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Anybody out there?

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
Hubby had a bad day at work and won't tell me about it. He won't talk at all. He's acting like it has something to do with me. The last time we went through this he accused me of cheating on him (not true, and he knew it once he got himself under control). I feel like he's about to dump our whole life upside down and I don't know why. He went for a drive, daughter is sleeping, and I'm uptight now. {sigh} What is it with guys, anyway?
post #2 of 24
Just take a deep breath and remember that you are strong enough for anything. Marriage is a rough road and sometimes the bumps feel like mountains. After being with my husband for 10 years, I have gray hairs at 27. However, everything has worked out in the end after a little effort on both parts. Hopefully it was just work stress and he needs to blow off some steam.
post #3 of 24
Sorry to hear about your problem. Maybe he is just having a bad day in general? Like Sandie said, marriage is a bumpy ride...... I am 24 and have been married for 4 years now, & sometimes it isn't the greatest, but we work it out. Has he not even talked to you since he got home? I hope everything works out ok. I have come to the conclusion, that men get just as pissy as us women do, and sometimes even worse! Oh, and they are lazy, too!
post #4 of 24
Men sometimes find it hard to express their feelings in words. Sometimes you need to give them time on their own to cool off. Please let us know how you're doing!
post #5 of 24
Men are strange creatures sometimes!! My husband and I hve been married 6 years now, and I still don't understand him a lot of the times. They can't always express themselves the way we do. With David, the best thing is for me to ignore him and just try to act normal. Usually within a short while he'll snap out of it and just tell me what was wrong to begin with.
Hope it all works out for you. I know its frustrating.
post #6 of 24
Sunlion - Been there, done that. It's never easy, but at least in my case, it always ends. The last time Doug acted like that, I told him he could either quit or I was leaving. And I was serious. He was treating me like a piece of furniture, and it was driving me nuts. For at least a month he wouldn't even say hi to me when he got home. When I tried to have a conversation with him, he'd ignore me. I was basically just there to take care of the kids, cook his food, do his laundry, and pick up after him. When I called him on his behavior, he shaped up. He tends to get depressed sometimes and I guess it's easiest to take it out on the wife.

I hope your hubby opens up to you and tells you what's wrong. It only makes matters worse when they act ugly to the people that love them most.

In the meantime, we're always here if you need to vent.
post #7 of 24
I am sorry you have to go thru this. I know exactly what it is like. My husband has been extremely testy lately. He is being sued for 1.5 million dollars for a car accident he was in. It was not his fault - she hit him - but she clm it was his fault. Unfortunately it seems men keep thing inside until it blows - when it blows watch out. All you can do is love him and be there for him if he needs to talk. I hope everying goes ok!
post #8 of 24
Thread Starter 
He never did tell me exactly what happened.

Apparently his boss criticized him about something and it felt completely personal. I don't know what he said, so I don't know if he deserved it or not. Hubby is ADD as well as suffers depression, so sometimes he's fighting biology and people around don't realize how hard it is for him. So there are criticisms he deserves, ones that might be true but he can't help it, and ones he doesn't deserve at all. Which is probably true for most of us, just he is more sensitive to it, and the days he seems most deserving are the days he's probably sruggling already.

Instead of sucking it up and "kicking the dog" or whatever it is folks do, he came home and sat on the sofa and stared. Literally. Every time I tried to talk to him or even just touched his shoulder, he'd frown at me and shake his head "no" and raise a hand like "talk to the hand". He told me he was going for a drive. I tried to call him on the cel phone, but he didn't pick up. I thought maybe he was having a beer or two.

When he called me back, he said he'd been to the boss's house! I mean, eek! What was the point of that? He added that he's lucky to have a job still, and I think that's probably true! He said they talked about his problems. I asked if it was what he thought were his problems or what the boss thought, and he said the boss. So I guess it wasn't very fruitful . . . {sigh}

What really scares me is, he kept saying that he felt like he was floating out of his body or he was in a dream or he was completely numb. He said it felt like it happened to someone else and he didn't care any more. He sounded really dissociated and I can't support my daughter and I if he has a complete breakdown. He actually got up and went to work this morning, so he must be feeling better on some level, but I don't feel secure about that.

He has an appointment on the 12th to get his meds re-evaluated, I hope that makes some difference.

Just having a moment of being overwhelmed, I guess. I know marriage isn't easy. And it does help to have other people say they deal with the same things - makes it seem less personal, somehow! I mean, if lots of guys would rather be silent, maybe mine isn't as freaky as I think! Or maybe they're all freaky and I just didn't realize it!

(Sorry to be so full of hot air today.)
post #9 of 24
I know some of what you are going through. Recently, my husband has lost his smile. He comes home from work, surly and gruff so unlike him it is amazing. He sits on the couch and glowers at the television whether it is on or not. We will be celebrating our 15th wedding anniversary in a few months, so I was just hanging in there, knowing that when he wanted to talk about it, he would.

He opened up the other day and he has a new lady boss now that apparently has some major control issues. She knows nothing of what he does- my husband is the only one in three in the United States that can do what he does- he's a calibration technician, from the old school of taking a piece of test equipment and finding out what is wrong with it instead of the new school which is toss it out and order another new piece. So there is really very little this man doesn't know. But at every turn now he is challenged, and when he orders something they tell him he "doesn't need it" and so on and so on. Once he started talking about it, the damn broke open.

So, I listened, and I sent him flowers at work to cheer him up. I packed him extra special lunches with notes in them to make him smile (private jokes and stuff) I just let him know that I am in his corner and that I believe in him. As his wife, it is all I can do. The other day, I sent flowers to his boss lady (anonomously) and it really perked up her day! lol I might do that again, as my friend runs the floral shop and she won't tell who is sending these because I asked her not to.

it took 3 weeks for Mike to tell me what was wrong and in the meantime, I just tried to be there for him in all other ways. Good luck and know that in these turbulent times, many people are not acting normal at all.
post #10 of 24
I was married to a man who did the same thing to me ALL THE TIME! Everytime he was in a bad mood or had a bad day at work he'd give me the silent treatment. It drove me nuts!! But at that time I was very young (20) and didn't have the patience. Guys have a difficult time admitting when they're depressed (makes them feel weak). My dad suffered from depression. Rather than go to therapy, he drank his troubles away. I inherited the depression and am on medication.

Marriage takes work. If I had to do it all over again, I'd have worked alot harder. But I learned too little to late.

Good luck and keep your chin up!

post #11 of 24
I, too have "been there, done that", although from the other side. Please bear with me and my explanation.

It most certainly is true we men have great difficulty opening up, and when we do it's usually not pretty...more like vindictive (to anybody). I tend to think I do better these days, although still not "perfect". However, it took 5 months of individual and joint marriage counseling and having my marriage on the brink of dissolution to be the necessary catalyst. I don't necessarily like to advocate "pop psychology", but John Gray's Mars/Venus material was like holding a mirror to my own face. Men generally like to be the problem solver and when the solution is not easy, we clam up until we think we have it figured out. Along the way, everyone/thing gets pushed to the background. While this doesn't fix the situation, wives being aware of this seems to prevent some (not all) hurt feelings during these episodes.

To this very day, I don't really enjoy my day job and occasionally go home to my family in a less-than-congenial mood. Part of my feeling is I don't want to "dump" on my wife, as I feel she has enough of her own stuff to worry about...so, I bottle it up. The other part is, when I do try and talk to her, she generally ends up apologizing for things she is not responsible for nor that she has any influence over. That's not how I want her to feel.

Lately, in conjunction with the progress we've made in our youthful, 6 year marriage, we've found that having returned to church life has had a tremendous benefit for us and our son.

Lastly, please try to be patient with your husband. I would find it difficult to believe he's blaming you for any difficulty he's having right now. If he is, gentle talking/listening (when he's ready) not admonishment for how he's been acting, will be the most useful.

I hope that helps shed some light without offending.

Prayers and blessings to you.

post #12 of 24
So sorry to hear about your situation, you seem to have quite a bit of great advise, I just thought I'd extend just one more and that is "have faith"...no matter what happens, you'll be okay.

I'm sure things will work out, it does sound that he's going through quite a bit with his boss and since he is also on meds, it's very understandable how that can alter your moods, but I'm sure it's very difficult to be on the receiving end...there you have more than my sympathy...(sigh)

I would also like to thank BillChamb for his reply. You have certainly opened up my eyes although I am not married nor have a boyfriend that I live near enough to to have to deal with him on a day to day basis. I'm sure that will help in my future relationship with him.

Love & Peace,
post #13 of 24
Thread Starter 
Bill (and everyone),

I'm not offended. You can probably make a better guess than I can, just because you're on that side of things. It sure explains that tendency to crawl into a hole and then tell me how life is going to be! As if I'm not also an adult and have no say in the matter, sheesh. See how these things get misunderstood?

It's just, shared joy is doubled and shared sorrow is cut in half, you know? He doesn't need to carry it all himself, but he seems to choose it even though he suffers more because of it. Actually, we talked a bit tonight.

Backstory: My folks died when I was 19, so I've been putting myself through college, which was a slow process. I'm about 7/8 of the way through my Bachelor's, but since my major is social work and counselling, I need a Masters to really be employable. When we met, I was taking time off to work so I'd have something to live on while I was taking classes. We got married and had our daughter within a year. The plan was for me to go back, but it hasn't worked out so far.

So I told him that I thought we goofed in our priorities about things. I should have gone back to school 4 years ago (daughter would have been a year old) because by now I'd be done and have some work experience. Then, if he wanted to, he could take a less stressful but lower paying job, because we wouldn't be so dependent on him. I pointed out that it was an issue anyway, because even if it was something purely physical like breaking a leg or catching pneumonia, if he was out of work for a month, we'd be scrod. I can't support us right now if I had to, so I really need to get back on track.

His whole body relaxed, I mean I could see it. It's hard enough to keep things together just being depressed, I think, and the fact that he is the sole source of income for us has to add to the pressure. He would be happier doing Mac work as a consultant, but he didn't feel like he could take the cut in pay to do that. (More $$ per hour but fewer hours of work.) Takes time to build up a clientele. But if I am working regular hours, say 25 or 30 sessions in a week, then he can have good months and bad months without us going hungry.

Besides, I'm getting terribly bored hanging around the house and it isn't fair to drop all our financial needs on him. And I think it isn't very smart to have only one way of supporting the whole family, anyway.


Thanks for all the responses! It's nice to know it's folks in general, not us in particular.
post #14 of 24
Sunlion (and all),

Funny you should mention about the pressure of single income support. For the past three or so years, I've been the only income in our household. It's vastly more important to me and my wife that she be home to be "Mom" to our son (who is ADHD/OCD). Stay-at-home moms are, to me, the single most important aspect of child rearing. That said, I fully realize that not all moms have that option, and I have a greater respect for those single moms and their balancing/juggling acts of work and family.

Our son is 9 and is a third-grader. Last week, my wife decided to take a PT job for a local senior couple. 3 days/week of light housework and some cooking. She finally feels like she's contributing to our family, although I've tried to explain she's been contributing all along by being home.

We're in much the same position, in that, I no longer have the drive & desire to effectively get through my day job, but realize I must for my family to continue. My wife has offered to try to find a FT, better paying occupation, so that I might explore more satisfying work in some other field. This holds an appeal for me, but I know she's a better "Mom" than I could ever be and (knowing myself) I'd feel guilty thinking about her working FT, while I figure out what it is I really wnat to do.

Anyway, with all that said, don't second guess your past decisions. Go with the present and focus on what's important, i.e. your daughter and husband. As Cat so deftly noted, faith (coupled with hope and love).

Thanks for sharing and letting me share,
post #15 of 24
Bill - I just wanted to say how nice it is to hear a man say how much his wife is contributing to the family by being home with the kids. I too am lucky enough to be married to a man who sees the importance of this, and I know he's under tremendous pressure to provide from us financially. We're still trying to recover from him being laid off last year, and it's been a year now since it happened. And never once did he tell me to get a job, even though I have a very marketable degree and lots of experience professionally. So basically I just wanted to say YEAH for you and all the men like you.

post #16 of 24
post #17 of 24
Thread Starter 
We both feel pretty strongly about me being home for our daughter, and originally we planned to homeschool. (I have big philosophical differences with the design of our current educational system, which is why even tho' I am Catholic, I haven't really considered parochial school either, but I won't go into that here.) However, if one of us us miserable, then it seems like it isn't working out. I don't mean the usual momemts of blah that happen with every job, I mean overwhelmed and unhappy on a regular basis.

My daughter is pretty much old enough to articulate most of her desires and needs, being 5. She also doesn't have the kind of issues your son is facing, and she loves to be around other children. So perhaps a non-traditional school, like a Montessori (Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is, in fact, Catholic Montessori), would be good for her.

Plus, the idea is that I would work or school something less than full time and probably either early morning or evening hours. So he could adjust his hours accordingly and be home with her. He used to work at home because he was self-employed so she misses him terribly and he is a pretty hands-on dad.

Like everything, there is a trade off. I could cynically say, we are trading ideals for quality of life, but it's not that simple. People change, our needs change. Even tho' we chose this a while ago, maybe we didn't understand the full implications of it? So maybe we should just try something new. I think it would increase both stability (predictable income not based on someone's feeling psychologically good enough to work) and flexibility (he wouldn't feel so trapped and could pursue something more interesting).


I agree with Dawn. Dads who support their families are just as under-appreciated as moms who stay home. After all, aren't they just doing what they're "supposed" to do? It takes a heroic effort to spend your days doing something, that you won't see the benefit of for years. It's very grounding and healthy for kids to be around someone consistently who loves them like a parent does. (Which is probably the single biggest problem with day care, an inconsistent caregiver over time.)

So, how about a big round of applause for all the people who pour out their lives for their children, whatever form that takes!
post #18 of 24
Bill, it is really nice to get a man's point of veiw here also! Thanks! I have read this whole thread, and Sunlion, I know exactly what you are going through...it is hard.
My husband comes home somenights in a decent mood, but most nights, he is quiet, and just stares into space....I know he is depressed, and I know part of it is his job, and part of it is that his kids don't live with us, they live with their mom, but I always feel like it is MY fault when he acts like this, like I have done something wrong, and am not making him happy. (we have been married 7 years)
I ask him what is wrong, and then he gets snappy with me, and then we end up in a big fight. Marriage is SOOOOOO hard!!!!!!!! Why does it have to be so hard?????????
post #19 of 24
Let me just add, that I DO try to understand his feelings, and not push him to talk about them, but when he starts taking it all out on me, and getting mad because his supper isn't exactly what he wanted that night, or the TV show we are watching isn't just exactly what he wanted to watch, and stupid stuff like that, then I come unglued! I feel like I have had a crappy day too, and I just want to relax and enjoy the evening with him, not be picked apart for every little thing that is wrong.
Sorry guys....guess I too needed to vent.
I hope things get better for you Sunlion.
post #20 of 24
Thread Starter 
It's funny how fragile men's moods are sometimes, isn't it? It's as if we get all caught up their macho stuff and forget that they can be vulnerable about things. Or it's like they are oaks and in a strong wind they just blow over because they can't bend. doesn't take much to throw them out of whack, but if they won't tell you what's going on, how will you know? And if you knew, you probably wouldn't be as grumpy yourself! You remember "Oh, yeah, work situation is bugging him, it's not about me" (or whatever) and so much of the defensiveness just evaporates.

Not all men, of course, men are all different like women are all different, just kind of thinking out loud about it.

Things are better right now, Debby. We are talking about a few things and trying out some changes, so hopefully that will take some of the pressure off him. And of course seeing the doctor in 3 weeks should make a difference too, whatever they decide about meds. Shame he won't do counselling therapy, I think he has more control over things than he believes he does, but he's not going to believe me.

Oh, and I found a group called DMDA, the Depressives / Manic Depressives Association, that has a weekly meeting. There is a meeting for family members at the same time, so as soon as I get done with this e-mail and wash off my workout, I'm heading over there. Hubby won't go, he's still in the denial stage, but it's helpful to find out what is common to marriage, what is common to living with depressives, and what is particular to us. Because some of it won't change but other parts can be worked on, you know?
post #21 of 24
That is great that you have found a support group. Hopefully, your hubby will go sometime!
post #22 of 24
Sunlion, Please let me know how this meeting goes....I wish we had something like that here.
post #23 of 24
Aren't there any 12 step meetings closely associated with anything like that? From what I understand, there's been an incredible amount of groups that have taken the foundation of the 12 step program of Alcoholics Anonymous to deal in different problem areas in life.

I would think there would have to be something available in most cities. Twelve step groups are free and it benefits the community as a whole.

post #24 of 24
Thread Starter 
I used to work with dual diagnosis people - that is, people who have both an addiction and a mental illness - so I knew there were a whole bunch of 12 step programs out there. Problem is, they usually don't keep contact info for each other and they don't all get listed in the phone book. So I called our local mental hospital, and they had the listing for DMDA. I called them and left a name and number, and they called me back within 24 hours so that was pretty impressive.

They have a monthly schedule of meetings:

Week 1 - speaker from a service provider
Week 2 & 4 - speaker who is a psychopharmacologist (works with drugs that affect brain chemistry) who has an 18 lesson program he does every year
Week 3 & 5 - (some months have 5 weeks) group discussion, with the friends and families in a different group from the person witht the disorder

This week was the drug guy. He talked about the history of psychiatry and basic brain chemistry, which I knew most of, but not everyone does and it's good to review so we'll see how it goes. And I talked toa few other people who are in my same boat, which is good because you start telling a story and everyone just nods and laughs because we recognize it. You don't have to explain stuff from scratch, and nobody looks at you like you're very strange.

What was good for me, was to hear that I am not the only one and that other people had worse problems. My husband, for example, gets up and goes to work every day, even though he likes to spend the rest of his time in bed, but other people have spouses who can't work. My husband has been suicidal a few times, but other people have been htreatened by their partners when they lose touch with reality. He's never been hospitalized, I've never had to call the police on him, he's good with our daughter. So we'll tweak the meds when we see the MD in a few weeks that should help, unless it makes it worse as med changes sometimes do, but I won't worry about that at this point.

It worked out well this week because I went to the meeting, daughter went to a parents' night out that a local church is doing as an outreach in our apartments, and hubby spent the evening alone. And I think he needed that because now he is ready to go do something with us this afternoon, which is fairly unusual lately. So I might not go every week but I expect to go back now and then.
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