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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been married for 5 years, have a 2YO son and am 5 months pregnant with our second child. At face value, my husband seems like a really good man. He has a good job, is very loving to our son and our dog comes from a good family where his parents have been married 40+ years. When we go out with friends he appears to be very attentive toward me and is loving. However, he has a really dark side.

He was recently diagnosed with ADHD after years of me thinking he was just abusive. The ADHD causes him to have intense fits of anger and blame, complete denial of many things he does and says to me and the typical inability to follow through on anything. He plays video games incessantly (6+ hours a day is not atypical) and ignores me on a regular basis. When I say that I feel ignored, he says I should stay in the room while he plays like somehow that will give me the time together I’m asking for.

He has said some really ugly things to me over the course of our relationship (7+ years total). Most of it has been behind closed doors (he’s called me “a piece of s*&t” and some other savory names). Occasionally he’ll curse me out in front of family and friends and insulting my parenting skills. For the record, our son is a very sweet, loving little boy and people regularly comment on how well-behaved and good-natured our son is.

Most recently, he accused me of making up the fact that I had 2 miscarriages prior to getting pregnant this time. Both were early but were clinically considered miscarriages. He did apologize but when you hear stuff like this over and over it becomes harder to forgive and forget. In public and in front of our son he frequently berates the way I parent which upsets our son. He frequently puts me between himself and my parents who live across the country. So visits with them are always tough.

I was a stay at home mom for the first 10 mos. of my son’s life until I got so frustrated with his unwillingness to help out at all (neither his parents nor mine are in the city where we are, we have no other family nearby and our friends tend to be wrapped up in their own lives). He would repeatedly berate how I cooked, cleaned, handled our son and basically did everything. Then he told me we were going broke while I found out he was amassing hundreds of thousands of dollars in investments.

I went back to work determined to help with our income, just get a break. I was really successful in my sales job in my first year, but eventually he started resenting my work. He would curse when my cell phone rang and say I worked too much, but then ask when the next check was coming. Now we have a nanny who takes care of our son and cleans our house, but the second she leaves it all comes back to me. I don’t have a 9-5 job and mine frequently calls for work during evenings and weekends. This morning when I said we should consider getting some new kitchen appliances because ours were starting to break and not work well (I’m not spoiled, they are over 10 years old and not top of the line by any means), he said I should plan on making more money. He won’t take time out from his day (unless it’s an absolute emergency or involves his dog), but he is more willing now to help with after hours work. Though when he does help, he needs at least equal time to relax and unwind.

My mom says I should quit my job. We'd be OK financially, but his lack of motivation and general ambivalence toward his own job leave me concerned that if he lost his, we'd really be up a creek. It took him 11 mos. of not working to find the one he's had for the last 5 years.

He doesn’t help with any of the cooking, cleaning outside of what our nanny does, grocery shopping, or any of the other mundane tasks of running a household other than paying the bills online. My working afford us having a gardener so no more yardwork for him. I even took care of replacing our hot water heater and repairing garage door opener because he couldn’t take the time to deal with them. I was exhausted a lot of the time earlier on from the pregnancy and he thought I was faking it. I had morning sickness for the first 3.5 mos and just felt lousy, but because I physically didn’t get sick he thought I was just being a baby. His mother and sister were the epitome of health during their pregnancies so he just can’t understand why I don’t feel that good too.

We’ve been in therapy on and off for the last 2 years with 3 therapists. I just feel like I’ve gone from being a very confident independent person to someone who is insecure, unappreciated and alone. I live in a city I hate- his choice to move here- despite the fact that he telecommutes and we really have no other ties other than his parents living here seasonally for ~3 mos./yr. I have very few good friends, and limited job options. I’ve asked to move numerous times to be closer to friends and family but his answer is always that he needs to be close to his corporate headquarters (2.5 hours flight away) which he seldom visits.

After the insults and nastiness, he always apologizes and gets more involved temporarily but the next episode is always around the corner. I’m terrified that our son will think this is normal and am worried that I will waste my life with someone who doesn’t even care enough most times to ask how my day is. I’ve had better interaction with roommates. He is not really willing to go to counseling with my anymore and no one ever sees this side of him. I’ve tried to figure out how to record our arguments per one of our therapists but logistically it seems impossible because of the size of our house.

I don’t want to leave- but am concerned about the long-term effect on our children and my own psyche. I continually try to figure out how to make it better but we always end up at the same place- with me completely frustrated at his lack of participation in our marriage and our life in general. I know marriage is never a 50/50 split, but I didn’t think I’d do most everything.

I just don’t know what to do. My friends and family have commented they don’t know how I do it and have asked what I will do when the new baby comes. I just don’t know but I’m really scared of the prospect of it all. I don’t even have anywhere to go if I leave. I would have to give up my career here because I can’t live in a city with no help from family because I’m sure I wouldn’t be able to afford it otherwise. The idea of starting over just makes me feel sick. I’m a really resourceful person, but this is truly the first time in my life that I’ve never been able to come up with a solution for my problems and time is not healing anything. Any help or advice anyone can give would be greatly appreciated. And SO sorry for the novel…
 

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I am so sorry that you are going through this right now. It sounds to me that your husband doesn't realize that there are two people in this marriage and that both have to work at it. I really hate to tell people what to do but it sounds like he is verbally abusive to you and that is just not a good environment for you or your kids.
 

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I agree that this is a verbally abusive relationship. Money should not be a reason to stay with him. You could move to a part of the country that requires less money to live. You already work, and all the assets he has is community property so in a divorce you'd get half or more of it plus child support for two children which would be about 25-30% of his gross pay.

If you stay with him then you need to do more for yourself, If you leave him chances are you will notice all the wounderful things about yourself again.

Please, don't feel trapped.

draconis
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you both for painting an unbiased picture of the harsh reality. I know money should not be an issue, but it's the hard reality of life. We don't live an extravagant lifestyle, but I hesitate to take on single-parenthood without my family who I will need for support with raising 2 kids. He hates the NE even though we are both from there and has made it very clear that he has no desire to live there. I have a hard enough time with the hours I keep and no help where I live in no-man's land.

Unfortunately, moving closer to my family would put me just outside New York City which is not terribly affordable. Also the majority of my business contacts are there because it's where I grew up and started my career, so it would be one of the easiest places in the country for me to get a good job for what would make living and paying for childcare, and other living expenses more feasible. I guess it's time to speak to someone (a lawyer) a little further about my options...
 

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Thank you both for painting an unbiased picture of the harsh reality. I know money should not be an issue, but it's the hard reality of life. We don't live an extravagant lifestyle, but I hesitate to take on single-parenthood without my family who I will need for support with raising 2 kids. He hates the NE even though we are both from there and has made it very clear that he has no desire to live there. I have a hard enough time with the hours I keep and no help where I live in no-man's land.

Unfortunately, moving closer to my family would put me just outside New York City which is not terribly affordable. Also the majority of my business contacts are there because it's where I grew up and started my career, so it would be one of the easiest places in the country for me to get a good job for what would make living and paying for childcare, and other living expenses more feasible. I guess it's time to speak to someone (a lawyer) a little further about my options...
I wish you the best of luck and hope that you continue to tell us how you are doing and/or help others on these forums. Be well.

draconis
 
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