× Family & Parenting

miserable husband syndrome

12 years 5 months ago #43853 by sahmd

Conflicted makes the point that obesity is being blamed on women working, which is just as ridiculous.

Is it ridiculous, though? Wouldn't we all be better off nutritionally if we all had someone at home cooking us a healthy meal from scratch? When women work full-time plus are expected to do more than their share of tasks at home, cooking meals can become a low priority. I know that when I am busy and/or exhausted, I would really rather get take-out or stick something in the microwave.

So to be a little more accurate, I think the problem isn't that women are working but that they do not have enough support with household tasks.

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12 years 5 months ago #43854 by Franabelle
I don't think working women are the sole cause of the obesity epidemic, but I do think it is a contributing factor. My husband helps prepare dinner several nights a week. But when both of us are working full-time and commuting up to 3 hours a day, there are still plenty of days when a hitting a restaurant or drive thru is much more tempting than taking the time to cook dinner. I think the fast pace of society nowadays is just not compatible with family life.

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12 years 5 months ago #43855 by BabyHeartz
Hey guys, I am in a similar dilemma to many folks on this thread. Many of you have probably read the thread I started about "crushes.." it's perhaps a bit more of a lighthearted take on what I'm beginning to see is the real issue at hand.

Let me start by saying that I'm not even IN med school yet. I'm working 36 hrs/week as a nurse and going to school, 5 credits. This amounts to me being out of the house for basically the entire day, 4 times a week. On the other three days, I make sure to be home when my DH gets in from work, have dinner ready and try really hard not to study or do any housework on those evenings, so as to give us some "family time". (We also have a 3 yr old.)

Sounds great, right? I mean really, we all know people with a lot less available family time than that. Well apparently, it's not good enough.

Even during the summer when I was off school, we'd enjoy our time off together, but DH would pretty much treat me like crap after I arrived home from work. We'd potentially have at least an hour or two to spend together, but most of the time he was cranky from having to take care of our son by himself and "being alone all day." So he'd mumble some excuse about going to bed early. Some of the time I'd go after him and bug him until he cheered up, but a lot of the time, I'd think, "screw it, it's too much work, and I don't deserve to have to work to be treated decently when I've done nothing wrong!"

Then, of course, when school started, I had to hear a lot of b*tching and moaning about how I was never going to be home, etc. etc. (even though really, it's only a difference of one more day!) Last night I came home from school after he'd had the day off with the little one, and he was genuinely angry. Said he couldn't take it anymore but there was "nothing to be done about it..." Hinted that he doesn't think our marriage will survive all of this, and worst of all, refused to talk about what I/we might do to make things better. Honestly, I wonder if we WILL make it, given that he just can't seem to open up and talk without either yelling or storming off.

To be honest, I really think our schedule is "normal" right now... certainly no worse than that of our other married friends. His expectation of me has always seemed that when he's home, I should literally be sitting on the couch sprawled all over him at all times. He gets upset if I clean, read, cook, etc etc... at any point when he's home, unless of course HE is engaged in some sort of "manly" endeavor. So I have a lot of trouble sympathizing; I'm pretty sure that if I was a SAHM that went to the church knitting bee once a week, I'd be dealing with the same complaints about him missing me, etc!

I should bring up that he's had a very traditional southern upbringing-SAHM who takes care to cater to his dad, and also a family h/o depression. But I'm starting to fear that we are setting ourselves up to resent each other one day. There are a lot of things I'd love to do before med school, like run a marathon, go on a mission trip... but since he refuses to join in, it all amounts to more "time away." I love him but am feeling very ambivalent about our relationship right now. Thanks for letting me vent and sorry so long.. I'd love to hear some input. To those of you with similar situations, please know that you're not alone and I'd love to talk!

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12 years 5 months ago #43856 by mommd2b
Babyheartz....It sounds like you're really taking some time to evaluate what is going on in your marriage at an early stage. Good for you!

I can give you my take on it all as a sahm....Sadly, I sound a lot like your dh on way too many days. :( I have uttered many of the same phrases like "I can't take it anymore", "I'd leave if I could", "I feel trapped" :eek: blah, blah, blah.

At the same time, I adore my children and wouldn't change a thing about having them....

What helps me when I get to that point is having my dh recognize my contribution and then help me find something for myself.

Since DH is a dawkter, he works some wacky hours...and there are days when he isn't home until 9 or 10PM...those are my worst nights. Even though I know he is "working" I feel resentful because I end up doing dinner, homework, bathtimes and bedtimes on my own...and I guess I just get my nose out of joint sometimes that he can pursue what he is passionate about but that I can't.

DH has taken some big steps this year to help me....because his passion for work and his history club, etc won't change...he sees that I need something for me. He has made some concessions for me now, like registering me for a class that I feel passionate about and then giving me a couple of nights out a week to go to Barnes and Noble and study....It's those things that make a difference in a huge way in our relationship.

Last weekend, I was exhausted and he sent me up to have a warm bath and go to bed and said that he would take care of getting the kids to bed AND he made me a cup of tea. :yikes: That little bit of nurturing went a looooong way towards helping me feel more connected and loving towards him....


In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer.

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12 years 5 months ago #43857 by BabyHeartz
Thanks, Kris! I am trying to evaluate things now rather than later. I know so many friends' moms, older female relative, etc. who are regretful for having stayed in a marriage with someone who... wasn't bad exactly, just wasn't right for them. I have really been wondering lately if DH and I can make each other happy on a long-term basis when our goals are so different. It's not that he isn't career-oriented, it's just that his career has literally no educational demands whatsoever.. he will never do mandatory overtime, have to go to a conference, be kept late because of a code, etc.... and therefore has a very hard time gaining any relative perspective.

Now we are starting to get a little tense about the holidays already.. this is a battle every year, and a discussion I put off until the last minute! We live near his family. My parents are 700 miles away and elderly. I am also very close to my high school friends, so we all try to make it home for awhile during our winter breaks, even if it isn't for Christmas itself. I told him I'd be happy to stay here for Christmas and go to my folks for New Year's, or vice versa, whichever he preferred. He fought me tooth and nail, said he "shouldn't have to go," "there's no reason for it," etc... Well, as crazy as it may sound, my reason for wanting him to go is that I want to spend both holidays with my HUSBAND, regardless of where we are! Ultimately another conversation that ended with him mumbling that he was going to bed.

It's the combination of the career-related stuff, and completely unrelated stuff like this, that has me asking myself some pretty painful questions about our marriage these days. I really feel that I need some objective input: am I being unreasonable? Is my schedule that unreasonable? .... are things really that terrible..?

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12 years 5 months ago #43858 by Sweet
Dear BabyHeartz,

I am going to venture a guess that you may have the answers to some of these questions hidden deep inside your "gut", or subconscious mind, or whatever people choose to call it. There are some things you know in your gut, but they are difficult to face and even more difficult to accept, so the rational mind tries to find a logical algorithm by which to arrive at an "intelligent decision".

Many of us are very driven (I would say that most women on this board are very driven, simply by virtue of the career path they have chosen), we are also achievement-oriented - we do not like to fail (be it in school, at work, or in our relationships), and the failure of a relationship is a huge blow to our self-confidence, our perception of who we are, etc., so even when the relationship has failed internally and holds little intrinsic value, we may cling to the illusion and continue fighting in it/for it, to maintain at least the external appearance of stability.

I am not suggesting that your relationship is anywhere near failure or that it is doomed in any way - these are just some things to keep in mind as you are honestly evaluating the reality of your marriage.

A few years ago, when I had finally found the courage to honestly evaluate my marriage. I had to admit to myself that no two definitions of "functional" were likely to be identical and in some cases they might be grossly divergent. So, the difficult questions were (given all the disagreements and struggles that seemed to plague our marriage) - did my husband and I define a "functional" relationship the same way, and more importantly, did we have the mutual desire to build such a relationship? (Perhaps, I would have posed these questions before jumping into a marriage, had I been older than 21 or had I been a little less devastated emotionally and psychologically then... but better late than never! ;) )

As it turned out, my husband did not really have (at least not consciously) an image/sketch/definition of what he perceived as a "functional relationship". He had barely given it any thought - his behavior in all of his relationships (before me and with me) had simply mirrored whatever happened to be surrounding him (social conditioning) and was mediated by his desire to do what gave him the most immediate gratification.

I decided that I should do what I had long known (but had been too afraid to admit to myself) was the best choice for me, and ultimately for everyone involved (kids, and him). I explained to him that I could not continue in the same way and that I believed we needed to separate. I also outlined to him, as I had done many times before, what I believed were the problems (in my perception), and this time I did not allow for this discussion to terminate in someone storming off or simply sweeping it under the rug. I explained to him that from that point forth I would never choose to be in a relationship with someone who did not have a clear understanding of what he desired in a relationship, what he wanted to put into it and what he expected to get out of it.

After the first 6 months of our separation, I was no longer afraid of going forward alone, I was not haunted by a sense of failure. My husband, on the other hand, had embarked on a journey of discovering his own relationship potential and creating a definition of a meaningful/functional relationship for himself. This was nearly 4 years ago, and to make a long story short, after 2 years of being separated, we came back together and have been happily enjoying a strong, functional, consciously maintained and lovingly cared for marriage. I am acutely aware of the fact that the likelihood of us never getting back together was as high as (if not higher than) that of our reconciliation. But I can honestly say, I was as certain then as I am today, that I chose the path which lead to a much more meaningfully happy future no matter which way it turned.

I firmly believe that as individuals, if we are not happy about something, we must accept the responsibility for changing it, and by changing it, we can bring about the happiness that we desire (sometimes in expected and sometimes in very unexpected ways).

If you are still reading... sorry about the length of this post. :o

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