Mumsnet Logo
My feed

to access all these features


My BF won't STFU about WWII and today I had a huge meltdown at him.

241 replies

questionzzz · 28/10/2019 00:44


BF of one year is a teacher, no kids of his own, and very sweet and lovely. I know ppl always say that but he really is. Very gentle, animal lover, vegetarian etc.
Also a huge history nerd (in his own words), espcially WWII and the American Civil War. Now generally I don't mind that- I did A-level in History and have a fairly solid grasp of the historical outline, I think, although I have specialized in another field of social science.
He usually does go on a bit about the historical documentaries he has watched or books he has read, kinda does go on and on a bit. Again, I generally don't mind that. I have two kids, and I actually appreciate dating someone who does most of the conversational "heavy lifting".

The last couple of weeks however I felt the WWII stuff was reaching a particular intensity. I can't quite describe it. Like he literally wouldn't shut up about it, except during actual sex. I started dropping hints, eg a few nights ago on the phone, he was at it again and I said ok I feel sleepy now and gotta go, listening to you go on about WWII is a sleeping pill hahaha making ajoke of it, but I did end the conversation. I've also mentioned that you know there are other atrocities and terrible things, human beings are pretty good at doing appalling things to each other, have you heard of Rwnad, the Khmer Rouge, Kosovo etc, and he would say something like, yes but in terms of sheer numbers, the Germans blah blah blah blah.

Anyway today we only had three hours to spend together. Our time naturally limited due to the fact I have kids and am a lone parent. We were also planning on doing something else after intimacy. So we're dressed and ready to start the other thing, and he gets on about WWII. I glance at the clock.

Now I really don't know why i didn't say look, stop talking about WWII, we said we would do this other thing, can we do it please (it's cringey, just an art project we're suppsed to be working on- which was his idea by the way and he bought all the supplies etc for). I just listened, thinking he's gonna stop soon. Surely he can't go on.
, It's not just the length of time, as I listen to him babble on, I feel he has this creepy insidious admiration for the Germans? Like he's talking about this amazing war? And he wants me to admit that this was the most significant and incredible event in modern history? he didn't say it in so many words, like he didn't actually directly say "and weren't the Nazis incredible", but I almost felt that where he's heading?
About 20 minutes I did say a few times can we please stop talking about this, and my voice was getting a bit emotional and upset, but he seemed to be stuck in his head, and didn;t seem to hear me.

At the 45 minute mark I got up started putting on my outdoor clothes to leave while having a completely insanely angry meltdown. I can't remember quite what I said but certainly Fuck off, don't touch me, i can' stand you, what are you trying to accomplish, are you trying to get me to admire the Germans and WWII - what is your fucking problem, all in there.

He was completely horrified and shocked. He says he has no idea I was becoming agitated and upset. Certainly no admiration for nazis. WWII was appalling. He asks me what else is going on. I have my fair share of life's stressors, but this is the first time I've had a reaction like this to him, just sheer insane anger. I tell him it's you,, I;m angry at you, don;t try to blame other things, you weren't istening to me.

He acknowledges he wasn't listening to me. Eventually we make up.
WTF happened?
WIBU to be so angry? Actually I had a vision of hitting him while I was angry, police officers arresting me and asking me why I was violent, and me saying because he wouldn't stop talking about WWII.
How crazy is that?

OP posts:

RyvitaBrevis · 28/10/2019 16:00

I know a few guys who have gone through an "obsessing about the Germans in WWII" phase. This is just me, but I think it's an expression of the crisis in modern masculinity they are experiencing, on one level. Most of them are 100% fine. One of them I really worry about.


KindOranges · 28/10/2019 16:09

I know a few guys who have gone through an "obsessing about the Germans in WWII" phase. This is just me, but I think it's an expression of the crisis in modern masculinity they are experiencing, on one level.

Mind you, interesting that women have experienced a crisis in modern femininity without developing an obsessive fascination with Nazism.


mathanxiety · 28/10/2019 16:15

It's not just one weird incident.

He is doing in extreme form what her own make family members used to do.

There is too much to deal with in this relationship.


CanISpeakToYourManager · 28/10/2019 16:19

He is doing it more as he gets more comfortable in the relationship.


RyvitaBrevis · 28/10/2019 18:51

@KindOranges Well, women on the whole are generally pleased to finally be given rights so less cause to be harkening back to the good old days [of senseless military aggression]?


questionzzz · 28/10/2019 19:10

@RyvitaBrevis @KindOranges Grin
When I think about it more, it was more the subject-matter and the feeling he was trying to get me to admit the incredibleness of WWII or something that sent me off, more so than the talkiness, also that the feeling that time was slipping by and we were "wasting" our short hours together.
But yeah, the talkativness too. And then the feeling of being trapped.

If he does continue like this obviously the relationship won't last whether we want it or not.

OP posts:

yellowallpaper · 28/10/2019 19:27

You need to talk to him firmly and he needs to listen to you. That way this would have been avoided. He's probably saying to himself, I'm a dating a psycho? While you're saying am I dating an obsessive.

Ah the joy of not communicating clearly.


KindOranges · 28/10/2019 20:43

@RyvitaBrevis, I was think of recent developments where the biological category of being a woman has been redefined by entitled men with a ‘feeling’, leading to women’s safe spaces being no more, women’s sport becoming a nonsense, and a sudden rise in ‘female’ violent crime.


JulietTango · 28/10/2019 20:56

Maybe he should follow
@RealTimeWWII so he can follow it and talk to other people obsessed with ww2.
It is in 1941, so 3 years through. Although we're coming up to the bombing of pearl harbor and the Americans joining the war


JulietTango · 28/10/2019 20:57

That's on Twitter


flobonobo · 28/10/2019 21:53

@Angi1979 It sounds like you’re projecting about a different personal situation perhaps.

To tell someone to fuck off that hasn’t listened time and time again, isn’t abusive. Whilst OP says she didn’t shout. Even if she had it wouldn’t be abusive. He’s blatantly ignored her frequent requests/ wishes and continued to harper on. Someone with verbal diarrhoea is frankly torturous in my experience.

Things are banded about as ‘abuse’ constantly, to disagree with someone or to only be heard when you swear or shout is not abusive. It’s a sign maybe you need to separate but not abuse. its a normal reaction for many.

I was abused verbally and physically for 13 years. It belittles my experience to hear people like you label normal reactions as abuse.

OP, hope you’re ok.


Angi1979 · 28/10/2019 22:36

questionzzz that's my real point. Doesn't seem to hear you. Either you're not assertive in expressing yourself or you're not with someone who is worth speaking to. Maybe both. It all seems rather pathetic- in the literal rather than pejorative sense- to me. I used to be very much like that- people pleasing, emotional, prone to tears. It's very liberating to throw off those shackles. There are plenty of ways men could take a leaf from our book but this is one area we can learn from them. No passive aggressive bullshit, no hints hidden as jokes, say what you mean, tell people what you want and don't be afraid to cut them out if it's going nowhere.


Angi1979 · 28/10/2019 22:40

flobonobo no projecting, although I was engaging in hyperbole to make my point - being that her reaction is harmful to herself too- hence she's on here whining- rather than asserting what she wanted originally. No need for shouting and tears once you've learned to assert yourself properly. Amazing how much better you feel too.


Angi1979 · 28/10/2019 22:43

yellowwallpaper exactly! So well said.


Neverwouldhave · 28/10/2019 23:01

So I did engage with him some more (I didn't say sorry though) and I think we are in a better place now. I really don't want him to feel he has to be on eggshells around me

But you can't be walking on eggshells around him either. It sounds unbearable, OP. Someone talking for that length of time is rude and bloody boring. I'd leave him.


Neverwouldhave · 28/10/2019 23:03

And the fear he'll leave you, the sudden anger, the feeling you wanted to lash out, is there nothing more to this? Nothing else he's doing to make you feel insecure or worried?


flobonobo · 28/10/2019 23:45

@Angi1979 “on here whining” - or asking advice? This persistent tone and response on mumsnet upsets me.

Just because it’s not a real face to face conversation, doesn’t mean you should be so flippant or non empathetic to your fellow human unless they have given you perhaps personal cause.


mathanxiety · 29/10/2019 00:28

I disagree, yellowallpaper.

When you find yourself in a relationship where the meaning of the word Stop has to be explained, you need to compose a Dear John letter and block him on your phone and SM.

The fact that he was able to hold off talking about WWII, and was able to say and do the right things, until the sex part was over makes me think he quite capable of prioritzing and categorizing his interests in the moment.
I think you need to discount autism therefore, and accept the fact that your boyfriend is what you fear he is, someone obsessed by the Nazis in an unhealthy way (and someone who should not be allowed anywhere near impressionable minds). Also someone who doesn't listen to a partner. You have been in an abusive relationship before, @questionzzz - did you get any counseling afterwards?

Is bubbly conversation worth the tradeoff of feeling desperate and trapped?

Are you too focused on avoiding silence in a relationship because of your previous experience of a surly, brooding, menacing person in your home?

I suggest you haven't shaken off the fear that comes with the sort of abuse you suffered with your exP and that chatter reassures you.
But ignoring requests to stop is a red flag even when it's 'just' a monologue.

People in a relationship should be able to sit comfortably in silence together.


questionzzz · 29/10/2019 01:09

hello again :)

Yes my workplace at the time we separated offered 10 free counselling sessions which I took- but it was very focused on immediate practical solutions and safety issues (he had threatened to kill me, police were involved, it was horrible, really horrible), not about my general relationship skills and lack thereof. And that was over three years ago. the actual divorce was finalzied in Dec. This is my counselling now :)

Honestly I have never felt like this with him, trapped and desperate and cursing before. This was the first. We have had smaller upsets, eg him arriving late due to traffic or stuff like that, but always mature and adult- no cursing sobbing etc. No fighting. I loved that! I felt so grown up and wonderful! I even told him that! I have been upset about other things while with him- he has seen me distraught and cry before, but he was never the cause- until yesterday.

I have no doubts that the baggae from my previous relationship affects me now- I have told him as much! but it was abundently clear to me that the incident yesterday had nothing to do with the ex.

It seem pretty clear to me to, if next time we see each other we have regained the former easy breezy footing, then I'll probably hold on. But if this continues, and I'm not saying this in a threatening way, just in a sort of matter-of-fact, obviously way, if I am to have a meltdown every time or even every other time then we'll have to let go even though it is painful beacuse like I say I have become somewhat attached.

I have to say, dating post-awful-marriage, with no kids and property etc involved has been wonderfully liberating, just the freedom to let it drop. The stakes are just so low. You're not enjoying yourself? Off you go. Even the way it hurts is kinda affirming, at least you know you're not dead inside.

OP posts:

Angi1979 · 29/10/2019 01:28

It just strikes me as an obvious answer. They have no common ground, he bores her to tears (literally) and she goes from doormat to screaming psycho in 30 secs. You post asking for opinions then that's what you get- opinions. My opinion is it's all a little pathetic. You disagree. If a man gives a forthright opinion he's a strong alpha. When a woman does it she's a bitch who should alter her tone. I'm not playing by those rules I'm afraid.


flobonobo · 29/10/2019 01:41

@Angi1979 nothing to do with male / female. Just assumption, brashness and empathy. I’ll be honest, I’m can be pretty brash in every day life on situations and friendships I know. I’m known as the brutally honest friend. But online you don’t know who people are and text doesn’t convey a situation clearly.

You sound super straight forward which I admire.


Coyoacan · 29/10/2019 02:12

I know you say the subject matter got to you, but how can you cope in conversations that are just monologues? I've had friends like that, though I don't think they ever really cared what ear was there to listen, but I couldn't have a relationship with someone like that.

My dd has managed to bounce from one abusive relationship to another, by choosing people who are seemingly the opposite of the one before. Be careful OP.


Angi1979 · 29/10/2019 05:15

flobonobo I am very straight foward nowadays unlike years past. Not everyone likes that but it does mean I don't have the kind of irrational blow outs the o.p described. My advice- which she can take or leave- is designed to help her reach the same place, should she want to. She's entirely free to ignore me as is anyone else. My life is unaffected either way. It's helped enormously in relationships though. I don't have irritants building up for weeks or men in my life that annoy me. Most men find me to be too blunt- as is their right. The men who don't mind my straightforward talk I find are worth having around so it's win-win. I'm afraid I'm not into ego stroking nowadays- and that includes the o.p and anyone I've offended. If words printed on a screen from a stranger cause deep distress to anyone, I'd suggest the issue is with them, not me.


AgentJohnson · 29/10/2019 06:19

He sounds incredibly boring and you are a horrible communicator. Apologise for the meltdown because there was a more direct and clear way of communicating your displeasure without resorting to acting like a child.


tillytrotter1 · 29/10/2019 11:51

He can come and live with OH who is obsessed with AIr Crash Investigation, especially just before we fly off on holiday. He once sat on a plane before take off and gave me a run down on all the crashes this particular model had been involved in, long before Rachel and the phalanges on Friends!
He's also very interested in the American Civil War, we've tramped round many many battlefields and I've become quite well versed, if you can't beat them, join them. The Ken Burns series gave me a long list of gift ideas for birthdays and Christmas!

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Sign up to continue reading

Mumsnet's better when you're logged in. You can customise your experience and access way more features like messaging, watch and hide threads, voting and much more.

Already signed up?