Sunday, March 05, 2006

true colours

TRUE COLOURS

I need some perspective.

DH has been home since Wednesday night. In that time, and in an attempt to keep the peace, I have made a real effort to play by his rules. I thought I had done a good job, but it seems not.

Let me run through my day for you and please tell me, honestly, if I am the one being unreasonable here. I need to know.

7.00am - I rise. He is still sleeping. I bring down a load of washing, put it in the machine, sort out some clean washing and drying. I put the oven on to heat for the chicken I am cooking for lunch. I make myself a drink, switch on the PC and spend 15 minutes reading and replying to emails. Then I turn the PC off because I know he will get mad if he gets up and it is on, even if I am nowhere near it. Then I pull out the weeks ironing and do the whole lot. Ironing completed, I then run a bowl of hot water and clean out the grill pan, scrub some baking trays that I neglected to do last night and clean all the worksurfaces in the already immaculate kitchen. During this time the children get up and I make them breakfast and drinks and clean up after them.

8.30am - He gets up. I make him coffee and he sits at the kitchen table watching me as I make a mix for Yorkshire Puddings and put the chicken in the oven. Then I make a chocolate cake and put that into the oven. I call my mum to make some childcare arrangements, sort out the washing that has now finished and take the ironed clothes upstairs. I bring another load of dirty washing back down with me, put it in the washer. Then I sweep and mop the kitchen floor.

9.30am - He decides he wants breakfast so I make him toast and coffee, make some porridge for myself and sit eating it at the table. Then he announces that he is going to drop the recycling off and will call in at the supermarket. I ask him to get me a Sunday newspaper and a block of chocolate for decorating the cake. He agrees and leaves the house.

While he is gone I switch the PC on again and send a message to ~S~. Unbelievably (it's 4am there) she is online and we talk for a few moments. Then he calls and tells me he is driving over to an outlet village an hour away from here to pick up a new hat for himself and some bin liners for the kitchen bin. He'll be gone for at least 2 hours. I tell ~S~ and she calls me. We talk on the phone for a short while but it is the early hours for her and she soon has to go back to sleep. I turn the PC off again, put away the ironed clothes and tidy the upstairs of the house. I come back downstairs, lift out the chocolate cake, turn the chicken and start to prepare the vegetables for lunch. The chicken finishes cooking and I wash the roasting tin and the cake tin, pre-cook the carrots and potatoes.

12.30pm - He calls to say he is ten minutes from home so that I can put the finishing touches to lunch.

12.40pm - He gets home. I am finishing off getting lunch ready, setting the table and suchlike. We sit down to lunch around 1.00pm. After lunch he goes upstairs for a sleep and I clean up the table, wash the lunch dishes and finally sit down to read a little of the Sunday paper at around 2.30pm, just as he gets up from his sleep. So I get up, make him a coffee and sit down to read again for a while, in the lounge, with him.

3.00pm - He puts the PS2 on and starts playing games. I work out that ~S~ will be up soon and go into the room where the PC is and switch it on. I'm browsing as I normally do.

3.30pm - He goes upstairs to run a bath for the youngest child. Then he sneaks downstairs and bangs through the door and frightens me. I tell him he has frightened me and he laughs.

4.30pm - He comes back downstairs and makes a big show about getting the last load of washing out of the washer. Sarcastic comments abound. He says that he bets I can't wait to get rid of him tomorrow when he goes away again. He is so right but I actually don't say this. Instead I ask him to please stop being so confrontational. He says that he can't wait to get away from me. I say nothing, but I do get up and sort out the washing basket that he has thrown across the kitchen floor. He goes back into the lounge and I sit back down to work at the PC. He makes a point of closing the door - this is his way of freezing me out of the house. Then, a few moments later he does the sneaking up and banging the door open thing again. Once again it frightens me. I ask him not to do it, I tell him it scares me and he says he will do what the fuck he likes, he doesn't care anymore.

Right now he's watching TV in the lounge, clearly I am not. I know that whatever I do now will enrage him - if I stay on the PC or away from him then I am in the wrong yet if I give in to him and go sit in the lounge doubtless he will give me the cold shoulder all night and I will have to endure whatever he wants to watch on TV as my opinion will be worthless.

Is it excessive for me to spend two hours on the PC (two and a half now actually) on a Sunday afternoon when I have been ignored by him all day? Am I the one behaving unreasonably? No-one is starving, everyone is fed, the house is immaculate, everything that should be done is done and plenty more besides. I've baked, cooked, ironed, cleaned and tended to everyone's needs. Is it so wrong of me to want some time doing something I want to do? I just have no sense of this anymore. No matter what I do it isn't good enough.

This weekend he had seemed to be civil again and I felt guilty about the solicitor. That guilt has gone now but in it's place is that lack of conviction in myself. He strips me of it the second he walks through the door.

36 Comments:

Blogger Sapphire said...

I love you so much DF and I will fight to the death for you.

xxx

5:43 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

You are not being unreasonable to want to have that downtime...you've done everything you can possibly think of to please this man and he's still being an asshole. Sorry but we all deserve some respect and time on our own, and you have very little from what I've read on here.

Thank god he's going tomorrow, I can't wait for him to get away from you and stop all his silly childish games.

Please don't apologise to us for not being able to stop by and read at the moment, you've barely time to yourself, let alone us. Just concentrate on yourself, S and the children.

You're in my thoughts.

6:08 PM  
Blogger MamaKBear said...

Good grief, girl! My husband could care less if I had done all that work you did in just the first hour and a half you were up!

As long as the house is decently clean and he gets to eat and has clean clothes he is happy and doesn't care how much time I spend on the computer (which is A LOT).

There is NO excuse for him treating you the way he does. Even if he's not physically abusive, he is most certainly mentally abusive, and that's just as bad. You should not live in fear of your husband.

I'm so glad you are taking steps to get away from him! Stay strong!

7:40 PM  
Blogger Chelle said...

He is an asshole! I am sorry, but that is the truth!! No one should have to endure the that kind of treatment. I, too, am glad that you are doign what it takes to leave his sorry ass. He is and will be one sad and lonely man!!

Chin up girl.....you can do this!!

8:13 PM  
Blogger Lea said...

You are not wrong to take time for yourself in any way...being the man he is, he can NOT see all that you have already done for the day and that it is your time. He is one who only thinks of himself and his needs. I do understand your frustrations.
Take care of you and kids.
(((Hugs)))

8:24 PM  
Blogger Aine said...

I have never done half as much as you do for any man. Never. This is slavery, sweetheart. What is unreasonable is him. What is unreasonable is his behaviour. What is unreasonable is that it's taken you so long to decide to get out.

((((DF))))

8:48 PM  
Anonymous doctorlucy said...

Everyone on here is right. He is an absolute arsehole! There is no reasonable person on this earth that would think you were unreasonable for wanting some time of your own to do what you want! Everyone is entitled to some time for themselves, especially when you've busted your arse to care for your family! You're a better person than me! I think in your situation I'd be confrontational and tell him to do his own f****** ironing and cooking! You selflessly put your kids first and that is an amazing quality! Chin up and hang in there... your future is ahead of you, and this arsehole of a husband is the only one that will lose out! And believe me, it's his loss! -x-

12:07 AM  
Blogger EE said...

Wow. Umm, YES he is being unreasonable. Good lord. I feel that I do a really good job keeping my house up and running and it doesn't even COMPARE to what you did today. Yikes.

He is being ridiculous. And the whole banging on the door to purposely frighten you is emotional abuse.

:( *hugs*

3:24 AM  
Blogger Junebugg said...

It's called mental abuse. Sounds like he's a master of it and the sooner he's gone the better.

3:52 AM  
Blogger Belle said...

What an utter, childish ass. I can't wait till you are rid of this crazy boor. And no, you have not been unreasonable about anything, but he sure has.

4:33 AM  
Blogger Deadly Female said...

Thank you - not just for supporting me but for helping me look at this objectively. It's hard to do when you are so caught up in a situation.

It's taken me a long time to see that him doing things like banging the door open to frighten me is emotional abuse and part of me is still in denial. I don't like seeing myself as an 'abused woman'.

The first time he did it yesterday, I shouted at him. I think my exact words were that he 'scared the shit out of me'. I rarely swear but it just slipped out. He proceeded to have a go at me about swearing - told me to mind my language as the eldest child was in the other room so in fact I ended up apologising for swearing. Then the second time when he told me he would do 'what the fuck' he wanted, both children were in the other room but I didn't have the courage to pull him up for his swearing. That speaks volumes, I suppose.

7:21 AM  
Blogger Evil Minx said...

DF, honey:

He's more than an arsehole, in my opinion. He's a cruel and sadistic little shit.

He's the kind of person who would have been a mean and nasty bully at school.

I'm not a violent person, but he needs a good hard kick in the bollocks, and then a sharp slap round the face. And then a basebll bat inserted where the sun don't shine. And that's just for starters.

I understand how you feel about perceiving yourself as an abused woman, but remember -- the sooner you get out of the situation, the sooner you will stop being an abused woman. There should be no guilt. None at all.

Be strong, sweetheart. You can do it, i know you can.

My love to you and ~S~.

Minxy xxxxxxxxxxxx

7:53 AM  
Blogger 40spoet said...

i stumbled upon your blog purely by accident and read. it was as tho' i was reading my life 5 years ago. just change the names. you are not alone in the journey, you seem to have some good friends, as i did. he is alot like my ex-h, a real ass. i'm sorry i don't mean to judge, just an observation. take care of yourself, and drop by my page if you can. ...poet

8:39 AM  
Blogger Aine said...

Don't think victim, honey, think survivor. Don't let him beat you down.

xoxo

9:10 AM  
Anonymous Joy said...

Hi DF, I visit your blog everyday since about a month now. But I didn't have the chance to read all your posts. What I'm going to say may be out of line; nevertheless, I would like to tell you my 2 cents on this matter:

Does hubby know about this blog? Does he know that you have supportive blog friends? Does he know (or even has a hint) about ~S~?

I think it's not spending time in front of the pc per se that he is mad about. He is jealous. He doesn't want you to be happy without him controlling the situation. From what I've been reading, it seems to me that he is narcissistic. That little smile on your face, that expression of relief, the glitter in your eyes everytime you are using your pc are despicable to him. These little pleasures lead him to act nastily at you.

Do you maintain your blog secretly from him? I reckon he is a smart man. I suspect, he's making the necessary to know what there is online. Don't underestimate him.

Since you are still living with him until the time your fragile wings can fly back again, I suggest you make concessions to avoid these nasty gestures from him. Avoid using the computer when he is at home. Use it to the maximum when he is away! (dont mind the laundry!) Silent water, runs deep, they say. Outwit him!

Oh, I wrote such a long comment for my 2 cents. This is like a blog itself. Sorry about that.
:-))

Cheer up, girl. Bear hugs to you!

9:42 AM  
Blogger bee said...

i have done a LOT of working helping abused women, in particular, during their times of crisis and afterwards. something i can tell you that is pretty common is, abusive people (which i think dh is) really like confusing the person they are abusing. being nice to them one minute/being snarly and creepy (the slamming door)the next/ignoring them. this serves to put the person who is being abused in a state of turmoil - am i being abused? or not? - and more apt to stick around to see what pans out.
sweetie, you are NOT imagining things. this is a f***ed up situation, and one that you shouldn't feel badly about being in. there is NOTHING to blame yourself over - lots of women, for lots of reasons, find themselves in situations like this each day.
hold strong. don't let the bastard get you down. and feel free to email me at any time (email on the blog).
much love to you and your ones.
take care...

2:53 PM  
Blogger patti_cake said...

Girl, he is doing nothing but inflicting mental cruelty on you and those kids. Keep on with the plan you have and breathe a sigh of relief when the bastard is gone again. I don't know how you stand it. Truly I don't

3:04 PM  
Blogger BTExpress said...

You are doing a marvelous job, and should never question that. It's DH that's wrong on all accounts. I could never imagine treating anyone the way DH treats you, much less someone I loved. That is just not the way human beings are supposed to treat each other, period. My thoughts and prayers are with you to keep you strong, and to give you the strength to endure your situation until the break can be made from DH.

3:15 PM  
Blogger lo sciocco said...

(((you)))

i'd say we're walking similar paths right now though i don't have an ~s~ in my life - only the asshole at home and i never bake.
:)

i watched a show on television the other day and the woman on there who had gone thru a divorce was talking of how she had known for nearly 5 years before divorcing her husband, that the marriage was over. she said something along the lines of how sad it is that we have to convince ourselves to protect ourselves... and that really struck home with me.

i'll hold your hand while you travel this road honey. here's to a bright future waiting ahead for both of us.

4:57 PM  
Blogger Lil Bit said...

I am going to try to shed some light on that asshole of a hubby you've got... maybe... *shrug* - cuz something like this recently happened to me w/mine.

Everything was "fine" until you turned on that PC around him.

Perhaps he's aware that he's losing you (or has already lost you) & is actually AFRAID of that? Perhaps he's looking for the tiniest thing to justify his irrationality? Perhaps he wants your undivided attention at all times?

... and then again, perhaps he's just a dick.
That "banging the door" shit just to scare you is RIDICULOUS.

*sigh*
*slaps DF's hubby*
*hugs DF*

5:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bloody hell...

It takes 2 of us to get through one load of laundry on the weekend, and between us we then spend about 8 hrs online & gaming, occasionally arguing about who's going to go out for takeaway.
Damn girl, I'm sorry :(

Come and stay with us awhile, browse your days aways..

Ratty xx

6:37 PM  
Blogger Angel Girl said...

You are not his maid/servant, nor his employee. You have every right to play on the computer, watch tv, talk on the phone or whatever else your heart desires just like he does. I can guarantee that he would not behave like this if he had a wife that bullied him back. Sweetie, hang in there you are not in the wrong, and you do not deserve to be bullied in such a manner!

Love ya.

7:00 PM  
Blogger nniceguy269 said...

What I would like to know is why didn't you go to town an hour away to get the liners for the bins? He shouldn't have to do that!!!! hahaha just joking just joking... hey if I wasn't married you could come take care of me that way...yeesh the man's not the least bit selfish is he. I'm thinking he doesn't know a good thing when he has it right under his nose. =)Although I have been known to scare the wife a time or two... but it's soooo fun! ;-)

8:15 PM  
Blogger jazzy said...

This man is completely spoiled! You clean and cook more in one morning than I do all month!

Oh DF - you've got the patience of a saint.

8:30 PM  
Blogger Minerva said...

BASTARD...

Nuff said...

Oh, and I love you DF...

Minerva

8:46 PM  
Blogger Miladysa said...

(((Hugs)))

10:48 PM  
Blogger Frankie said...

kick the bastard out. really.

12:58 AM  
Blogger pack of 2 said...

Geez...what a tool that guy is.
Get out of there & go be with S~

Shelly

3:40 AM  
Blogger TigerLilly said...

*hugs*

10:27 AM  
Blogger SassyFemme said...

I've thought about this so much since I first read it. I was too infuriated to comment at the time.

DF, what you are doing, and they way you described your day is more like servitude than anything else. Please understand that no matter how much you do, he is a BULLY, he will make it so it is not good enough, or enough in total.

There is absolutely no reason you need to do all of that. The man is a big boy, he can make his own coffee, and make his own lunch, that's for sure. He's sleeping and you're cleaning is not okay. He should be doing part of the cleaning.

The banging is bullying to show you that he's bigger, badder and can control you and your emitions and reactions. When you call him on it, he laughs. That's sadistic. Seriously. It is NOT acceptable. No one should have to live like that in their own home. You don't deserve it, you have done nothing to deserve it. He is a controlling, sadistic bully.

DF, I know you will eventually leave, and be okay. However, I want you to think of your girls, and what they're seeing/hearing and being exposed to. This is impacting them, even if they're not in the room when it happens. They know what's going on. Kids aren't stupid. The longer you stay there the more it becomes ingrained into the girls' psyches that this kind of behavior is okay. They WILL allow it to happen to them when they are older and in relationships. All that they see you do is what they are absorbing that is to be expected of them in life. There are things happening in the minds now that can't be undone in the future, no matter how wonderful their future homelife with you and S will be. We fought every day to undo damage to Jen that resulted from the time she lived with her father. We weren't always successful. DF, you need to get out soon, if not for yourself, then for your girls.

3:55 PM  
Blogger d. said...

i wish you the peace to get through all of the this.

4:45 PM  
Blogger pack of 2 said...

You are not being unreasonable....he is just, as usual, being a jack-ass.

Angie

5:16 PM  
Blogger Sis B said...

once again i don't have time to read the above comments.

df, you are being abused in a way that it's VERY difficult to put your finger on. the very fact that he "strips you of it the moment he walks through the door" is evidence of it. for men like him, for whom it's hard to really pinpoint the abuse except in a few cases, but you feel it constantly, the method is called "gaslighting". it's basically a systematic way of treating you that makes you feel a little crazy and makes you doubt everything about yourself. The fact that he enJOYs scaring you, even when you ask him to stop, is a sign of this. His making you feel like you haven't yet done enough in a day when you've accomplished more than he probably does in a week--that's a sign. The fact that he makes you doubt whether you have a right to some quiet personal time, when he has to get the laundry out of the dryer--that's another sign. Taken by themselves, they don't mean much. But it's the compilation of them all... the overall picture of how he treats you, that makes you feel the way you do. And you are JUSTIFIED to feel that way. Google the term "gaslighting" in regard to domestic abuse, and you will find lots of resources that explain what it is and how it works. In a lot of ways, it's MORE difficult to contend with this than blatant physical abuse because it is a mind game that leaves no evidence.

You are on the right path. Don't give up. Don't believe for an instant that the universe thinks you need to be in this relationship for a second longer. I know EXACTLY what you're feeling. You know I've been there. Find one point, one beacon on the horizon to move towards, so when the walls start spinning and you get lost in his presence you are able to find your way again when he is absent. You are doing a great job. I believe in you. You can do this.

7:18 PM  
Blogger Evil Minx said...

Honey, if you don't want to listen to me, or anyone else -- please please please listen to sis b and sassyfemme.

They make a ton of sense. Seriously.

Minxy xxxxxx

7:58 PM  
Blogger a fish on a bycicle said...

banging through the door to surprise you....(trying to get a glimpse of what you are looking at on the computer screen more like?)

10:47 AM  
Blogger saratoga said...

I think you are doing an incredible amount of the work in your household.

A few comments about your day diary. First, nobody seemed to be able to spend much time with the children. You are clearly supporting your husband by doing all the work, while he largely sleeps.

At least he could use the time to be with his children?

I'm sorry you are suffering such emotional and mental abuse. It is good to split in order to keep your children healthy. That should be your guiding focus now.

I've been there, done that. Now my children are happier, and I'm happier. Their mother, who was the emotional bully in our situation, is left to control less.

Keep your spirit up and move toward your end date with as little anger as you can manage. Anger is always corrosive, and this will, I suspect, be your greatest challenge. Especially in demonstrating to your children that anger over the past is wasted energy. Focus on brighter, calmer futures is better.

1:42 PM  

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