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So scared - DH has said he's not happy

(9 Posts)
BaconAndEggs Mon 14-Sep-09 10:30:55

We have been arguing loads over the last few months, but I thought that when we weren't arguing we were happy. I knew we had to do something about the aguments but I put it down to lack of sleep and coping with a young DC and that we would get back on track. Sat night DH said he doesn't think it's right, that he's not happy and he doesn't want to leave me and DS but he doesn't know what else to say.

I am devastated. He now says he wants to try and make it work but I am devastated he would even consider leaving us. I love him, I don't know what I would do without him. DS needs him. I have efectively given up any chance of a career for our family, DH is the one who has been forging a career. I am trying to be nice and not argue and be affectionate so we can try and fix things but I am scared that DH just doesn't love me any more. What can we do? I have suggested relate (has anyone used them? did it work?) but dh isn't that keen.

shootfromthehip Mon 14-Sep-09 10:39:08

But he is saying that he doesn't want to leave you and that he wants to make it work. My DH and I went through similar last year and I was the unhappy one. When we weren't arguing we'd float along but that fundamentally didn't change the fact that I was unhappy generally.

You need to treat this as a wake up call- he isn't leaving you: you are not leaving him. You are not at the stage where many couples get to when one or other of them has already made the decision and there is nothing you can do to change their mind.

You have to decide if what he wants is reasonable- what is he actually saying? By focusing on his needs and not the fact that you are hurt by his crisicism of your relationship not being what you thought it was, you can try and move forwards.

We didn't go to relate as my DH wasn't keen either but we gave ourselves targets and timescales to work towards. Was I happier by Christmas? Was I happier by my birthday?

Don't be held to ransom as this has to be a mutual process but think about what it is you both want and how you can achieve this together.

Keep talking and try and take some of the emotion out of it. He's not happy, you accept that and want it to work- how can you fascilitate that together?

You are a team and can fix it but have to do it together.

Good luck xx

shootfromthehip Mon 14-Sep-09 10:40:55

Oh and having young children is really hard and will stretch even the strongest of relationships- he needs to accept that too.

Sorry for the typos too!

BaconAndEggs Mon 14-Sep-09 10:48:08

Thanks for sharing your experiences shootfromthehip, that's the thing - he says we aren't even acting like friends at the moment. It's true we often are both on the computer in the hour we get after DS goes to bed, and I know this is something we need to stop, but I thought we had lovely times together at weekends etc and if anything he is the one who can be moody.

His needs are for more sex partly I think - I have a low sex drive now and struggle to get in the mood - but mainly he says for us to get along and be happy. I asked if he wanted to meet for lunch today and he just said "I'm too busy", so now I feel rejected again and like I don't know what else I can do, I know this is silly but I am just so scared it won't work and I won't be able to make him happy

Can I ask what sort of changes did you make? I know every situation is different but I am at a loss what we can actually do other than sort out evening time together.

randomtask Mon 14-Sep-09 10:49:40

I'm so sorry you're having to go through this. As far as I can see, it depends on how brave you are and what you think you can do. From what you've written, your DH has said he wants to work at it too so all is not lost.

My sister has tried Relate (after her 2nd DC and lack of sleep/bonding leading to relationship problems with BIL) and it worked.

Is it only your relationship that isn't making him happy or is it his life? I know that sounds a bit silly but if he's having problems/stress elsewhere it's likely it'd come home before he dealt with it.

DH and I (although having a very solid/loving marriage) find sometimes 'life' gets on top of us and we seem to drift off from each other. A month or so ago it felt like we were parents/housebuyers but not husband and wife. So, we each wrote a list of 3 things we felt we could do better in our marriage and 3 things we felt the other person could do better. Some were quite important (be more considerate) others were smaller things that niggle (help wash up more) but it felt really good to be able to talk about our marriage and we've had a lovely last month enjoying our relationship.

Good luck and remember that every relationship has these moments, it doesn't mean it's over or that your DH doesn't love you. It might just mean you both need to try more.


posieparker Mon 14-Sep-09 10:51:16

How old is your DC? Only I thiknk the first year is the worst.

I recommend a book called 'stop arguing and start talking' by Relate, if you can't afford the counselling.

shootfromthehip Mon 14-Sep-09 11:11:49

I had two main issues with my DH- my first was that I felt like I was living with a robot. DH has a horribly busy job that takes him out of the house for 12 hrs a day and then he worked on the laptop from home every night. I felt like a single parent and he didn't even have time to talk to me- which leads me to my second 'ishoo': the way he spoke to me was like I was an irritant.

I am a very strong woman but just felt like he was treating me like shit. I too gave up a good career to stay at home and raise our children and felt like I deserved a certain amount of respect and consideration for doing that. I wasn't getting either.

The sex thing was also an issue- because he worked so late every night we would go weeks and sometimes months without it. I felt I was being starved of love (emotional and physical) and attention and had had enough.

Anyway things came to a head and we got to the point where I was putting plans in place to leave. I had a horrible confrontation with him where he accepted that he had emotionally withdrawn from me. He didn't want to split up and agreed to change things.

He had to change the way he spoke to me first- I think that was the bit that really got me. He has since admitted that he was under so much pressure at work that he felt like he was drowing but didn't want to admit it as it would be weakness. As I pointed out I am supposed to be there to help him through hard times, not to be treated like the enemy.

Much of the trust was gone- we had had a tough time adjusting to parenthood and has gradually let the affection and talking go- they had to be the first thing to come back.

I had to change how I was with him- I admit that I was very angry and resentful and I had to let it all go or we weren't going to get through it. he also had to get a new job- not easy in today's climate and he only starts next month so the change had to come from inside him rather before that if he wanted me to bear with him. But we were at least getting closer as we tried to get him a new job.

We also had to get some time together 'dating' as it were- remembering why we got together in the first place. We don't have any family around so we date at home- no TV, laptops and no pressure to have sex. Just good food, wine and conversation. We are a family but before that we were a couple and we had to get that back.

1 year on and things are better. We face challanges together and are more affectionate. I accept my part in all of our troubles (being difficult and complacent) and so does he.

It has been a long shift though and it takes as long to come back from something as it takes to get there.

Anyway, this is massive and I hope some of it helps. Take care and good luck with all the hard work ahead of you x

shootfromthehip Mon 14-Sep-09 11:20:25

And men are simple creatures- if they say they are busy, they are busy- they probably aren't trying to hurt you. And, a bit of brow stroking goes a long way as DH will never accept that my ife can be as stressful as his because I'm not paid to do it. The feminist me hates that but it is a simple fact- I have to give him a hug/ placate him before he can think about meeting my emotional needs. My Dh is not a sensitive soul, he is selfish and arrogant but in a simple and pure 'male' way: his needs then mine.

I don't like it but I can't change it so I've stopped trying to.

Conundrumish Mon 14-Sep-09 11:30:42

I think what he is trying to do is just let you know. So many men in the posts on this forum seem to go off and have affairs when they are unhappy, so I think this is very positive that he feels able to be honest like this.

I think you need to give your relationship time after having a child (& I am talking years, not months). We have gone through an entirely normal rough patch after each child, and we have weathered each with the view that it will get better in the end ... and it has.

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