Stay or go?(11 Posts)
Hi, I'm newish and really need some advice. I just don't know what to do.
This is the story first: Have been with dp for 8 yrs, have lived with him for 5. He was divorced with 3 dcs who did not live with him but had alcoholic mum with a lot of issues. I brought my 3 dcs to live with dp and immediately his eldest dd (14 at the time) moved in. A few months later his other 2 dcs were placed with us by police after reports of violence at mums home.
Anyway the main problem is not any relationships between our dcs, they all get along brilliantly. It's dp's anxiety and depression. He is funny about spending money, he panics we will end up in debt. We both work, and I'm not a spender by any means.
I struggle to cope with his not pickiness, nothing is right. He can walk in a room and find something, anything to comment on. It's hard to list all of the little issues but they all mount up.
I have been feeling for a while it's time to go, but I don't know if I should. When it's great it's really great, and when it's bad I just want to run away. I feel trapped.
Should I support him and stick it out, I do love him very much. Or go?
He obviously has a problem, maybe MH, or he's not coping with such a large household....could be many things! But one thing for sure, if you don't talk about it/bring it out, it won't go away!
You're right, I will try to talk to him, he's very closed sometimes and gives silly extreme replies, making it difficult to have a proper conversation.
I think I will ask him to see his gp for some help.
Thank you for your response
I think you need to make some time to speak to him and say it's upsetting you, but that you're concerned that he's not happy and want to support him to get some help. Don't let him get away with flippant answers (my DH does this too when a conversation's getting too heavy for him, as a means of avoidance). One thing you could ask him to do is to make an effort not to say out loud all the little things that are bothering him, but to pick only those that matter most, which may help you feel less got-at.
But if there are lots of small things bothering him a lot, and he's anxious a lot, he might find a referral for some counselling helpful. Can't have been easy seeing his kids failed by their DM and then having to pick up the pieces. Not easy for you either - but possibly more guilt for him, or anxieties developed previously. Leaving doesn't sound like it would be easy for you with lots of children/teens who are reliant on you staying together.
Evergreen I will find the right time and talk to him. It all seems to be clearer now and I feel a lot more positive. He does feel guilty and does have previous anxieties from exw and his mum.
Thank you, am more optimistic and feel better already.
So between you, you have six DC. Wow, then you are doing well! It sounds like maybe he needs to hear that. There can be a lot of resentment and pressure if one parent is fully absent because of the huge life changes on the parent who has to make it work alone. With anxieties, emotions spiral out of control and it sounds like focusing on small stuff is a coping mechanism. But with six DC, everything will never be just right, thus increasing the anxiety.
If he tries to deflect with extreme replies, maybe ask him what is underneath that prickly surface - or something. As already suggested, be clear you want to help. But also make sure you have RL support for yourself too.
That's something I don't have, RL support. But hearing this advice makes me feel more in control. I think it's exactly as you describe, little things as a coping mechanism. I don't always deal well with criticism but I deflect this quite well, it's the dc who I feel for. They stay out of his way when he's at his worst.
He never gives himself any credit or looks to the positive, it drags you down in the end living with this mindset.
Looking to the future I will talk to him, ask to seek help. Maybe find some for me too.
It might help if when you talk to him, you slant the conversation towards, the problem (for want of a better phrase), being something you see as a joint situation, for which you are both culpable, (always two sides to a story) but more importantly, both hoping to resolve....present it as a team project!
It might be hard but don't gloss over this. It's obviously a big problem otherwise you wouldn't have posted. You both have a lot of kids, a lot to be responsible for. One or both of you may not be reacting well with the stress.
Has your DP always been like this?
Is it a recent change?
Whatever you do OP, don't brush it under the carpet. Set a time limit for yourself for it to change. Put it to your DP, try talking, try counseling, try talking to friends outside regularly to get some perspective. But keep that time limit in mind, 6 months or whatever. And review it, if nothing has changed, consider separating.
He has always been like this. It seems to get worse when he feels as though he has no control, and that he's being undermined. That in itself I can cope with, it's his reactions that wind me up.
You know, one of the things my DD said when I split from xH was that it was so nice to come downstairs without having to worry what his mood would be. The house is much more relaxed. I have anxiety and I find the mess stressful, so now and then I have an all hands on deck, get this cleared moment, as well as trying to stay on top of it day to day, but I have also had CBT and therapy to realise that a tidy house is not the main thing.
You and the DC should not be subject to his moods. I think bananas makes sensible suggestions. My xH used to always accuse me of undermining him, it becomes a way of silencing any criticism or different approaches. So be aware of the potential for that here.
Join the discussion
Please login first.