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Let's xmas over with and then we're separating, I said
122

rogerthat87 · 03/12/2021 23:07

So this is my day... a school run with DH in the car (needed a lift into town) where he criticised my driving 3 times.

I experienced a near miss later in the day where I was nearly hit by a car, and was shaken... DH did not say all the caring things you'd expect or want to hear and I had to ask for a hug.

Now this evening, he is having a go at me for having filled the kettle two thirds.

I did it in error and never boiled it. He is really cross with me but won't listen to the fact I didn't boil it. He thinks I'm going to boil it all tomorrow for 'one' cup of tea which is a waste.

I lost my shit. Wtf? Having a go at me for something I haven't even done? I kept asking him "what have I done wrong? You're mad because I put water in a kettle?" Whaaaaaat?

Don't I deserve to be heard when I'm telling him about something scary that happened to me today? He just started looking at his phone half way through me telling him about the near miss.

Don't I have the right to make a short journey to school, which I do everyday, without him remarking on my decisions, which even included the route that I chose to take.

Does it matter that I accidentally put water in the fucking kettle?

Anyway, after he got cross about me following a kettle.... filling a kettle for gods sake... 11 o'clock on a Friday night. What a saddo.

I lost it and told him that we'd get his birthday over with, get xmas done and then we're separating as I can't take his bullshit anymore!!! I stormed off upstairs. He's still down there watching tv.

What do I do now?

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Whydidimarryhim · 04/12/2021 06:17

Yes great post Penny - op look up what benefits you would be entitled to google entitled to - you will be entitled to tax credits - he will need to pay child maintenance - it’s not currently a healthy relationship - my marriage was like this - but it became physical - we are divorced now.
The problem is he’s choosing to not listen to you and he undermines you in front of your children. He’s not arranged therapy either. He’s not taking any responsibility to fix the marriage - you are the one posting here -
He can leave - is the house in joint names - does it have equity - have minimal interaction with each other - when my friend was struggling herself and her husband would text each other - it calmed things -

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lightisnotwhite · 04/12/2021 06:11

@Toseland

When I make coffee, instant coffee, I can still hear my ex in my ear, criticising me for not putting the milk in first- it’s been 20 bloody years though it’s quieter now.
I think some men when they are irritated will pick on anything available to criticise and be nasty. It becomes a bit of a habit.
I’d leave- I wish I’d left my ex sooner.

I don’t think it’s just men. When you are with the wrong person they do become annoying.
I’ve moaned at a partners driving (always stays in the middle lane, never knows where he is as relies on a sat hav), the way he walked, the way he talked; all the things people say are signs of an abuse. It was horrible for both of us. I didn’t want to be with someone I had no respect for and didn’t really like but my partner made it easy to stay.

Never been in a relationship like that before or since as he wasn’t my usual type. So much healthier out if it.
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MoonbeamsGlittering · 04/12/2021 05:15

@PennyWus Great post. OP - I think this is some really good advice.

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DeadoftheMoon · 04/12/2021 04:45

He sounds like a nasty, disrespectful, controlling pos to me. At couples counselling, he will convince the counsellor that you are in the wring and the onus will be on you to change to more fully meet his requirements. Get legal advice, and find out what you have to do for you and the dc to cope without him.

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Charley50 · 04/12/2021 04:35

Why don't you want to go to couples counselling? He sounds annoying, not abusive. I think you can come back from this as a couple if you can learn to communicate with each other better.

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GiltEdges · 04/12/2021 04:34

I'm considering a split but remaining in the house with our own rooms and designated evenings to be responsible for the children

This is madness, honestly. Your DC are young now but they won't be forever. Don't allow them to grow up in such a dysfunctional environment. They won't thank you for the psychological damage in the long run, just because they got to stay in a nice house with a lovely garden. I say that as someone who grew up in a similar situation and is now NC with one of my parents and not especially close to the other.

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Rainbowqueeen · 04/12/2021 04:17

You may only earn 600 quid a month now but it won’t be that way forever. On the basis that knowledge is power I think you need to do sone research. Find out what benefits you would be entitled to. It sounds like your husband earns well. Gather all the information you can on your joint financial situation. Then start exploring options. Because this is no way to live

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Iwonder08 · 04/12/2021 04:10

You know it has nothing to do with kettle. Just like you nagging him about minor things. It is not a cause, it is a symptom. You just don't like each other anymore and don't care about each other. Both of you need to find an optimal way to separate

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SD1978 · 04/12/2021 04:00

So he does absolute thing around the house, and is rude to you, but you want to continue to share the house and split up the tasks he doesn't currently respect you enough to do whilst you're together....that's never going work.

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starrynight21 · 04/12/2021 03:55

If your plan for separation is to stay in the house together, why wait until birthday / Christmas ? If you were moving out, fair enough, but if you're planning on staying together physically you can do it now. Less talk, more action is the way to go.

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AvocadoTrees · 04/12/2021 03:47

It doesn’t really sound like you’re done. It doesn’t sound like a very good relationship at all, negative and nit picky critical, but it’s a little strange to actually want a hug from someone you say you want to leave. If you can’t stand someone and want to separate, you don’t want a hug from them.

Probably try and work on it, neither of you communicate well and are not very nice to each other. You could both have a better life if you worked on this.

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Anordinarymum · 04/12/2021 03:32

@rogerthat87

Thanks for replying everyone. I feel a lot calmer from having written this all down. I do feel like I've cleared the air.

So you've cleared the air and got it off your chest but the situation stays the same.
If you want respect from him I think you have to teach him how to respect you by doing nothing for him.
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cookiemonster2468 · 04/12/2021 03:31

He's trying to save energy so boiling the kettle for nothing would have certainly annoyed him but he was convicting me for a crime I didn't even do!!!

Well yes, but also, do YOU care about this whole kettle/ energy thing, or is this just him?

It's pretty controlling to be honest. He has decided this little random thing is super important and is projecting that onto you and expecting you to live by his rule.

It's up to you how much water you put in the kettle ffs. He can do it himself, and can of course encourage you to be more environmentally friendly, but at the end of the day he has no business getting mad with you about it. You are an adult who can make your own decisions.

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HoppingPavlova · 04/12/2021 02:35

A lot of angst over a kettle and water, I don’t understand. Fill it, don’t fill it. Boil it, don’t boil it. Boil it, drink it. Boil it, don’t drink it. Who caresConfused. Seriously, if DH blathered on about the kettle and water I’d be concerned and wonder if he had a mental health issue.

Irrespective, you sound miserable so best leave. Either you need to leave the house, he needs to or you sell and both leave, but both staying will never work.

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PennyWus · 04/12/2021 01:41

Oh posted too early sorry OP, i am just going to finish what I was saying.

So you need to take all the heat out of these exchanges. Ask yourself this: is getting angry at him stopping his bad behaviour? Are his angry outbursts and cruel public criticism making you feel loved and wanted? Is it helping your kids or you enjoy your lives more? That's an emphatic No. You are grumpy, angry and sad so you are needling and nagging him about tiny things (he didnt put the sellotape back etc). You are defending yourself by attacking him. It has become pathetic tit for tat. You are both behaving like arses, I think, albeit he is the worse of the two of you.

You need to sit down calmly and ask if he wants to fix this. Then you both need to talk, and be prepared to listen. You each need to learn how to listen without getting defensive or emotional, and use the conversation to find solutions. Counselling could honestly help you. I'm sure you're right that you landed yourself a miserable arse, but you had two kids with this guy and I'm sure you're not perfect either. The question is: if you could make things bearable again, would that be enough?

It has been for me. My kids are happy, they adore their daddy. I have a good career, great friends. I can won back my self esteem, and if I'm put down in public, I will calmly - and publicly - call my DH out on it, which makes him look like an arse and so, guess what, he doesnt do it so much. When he criticises me, I pull him up on it. When he belittled me or snaps at me for not doing something perfectly, i literally list for him all the things I've done perfectly that day and then sweetly ask him to have another go at providing a more balanced assessment of the my "error".

And in exchange when I do something that I know has annoyed him, I will acknowledge and try to find a way to avoid doing it again. In my house it is my DH who is the tidy freak, I don't understand it, but I've learned it is very important to him, and so for that reason alone, it has become important to me, but it is a joint enterprise and I have, after many years, got to a place where he will put up with a mess as long as I can say, "I'm busy doing Xyz, so I won't be able to tidy up until x o'clock" or "that desk area is going to be messy while I'm sorting through files, it will be like that for two weeks as I need to sort that area out properly and, unless you want to do it yourself, I need to create some mess there for a few weeks". So we've learned , we have BOTH learned, he needs to control his impulse to be horrid to me over things I consider trivial and instead he needs to gently and with love, explain why he needs something to be done a certain way. And then we discuss what is a reasonable way forward. So the kettle example it would be a non-issue for us now. He would say, "Penny I'm trying to save energy, because I think that's something that will save us money and be good for the environment. I can feel myself getting wound up when you fill the kettle because it seems like you aren't helping me save energy and that's important to me." Then I'd say, "oh I know it's important to you, I'm really trying but sometimes I forget. I'll try to remember but you can jog my memory if you notice im still boiling too much water but try and be patient with me, I'll get the hang of it. Actually this time though, I filled it that far for a reason (give reason). Would it help if I tell you whenever I'm boiling the kettle so you know what im doing with it?" To which he will usually say No, as being informed every time someone boils a kettle is absolutely bonkers but IF he says yes, then calmly do that for a while, without being facetious, until he just gets used to the fact that, guess what, you do know how much water to put in the kettle, you ARE conscious of it, you ARE trying to make him happy by not boiling more water than is necessary. Believe it or not this insane way of going on, has completely retained the way we treat each other. We are now friends who have respect and appreciation for each other. We notice when the other person is going out of their way to do things differently than they naturally would and we say thank you, or we reward them by going the extra mile and doing something to really cheer them up (I love it when my DH brings me a cup of tea and gives me a hug, he loves it when I tidy a drawer or sort out something that usually would fall to him).

We play to our strengths now and compensate each other's weaknesses, we are more of a team. We can call each other out on "bad" behaviour, without causing horrible atmospheres and arguments. We sometimes are even capable of noticing when we are contributing to making things get ugly again, and we step back, have a chat, apologise, move on.

We are happier, and we do have sex again, because we do get along better.

So for a start, You badly need some ground rules how to live together. What kind of crap example are you both setting to your kids right now? Grow up and sort out your problems, or leave. You need a conversation that goes, "there are some things that are really important to me, that you find difficult to do and arent important to you. And vice versa. So for the sake of harmony, let's each pick two things that need to change THIS WEEK." Choose Easy wins. You say, I am happy when the house is tidy so I'd like it if your shoes always go in the cupboard, and I get upset when i have to pick up after you, so let's agree that you always leave the dining table clear after an activity" Then he picks two things you have to change. You can gently negotiate if the thing he picks is impossible to deliver. The important thing is: you don't challenge the fact that each of you WANT this thing done a certain way. You accept that. But then you learn to compromise, and understand how much wiggle room you have. You learn to trade, "ok, I will try to nag you less and speak in a kind way, if you watch out for your anger when I don't do something in a way that you like."

You both need to agree that this won't suddenly be fine overnight, and there has been a lot of hurt and damage done, which has scarred your relationship pretty deep to the point you don't even want sex and really want to end it. If you want to climb back from that, it's a hard road. But if you DO want it, then commit to the work. And if frankly you can't be bothered, then call it quits, put your big girl pants on, and move out.

However you CAN learn to calmly respect each other boundaries, gently correct each other, learn what makes each other tick so you can anticipate what is likely to bother them and try to avoid doing that, and learn how to call a time-out when things are escalating and get tempers back under control so you don't spend days and days slowly winding each other up until you have a huge massive argument. That is no way to live.

Your decision OP. What do you want?

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Toseland · 04/12/2021 01:16

When I make coffee, instant coffee, I can still hear my ex in my ear, criticising me for not putting the milk in first- it’s been 20 bloody years though it’s quieter now.
I think some men when they are irritated will pick on anything available to criticise and be nasty. It becomes a bit of a habit.
I’d leave- I wish I’d left my ex sooner.

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PennyWus · 04/12/2021 00:57

Actually I'm going to stick my neck out and say it is possible to get through this, but you will have to work so hard and so will he. It sounds like he wants to. Why are you so dead set against counselling?

For sure, if he or you aren't prepared to try, you need to leave. It's not fair on your kids to grow up with two adults sniping at each.

My DH was awfully critical and controlling and it did get to the point I nearly left. He is still fairly awful, but I have learned to manage him better. I call him out, with kindness but very firmly, when he is being horrible. It doesnt stop him doing it altogether but he has learned, if he goes mad at me about the small details, it will not be tolerated. (The classic examples are things like, a teaspoon upside down in the cutlery drawer so they don't sit nicely;

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RaoulDufysCat · 04/12/2021 00:45

Mate, get out. He won't get nicer.

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Confusedteacher · 04/12/2021 00:09

This reminds me of all the things that were wrong in my first marriage, and all the things that are not wrong in my second marriage.
ExH used to be like this constantly. Criticising me for every little thing. The kettle thing- he would do that! And my driving. He told me off for closing doors without pushing the handle down first. He would put me down in public. I remember saying to him, you would never speak to anyone else the way you speak to me.
With my now DH I finally realised- that is not normal! He wouldn’t care if I overfilled the kettle- and if he really did care, he would raise it in a polite, friendly way. We each do chores in our own way- we don’t snip at each other for how we hang the laundry out, or who left the lid off the toothpaste.

OP, you don’t have to live like this!

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Janeandjohnny · 04/12/2021 00:02

@FallonCarringtonWannabe

Staying in the house is utter madness and will not work. It is a toxic environment now. Living together living separate lives, having new partners, will become more toxic and also damaging for the childrens perspective on what is normal and acceptable.

Agree fully. Its a popular opinion to leave instantly etc... but in the real world lots of people work through and learn to communicate better, make allowances, see things differently. I strongly suggest couples counselling first before you have more conflict. I dont think its a great sign that you wont go or he wont set it up. Living together in turmoil is extremly damaging for your kids. Both of you have issues communicating and the tit for tat stuff is childish.You can go to counselling to plan how you might seperate also so its not always about making up. Remember your kids in this, in a few short years they wont be little so act now to decide your next chapter.
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rogerthat87 · 03/12/2021 23:59

@FallonCarringtonWannabe

Staying in the house is utter madness and will not work. It is a toxic environment now. Living together living separate lives, having new partners, will become more toxic and also damaging for the childrens perspective on what is normal and acceptable.

This has struck a chord.
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Redsquirrel5 · 03/12/2021 23:58

Buy a trug put all the stuff he leaves lying around in it. Some of the things he does could cause an accident putting water in a kettle won’t.
Eg the cupboard doors, shoes.

DH leaves his chair out in the kitchen because he is too lazy to put it in. It annoys me partly because it is out ( I worked in a Primary for 30 years even the four year olds put their chairs in) and partly because it is then in front of double doors in the dresser so a nuisance if you are putting plates away.

Putting you down like that will continue believe me.

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rogerthat87 · 03/12/2021 23:57

Thanks for replying everyone. I feel a lot calmer from having written this all down. I do feel like I've cleared the air.

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FallonCarringtonWannabe · 03/12/2021 23:55

Staying in the house is utter madness and will not work. It is a toxic environment now. Living together living separate lives, having new partners, will become more toxic and also damaging for the childrens perspective on what is normal and acceptable.

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nocnoc · 03/12/2021 23:53

Stick to it. This is a miserable life. It’s hard now but get out now. Find someone you’re compatible with who is nice to you!

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