Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Please give honest opinions and advice on whether I should split with my DH

(86 Posts)
halia Mon 07-Jul-08 12:54:37

possibly long - sorry

Me and DH have been together for 9 years and married for 6 years. We've got one 3 yr old DS and won't be having any more (joint decision)

Its always been a relationship we had to work at, neither of us is brilliant at living with someone else and losing independance and it worked best when we each had our own lives and connected with each other over dates and fun times.

Since DS was born its got worse and worse, our sex life is crap (used to be good) we've tried to fix it but i am getting tired fo trying. tbh it feels like DH isn't willing to change his behaviuors around sex, if I don't like it the way he does it thats tough. Plus he mentions fairly often how good he is in bed etc.

(he does say I'm good in bed too and that I'm gorgeous all the time)

DS has health problems and some SN and its been a very long, tiring and worrying 3 years. Alot of DS stuff has got better this last year but tbh our relationship hasn't imrpoived that much

We can't seem to do everyday 'boring' things without it becoming a huge issue or argument. The only time I really enjoy being with DH is if we dump DS and go out for the day.

Now I know the obviuos answer is that its the stress of having DS but I feel its more than that.

DH constantly moans about not having any fun, but he doesn't DO anything to make it happen. Its like the burden of organising stuff is always down to me. I've talked to him about this and said it would be lovely (and make me feel sexier) if he would arrange a babysitter so we could go out. He never has, its always me who has to ring up.

In a way its like this is a hotel (not a very well run one) he doens't seem to make the effort to remmber anything to do with the house, for example he doens't know what days the bin collection is, or what the phone number for our sons GP is.

I can't see this changing even as DS gets older and healthier. I'm just so tired of trying to run the house (not my favourtie job anyway) and feeling like I get no thanks.

Thent here's the biggie, I have some health problems. I suffered badly from PND when DS was born and have recently been diagnosed with a nuerological condition. Its fairly scary at times and upsetting/tiring. Because I'm so tired, run down and depressed about our relationship I tend to get lots of illness's. I KNOW its annoying, it bloody well annoys me but Dh treats it like a perosnal insult. He has NO sympathy at all and he will ignore any sign of pain etc. In feb I felt really ill, chills, fever, aches, it was like awful flu and I coudl hardly get out of bed but DH just said "well you do get alot of these dont' you, i can't stay home or take DS to nursery I'm too busy at work" trotted off to work leaving me with a 2 yr old roaming freely round the house whilst mummy threw up and passed out in the bathroom. I got myself to the GP who said I had viral menengitis and was very ill.

Did DH offer to help at all when he found out? nope

Its happened again today. I kept having severe pains in my side and back all weekend. DH said it was cos we'd gone swimming and I was very unfit and he was a bit achy too. I tried to explain it wasn't liek muscle pain but he just tuned me out. I went up to the GP and I've got a severe kidney infection and possible kidney stones.

god this makes me sound like I'm flalin apart, I do feel liek that i knwo my helaht is crap but it feels like DH makes it worse. feeling so crappy and depressed all the time is awful and I feel so pulled down.

I'm so isolated as when i left my last f/t job I lost alot of contacts and friends and DH has deliberatly cut off contact with most of our joint couple friends. I literally have no-one to talk to except him and my family.

When we met it was like he was my best friend and lover, now both of those things are gone. the sex part might come back but most of the time i just dont' want to spend time with him.

I know he's msierable too and wants it to work but I just dont' think it can. We've completly lost each other and alt of the time I think he doesn't even know me.

We have tried relate but it was awful, DH spent the whole session being sarcastic and awkward (too long to descirbe how), when we got out I asked him why thinkign he might have felt shy or something and he said he'd done it deliberatly cos obviuosly I'd gone there to prove I was right and he was an ogre so he thought he'd play that role for me! (and waste £65 into the bargain)

I've tried seperate counselling for my problems with sex and its gone nowhere except to tell me I was deeply truamatised by DS birth (early, vicous, no pain relief, tore)

My GP said I'd had PND and shouldn't have put myself udner such pressure to try and get back to normal re sex. I DIDN'T, after only 4 weeks DH was badgering me and he hasn't stopped since.

please help, sorry this is a ramble, i'm just so miserable.

TheHedgeWitch Mon 07-Jul-08 13:04:13

Message withdrawn

halia Mon 07-Jul-08 13:21:43

I did go away last summer, I went away for a week and then DH took DS to visit his family. It was bloody marvellous tbh.

ObsidianBlackbirdMcNight Mon 07-Jul-08 15:27:02

It sounds dreadful and he sounds like an insensitive, unsupportive twat.

Tortington Mon 07-Jul-08 15:30:14

he sounds like an immature twat

onlyjoking9329 Mon 07-Jul-08 15:40:24

sounds like you are having an extremely difficult time, i don't know if your DH truely understands?
could you maybe show him some of what you have written here?
it sounds like there is a lot of built up stuff hanging around.
i could be well wide of the mark here but it might be that you have both put on your battledress to fight for stuff for your DS and you are still in battle mode, if that makes any sort of sense.
we have 3 children with autism and have had many many battles, i sometimes feel that i am bracing myself for the next battle when i don't need to.
sorry if this appears jumbled i am thinking out loud here.
i hope your health improves somewhat and that other stuff improves enough for you to find a way forward.

TheProvincialLady Mon 07-Jul-08 15:47:29

I can't see what you get out of this relationship TBH. And the icing on the cake is that he thinks he is good in bed, and says so, yet he obviously isn't interested in what you want to do and isn't going to change. That is symptomatic of everything else you have described. You would probably be better off by yourselfsad

beaniesteve Mon 07-Jul-08 15:53:03

Are you working at the moment?

boozybird Mon 07-Jul-08 16:16:54

Hi Halia,

sounds awful!

i have had a really crap time with BF ever since the birth of our ds, nearly 2 now. to be honest, it wasnt' that great before that either, we're not very well suited. we had counselling for a while which did help, but as soon as we stopped going it would get worse again. eventually i reached a point where i felt that i really would be happier if we lived apart. i told him this in a really calm way, and explained why, and what would need to change in the relationsihp for me to want to stay together. that seems to have really made a difference, and i think that's because i genuinely meant it - it was not a threat. we talked about how it would work and sharing childcare etc., and i think facing the reality of living alone was quite scary for him, and the fact that he could see i wasn't just having an outburst of anger meant that he actually listened to what i had to say and realised i really meant it. it's early days, but his behaviour really has changed.

this could be a good path to go down, but only once you've really thought it through, and worked out what you would do and how you would cope, so that you are comfortable with the possible outcome that he agrees it would be better to live apart too.

the most important thing is for you to talk to each other about what you really want - no sarcasm, no anger and no guessing. it's quite tricky. then you can both think about whether there's a compromise to be made and whether it feels worth it.

i have to say though, it sounds like he may not be a mature enough person to deal with that kind of honesty!

hope that helps a bit.

i hope that helps

halia Mon 07-Jul-08 19:37:16

beaniesteve, I havn't been working for a year whilst I saw consultants and got medication etc for my neurological condition. I was studying p/t for a BSc and organising the house renovation for most of that time.

I've just been successful in interview for a good job, decent wage, local and p/t hours which I will start at the beginning of august.

Why do you ask?

The thing about what I get out of it cuts to the heart of the problem. I've always said that what I got from being with him was someone who thought like me, who I could talk to, someone who shared my views on alot of things.
Alot fo that seems to have gone, we've both hcanged (to be expected over 9 years) but I think one of the biggest changes is in me, at 22 I was attracted to a level of independance, charm, and a slightly cynical unconventional approach to things.
At 32 I find that sometimes I just want to say 'grow up' and I feel that he pushes his opnions and views onto me. Like we've had this long discussion about having more fun, he wants more high adreneline, going out with friends, new things, type of fun. I said great, you decided what you want to do and I'll support you/ go with you.
He then said well you sound bloody miserable about ti so whats your idea of 'fun', I said fun wasn't as important to me as happiness and that my idea of happiness was more about lifestyle things, so going back to my music (I used to play as a semi seriuos amatuer), walking in the hills, having a lovely quiet garden.

he said I was incredibly conservative and none of that was any fun and I was just sad and miserable all the time.

Everything has to be new, and different with him. It's difficult to explain but he refuses to go back somewhere on holiday even if we had a great time purely because we've been once.

It relates to sex too, I feel like I'm a performing monkey sometimes. It always seems ot need to be a marathon session with wild sweaty stuff thrown in. And sometimes (quite often at the moment) I just want a cuddle and a 10-15 minute quickie.

last night I was saying I felt flabby and a bit depressed. After saying I wasn't fat just had a bit of a pot belly he then went onto say well wild rampant sex is good for burning off calories. All I actually wanted was a hug and a nice cuddle.

I have talked to him about all of this, several times. He says we just keep going round and round the same topics and I've pointed out that maybe thats cos we havn't resolved them.

I've tried to be adult about it, saying "you have X behaviuor which I react to badly, I get upset and miserable. Could you try and modify the behaviuor as it would make me happier and when I'm happier I feel sexier"

The behaviuor in qeustion was that when I said I was feeling ill he would just leave me alone without checking on me. I said that I would feel so much better if he could come up to the bedroom with a cuppa and check I was OK or if I needed the GP/medicine/ food/cuddle etc.

Sorry I keep doing marathon posts! Its just good to get some of it out.

Sorry I keep doing marathon posts! Its just good to get some of it out.

DarthVader Mon 07-Jul-08 19:54:04

"in sickness and in health"...I am worried that your dp does not support you when you are unwell.

What kind of alternative support network do you have and is dh standing in the way of you developing this for yourself?

halia Tue 08-Jul-08 10:03:44

What kind of alternative support network do you have and is dh standing in the way of you developing this for yourself?

I dont' really have anyone else, family or friends.

I don't know if he is standing in my way but I do feel I might get more support if I was a single parent. My health condition does mean that on bad days its not safe for me to look after DS on my own. Plus the strain of trying to do so makes things worse.
But if I talk to GP or HV abotu support they tend to say, well your husband is entitled to ask for flexible working, or can't your husband take unpaid/paid leave to help out etc etc.

Had a really bad morning today, problem is I'm not rational / communicative when things get bad (health wise). I just want someone to take care of things not keep asking questions and saying whats wrong now.

He kept going on about taking me to hospital and I was trying to say its just my ongoing condition a bad attack plus pain from kidney infection. Just look after DS please.

After hanging around for about an hour he left for work; in that time he didn't really do one useful thing like
get DS dressed
bring me a cuppa
bring me my meds
Ring and see if DS could have an extra half day at nursery
Take DS out of my bed and stop him bouncing on my stomach and back (yeah very nice with a kidney infection)
Do a quick wash up of breakfast things
stick DS pants in the dryer so he had dry clean things to wear.
Make a plate of sandwiches so I didn't have to worry about lunch for DS and me

please note I wasn't expecting all of this at all, but it makes me angry and upset that it didn't occur to him to do ANY of the above.

I know it must be hard for him coping and I'm sure my refusal to have the GP frustrates him. But the GP can't do anything, he'll just say its a bad day/ attack.

Mind you I think he thinks I'm faking it - I mean why else would he leave the house with his wife collapsed in bed after crying her eyes out, complaining of severe pain and exhaustion AND A 3YR OLD RUNNING AROUND LOOSE!

I was so scared DS would hurt himself before I could get up. Thankfully DS likes being on my bed so he stayed with me til I got up and got my meds. I then stuck his favourtie DVD on hate him watching so much TV but better a disney film all morning than him or me getting hurt.

god another whinge, sorry all. Its just helping to come online and get it written down.

I dunno, the extra stress of coping with DH behaviuor and unhelpfulness is depressing me, but then I sit here half-watching disney films and think how lovely it would be to curl up with DH and have lazy days together.

I just wish he'd admit he doesn't love me or even like me very much.

You poor thing. You do realise that living with this utterly selfish person is making you ill? He's utterly selfish, what screamed out at me from your posts is that there is NO ROOM for you in the spotlight, the attention must always be on him, and your illness is an inconvenience to him so he chooses not to acknowledge it; he's a solipsist.

I hope for you that you one day meet someone who will love you for who you are not what you can do for him.

JessJess3908 Tue 08-Jul-08 11:02:40

I like your ideas for being long term happy much better than his. They sound much more satisfying than high adrenalin stunts (what does he want to do? bungee jump while having hot sweaty sex?). They also sound like things you should be able to enjoy as a family. It's rotten of him to make you feel boring when you're sharing your hopes & dreams for the future with him.

Why has he deliberately cut off most of your couple friends?

It is v worrying that he doesn't look after his DS, let alone you, when you are ill. Have you told him that you feel like you'd be better off on your own? It sounds like you might well be.... sad

Jux Tue 08-Jul-08 12:45:42

Oh dear, you poor thing. My dh was very very similar after dd was born and I got iller and iller (ms diagnosed in the end). It was completely bewildering to me how he could hear me say things like "I can't stand up long enough to do the washing up" and still get really angry with me because it wasn't done; or how he could walk on and on and ignore me when I had collapsed in the street and couldn't get up again. He and his mum treated me absolutely as if I was a malingerer and a total waste of space.

I was too weak physically, and too exhausted mentally and physically to do anything but struggle through the next 5 minutes. This went on for several years. I found it a lot easier to deal with dd and life in general when he was out/away and felt pretty sure that if I were a single mum I would get a lot more outside help (if I asked friends for help with something, they would inevitably ask why dh wasn't helping, and I just ended up too embarrassed - for him!, not that he knew).

I was lucky in that I did start a very slow recovery, and as I got a bit stronger I started to demand more from him, in very small things at first, as I couldn't take the rejections he dished out. After a long long time I finally said that if he wanted the marriage to work then we would go to relate or else I would be taking dd elsewhere. We did relate - for a very long time. One session is not enough; you have to get all that stupid defensive stuff and then the anger out of the way before anything useful starts to happen. It can take ages.

I cannot decide even now whether I did the right thing by staying with him. Our marriage is not perfect by any means, but we spend a lot of time together - he is a muso so works evenings/weekends and is home all day. Our relationship is good; our daughter is fine and happy that we are both there for her. TBH I do not know whether we will stay together for ever; this is not really how I wanted marriage to be, but I doubt that marriage ever turns out exactly how you expect it to. We are happy, enjoy each other's company, he is more thoughtful (brings me tea in the morning to get me up!), checks on me when I am confined to bed and is much more able to show his caring, kind side than he was.

My mum used to say that sometimes it is really hard for a man to accept that someone he loves is ill and needs them in the way that illness made me need him - just for all those little things that you have mentioned: do you need your meds, do you need a cuppa etc. He is frightened that you are ill and doesn't know what to do, and therefore ignores it and then gets angry about it but it comes out as being angry and resentful with you. (I know this is rather patronising to men in general and I'm sorry about that, but my mum is of that generation where men had stiff upper lips etc. but actually, this is a pretty good summation of my dh's feelings.)

Since I haven't died but have improved (for the most part) he has got used to me not being the hugely capable, intelligent, sharp and witty person I was, or at least not all the time (not much of the time, truth to tell).

It has taken me a long time to realise (and to believe) that a lot of his really mean and selfish behaviour was born out of fear; and it's the worst kind of fear, because you don't really know what you're frightened of. It came at the worst time - grew during pregnancy continued after childbirth and peaked when dd was about 3.

I do not know whether any of this is remotely relevant to you. Forgive my ramblings; I still have huge issues over the whole of that period and have not been able to shake them yet, but will continue to try (writing this has helped me).

Very sorry this is happening to yousad

halia Wed 09-Jul-08 01:10:37

nealry crying again this evening. I need to know if i am beign unreasoble or nto here...

DH rang at 1.45 to say he was on his way home to 'pick up the caring for DS and check we were OK'

He arrived just as I got up from a nap and was about to wake DS up from his nap, he wandered off and got changed, then pulled out his laptop and spent until 5.30pm working. At one point he said "I'm going to need quiet in here for half an hour whilst I make a phoen call." I pointed out that DS was beign VERY quiet as he felt a bit under the weather and we were sitting colouring int he sofa. DH then said he'd go upstairs for the phone call.

At 5.30 he started to play with DS and I thought, finally I can realx a bit and DH can put DS to bed etc.

No, he then got his swimming kit out and said he was going swimming this evening (new hobby this week) I said great wanting to encourage him, only to then realise that unlike last night when he went at 7.30pm he was leaving at 6pm BEFORE DS bedtime. I did try and point out that I had hoped he could do the bath and bedtime routine but he just said that today swimming is only open til 7.30pm. I said I was worried in case I couldn't lift DS into his bath//cot. DH goes all wideyed and says whats wrong with your back then? I say "I've got a kidney infection, its really painful" he then says but your kidneys are here - putting his hands on his back. I just stared at him!

I got really upset after he left cos he's planning on going 3 evenings a week and I thought this one he could have skipped to hlep me out. Especially as I only have ONE evening when I'm out (which I frequently have to miss due to DH being away at work) and I try and make sure I get DS to bed first.

He barged in at 6.50pm and ran upstairs to say goodnight to DS (who was asleep in his cot). When he came down he said "I rushed through my swim cos you normally put him to bed at 7pm", I said I was sorry but he hadn't said he was coming back early. He went on again about rushing and I got sarky and responded with "I'm sorry I didn't interprit you saying DS can climb on a stool to get into his bath/cot as I'll make sure I'm back in time to help you out"

I just went ot bed then, it felt like I couldn't bear to be in the same room as him. I know if I bring it up he'd say I was being unreasonable and negative - am I?

Jux, your Dh sounds very like mine. He has doen some things which make me cry still to think of them. Once when I collapsed in the kitchen (before we had a diagnosis) I was so scared I was hyperventilating, crying and shaking. He stepped over me and sat eating chocolate cake at the table. He has improved since then, he says oh mummy's collapsed again and gets a blanket. but it all still feels cold IYKWIM. There's never any caring or warmth in his voice or actions its always this weariness and distance. He doesn't ever check on me aferwards or give me a hug or anything.

We got in a huge row about it cos he said I was annoying him cos I was just accepting it rather than getting angry. I nearly blew up... my attacks are partially caused by STRONG EMOTION, and really what good does getting angry do? Its a medical condition, its genetic and not something I can do anything about or change. There is medication to help control it and lifestyle changes you can make. Its not life threatening in itself (only through the risk of hurting yourself in a collapse.) He said he'd get angry and I said well thats your rection but this is my illness and I find its easier to deal with if I accept it, make the right hcanges and then get on with things. Being angry just uses up energy and makes me feel bad about myself.

When we talked about how he behaves when I am ill he says he was brough up in a fmaily where you ignored illness and just got on with things. (yeah like his family is a model of perfect coping techniques, two divorces, one extranged sibling, one in permenant psychiactric care, one prison sentance)

he said he was applying psychology in that he shouldn't reward me for being ill cos then I'd continue, and that bringing me a cup of tea or saying "you poor thing" was rewarding me with attention. That I should only get rewards / attention when I was well and happy.

He also said that if I cry he just thinks I'm being silly and putting it on, that if I'm ill I should really just say clearly and calmly 'can you do this'. In his words "I dont' respond to emotion" I DO TRY Honestly but he turns me down half the time or makes a big sighing production out of it. And tbh when I'm in extreme pain its difficult NOT to cry.

Jux, I just wanted to say thanks again. I dont' know if he is frightened, I doubt it cos he used to be a nurse but he might be feeling useless? I know he is angry about it.

madamez Wed 09-Jul-08 01:20:19

Holy shit you need to get rid of this man. His behaviour is abusive and dangerous - leaving a sick woman alone in the house with a 3-year-old while he goes fcuking swimming! And then telling you that your illness is all in your head and attention-seeking.
Get him out. What few good points he has will be appreciated better by your DS when he onl sees him at weekends/by appointment, because then he might be prepared to make an effort.

thumbwitch Wed 09-Jul-08 01:35:51

Halia the man is an IDIOT. He really thinks you are putting it on for effect! He has no empathy at all and clearly he has no interest in helping you come to terms with and deal with your problem.

A client of mine with MS saw me today and told me of a workmate whose son's wife was diagnosed with MS (b4 my client knew he had it) - the workmate had told his son to "get rid and move on" from his wife as she was draggin him down. Luckily the son had more integrity/decency/humanity etc. and stuck with his wife. Just telling you this to demonstrate that some men really can't be arsed with a less-than-perfectly-healthy wife/partner. Probably because they expect wife/partner to be their mum as well and do everything for them and it comes as an ALMIGHTY SHOCK to realise that they might actually have to carry some of the load themselves. Selfish wankers.

colditz Wed 09-Jul-08 01:38:39

Stop having sex with him, and contact Womensaid

He is an abusive, controlling man.

Applying psychology to your wife to stop her being ill is not appropriate behavior. neither is leaving her to do things she is not capable of doing. He is doing this to you. It is abuse, and not only is it abuse, it is child neglect.

I have to ask - his name's not Glen, is it?

thumbwitch Wed 09-Jul-08 01:41:19

Another thing, slightly off topic but still relevant - men don;t like to be made to feel uncomfortable and clearly your crying/being ill makes him uncomfortable.
My DH hates feeling guilty or tha the is in the wrong (like so many of them) and always turns it into a "if you would only say/do this in such and such a fashion instead of getting all het up about it then I would be more inclined to do it" - I have tried "just asking calmly" and it somehow fails to achieve the desired outcome as it doesn't convey the sense of need and urgency that shouting does! So I shout. I know I shouldn't but I do. It gets it done. Usually. and with a whinge. <sigh>

Your man needs to take a good long look at his motivation for putting your DS at risk in this fashion and sort himself out FAST before something happens.

dittany Wed 09-Jul-08 01:42:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsMacaroon Wed 09-Jul-08 01:48:20

I think you need to take the bull by the horns here and make it crystal clear that he needs to step up to the plate and show proper care and consideration, both manually and emotionally and if this doesn't happen immediately as of TODAY, then you will have no other option but to reconsider your future together.

He seems unable to grasp the seriousness of this situation but to be honest, your description of the way you react to him is equally sound apologetic and downtrodden and that has to stop. You are allowing this to continue and your child is watching this undermining and emotionally abusive need to nip this in the bud so that your DS sees a mother that although weakened physically, is strong within herself.

halia Wed 09-Jul-08 01:55:48

see I wonder sometimes if i'm making it up, I feel so unsure and have lost loads of confidence.
I certanly hadn't thought of it as abuse, but maybe I'm making it sound worse etc I know DH would say he'd not at all nasty or anything.

I don't think he sees DS as being at risk cos every time so far I've managed (somehow) to stay awake/ consciuos and able to sort of care for DS.

DS adores him and I'd hate to split them up, I think DH is not a bad person he just doesn't know how to be loving and caring. (weird family background)

We're in a position now where I could move out if DH would extend the mortgage on this house (lots of equity) to represent a half share of equity until he managed to sell it and then he could keep the profit. I dont' want to stay here, it was his house not mine and I've never liked it.

I'm happy for him to have DS some of the time, I think he's a good dad overall even if our parenting styles aren't always the same. I'd stay in the area and stuff so DS could spend 2 nights with his dad each week - is this reasonable?
I'm just so scared, I want to be happier and feel safe again, but i'm scared at the same time of losing DH.

thumbwitch Wed 09-Jul-08 02:05:53

gawd love you, he really has done a number on you hasn't he.

you are not making it up. He has sapped your confidence.

You have "managed (somehow) to stay awake/ conscious and able to sort of care for DS." and you think this is not risky?! Or that your DH is a good dad when he is happy to leave you in a parlous state with a son who also doesn't have the best of health?
Don't agree. I'm sure he has good intentions BUT he is still a non-empathetic, selfish IDIOT who is putting both your and your son's health needs aside to suit himself.

DO something about it - don't wait until the bad thing happens.

dittany Wed 09-Jul-08 02:08:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: