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Old 10-20-2006, 09:05 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jun 2004
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hillaryb HB User
Married for 5 years-gosh, things change alot!

I just recently celebrated my 5-year wedding anniversary. My husband and I have a daughter together and we each have a child from a previous relationship. There have been many ups and downs, but we persevered and things are rock-solid and stable. I've grown alot recently and have felt like I have come into my own as far as knowing who I am and who I want to be and I am very happy.

I love my husband and I want him to be happy. But my feelings for him have dulled-ALOT! We are friends, but I am not interested in romance. I know that part of it has to do with the fact that he doesn't seem very interested in participating in family life recently. He love us all, but he works, and vegetates and that is IT!

I do think maybe he is overwhelmed right now and is having trouble relating to us. Any chore I ask him to do is met by extreme eye-rolling, yet I rarely ask. Our daughter is 4, and he doesn't really interact with her (or me for that matter). He makes tv and computer time a priority over her immediate needs, and when he says to her "in a minute she knows it means she will wait forever for him to get up and deal with her. It annoys me. WE all deserve some downtime, but he is tuning us out. My solution is to find happiness outside of all this and I don't let it get me down. But I am a bit disgusted that he puts his family, and mainly his kids off so much.

I spoke with him recently (in a non-angry way) and told him he seemed depressed and that he needed to do something. I didn't marry this man to raise the kids alone and this isn't what I wanted for them. He just has no balance in his life, and I personally think his priorities are pretty messed up. He works hard and I respect him for it and work is number one to him by far. But family is way down at the bottom of his list. I just make sure that the kids get what they need from me and that they get my attention and know that I will always be there.

I don't get mad at my husband, though I am definately a bit disgusted right now. My family is so important to me and I just can't understand what is going on with him. He has some other issues as well. I have to say this, though not for superficial reasons, my husband has gained a significant amount of weight pretty quickly. He was always so weight-conscious and I know this is really getting him down. He gets NO exercise. Less that ever considering he vegetates in ALL of his spare time now. He always goes up and down a bit but this is alot more than ever before. I know it probaby makes him feel even worse because it seems to get him down. he tries to hide it by wearing lots of layers but he looks horribly sloppy. This just is not something I would not ordinarily expect from him .

On the plus side, he does still seem to love me. He says it all the time and is quite affectionate, but at the end of the day, I would still have to compete with the tv to talk to him and I always lose that battle. So I don't even bother. I sat him down and told him he seemed to be at a low point right now (didn't reallly mention the wieght thing-it's probably a symptom, not the main problem) and that he should do what he needs to do to feel better. I told him maybe he would feel better if he had a life outside of work. Hobbies, fresh air, SOMETHING. I told him maybe he needed counseling, that I was there for him, etc. I just hate to see this. He is my husband and a father yet the kids and I are pretty much on our own.

I'm NOT going to chastize him but I do feel like saying to him sometimes: Darn it! you are a grown man wake up and do something before we just up and leave. I mean, we are already living out our lives without him for the most part, so why are we here? I married him because I wanted a partner and right now I don't have one. How on earth can anyone put a TV show above playing ball or takign a walk with us???? Me and the kids do these things and he just sits in the house and lets me do all of it without him. I feel kind of "ripped off" in a way because we took our vows and THIS is what I got! OK, so maybe I am a bit mad. That was mostly a vent, I just had to get it off my chest, and yelling at him isn't going to help.

I just have a hard time understanding how a person could seem to care so little about the things that should matter the most. I know in my heart that I cannot resolve myself to just accept this. I'm not going anywhere at the moment, I don't take my marriage lightly. But I do know that I value my personal relationships so very much that I could never stay with a person who doesnt and never will.

I am hoping he can resolve this. I want him to be a father and a husband like he used to , and I know deep down he still wants those things. He knows how I feel about this. I spoke with him without nagging or yelling and tried to convey that I understood he was going through something and wanted to see him make changes, not only for me and the kids, but for himself as well. We all go through things. Ive been through alot and managed to pull myself out of it and I know he can do it too. We are both adults. I guess for now the ball is in his court. There is nothing more that I can do. I know he has options, therapy, whatever. I kee thinking it could also be a simple as getting up and participating in life again, eventually he would learn to enjoy it again, right? At this point he isnt doing anything to help himself. Ugh. What do I do now? I feel empathy for him but numbness as well. I can't sit around and put my life on hold and wait for him to come back to us.

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Old 10-20-2006, 09:24 PM   #2
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galinaqt HB User
Re: Married for 5 years-gosh, things change alot!

I think may be your husband is overwhelmed with his job right now and computer provides relaxation while taking care of a family is another job. I understand he has one more kid to take care besides your daughter.
I right now overwhelmed with my mother getting worse in her health and put more pressure on me in addition to my 3 y.old and full time job. It often makes me procrastenating.
May be he can change slowly, sort of one step at a time. Work on one problem at a time. Don't have unreal expectations. I don't know how old is your dh but with the age things getting harder as well.

Old 10-21-2006, 11:46 AM   #3
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hillaryb HB User
Re: Married for 5 years-gosh, things change alot!

the good news for himis he doesn't take care of the kids, AT ALL. I do. ALL the time. I also cook for him, clean,do all the shopping, all the school activities etc. He works and vegetates. I'm all for him getting rest and downtime. He is 33 years old btw. I am 30. I don't need him to take care of kids or clean. I would like to see him have a conversation with us once in a while. I would think that taking a walk with us on his days off would maybe be relaxing. I am starting work in a week or so. This is going to get rough for me. I already work 24/7 at home. I am extremely busy. I know I can handle the job and the rest of the things that I do (I hope, at least) but he will have to make a few changes.

I'm exhausted as it is. I never clock out. What else can I do for the guy?? I feel like a slave and it has definately made me see him in a different light. He works, vegetates and sleeps, so tell me, what can I do to make sure he really and truly is getting his much-needed rest after working? I was under the impression that he had it and then some. Hmmm...

Old 10-21-2006, 03:21 PM   #4
Join Date: May 2004
Location: New York
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goody2shuz HB Usergoody2shuz HB User
Re: Married for 5 years-gosh, things change alot!

Hi, Hillary It's good to see you amongst the oldies but goodies again but not under such circumstances, huh??? WOW....this is a tough one. I know how committed you are to your husband and your marriage and how far you have come since knowing you here on the boards.

It looks as if you have gone above and beyond to try to get your hubby to participate in your family and relationship. I can't help but agree with you that there must be something going on in terms of depression or within himself to remove himself from life in such a way. Men are so different than us women in terms of how they deal with stress and inner turmoil....we recently have gone through somewhat of a crisis within our family and hubby uses the TV as a big escape from the pain and stress of it all. So knowing that, perhaps there is something going on at work or with a friend or in the family that is causing your husband to remove himself emotionally from everything that in the past he seemed to enjoy. I know in the past it had more to do with other things but I must agree that if this doesn't change it WILL have an effect on the longevity of your marriage OR at least the growth that you deserve as a family.

You never really discussed your husband's response to your suggestion of counseling. Is he open to it???

I know that you are more than a little disappointed and angry (as you admitted) and understandably seem to have taken the high end of the road on things but as you have shared it is unfulfilling as well as exhausting to have to do it all without any participation from your husband.

May I suggest that you try something that will perhaps be a start??? How about taking some time out to do something for yourself and leave hubby with time to spend with the kids telling him that it's time for him to bond with the kids. Let him take them out someplace making it sound exciting so that he gets into it too. Chuckie Cheeses or something. And then you go out to Borders for a cappuccino and read a book. That's a start!! Then next time suggest that the two of you grab some Chinese, pack up some plates, utensils and a bottle of wine and take it to the beach or a park with a picnic table and just get out of the house saying it is a change of scenery that you need. If things do not improve I think that it may be time for a medical check up.

I sure hope that you can get to the bottom of all of this.....I know how much you love you husband and how he loves you and all that you have worked at to get things squared away. I was right there with you and feel as if I somewhat have an investment in making sure things continue to go well for you two.

I know that you are like me in fighting for something you know is worth fighting for, so I have faith that you will get through this trough until the next peak comes along.

(((HUGS))) ~ Goody who believes in YOU!!

Old 10-21-2006, 07:52 PM   #5
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galinaqt HB User
Re: Married for 5 years-gosh, things change alot!

He has to share responsobilities with you or you wore youself off. Bad thing that he already have used to you doing everything, may be visit to councelor, support groups, seminars can change his mind. Once in a while eating out or him staying with kids as previous post suggests is a good idea.

Old 10-21-2006, 09:14 PM   #6
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Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,130
hillaryb HB User
Re: Married for 5 years-gosh, things change alot!

Hi, Goody! Nice to see you. I browse the majority of the boards here so I am well aware of what you have been dealing with over the past couple of years. I just wanted to know I see your posts periodically and think of you. I should log on more to let you know. Anyway, I guess I am venting because I am somewhat annoyed but I think at this point I have faith that this is not representative of what is to come. Hubby is a good guy and deep down he has it in him to get his behind in gear again. There is an ebb and flow in marriage, and this is a down moment but it always seems to go back into a positive direction. I think I am worried that this is it but from past experience I know that it isnt. If it was, then yes, I would eventually probably feel like letting go. It's funny. He is doing all the things I am complaining about, but still proclaiming his love for me, still hugging me and kissing me and being sweet. But man, the boy has got to snap out of the rest of this.

The good news is I went out tonight with an old friend and had a nice evening. My parents had the kids because hubby worked tonight and he called me a few times to wish me a nice night. He doesn't begrudge me a nice time out or anything but I still don't do it enough. .I do live around many other moms that I am friends with and we talk while the kids play and I adore these women. It helps.

Ultimately, I am still an upbeat fairly happy person. I just wish he were feeling the same. Time will tell I guess. Take care guys. I know most of us come here in great pain (as I did years ago) and I just want the best for all of you.

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