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Old 11-21-2009, 05:18 PM   #1
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My husband talks down to me

I've been married for 3 yrs and basically I think my husband can be condescending, controlling and he expects me to be someone I'm not. He's a really neat, organized person who wants things to be done HIS way and although by no means am I a slob, I am not one to be as rigid as he - I am so much more carefree about things and laid back. I have come a long way since we moved in together - I know it's his house too, so I respect that. But If things aren't done his way around the house, he tends to talk down to me like I'm his child. He is so picky about certain things, that it drives me crazy. I make the bed every morning (because he wants it made; I could care less) and half the time he asks me to "fix it" and smooth out the covers because it's not to his liking. He'll call me back into the bathroom after I brush my teeth to wipe off the water that was splashed on the sink (it's a sink! If you don't like it, wipe it off yourself...).

This is causing resentment on my part, and I don't feel like he and I are on the same level anymore. I don't feel like we are a "team". Our relationship honestly reminds me of when I lived at home with my parents. I've tried talking to him about it, and he says we need to compromise, but when I do, I feel like he keeps expecting more and more out of me and expects that I should basically just be more like him. I think this is how he is wired - I don't see him changing.

We both want to have children (soon), but I am wondering if I can ever have children with him which is really scaring me. I know I can't live the rest of my life like this - I've always been very independant and self-sufficient and I just cannot accept him treating me this way. Other than this, he is a good husband and person and I know he loves me very much.

I wonder sometimes if I am overreacting or being stubborn or not willing to put in the effort that marriages sometimes need.

 
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Old 11-21-2009, 05:30 PM   #2
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Re: My husband talks down to me

Can you picture yourself living like this for the rest of your life?

Of course it is causing resentment on your part, I don't blame you, that's no way to live. A marriage should be a partnership. Everyone has their quirks, but this kind of sounds ridiculous. Of course their needs to be a compromise, but said compromise shouldn't be one sided.

I wouldn't even go down the children road yet. I wouldn't want someone that critical of things to be my partner in parenting.

It's a tough decision, I feel for you.

 
Old 11-21-2009, 06:06 PM   #3
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Re: My husband talks down to me

It sounds like your husband is a perfectionist, but when he expects you to be the same, that isn't accepting you as you are. My husband has to do things perfectly when he does them, but he knows I do the best I can and don't care if it is perfect. We leave each other alone and don't try to change each other. Compromise is important in a relationship in that sometimes one person gets their way, sometimes the other person gets what they want, or each give a little. Your husband sounds very rigid about that. He seems very controlling and for someone like you who is independent, that can't be what you want. I agree that this isn't the time to have children. You need to fix what's not feeling right between the two of you. You might consider couples counseling. Good luck.

 
Old 11-21-2009, 06:34 PM   #4
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Re: My husband talks down to me

Back in the old days of "love, honour and OBEY", you would have been expected to put up with this, but nowhere in the rule book of modern partnerships does it say that you cannot just say "You don't like the bed??, Fix it yourself". In a modern partnership, the person with the "high standards" must be prepared to take an actual part in maintaining them. He is training you like a pup and it is your responsibility to change the dynamic; he won't (why would he?, he gets to be Mr Boss). What is the worst that can happen? He will get grumpy? Talk down to you? You have that already, so might as well be your independent self and cop the same stuff. He clearly has the relationship he wants; why shouldn't you? Good luck, Sera

 
Old 11-22-2009, 06:58 AM   #5
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Re: My husband talks down to me

I think you've gotten some really good dvice here. I can only reiterate it. You cannot change someone else's behavior, only your reaction to it. I like Seraph's idea. By jumping to and smoothing out the bed when he wants you to and coming when he calls you into the bathroom to scold you about the sink, you have taught him that you don't mind when he treats you like this. You're going to have to let him know you have no intention of living like this anymore. Next time he tells you to smooth out the bed, tell him you already made it, but if he doesn't like the way you made it, he can feel free to smooth it out himself, but as far as you're concerned, it's made and you've moved on. It's not like you're "pleaning" (doing a very poor job cleaning on purpose, the thing men do the get their wives to stop asking them to help around the house).

You can't love this guy, or any man, like you're afraid to lose him. That's just not how love works. You need to be who you are, so you won't become any more resentful. Then the choice is his. He can choose to love you for who and what you are, he can continue to nag and scold until you get fed up and leave, or he can leave and try to find someone who will conform to his perfect standards. Yeah, good luck with that, dude. Your compromise is realizing that it's his house too, and doing your best to keep things neat and to clean up after yourself. So where's his compromise?

Last edited by Larrylou'smom; 11-22-2009 at 07:01 AM.

 
Old 11-22-2009, 08:54 AM   #6
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Re: My husband talks down to me

Thanks for all of your replies. It's hard because I know he does really love me and he really isn't a bad person, but I've tried talking to him about this and it seems as though he just keeps expecting me to morph into someone I'm not and never will be.
I think I am going to try talking to him again but really tell him everything I feel. I never mentioned the resentment or thoughts of leaving before, and I know this will hurt him because he can be quite sensitive.
He complains that he always has to tell me what to do around the house and that I never take the initiative to do things, but some of these tasks are things I would never even think of doing because we are 2 different people in that aspect.

 
Old 11-22-2009, 12:04 PM   #7
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Re: My husband talks down to me

Well, I think keeping the communication lines open is always a good thing, but I think by and large, generally speaking, men respond to action, not talking. In addition to talking, you still have to modify YOUR behavior. If you don't WANT to have to smooth out the bed after you've just made it, then DON'T. He won't understand if you keep SAYING "this bothers me, that hurts my feelings'" and then still continue to do it and still continue to allow yourself to be pushed around.

 
Old 11-22-2009, 01:32 PM   #8
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Re: My husband talks down to me

You could try a little reverse psychology....tell him that you know how important it is for him to have things exactly "so" and since you can't reach his ideals, you are leaving the opportunity to make it perfect to him...since he's the expert on it.

Seriously, there was a time in my life when I could not understand for the life of me why the maid/husband couldn't see that they had put the picture/book/candle/whatever 1 inch off where it should have been. Then I had a giant revelation - the out of position stuff was just an opportunity for me to get it all just like I want it...and fiddling with stuff like that is something I love. So looking at it as an opportunity rather than a burden freed me to reposition everything when they got it out of place. Perhaps he needs that revelation?

 
Old 11-24-2009, 08:58 AM   #9
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Re: My husband talks down to me

Life's too short to quibble over the small stuff like if the bed is wrinkled or the candle not in place by 1". Focus on important things--you're self esteem, what you can do to help yourself feel better, do things you like to do. Whether it be a spouse or friend, if they can't accept you the way you are and have this unhealthy need to change you into someone else, then why have them around? That's not love. People who really care about you focus on real needs like someone to talk to, share affection, have fun together, support you when the outside world hurts your feelings, listen and sympathize when you're disappointed. And most of all, love you just the way you are, no matter what for always.

 
Old 11-24-2009, 10:08 AM   #10
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Re: My husband talks down to me

this is not love......
this is control, manipulation and abuse
your husband is on a power trip and expects you to just bow to his whim
smart move not having kids now......I wouldn't have them EVER with this man

 
Old 11-24-2009, 11:52 AM   #11
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Re: My husband talks down to me

As is usual, . . . I tend to agree with my friend, rosequartz. This guy does NOT love you. He OWNS you. Real love will never demand . . . especially stupid things like you've mentioned. This guy needs to get a grip on himself, or you need to really reevaluate your [yours and his] relationship. Definitely do NOT bring kids into this atmosphere. If a daughter, she may resent men, or be passive. If a son, he may become as much of a controlling jerk as your husband.

I know I may be sounding harsh, but this is freakin' ridiculous. I am so fed up with men who are nothing but bullies, and because they haven't the nads to stand up to others who are just as powerful, or moreso, . . . they take it out on someone they can. THAT'S a bully!

This is post number 2, that I've seen today, that has a man being an incredible jerk!
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Old 11-24-2009, 02:27 PM   #12
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Re: My husband talks down to me

Love is an action word...it is shown by actions not words. In order to love, one must respect the other, he is showing you no respect. This will only continue to get worse. And, just wait, kids do not bring people together, many times it pulls them apart. I believe you will end up shouldering all the responsibility if you did have children...and that resentment is HUGE! Plus, your children will grow up seeing this behavior and thinking this is normal and the cycle continues (I believe you eluded to the fact that you grew up in a similar home). Get out, you have one life to live!!! He is breaking you slowly and this type of behavior does not change. Work on yourself, stay single until you have gotten to the root of why you would stay in such a situation and why you think this is love.

 
Old 11-24-2009, 03:08 PM   #13
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Re: My husband talks down to me

One other thing to keep in mind...kids make messes. Big ones. Reasonable people realize this and make accomodations. I have a feeling your husband would expect the house to remain spotless even with young children around. Imagine THOSE arguements...
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Old 11-24-2009, 03:11 PM   #14
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Re: My husband talks down to me

Quote:
Originally Posted by wrkgirl View Post
I've been married for 3 yrs and basically I think my husband can be condescending, controlling and he expects me to be someone I'm not. He's a really neat, organized person who wants things to be done HIS way and although by no means am I a slob, I am not one to be as rigid as he - I am so much more carefree about things and laid back. I have come a long way since we moved in together - I know it's his house too, so I respect that. But If things aren't done his way around the house, he tends to talk down to me like I'm his child. He is so picky about certain things, that it drives me crazy. I make the bed every morning (because he wants it made; I could care less) and half the time he asks me to "fix it" and smooth out the covers because it's not to his liking. He'll call me back into the bathroom after I brush my teeth to wipe off the water that was splashed on the sink (it's a sink! If you don't like it, wipe it off yourself...).

This is causing resentment on my part, and I don't feel like he and I are on the same level anymore. I don't feel like we are a "team". Our relationship honestly reminds me of when I lived at home with my parents. I've tried talking to him about it, and he says we need to compromise, but when I do, I feel like he keeps expecting more and more out of me and expects that I should basically just be more like him. I think this is how he is wired - I don't see him changing.

We both want to have children (soon), but I am wondering if I can ever have children with him which is really scaring me. I know I can't live the rest of my life like this - I've always been very independant and self-sufficient and I just cannot accept him treating me this way. Other than this, he is a good husband and person and I know he loves me very much.

I wonder sometimes if I am overreacting or being stubborn or not willing to put in the effort that marriages sometimes need.
Sorry, I need more examples before I would call your husband controlling. I don't see anything wrong with making the bed neatly (without the wrinkles as wrinkles bother me too). Of course you should wipe the sink after you brush your teeth, that's only common sense.

Do you have more examples? I don't think your husband is asking for too much so far.. Does he work more hours than you? Is his job more stressful compared to yours? Do you work at all?

These are the missing factors that would tell me alot more...

Sunny

 
Old 11-27-2009, 06:24 AM   #15
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Re: My husband talks down to me

Other examples: I was upstairs in the bedroom, my husband was downstairs watching tv. The dog accidentally peed on the carpet in the bedroom and according to him this was my fault because I should have been watching him because he was in the same room as me, so I got scolded. I personally didn't think this was anyone's fault - accidents happen. Another example: We have separate closets and I like to throw my clothes on the floor of mine and he's constantly asking me to clean my closet and keep it neat. I don't understand why, because I keep the door closed and these are MY clothes, not his.
We both work about 40 hours a week and make around the same salary.

I think what bothers me the most though is HOW he reacts to things I do or don't do..the "scolding" really bothers me and it happens in front of other people as well at times, like when we have company over.

 
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