23 answers

Unkind Husband

I was wondering if anyone has good advice for dealing with an unkind husband? He is so cold and distant. I get criticized and put down daily no matter what I do. Everything from what I cook to what I wear or how I decorate the bathroom. Literally EVERYTHING I do is put down in one way or another. I am a SAHM of 2 children one of which is 10 and is disabled and is completely dependant on me for everything. I just need some advice I feel myself shutting down and turning inward. I cant feel this way. I have children to care for. Any advice would be wonderful. Thank you for letting me vent....

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thanks for listening to me.I 'm sorry it's been a while since I was able to get back here. As for the situation with my husband, it is definately not the first time his behavior has been like this. It is a pattern in our nearly 16 years of marriage. Forgot to give a little background with the initial post. My husband is in a career that he loves and has passion for. He is pretty much his own boss. He makes an excellent income even in this economy. I was even able to leave my job in the medical field to take care of our children without any issues. We have discussed the numerous times and Divorce was never a thought. Too many people are quick to throw in the towel these days. I have never been afraid to get my hands dirty and do hard work. I will be seeing a therapist by my self at first. I realize I need to get out some of the "old hurt". It's amazing how much words hurt isn't it? I absolutely refuse to play a victim ! It's not the kind of person I am or the role model I want to be for our children. I am confident in the fact that talking to an "outsider" will probably be best at this point. As far as family support, they haven't been around since our son was born. It's quite disgusting how people don't know how to treat someone different than them! but, that's a whole other story in itself! We were able to sit and talk calmly to each other for a while yesterday. I let him know that this pattern ends now! He realized that I am under a great deal of stress keeping all of this together. I told him that even though he thinks he's not going "too Far" he is and it hurts deeply. It's starting to sink in. We are not out of the woods yet but, we are working on it. Truly working on it, not just a band-aid fix to get us by. I think that this Mamapedia website is wonderful. I stumbled upon it recently and I am glad I did. The advice is great and I thank all my mommy friends out there. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. God bless all of you!!

Deb

Featured Answers

Divorce. No one deserves to be treated badly.

If you took vows to "love, honor, and cherish" he broke those vows first.

good luck.

4 moms found this helpful

More Answers

Hugs to you. I am sorry that he is treating you this way! You don't deserve this. My suggestion to you is to look him in the eye and the next time he says something nasty, say in a firm voice-- his name first, then ENOUGH. STOP IT WITH THE NEGATIVE COMMENTS. IT hurts my feelings and I don't appreciate it. See how he responds. He may come off as more mean or nasty or he may realize that he has been a jerk and apologize. Since I don't know your hubby, I can't say. But its good to state how you feel when someone treats you badly. You can't control how they react, but you can control how YOU react to them. If all else fails, ignore the comments and don't speak to him- after he has said something mean. When he sees you aren't speaking, he will want to know why-- you can simply tell him that unless he has something nice to say to you, you won't be listening to his garbage or insults. And walk out of the room. Stand up for yourself. You don't have to take this. Best wishes and I hope you have a wonderful, peaceful night.

M

9 moms found this helpful

As usual, Ditto to SH, please get yourself a therapist, ask your OBGYN or regular doc for a referral, if only to have someone to talk to, and to have someone on your side.

Man I HATE posts like this, your husband is lucky I can't rip his face off!

Peace to you sista! Don't let him drag you down to his level!

:)

6 moms found this helpful

You are describing an abusive relationship. I second the book "Why does he do that." You need to find a way to get out of that relationship, for you and your children.

5 moms found this helpful

Your husband sounds like my verbally abusive mother. I would not tolerate that for a second. I would divorce him (it's much easier to divorce a spouse than your own mother). Do not accept this and get out!

5 moms found this helpful

My MIL (76 years old) said to me a couple of years ago that she realizes now that her husband's critical behavior was a result of his low self-esteem. They had divorced years earlier and he has long since passed, but I wonder if this knowledge would have helped her in dealing with her pain and in coming to a solution other than divorce. I am sorry for all that you are going through - we all need love and support and the people in our lives aren't always "equipped" to meet these needs.

4 moms found this helpful

Divorce. No one deserves to be treated badly.

If you took vows to "love, honor, and cherish" he broke those vows first.

good luck.

4 moms found this helpful

He probably doesn't even know what he is doing. I'd suggest flat out telling him how you feel. If he doesn't respect that and try to stop. . . you might have a problem on your hands.
Your children need to learn that putting women down is NOT ok. This needs to stop now.

4 moms found this helpful

Why do we do it to ourselves? I was in a similar relationship before my hubs and I wondered after I left this man what kept me in the first place? Perhaps it is the added stress of having a child with challenges that doesn't allow you to really deal with your marriage head on. If you don't want to leave , Then you need to take care of YOU first. Go see someone. Build up your strength, your communication skills, then you can approach hubs with your needs as well as what you will NOT be putting up with any longer. Until then vent to us, we hear you.

3 moms found this helpful

I am so sorry thar he is so hard on you! It can really make a person feel worthless... Occasionally, my husband wil begin to act like this with a sort of teasing tone. He's knows it gets to me and he thinks he's funny. I have to stop him in the act and remind him how it isn't funny and it is really hurting my feelings. He always comes around, he's a sucker for tears.
He may not realize what effect this is having on you. Have you told him? "Honey, I am trying my best to keep this household together. I am taking care of our children, cooking, cleaning, ect... the best I can. If you would like it done differently, can you make your suggestions in a kind way? I love you and it really hurts when you don't act like you're appreciating anything I am doing to show you and our children my love for you." Unless he is a total jerk, this should get your point across.

3 moms found this helpful

So sorry you are going through this, D.. No one deserves this treatment and I can only imagine how hard and unhappy it makes your day to day. You deserve something better for yourself and your kids. Your husband sounds like he needs a change too. Surely he's not happy being that kind of person.

I'm sure many have recommended counseling, and while it can seem daunting to find that right person to work with, I really recommend it. For both of you if he'll go as a couple, and for just you so you can have the support you need to take care of yourself and make some hard decisions if need be. It's so great to be in a room with someone who can give you support and a safe place to say what you need to. It really helps in couples counseling to have this, so you each can be heard in a positive, non-threatening, constructive way that is so, so hard to do on your own. If he won't go just yet, really, really go on your own. It will give you the hope and clarity you need to move forward in whichever way is best for you and your family. Best of luck to you.

2 moms found this helpful

Has he always been this way or is it more recent? Is there something happening with him and work, or something else, causing him stress? I mean, the way I deal with things may not be the way someone else would deal with things, but it seems to me that you need to start standing up for yourself more and flat-out ask him what his deal is. If my husband started putting me down and criticizing everything I did, it would not take me long at all to ask him what's the problem, and then tell him to knock it off. If something is eating at him, he needs to do a better job communicating it to you than just taking it out on you.

2 moms found this helpful

I totally agree with AnnaLee. Work on yourself and communicating with him. Maybe he's stressed out too? If he's still not willing to change then I would put couple's counseling out there and if he's still not willing it would be more than obvious to me that he's not willing to put in as much work as you have towards your marriage so time to move on. There's no sense in being beat down emotionally when you have two children who need you at your best.

Not too mention, you don't want your kids to grow up thinking that this is how you treat someone you love. Our kids get their relationship models from us. Would you want your kids to be in the kind of marriage you are? This does not mean I'm leaning toward divorce just a better relationship for everyone whether that's together or apart.

2 moms found this helpful

I am so sorry for what you are going through, you sound like a wonderful person. I would recommend a therapist of your choice. You deserve to be heard and validated; not at all do you deserve the unkind treatment that you are getting now. Sounds to me your Husband has issues to iron out, and his inability to communicate respectfully is hurting you. My Husband and I enlisted the help of a wonderful therapist when we were really on outs about 5 years ago...she helped us to change ourselves and save our marriage. You don't say if your Husband is on board with change, and if he isn't do it for yourself. Many of them take insurance and some even Medicaid. Good luck to you...you will be in my thoughts.

2 moms found this helpful

Hi D., Try and sit down with him and talk, if he has not always been like this, there may be something going on with him, and he's lashing out at you. Hang in there, I'm sure you will get a lot of advice on this one. And you know talk to your mom if you can, see what she says, because in society today people are so quick to cheat, and or leave, when most issues in a marriage can be resolved. I've been ,married for 30 years, I know. J.

2 moms found this helpful

sorry to hear that you are going through this. It sounds as though right now he is really unhappy and he takes is frustration out on you. which is unfair to you.

Try reading, The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman.
the author explains that we all have a love language and until we know our spouses love language our spouse won't feel loved his/her love tank is empty. When a love tank is empty we can be critical and unloving.

Obviously its his behavior that needs to change but sometimes we need to be that motivation for change.

Not that long ago my husband and I went through a really rough time. It a work in progress but we are willing to fight for our marriage.
He was very critical of me, unhappy, hated is job, we were in the process of selling our home which was stressful. We didn't make time for each other and he felt as though I didn't make time for him. We have a 3 1/2 year old.
We had to talk honestly with each other. It was painful! Last year was the hardest year of my life. We even talked about divorce. We do love each other and we made a vow to be married. I really do think this is something all marriages go through and that is why I shared my story with you. Not to take away from what you are going through because I can only understand enough through my own experience but so that you know you are not alone and you will get through this.

I hope this is helpful!
C.

1 mom found this helpful

I'm sure others suggested counseling and such, which is a great idea. But I'll just say that I'm the more dominant personality in my relationship, and while I love my husband dearly, sometimes I go through periods where I'm really hard on him. I've come to realize that it happens when I'm feeling really stressed out and like I'm doing a bad job keeping up with my job (as a housekeeper and mom). So maybe see if something like that is going on and you could try lavishing him with attention and support to see if that changes anything. But if it doesn't, then definitely get some help because no one deserves to be treated this way!

1 mom found this helpful

Seek counseling for YOURSELF even if he refuses. You need to understand why you are tolerating this behavior. Yes, he may suffer from his own issues of low self esteem, or worrying about money etc. But that doesn't give him permission to treat you badly. Only HE can fix HIS issues. But you can address yours in relationship to him.Constant criticism can be very debilitating. And a resounding NO to the person who suggests lavishing him with attention, and see if he feels better. I don't think you want to reward this behavior in your husband, anymore than you would a child.
Good luck and hang in there.

1 mom found this helpful

So sorry you are dealing with this. If I were you I would seek out counseling, it might be helpful in your situation. Giving you some support and hopefully some techniques to help deal with this.

1 mom found this helpful

having a disabled child can bring on depression and other challenges. If he hasn't always been this way, he could be struggling with this or other issues - you are the easiest target for his frustration.

You have received some great advice for how to talk to him. You should consider turning this over to a professional counselor. He may not even realize he is doing this and you have a pretty bad pattern to break. BTW, Divorce in entirely too common for parents with a disabled child. Look at the divorce rate for parents of autistic children.

1 mom found this helpful

You need to talk to him about it but you can say it with love and kindness, after all that is the behavior you want to model. Tell him how much you love him and want him to be happy. but he clearly seems very unhappy. Keep repeating you want him to be happy because you love him and wonder why he is unhappy. Ask is he unhappy in your marriage, is he thinking he would be happier with another woman? (hopefully this will shock him) Keep pointing out that he is showing he is miserable and unhappy and you'd like to know why.

1 mom found this helpful

Try writing him a letter expressing your concern for his behavior. Sometimes reading it sinks in more than talking to someone. Ultimately you will need to talk of course, but give him your thoughts and then he can compile his thoughts and hopefully you can have a good conversation and resolve the issues. We all make mistakes and hopefully learn from those mistakes. Give him a chance to right things. Let you children see that you can work things out. Wishing you all the best!

1 mom found this helpful

Is this something that has ALWAYS happened....or is it a new behavior on his part? If it is a new development, I would wonder if there is a medical or psychological reason for it....and I Would encourage your husband to go in to see his physician.
Have you talked to him about this? Not during the heat of the moment...but at a quiet time...after the children are in bed...just the two of you...calmly talking about it? Use a lot of "I" statements and avoid the "you" statements.... instead of saying "You really hurt my feelings when you say xyz" try to say something like "I feel so good when you praise something that I have done or say that I have made a good choice, I wish you could do that more ".
Maybe the two of you need to start spending more time as a couple. Do you have a caregiver that you trust your 10 year old for a few hours? Get out of the house and just be husband and wife for a couple of evenings a month!!! It doesn't have to be an expensive evening....find a great place to go for a walk and have a picnic dinner together....take a drive....park and watch the sunset and just enjoy each others' company.
And you have to take care of yourself too...you can't be there for others if you don't recharge your batteries from time to time. Carve out some time for yourself...polish your nails, read a book, go get your hair cut....catch lunch with a girlfriend. You can't keep giving and giving and not eventually end up on Empty!!!
One word of advice from personal experience...humor helps....I am married to a retired military man...he is a type A personality, and used to being in charge and having things go his way. I can spend an hour cleaning the kitchen, have it all spic and span...he will come in the house...walk in the kitchen and ask me why I left the sponge in the sink instead of put it on the sponge pad....lol. Instead of getting my feelings hurt I try to toss a little humor into the situation, I will roll my eyes at him and say "thanks for the positive reinforcement honey"....he normally realizes what he has done and we end up hugging each other. You husband might not respond as positively to it but maybe you could just THINK to yourself "thanks for the positive reinforcement honey"....and roll your eyes internally....lol.
Good luck to you D....it sounds like you are in a really stressful situation at home with a handicapped child and a demanding spouse...keep hanging in there!!!

1 mom found this helpful

My ? is has he always been unkind or is this a recent change? Where does he get his feeling of accomplishment in his life? Does he have a job or career where he is fulfilled? What type of home/family life did he have growing up? How is the affectionate side of your relationship?

It is hard to answer your ? without having you answer the questions above.

1 mom found this helpful

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