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Practical advice please - considering leaving DH (long - sorry!)

(10 Posts)
Sallypuss Wed 14-Oct-09 11:52:59

I've posted about my relationship with DH before and in a nutshell, we've been together for 9 years, married for 3 and have one DD who is 12 months old. For 6 of the 9 years we have been together DH has made no financial contribution to the relationship - he ran his own business for 2 of those years but business fizzled out and he has, in my opinion, been half-heartedly looking for work.

I went back to work in May having taken 6 months' maternity leave and work 4 days per week. DH looks after DD for 3 afternoons per week and is with a great childminder for the rest of the time. I have a very well paid job and financially we get by.

Other than the ongoing issue of DH not working/contributing financially, we'e been looking at moving house and have sold our house and found somewhere to buy. The new house is at the top end of our (my) budget and whilst affordable, it will mean plundering my savings account and that there are no treats/holidays etc. I'm financially cautious (responsible in my book) and have a really strong work ethic. DH doesn't share these views and, I admit, I knew this when I married him.

In short, I've got cold feet about moving. The financial commitment feels huge and onerous. Despite numerous conversations with DH (using my contacts to find him work,paying for him to get his CV redone, sending him job adverts) he is doing nothing to demonstrate to me that he's actually looking for work so I'm in no doubt that the financial burden will continue to fall on my shoulders (and yes I know there's a recession on but in my book 6 years without work is taking the p*).

Our sex life has twindled to virtually nothing as I'm permanently shattered (get up at 5am to go to work) and if I'm honest, I just don't respect him any more and am starting to resent him. I do love him but don't feel loved by him. I feel more like his parent than his wife.

I reached a tipping point last night when I told him I was feeling a lot of pressure about the house move/financially/at work and he didn't even respond to my comment which really hurt. On the tube to work this morning I seriously considered not buying the house together and leaving him.

I've done the financials and can afford somewhere decent with DD. I will be better off financially each month having left him. My questions are practical ones:

- would I automatically get custody of DD (bearing in mind I work and she would have to be in childcare);
- would he be entitled to any of my assets (other than half the house which is in joint names) i.e. pension etc
- am I mad considering being a single parent and giving up on my marriage (my parents divorced and I know the havoc this can wreak). I worry about the loneliness but feel lonely in my marriage anyway.

sarasusie123 Wed 14-Oct-09 12:16:20

He is taking you and your income for granted, if he isn't at work, why are you paying for a childminder, if roles were reversed would he be paying for childcare while you were at home or would he expect you to look after your own child and the home full time, have the dinner on the table and listen to his troubles, I think so.
I don't know about the financial implications but as he is unable to provide a home, food and clothes for your child without you then why would anyone give him custody. It is tuff being a single parent but it is better than being a cart horse. If you can get a nice little house for you and DD and find good childcare so when you are working your backside off you know she is safe and happy then kick him out. He can still see her and if he isn't working can help with cildcare. I was in your situation but couldn't really afford to be on my own but decided I would rather be totally skint than be a doormat. So I left, he is still a lazy arse but I am not paying for him to sit on his backside all day. I am now with his complete opposite after 5 years on my own, sometimes think that although I had no money It was the best 5 years ever, me and my little girl against the world, she is 10 now and we are so close its ridiculous, we are a team and I wouldn't change any of the choices I made for us. Good luck xxx

LoveBeingAMummy Wed 14-Oct-09 12:19:41

You need to talk to him so he knows how serious it has now got. DD needs to go somewhere for he day and you need to sit him down and tell him how you feel and that you are now at the point of considering your options. Be clear you don't want to split up but that you feel there may be a time, and quite soon where this is the only option unless something is done now.

stellamel Wed 14-Oct-09 12:29:51

What LBAM said, talk to your DH first, let him know how you feel. He may have not idea - blokes can be incredibly stupid at times, or he may be burying his head in the sand.

Good luck smile

Ealingkate Wed 14-Oct-09 12:29:56

Definitely talk to him first, just for the sake of your LO. Can you get to the bottom of his work / lack of situation?? Does he not want to work?? Does he not know what to do?? Does he want to be a SAHD? How does he spend his time when your LO is at the childminders??

From the financial point of view he may very well be entitled to half your pension.

skihorse Wed 14-Oct-09 13:26:37

I think there are two issues here but I'm not sure which is more dominant or causing the most worry.

The first issue of course is the fact your partner is a SAHD - for 6 years this doesn't seem to have worried you unduly and it sounds as though you love your job.

The second issue is that you have to plunder your savings account and kiss goodbye to holidays and treats taking a huge financial gamble. You said yourself you're very good with money and are a responsible person.

So my question is - what's giving you the heebie-jeebies? The big money worries or the non-contribution of your partner. Would you still want to be with him in a cheaper home?

Sallypuss Wed 14-Oct-09 13:40:35

skihorse DH isn't a stay at home dad. He looks after DD for 3 afternoons per week under duress (from me!). The fact that he's been out of work for 6 years effectively has worried me and I've just got to the point where I can't put up with him being out of work and making no concerted effort to look for work any longer. In answer to your question, the potential house purchase has brought me to a startling realisation that if we move, I can see no end in sight to me being the sole breadwinner (nor can I if we stay put in our current house).

I will feel hugely responsible if I cast DH out (effectively) without a job or home to go to or any means of affording it (though he would get half the equity from our house sale). My main concern though is for our DD - I don't want her to be the product of a broken home but I really have reached the end of my tether.

FABIsInTraining Wed 14-Oct-09 13:44:00

If you made a choice for him to be at home then that would be okay but you haven't and he isn't even choosing to look after his daughter.

I think talking to him is fair. Tell him exactly how you feel about things, what you need him to do and what the consequences will be if he doesn't.

Parents splitting up isn't always bad for children.

skihorse Wed 14-Oct-09 13:51:10

hi Sally Well if this new house has brought it all to a head maybe you need to put the brakes on that - at least for the time-being so that you can concentrate on dissolving your relationship if that is the choice you make.

Then you can worry about a new house - but don't put too much on your plate - a good job, buying a new house and ending a relationship is a lot to deal with and none of us are superwoman.

Best of luck.

missingtheaction Wed 14-Oct-09 14:08:53

You need to talk this through with a counsellor, on your own. Phone relate now, and give yourself (say) three sessions before you make up your mind.

BUT you've posted on Mumsnet so on the basis of what you've said
- put the brakes on the house purchase now. Right now.
- as you know in your heart, dissolving a relationship is not easy or simple and you need to think very very hard before taking such a drastic step.

For example:
- For divorce purposes marital assets are shared assets. this is what 'All that I have I give to you' means in the marriage vows (along with 'won't shag around' etc). If you are married, have a child and both came into the marriage with pretty much nothing then 50% of all the equity you share is his. That means house, savings (whosever name they are in and whoever earned the money), pensions, whatever. If you are howling in outrage imagine you were a bloke and your DH was a woman and he wanted to leave the marriage.
- 'custody' of DD would depend on lots of things, not least what you can agree between the two of you. If the person earning more money 'automatically' got custody there would be a lot more single dads than there are.

Do what Skihorse says, junk the house and focus on the marriage. Good luck.

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