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You’ve been given some good insights. Including potentially why you do this.

So all I have to offer is how my husband communicates with me as a suggested starting point. I’m guilty of occasionally stating ‘Such and such needs doing..’. Which is my way of asking, ahem, telling. His response has been along the lines of, ‘Why are you telling me/ okay so what are you going to do about it?’ Message instantly received by me. I’ll reframe to ask him, or make a light-hearted response. Sometimes he’ll say, ‘No worries, I’ll take care of it’ but depends on the situation, and prefers that I ask.

I could imagine saying, ‘the cats need to be fed’ and him responding, ‘go on, then’. My personal response would be to either laugh and do it myself. Or ask ‘can you please..’

I don’t know if this is helpful at all.
 

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Discussion Starter #42
You’ve been given some good insights. Including potentially why you do this.

So all I have to offer is how my husband communicates with me as a suggested starting point. I’m guilty of occasionally stating ‘Such and such needs doing..’. Which is my way of asking, ahem, telling. His response has been along the lines of, ‘Why are you telling me/ okay so what are you going to do about it?’ Message instantly received by me. I’ll reframe to ask him, or make a light-hearted response. Sometimes he’ll say, ‘No worries, I’ll take care of it’ but depends on the situation, and prefers that I ask.

I could imagine saying, ‘the cats need to be fed’ and him responding, ‘go on, then’. My personal response would be to either laugh and do it myself. Or ask ‘can you please..’

I don’t know if this is helpful at all.
Thanks that is how I wish it was. I can’t imagine my wife responding the way you describe though. And I have replied the way you describe your hubby doing. Still, I agree with you and wish I had the wit at the time rather than later. Maybe when I’m better.
 

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If I were recovering from surgery and my husband called out that the dogs need to be fed, my response would be "So feed them". Seriously, lol.

That said, pouring some food into a bowl for the cats (or dogs) is hardly an arduous task, even for someone recovering from surgery.

OP you need to toughen up - either say you'll do it later or, that you can't and can she please do it.

It really is that simple.
 

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If you are supposed to stay in bed to rest what I am assuming is an incision then I would say, I cannot get up, you feed it/them please.
If you are recovering why is she asking you to do physical tasks?

Everyone is responding as if there is some long history and other posts you've made and they all seem familiar with your backstory. I am not.
If I am recovering from surgery I just say, I need to stay in bed you feed them. I'd probably say "you know I am recovering and need to stay in bed why are you even asking me to get up?"
He's not bed ridden or on complete bed rest.

I agree, I am part of the problem, I doormat easily without realising it at the time. The clever thing is she knows I could feed the cats, as I’m meant to keep mobile to prevent DVT, just the way she said it seemed designed to irritate me without sounding too bad. I know her you don’t, I know the games she plays. But yeah it’s up to me, you’re right, I just need to remember at the time it happens.
 

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Very good question. Answer: she is very opposed to be “the one who does x”, in the way of housework, and besides that she’s out or away a hell of a lot and I generally do everything other than cook delicious meals and ironing her clothes. Having said that I do feel she might be persuaded.
Where does she go? Does she have a job?
Do you have a job?
 

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This is foolishness... Of course she asked you. If this is HOW YOU communicate, the you may be some of the problem.

Like @Livvie said, either learn how to communicate, for real not this crap here, or end the relationship.

For my money, you kind of sound like a doormat if you are used to her doing these things to you.

You could have said, "I am not doing it, I don't feel well. You can do it or they can ****ing starve as far as I am concerned"...
But if he is that poorly, recuperating from surgery, maybe it's a question that shouldn't have been asked?

"Don't worry about the cats, dear! I've just fed them" is what my wife would have said under similar circumstances and it's what I would have said, too.
 

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Where does she go? Does she have a job?
Do you have a job?
She does lunch with friends, coffee with friends, yoga, meditation, mindful self compassion, picnics on our allotment with her friends, flower arranging and sometimes proof reading and writing, which she is very good at bringing in 20% of our household income. She used to go out clubbing and to gigs before the lockdown. With me sometimes. You know when an individual exchange is not just that but represents a whole attitude? OK I was triggered,,I know it.
 

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But if he is that poorly, recuperating from surgery, maybe it's a question that shouldn't have been asked?

"Don't worry about the cats, dear! I've just fed them" is what my wife would have said under similar circumstances and it's what I would have said, too.
Something tells me he wasn't worried about the cats at all.
 

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She does lunch with friends, coffee with friends, yoga, meditation, mindful self compassion, picnics on our allotment with her friends, flower arranging and sometimes proof reading and writing, which she is very good at bringing in 20% of our household income. She used to go out clubbing and to gigs before the lockdown. With me sometimes. You know when an individual exchange is not just that but represents a whole attitude? OK I was triggered,,I know it.
I your area no longer on COVID19 shutdown?
 

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She does lunch with friends, coffee with friends, yoga, meditation, mindful self compassion, picnics on our allotment with her friends, flower arranging and sometimes proof reading and writing, which she is very good at bringing in 20% of our household income. She used to go out clubbing and to gigs before the lockdown. With me sometimes. You know when an individual exchange is not just that but represents a whole attitude? OK I was triggered,,I know it.
Hmmm. So you bring in 80% of the household income and do most of the chores while she mostly plays and goes clubbing which occasionally includes you?

Interesting relationship you have going here.
 

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OK I was triggered,,I know it.
A couple goes to a marriage counselor. The man is talking, telling the couselor what he thinks the problems are that they need to address. Suddenly the wife blurts out "BUT HE NEVER PUTS THE TOP BACK ON THE TOOTHPASTE!!!!" With that shocking revelation, the counselor calms her down and then tells the couple. "I did not realize your marriage this far gone. Clearly there is nothing i can do to help you. You two just need to file for divorce."

What's the moral of that story? That when they start complaining about the little nonsense stuff, it means that the relationship is probably completely broken. It's not the tooth paste. It's that in her eyes his very existence is an annoyance. This can be fixed and the marriage recovered, but only if both are willing to work to build the relationship from the bottom up.

From what you are saying here, this is what your situation sounds like. There is absolutely nothing wrong with her asking you to feed the cat. And yea, it was basically her asking you because you could have just told her that you would not do it. She is not your boss. But you seem to find just about everything about her annoying. And I'll bet she feels the same about you.

So why are you staying married to someone who is basically using you to support her so that she can life a life of fun and leisure? You putting up with his is on you.
 

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Where does she go? Does she have a job?
Do you have a job?
She does lunch with friends, coffee with friends, yoga, meditation, mindful self compassion, picnics on our allotment with her friends, flower arranging and sometimes proof reading and writing, which she is very good at bringing in 20% of our household income. She used to go out clubbing and to gigs before the lockdown. With me sometimes. You know when an individual exchange is not just that but represents a whole attitude? OK I was triggered,,I know it.
If you are with someone who likes to go out clubbing (acting single...drinking, men on the prowl, dancing, single people looking to meet) while in a relationship I'd say you have picked poorly, she is not the good girlfriend/wife type and you are in for a life of misery and heartache.
 

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Thanks that is how I wish it was. I can’t imagine my wife responding the way you describe though. And I have replied the way you describe your hubby doing. Still, I agree with you and wish I had the wit at the time rather than later. Maybe when I’m better.
Well, thanks to your thread I caught myself earlier... said, 'Well, you need to let the dogs back in if they start barking.' Then realizing, said straight after, 'Could you please let the dogs back in if they start barking?' He laughed and appreciated the re-framing.

I hope you can follow some of the suggestions made in this thread, for your own benefit. It sounds like there may be more to the dynamic between you in terms of shared responsibilities and lifestyles.
 

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A couple goes to a marriage counselor. The man is talking, telling the couselor what he thinks the problems are that they need to address. Suddenly the wife blurts out "BUT HE NEVER PUTS THE TOP BACK ON THE TOOTHPASTE!!!!" With that shocking revelation, the counselor calms her down and then tells the couple. "I did not realize your marriage this far gone. Clearly there is nothing i can do to help you. You two just need to file for divorce."

What's the moral of that story? That when they start complaining about the little nonsense stuff, it means that the relationship is probably completely broken. It's not the tooth paste. It's that in her eyes his very existence is an annoyance. This can be fixed and the marriage recovered, but only if both are willing to work to build the relationship from the bottom up.
This is GOLD.
 

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i hate it when people try to get you to do something without actually asking you.

I once had a (male) coworker who would ask, "NTA, would you like some coffee?" I learned that saying yes, would only end with, "why don't you make some." to that question, I learned to say no and let him move on to the next (female) co worker in the office.

My mother has indirect ways of supplying "advice", usually outdated and useless. I was once telling her that in finding a new oncologist, I need to send a candidate the letters that I had already received when I was on the NHS. My mother just had to say "Do you think it would be a good idea to make photocopies of each letter and that way, you still have a copy for yourself." Why is my mother giving me advice ...... in that oh so helpful way ...... that was suitable if only we were living in the 1970s.
 

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@matador1958

I suggest stepping back and working on yourself.

You are coming off as too weak and compliant and your relationship is severely lopsided.

Complaining to your wife or trying to discuss it with her will more than likely not work or even make it worse.

There is a dynamic I have witnessed often about men and women though there are always exceptions so I hope no one gets ruffled feathers.

There is often a weird dynamic between men and women where men can become too accommodating and too laid back.

This eventually causes some form of unease or discomfort or even insecurity in their women and regardless of what might be bothering them, the women in these situations start **** testing, disrespecting and/or pushing boundaries with their men.

I've experienced it throughout my marriage and I see it happening with both my sons and I've seen it in multiple relationships with friends.

Setting up things right when this happens does not include rational conversations with your wife. It takes calmly reestablishing your agency.

I'll give you a very recent example from my marriage.

I am not considered weak or a pushover at all IRL. I'm the kind of guy that criminals avoid and anyone looking for conflict gives me a wide birth because I'll probably step on them.

I'm also extremely generous and loving towards my wife. I am constantly considering her and her wants and needs in every day life. I wait on her, cook for her and I'm always bringing her little gifts and treats.

I recently noticed her behavior getting a little stinky towards me about my desire to go to the gym. She works out differently than me and has her own schedule so we don't always click on our days and routines.

She was showing annoyance and displeasure with me going to simply take care of myself.

She was also whining about a lot more and generally being unpleasant for no good reason.

I had been responding to her as I usually did by being considerate of her feelings and trying to accommodate until I caught on that she was **** testing me.

I do not believe for a second that it is intentional on her part. It appears to be some form of instinct. I don't believe most of this behavior is thought out but it does come out as taking a husband for granted, walking on him and disrespecting him.

I corrected it once I saw it happening by telling her I was going to the gym. I told her like it was as simple as going to the restroom and I was calm. I knew, based on her previous behavior, that she was going to show displeasure and disagree with my decision to do something for myself. I didn't ask her if she wanted to go or consider her input in any way about my decision to do something for myself.

When she frowned at me and started complaining, I didn't get upset or even argue. I stayed calm and even smiled because I realized that I needed to stop basing my decisions on her attitude or emotions. I needed to do things for myself and not let her attitude ruffle me at all.

You know what? She needed that to. After she saw that I was unperturbed, unswayed and still calmly loving her despite her behavior, she almost immediately started behaving better and I could see she was more at peace.

I don't know exactly why this dynamic happens but it does a lot.

I have a friend that has been bending over backwards trying to make his wife happy and the more he capitulated, the more shrewish and disrespectful she became.

At one point, she ordered him to go out and sleep in their RV. I told him to not only refuse but to stand up to her and sleep in his own bed and to tell her she was more than welcome to sleep somewhere else.

He did as I instructed and, what do you know, she almost immediately became more peaceful and respectful of him.

This isn't every woman of course but there seem to be a lot of them and it appears to be instinctive rather than intentional.

My advice to you is to calmly start doing somethings for yourself, stop doing most of the chores, you should be going out to play without her like she is doing.

There are probably some books that could help give you some tips but I have never needed them in this situation.

@farsidejunky might have some resources to help you with your situation.

Hoping the best for you and your marriage.
 

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If you can't communicate to her that you are in so much pain from surgery that you'd appreciate it if she fed the cats (and really, why the ** is she even asking you to do it) because of the ** storm that would ensue, IT IS TIME TO FREE YOURSELF FROM THIS RELATIONSHIP.

Like, yesterday.
The only problem with this approach is that he will likely experience the exact same thing in his next relationship.

OP, why are you afraid of your wife?

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Totally, and believe me I feed those cats more than she does, along most other household stuff, the question I have is why was I knocked off balance by her statement? Probably because I recognized as another sign of her never actually asking me to do anything. Always just presenting me with a need and expecting me to deal with it like I was just jangimgvaroundcwaitingvto be given instructions. And I failed again to respond authentically, why?
You were knocked off balance because you know you should have stood up for yourself, but you didn't.

This causes you to lose respect and love for yourself.

How did you feel about YOU when you didn't do what you know you should have done?

Then, you turn that anger and apply it to her...where it is misplaced.

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I really disagree with this, Matador. If anything, you need to turn the tables on her and do the exact same things she does. Again, I'm saying you are not her child, but she treats you like one, and you keep letting her. Mothers leave instructions for their kids as they run out the door. Mothers remind their kids to do their chores or tell them to do things after they are already done. Mothers ask "Did you hear me?" when they know full well the kid heard them. This crap is demeaning. And you need to put a stop to it, rather than trying to appease her or trying to beat her to the punch of her demands. You've already been told women don't respect wimpy men. That's why you're going through this. Sit her down like I suggested and set her straight.
Soak this in, OP.

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I would recommend that you get a copy of Athol Kay's book, The Married Man Sex Life Primer. In it he writes how to do exactly what ConanHub is telling you. Put it into practice and get your balls back.
 
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