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Hello, I am Rafael. Thanks for asking your question - I'm here to support you. (Information posted here is not private or confidential but public).
No problem, I am here to support you.
I love my husband of 26 years and we agree on most things except his correcting me when I correct the children. As a result the children enjoy seeing me being corrected by him when they disobey or refuse to pick up a mess.
The huge problem here s that your children are being literally distorted in their personalities because of that while you are being wounding but such very abusive behavior.
Your children's life and well-being is a tip priority for sure, as it is for you to feel totally respected, understood, loved and supported, since this behavior is not consistent with a loving and assertive husband, it is truly abusive.
I have tried doing it his way - not correcting the children, which leads to spoiled children who will not mind either of us. The house is messy, and he and I have to do all the picking up, which stresses me. I have put all discipline issues over to him - and I tell him the children are disobeying - "up to you." After which his instructions are usually also ignored by our 10 and 12 year-old girls. Now what to try?
I think my husband is getting too lazy to deal with any conflict at all and I told him that conflict with me is not the answer. I told him that asking me to constantly swallow my pride is not the answer.
Marriage therapy followed by family therapy. this is very serious, your children are the helpless victims here, and both of you are responsible for their well-being, and tolerating it even more would destroy their lives, because spoiling them this much is worse than abusing them.
It is not for sure
You will be able to heal and get stronger from it. It's just very painful and traumatic but you can cope with it with the right support, you are a sensitive human being and that's why this happened, but now you know and this pain will not happen again for sure if you commit to your rehabilitation process
Are there steps, besides counseling for myself, that I can take right away to help? I don't know if he would consider marriage counseling. What do I continue to do when this happens? I have spoken up about 80 times, tried it his way, spoken up again, threatened one day to walk out and leave him one day when I just couldn't take it anymore, he then calmed me down, and I then experienced crying spells and I now take an antidepressant (low dose Lexapro). How should I respond?
If every confrontation, no matter how clear and proactive you were was helpless because of his resistance you understand and take responsibility for it, then please do not expose yourself to more of it until you get necessary support.
I have even searched for "Dear Abby" articles on the subject to see if he read this written by someone else, something like, "the best way to teach your children respect is to respect their mother in all things" he could internalize it better.
You may suffer of codependency, which is why you feel this way
Please read a book like "Codependent No More", n look for a local support group for codependency and for a parenting class. All of these are tools that would allow you to actually work on yourself and this tough situation.
This is a long term process, it would take hard work on yourself, the way you cope and communicate with your husband and the way you raise and provide discipline and affection to your children.
How should a healthy person respond to this situation - continue to parent as my instincts tell me - to continue to politely remind my children of proper manners and the need to participate in cleaning up after themselves - and ignore his criticisms, while undergoing counseling?
You need to set clear and consistent boundaries to your children without exception
How common is this problem? Is my husband out of his mind to counterman my authority as a mother? Or is there some common reason why he goes to such extremes to avoid conflict? He is 55, 350 pounds, and has health issues.
they must follow clear and healthy rule, otherwise they would have to afford consequences
Tsi is very common, very sad to state this but many families undergo this issue, and what makes the difference is how severe is the level of discrepancy between parents
the time the issue has been present and the type of support received to make changes
When I set clear rules for the children, with consequences, what do I do when he is present and tells me "just relax. Their behavior is OK. Does everything have to be a lesson around here?" What can I say that can reach him?
You would have to assertively confront him, to go to another room and make it clear that his behavior is unacceptable, that you have decided to start taking good care of your children and that it is unacceptable and abusive for him to react in such ways.
As ypu can see this is a very serious situation, and this is why counseling or psychotherapy are essential for you to work on making effective changes.
Will do. I am so frustrated that he just cannot correct this one thing about his thinking, although I do believe he loves me. He says he does. I fought with him for 2 years to finally get our oldest daughter examined and diagnosed with ADHD, and he now thanks me for getting her treated so she can now succeed in school. I just need him to trust my judgment on this one too.
You have been lining for so many years fueling a very distorted reality, and your children are the helpless victims here, you need to respect and love yourself and be consistent with the love you have for your children and not to allow this destructive reality to get worse, it is time to start changing taking full responsibility for your parental role regardless of your husband's neglect and refusal to work on it
Please do not trust nice words if they are not followed by concrete consistent actions
otherwise you would be enabling his manipulation and abuse
Thank you. Anything brief I can show him to read to help wake him up?
Be just very honest, open , direct and proactive about this. Take full responsibility for your own feelings, choices ad actions, and invite him to do the same for the integrity and well-being of your marriage and family. Show how much you care and love your family, and that it is because of that , that you are not willing to allow nor enable further dysfuction
Thank you very much.
Being loving, respectful and caring should never mean being tolerant or enabling any form of manipulation or abuse, that's why we all need to set boundaries and limits and take full responsibility for everything that depends on us.
You're very welcome
Please feel free to contact me for any further support since I am here willing to support you as possible.
Please, take gentle care and consistent action
Thank you again. Please feel free to contact me as needed. I am also willing to support you with confidential counseling online if you feel comfortable with it after assessing what could work the best for you, but independently of your preferences, please do get the support you need to build the reality you deserve.
No other huge problems - mainly just that I need his backing when I tellthe kids to pick up a mess or not to treat me disrespectfully.