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    Never Wanted a Marriage Like This...
    An_257631 posted:
    I got married 2 years ago and went from single with dogs to stepmom of three kids and wife. I work full-time and the majority of money goes to supporting the household while husband's money goes to alimony and previous debt. I feel so taken advantage of - I work, I clean, I pay for the food, cook dinner, pay for health insurance, pay for most activities, manage my rental property, try to work out some and still try to keep everyone happy.

    I feel like I am being taken advantage of as often my husband seems to be like a fourth kid. It is all so much work and I'm physically getting sick now - in two years I've gained 50 lbs, was sent to an oncologist and husband never asked what my results were, I feel like some of my opinions are listened to just to placate me and others are dismissed entirely.

    This is exactly what I never wanted to get married in the first place and now within 2 years of marriage I am exactly of where I was petrified I would end up.

    There are no highs - just days that are ok and days that are bad and days that are awful. The kids adore me and my husband says he worships me, but I've told him we've turned into roommates and are no longer a husband/wife. At what point do you simply say, I can't take this anymore and leave?
    fcl responded:
    Before you give up I have two suggestions for you.

    The first one is to see your doctor and get screened for depression. I understand you're overwhelmed, really I do, but sometimes depression can make things worse, can make things seem insurmountable.

    The second is to make an appointment for both of you for couples counselling. You are telling youir husband that things are not well and he is not hearing (or listening to) you. Counselling can help you communicate more effectively - express better and listen to each other better. If your husband won't go then I highly recommend you go alone. It will help you sort through your issues and your priorities.

    Finally, to answer your question, you know it's time you left when the thought of staying hurts more than the thought of leaving.

    Wishing you well,

    There's nothing inherently dirty about sex, but if you try real hard and use your imagination you can overcome that.
    dfromspencer responded:
    Hi, Welcome,

    At what point do you simply say, i can't take this anymore, and leave? Hmmm, hubby worships you? Kids adore you? I think you might be feeling overwhelmed? You knew what you were getting into, didn't you? You knew he had kids, didn't you? You knew he had baggage before you said IDo, didn't you?

    If the answer to anyone of those questions is yes, then you need to be the wife your hubby married, not a roommate! You need to be the mother to those kids that they need you to be! For better or worse, richer or poorer, you said I Do!

    So, you do what you said I Do for, and live the best life you can! However, this fourth child needs to step up and do some cleaning, and dishes, and taking the kids to soccer, or whatever, and he needs to be the hubby he said I Do, for!!!

    What it sounds like to me is, you two have a lack of communication, or one side has a problems understanding the other? F.C.L. mentioned help for you and hubby, or at least you? Do it!!! Hubby needs to learn how to listen with both ears! He needs to learn what being a husband and father means!!! In other words, he needs to grow up! He needs to step up to the plate, and be a good dad and husband/lover!

    You are stressing on things he should automatically should be doing as a hubby and father? He has it in his head that you are supposed to do everything and leave him alone? Not going to last that way, he is actually the one that needs this help! But, if he knows you are doing this as a last ditch effort to keep this marriage going, maybe he will wake up and do those things he should be doing??? Tell him exactly how you feel, and he better do something about it!

    I have said enough, i am just beating a dead horse now. Hubby need to "HEAR YOU"!!!

    I wish you tons of luck!!!

    Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD responded:
    You are clearly feeling that your situation needs to change. But I wonder what you have done to try to change things. Obviously any attempts you've made have not been fully successful, but have you done anything that's had any impact?

    One response that sometimes works for people is sitting those who take advantage of them down at a calm time and telling them your thoughts and feelings. Many people find it helpful to begin with their spouse so that they can resolve their problem and then work together on bringing the kids in line.
    mydogsmakemesmile replied to Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD's response:
    I've asked my husband to go to counseling on his own but he says he doesn't need it because he knows what any counselor will say to him. I've asked to go to couple's counseling and he's not keen on that either. The problem is that any complaint or concern that I voice is treated like I've attacked him - I work really hard at using terms like "I feel ..." or "My interpretation is..." so that I'm not being like "You did this..." but it sinks him further into his shell. The other day he got upset and disappeared for hours - the kids were asking me where he was and I didn't know what to tell them.

    I've asked for more help with chores like cleaning, etc. but his answer is then to the extreme of "Ok, then I'll do everything!" and then the fight begins because I say that is unreasonable.

    I'm going to go back to our pre-marital counselor this week and start seeing him on my own. I'm not saying the my husband doesn't have complaints about me and I am trying to work on those but I just don't know how much to change before I'm no longer myself...
    fcl replied to mydogsmakemesmile's response:
    So he's passive-aggressive. Take a long look at his reaction to counselling. He just doesn't want to go. He's scared that fingers will be pointed. He has missed the whole point of counselling...

    I'm glad you're going back to counselling. You really need to work through this situation. Has your husband realized that you might just decide that you want to be a wife and not a dogsbody?

    You are working full-time, he shouldn't be "helping" he should be doing HIS SHARE (YES, this kind of thing makes me mad!). Frankly, if he won't discuss things and won't participate in the running of the home and won't go to counselling ... at very least I would stop doing everything for him. Obviously, you can't leave the kids in the lurch but I don't see why a grown man can't pull his weight.

    Finally, you never mentioned how old the children were. Are they old enough to be doing chores? What kind of relationship does he/ do you/ do the children have with his ex/their mother?
    There's nothing inherently dirty about sex, but if you try real hard and use your imagination you can overcome that.
    mydogsmakemesmile replied to fcl's response:
    Kids are Girl16, Boy12 and Boy8 and they actually are great kids. We have them 90% of the time. I should say that the abuse from his ex has take a hug toll on husband and the girl but the younger two don't remember much of it (abuse as in their bio-mom used to threaten to kill the kids, would od on pills and then drive with kids in call and "challenge god" etc)

    We do have chore day where everyone pitches in and does chores, but husband has participated in weeks.

    He did mention he'd be willing to the Love Languages book - just not counseling. I just hope it helps because it feels like a boiling pot where more and more of the stuff he does is going to cause me to boil over....
    Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD replied to mydogsmakemesmile's response:
    I hope the pre-marital counselor can help. I'm guessing that he knows your husband, too, and so may have more insight about how to help. Also, maybe, even if your husband isn't exactly happy about it, he might be willing to join you in sessions -- assuming that he felt comfortable with this pre-marital counselor.
    dfromspencer replied to mydogsmakemesmile's response:
    Wow!!! Your hubby is one lazy guy! You really should do as FCL suggested, leave his messes alone, and only worry about your and the kids messes! He will get tired of the plates and bowls staking up at his place at the table?! Or on his half of the couch, or even the bed, only make your side up, and if at all possible, use your own sheets and blankets?! (It will work if you have a split mattress bed.)

    Leave hubbies dirty clothes wherever he leaves them, dirty towel, what ever you can come up with, that will drive him crazy till he gets the message! Oh, and no sex, either, if you can bear that?!

    Leave half of everything you possibly can, and i hope he gets the message? Or, as a last resort, leave for a week, go on a mini vacay all by yourself, and lets see how long it takes him to beg for you to come home? Go see your family, friends you haven't talked to in a while? The point is to make him see how much he needs you, and how much he needs to do to have you stay?!

    Before you go back, make him promise to do his half of everything! A marriage should be a partnership, everything 50/50!!! If a man cannot live up to his responsibilities, then he is no partner, and needs to be fired! Find one who will stand up to the plate and take care of business!!!

    He needs YOU more than you NEED HIM!!!

    Good luck!


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