First off, before I get into my thought(s) of the day–
I was pleasantly surprised when I opened my email today to see I had a follower. I’m doing this for my own form of therapy, but it’s kind of nice to know that I’m not just writing into the void. So, yeah me! And thank you, reader (s).
On to tonight’s stream–my DH.
Let me preface this with the following. My DH is a great guy–he has a steady, well-paying job, he doesn’t drink or do drugs, he doesn’t sleep around, he doesn’t abuse us, he takes cares of the house, he loves our son dearly, he doesn’t waste money. He can be funny, and he can be very sweet and charming. He has never been a reader, an arts lover, or a talker, and he’s never been really romantic. We’ve been together a long time, sixteen years. Most days are good. But, and it seems more often recently, there are days that are not good.
Today was one of those days. This morning, we went to the local dump to throw out an old mattress and box spring and our Christmas tree. I would have done it by myself, but there was no way I could have moved the mattresses alone. The Christmas tree, I could have. When I thanked him for the help, saying “I couldn’t have done the mattresses alone,” he added, “or the tree”. When I replied that I could have, he called me a weeble. You remember weebles. “Weebles wobble but they don’t fall down.” I am overweight–I admit that, and that is one of many things I’m working on right now. He continued his comment with, “You can’t bend down. Have you ever seen a weeble bend?” He may have intended for this to be funny, but it hurt my feelings. I can bend down, I can move, and I can lift things. There are many times he calls me lazy, because at 7:30 at night, I’m sitting on the couch watching some tv, or on Sundays, when I don’t get started with my cleaning until 8 or 9 o’clock. My day starts at 5:30. I work all day, on my feet, then come home, cook dinner, clean, childcare (he’s 11, but he still needs homework help, bed time stuff, etc.) prepare for the next day at work, then go to bed around 10. I’m not complaining about that life–I love my job and my family. He starts around 6:30, works all day on the phones, comes home, eats dinner, then plays computer games until 9. And there have been many weekends when I have gone out all day for a variety of reasons and when I come home after 9 hours, he and my son are still in their pajamas, playing PS4 and there is a sink full of dishes. I walk into the kitchen everyday and find empty cans or bottles right next to the recycling bin. His clothes are always on top of the hamper. I do not believe I work harder than him–my job is hard in a much different way than his job is hard–but I am not lazy.
I have interests away from my family. I am very independent. I love him and my family, but I am not the person that can be defined as a wife and mother. That is not enough for me. Today, I took longer to get back from an errand than he thought I should, and he said, “How’s your other family?” This started as a joke, but now, I’m not sure whether he really thinks I have someone on the side. He begrudges me time I do not spend at home. If he’s not at home, it’s fine. But if he’s there, I have to be too. If I want to go out with friends, he makes me feel guilty if I’m out a few hours, although he is always invited. If I need to stay up working on something for work, he pouts if I won’t come to bed to stroke him and touch him. I don’t mind doing it, but not when I still have an hour of work to do before I go to bed. I want to go to the gym more than I do (or at least I know I should, let’s be honest), but if it interferes with his time (like getting our son ready for bed), he of course lets me do it, but makes me feel guilty. If I can’t take our son to a doctor’s appointment or a basketball game because of some other committment, he gets all huffy and grudgingly does it. And as much as he does love our son, if he’s feeling tired, he won’t attend his events. I would never dream of skipping something of my son’s, but he missed my son’s last play because he “didn’t feel like going.”
I’ve realized over the years that he has two really big problems–he’s selfish and he focuses on what he doesn’t have. Let’s start with the latter. We have a house. It’s not a big house, but it’s good for our needs. Most importantly, we can afford the mortgage, even if one of us is temporarily unemployed. It’s not good enough for him. He has a nice car. It’s not brand new, but it’s paid for, looks great and runs well. He wants an incredibly expensive pickup truck that he doesn’t need. He hates his job, but he won’t do anything to get a better one. Frankly, he makes me feel like a moron when I think we have a good life and all he can do is dump on it, because I’m part of that life.
Now, the selfishness. I buy all my own Christmas presents. If I didn’t buy anything for myself, I’d have nothing under the tree except from my parents and my in-laws. He focused on not getting Starbucks coffee for Christmas, although he got a lot of other stuff. I took our son out to spend his gift cards from his grandparents. When my DH got home, he said, “Why didn’t you get me anything?” I had to go to a conference a few weeks ago. It was local, but I wanted to stay in a hotel close to the conference so I wouldn’t have to deal with traffic early in the morning. He told me I didn’t need to stay in a hotel because “some people commute that everyday.” In actuality, he didn’t want to have to deal with breakfast and dinner and bedtime and homework and all that stuff for three days. I was sick last week, and he was mad at me for not “needing” him to take off to take me to the doctor. I wasn’t that sick, but he wanted to take off to stay home and play computer games all day. I do worry what will happen if I ever get really sick–I don’t think he’ll take care of me. I broke my foot a few years ago–I couldn’t walk for four months, and he still expected me to cook and clean. And well, sex —- I won’t even go into that right now.
I have thought about divorce. But, honestly, I’m afraid he’d take our son and go back to where he’s from, where his mother lives, and I’d never get to see my son again. I couldn’t live with that. And also, I really can’t afford to live the kind of life I want on my salary. So, maybe I am to blame. Maybe if I was willing to make a change, things would get better, so maybe I can’t blame him. I’ve let him be this way for so long, what do I expect now? And why don’t I tell him how I feel? Because he can’t take critcism. If I say anything negative about him, even jokingly, he gets so offended, but I can’t feel the same. I’ve made my bed, so I suppose I must continue to lie in it.
It’s not all bad–we do laugh a lot, and quite often, we have a lot of fun together–it’s just getting clearer as time goes by that we really don’t have a lot in common–and we both have our own priorities. Maybe that is something I can work on more this year, on my list of things I need to work on–finding a way to meet him where he’s at, instead of expecting him to meet me. But, I guess I feel like I’m doing that already, how much farther do I have to go?