreamily at the landscape, the sea, the mountains. Each time I turn away for a few seconds to get something out of my bag, one DC is on the loose, or wandering off in the distance, unnoticed by DH who continues to watch the boats go by.
He is a complete dreamer and appears to walk around in a daze. He's much better if he's somewhere he knows well, afterall he has to watch them for one day a week whilst I work, although he often takes his mum along with him if he takes them out which is comforting.
The way I feel hadn't really dawned on me, other than feeling irritable when we're all out together and I'm watching the kids and saying "come here" "no don't do that" etc etc whilst DH is in a daze.
DH is very sheltered I think and is unaware that bad things happen in the world and that there are bad people out there and you have to keep your young kids close.
I probably am a little overprotective- I anticipate plenty of responses telling me this is my problem and my anxiety (to a degree perhaps) but genuinely, DH is always in a complete dream world. Friends and family comment on this a lot. It's nice to be with someone so Zen, but this hugely impacts my trust for him when it comes to the children. A year ago, I thought about leaving him (other reasons) and I'm thinking now that my trust for him when the kids are in his care partly held me back.

I'm saddened that I've just had to explain to him that, no, I don't want you to take DCs for a walk to a new harbour that we haven't been to before. He's asked me why not and I've told him why. He looked very hurt before shutting the door and walking out of the room. I can hear that they are still in the apartment so I don't think he's taken them, but I feel really upset at the conversation I've felt I've needed to have with him and also at the revelation, that actually, I don't trust him to look after the children when he's somewhere new.
I'm expecting responses to include me being "controlling" but I'd love nothing more than to be able to lie here, relax and concentrate on myself whilst the DCs have a lovely day with a fully engaged other-parent.

OP’s posts: |
toomanyplants Mon 27-Jul-20 12:05:55

I feel sorry for you being unwell while on holiday, but my heart breaks for your partner.
He is a grown man, and a father, come on...give him some respect.

IAintentDead Mon 27-Jul-20 12:06:41

When you are there he sees you as responsible I am sure he will be different when he is on his own with them. Especially as he has them on his own at home.

They are his kids too - I think it would be best for you to bear the discomfort and encourage him to take them out. The kids will also react differently when you are not there.

Myyearmytime Mon 27-Jul-20 12:06:52

You know if you leave you will HAVE leave the kids with him and you will have no control over what he does with them .

whattimeisitrightnow Mon 27-Jul-20 12:08:03

Honestly, he doesn’t sound ‘zen’ or ‘dreamy’, he sounds completely bloody useless. I’m a daydreamer who admires nature when I’m out and about, but I still keep a watchful eye over any children in my care because I’m a responsible adult. He doesn’t have the right to be hurt/angry about you calling him out - it sounds like you’ve been doing 95% of the parenting. He has to get his mum to come and help when he watches his own children?? How utterly pathetic.

I think even if you did split, you wouldn’t have to worry about them being alone his care, because I doubt he’d go for anything more than minimal contact: he can’t be too interested in his DCs as he doesn’t bother to stop them wandering off. I’m sorry, OP, and I’m sorry you’re not very well atm.

StoneColdBitch Mon 27-Jul-20 12:09:10

Just because you have different approaches to risk, that doesn't make you right and him wrong. I feel incredibly sorry for your husband.

Would it help to access some support for your anxiety?

SengaStrawberry Mon 27-Jul-20 12:09:47

Oh Jesus, in the nicest possible way as you’re unwell, get a grip.

whattimeisitrightnow Mon 27-Jul-20 12:09:52

He is a grown man, and a father, come on...give him some respect.

Respect has to be earned, not given. And he doesn’t sound like a grown man.

Sofasogood1 Mon 27-Jul-20 12:10:00

What bad thing has actually happened while they've been under his care? As long as they're happy and don't get hurt what's the problem. Is he really going to be so neglectful he lets them walk off a cliff or whatever.

DifficultPifcultLemonDifficult Mon 27-Jul-20 12:10:05

He does that when you're there because you pick up the slack.

I don't think it's up to you to 'let' him do anything, he's a parent too, but you're setting yourself up as the default parent, and he's letting you.

I would be furious if I were him.

Aquamarine1029 Mon 27-Jul-20 12:11:17

Does he acknowledge or even realise that he's not engaged/attentive with the children when they are under his care?

Do you think it's possible that he's flakey only when he knows you're there to provide back-up? On his own with them he might be different.

whattimeisitrightnow Mon 27-Jul-20 12:11:48

I feel like I’m reading a completely different post to some of you. So if your DH took your kids out and didn’t watch them/allowed them to wander off whilst he stayed in his own little world, you’d be okay with it? Even if the argument is that he’d behave differently were OP not there, it’s clear that he leaves most of the parenting to her when they’re out as a family, which isn’t acceptable.

ByGrabtharsHammerWhatASavings Mon 27-Jul-20 12:14:04

It's not "zen", it's lazy shit parenting by a man who is used to women doing all the heavy lifting in his life. Does he dreamily zone out at work, or is he capable of attention and focus when it suits him? This is a man who sees you as the default parent, so chooses to just do the bare minimum of being literally physically present. Atm he only watches the kids 1 day a week and it sounds like his mum actually does most of the work. If you leave him I strongly suspect he'll be, at best, and EOW dad and most of that will also be facilitated at his mums house.

DrDetriment Mon 27-Jul-20 12:14:40

I'm sorry you are so upset but you are being very controlling and unreasonable. He's just as much their parent as you are.

whattimeisitrightnow Mon 27-Jul-20 12:14:47

Also also, even if the DCs aren’t in ‘proper’ danger in his care, it can’t be nice to be with a parent who barely engages with you.

teablanket Mon 27-Jul-20 12:15:46

Unless there's a huge piece of information you've not shared, I think you're being massively unreasonable. Your poor partner. I'm a bit more "hands off" than my partner when it comes to parenting -- if he ever told me he didn't trust me to take proper care of our child, I'm not sure our relationship would survive.

DifficultPifcultLemonDifficult Mon 27-Jul-20 12:16:27

It's a vicious circle though, op tells him what he can and can't do with the children, he then sees her as the main caregiver, he treats her as the main caregiver, and so it goes on again and again.

AttilaTheMeerkat Mon 27-Jul-20 12:19:16

What do you get out of this relationship now?

What other reasons did you have for wanting to leave him a year ago?

I am wondering if he is being strategically incompetent here I.e doing a task like childcare so very badly or otherwise so poorly that you never want to ask him to do this again. He is useless and deliberately so too.
He even ropes in his mother to also watch his own children.

Does he act like this at work?. Likely not.

MitziK Mon 27-Jul-20 12:19:26

When has he ever needed to actively watch them - you've always been there, constantly stopping the little ones from doing anything?

You speak of him as though he's a nine year old with SEN, not a grown man and father of two.

Apologise to him, get back into bed and let him actually parent his children, rather than be oppressively parented himself.

ComeOnBabyPopMyBubble Mon 27-Jul-20 12:22:41

Did anything ever actually happen while they were in his care?

I'm more overprotective than OH, I know and recognise that. He's pretty chill, that doesn't mean he's lazy or incapable. He's just different.

If we're together I tend to take over, and I actually had to learn to take a step back and trust both of them.

There's no way a lazy,inconsiderate father would voluntarily offer to take two small children for a walk.

Oly4 Mon 27-Jul-20 12:22:52

You’re being ridiculous
He doesn’t look after them when you’re out because you’re there.
And your anxiety is controlling this situation.
Send him out with the kids!

My0My Mon 27-Jul-20 12:25:07

My DH actually did lose our DD when she was 5. He didn’t engage with her in a playground whilst I changed her younger sister. I got back to the playground, couldn’t see DD. DH was staring into space on a bench. There was, of course a big row! My DM and I were frantically looking all over the zoo. DD had made her way back to the snake house where she was spotted as being alone and taken to the lost child room. God it was awful and I do know how useless DH can be and no sorry was offered up either. Or any recognition that he wasn’t up to parenting. It was DDs fault for wandering off.

So, I would have talked to him but kindly and firmly. If he’s lost them before, then you won’t trust him. He needs to shake up. Mine had lazy form. When DD was 2 he told her to help herself to a sausage on a very hot bbq. Friends shouted at him and whisked DD away. DH is very bright, runs a medium sized business but just wasn’t alive to parenting and safety of his dc. I am not sure this can be learnt if they won’t engage but I think you should try.

Hellothere19999 Mon 27-Jul-20 12:25:32

He might be different when you’re not there? If you just say watch them properly please and if anything happens to them I shall be very cross?
Tbh my dad used to take 3 of us to the park and he’d nap on a bench and we were fine .... but yeah not the point.

DoorstoManual Mon 27-Jul-20 12:25:34

If I was him, I would be seriously questioning whether I wanted to remain married to someone who thought so little of me.

Shoxfordian Mon 27-Jul-20 12:25:44

If you're always there stopping them doing stuff and watching them then he probably doesn't feel he also needs to do it. He would probably be fine with them, I do think you're being a little controlling. Start leaving them with him more often, he's a parent as well so he should be fully capable of looking after them himself

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