How to manage moody behavior - ideas?
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Old 01-28-2011, 03:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default How to manage moody behavior - ideas?

Hello, I posted recently about my struggle with my husbands moody and (sort of?) controlling behavior. I'm not sure what to call it to be honest.

Since my posting, I have joined a class, met a few people to do occasional things with, and I have stopped working my schedule around my husband's.

As for his moods, I have had some success by trying to stay really calm and not "engaging" him. I often find myself trying to explain/understand or defend myself and before I know it we are in an awful argument over nothing (literally sometimes).

A recent example is when he presented me with a "list" of financial expenses he wanted me to "review and explain". He was speaking to me like an angry employer.

I decided to respond in the same way (but super calmly).....I looked at his "list" of generic items and told him I was fully aware of our financial situation and what I spend on our bills, etc and I did not need to review all of last years expenditures. I then said if he had a specific question or concern I would be happy to discuss it, and thank you, however I did not need his generic list.

He looked a little dumbfounded and kept his list. (whew) He didn't have any specifics so that was it. I felt like I really short circuited a major argument.

I feel a little silly but I have been also trying to do my "own thing", even coming home purposefully after him some days. I also ask him to do things with me, and when he says no, I cheerfully say ok and head out on my own. We have gotten into a bad habit of doing "his stuff" and now that we're married, he never wants to do "my stuff".

I think creating some independence may help change the dynamic between us, but I also don't want to inadvertently start "punishing" him.

This morning he had a computer issue and was really upset, I sympathized then offered my help at which he told me to leave him alone. So I did.

I feel kind of guilty, I had the solution to his problem but decided I would ask him things ONCE or offer my help ONCE.

another example...I am not working right now so I have been cooking nice healthy dinners for us, he loved it but not long ago, we got back after the holidays late one eve and I suggested we grab some take out and he suddenly chewed me out for "not planning ahead...and it would be nice if I went to the store once in awhile". Just an example but his comment/reaction was totally out of line and unfair.

So, I have withdrawn some of these things I feel he takes for granted...I do ask him if he would like me to pick him up a treat or have me make dinner....he says no, so that's exactly what I do.

Again, I don't want to be a "punisher" but I need to change this dynamic that is starting between us.

I think I am seeing some positive response, he actually went somewhere with me last week and we have talked about his behavior and that I do not like the way he speaks to me, etc. He does seem to have some control over his moods - he has been controlled his moodiness better lately.

Thanks for reading, and any advice/experience.

Best, Leah
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Old 01-28-2011, 04:31 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to manage moody behavior - ideas?

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I feel a little silly but I have been also trying to do my "own thing", even coming home purposefully after him some days. I also ask him to do things with me, and when he says no, I cheerfully say ok and head out on my own. We have gotten into a bad habit of doing "his stuff" and now that we're married, he never wants to do "my stuff".
Oh, how funny. That is EXACTLY one of the things I've noticed is good with me and my H--also moody, in slightly different but also similar ways to what you're describing with yours.

I used to have dinner waiting for him when he got home from work. This week, he's been home before me, and there's a subtle shift...just that half-hour or whatever of "waiting" for me to get home, HIM being hte one to make dinner, has made a little difference in our dynamic.

Like you, I'm also working on just saying things ONCE.
Like your H, mine will snap at me or tell him to leave him alone if he's not in the mood for my annoying presence (or help, or whatever).

Like you, I'm getting better at not being AFFECTED by his moodiness.

Last night he was all irritated at something pretty innocent I was saying, and I laughed and said "Get your panties out of a bunch. did you borrow mine?"

It sounds like you are doing great in your responses.

Something else has helped me be conscious of how to make these subtle shifts, adn I'll post the link to it here. It was from a thread I saw in the "Men's Clubhouse," but it has REALLY helped me think about the energy I'm sending to my H, and how that energy can affect my own feelings, and our overall dynamic.
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Old 01-28-2011, 04:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to manage moody behavior - ideas?

This might help:

Emotional temperature/thermostat
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Old 01-30-2011, 11:35 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to manage moody behavior - ideas?

I read your link, it was helpful, even if just to know I'm not the "only one".

Like you, I feel like I am playing games, I don't want to though.

I guess I too have responded like a "happy puppy", not a pushover by any means.....

I hope my husband and I can develop a different dynamic. I love my husband but now that we live together and I see this moody side of him, it does make me sad, I hope that we evolve somehow and I am not forced to balance us by purposefully withdrawing and/or changing my warmth/personality - what comes naturally to me.

Its still early in our relationship so there is plenty of hope. Time will tell I guess.

Thanks, Leah
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Old 01-30-2011, 12:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to manage moody behavior - ideas?

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Originally Posted by Leah L View Post
I read your link, it was helpful, even if just to know I'm not the "only one".

Like you, I feel like I am playing games, I don't want to though.

I guess I too have responded like a "happy puppy", not a pushover by any means.....

I hope my husband and I can develop a different dynamic. I love my husband but now that we live together and I see this moody side of him, it does make me sad, I hope that we evolve somehow and I am not forced to balance us by purposefully withdrawing and/or changing my warmth/personality - what comes naturally to me.

Its still early in our relationship so there is plenty of hope. Time will tell I guess.

Thanks, Leah
I re-read your other threads.

No, you don't want to have to "change your personality." BUT, unfortunately your husband is not showing respect for your intelligence or independence.

For this reason, you need to SHOW him more of these parts of your personality, because he seems to have forgotten they exist. That's not changing yourself; it's drawing on those traits within you and showing them to him.

I think handling him with a little humor is good, I've done that with my H--who is also moody and borders on controlling in some areas. I just have to show him it doesn't faze me, and that I can respect his opinion and STILL have my own.
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Old 01-31-2011, 03:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to manage moody behavior - ideas?

I think I see what you mean.

I suspect a pattern in that he gets annoyed with something outside of us and I inadvertently walk into his "target" zone.

Just this morn - similar thing, a minor issue unrelated to us and I turn around and he starts in on me about leaving a light on for a few minutes. As usual, the subject was irrelevant.

So, instead of allowing him to start chastising me and tell me what to do, I cut him short and firmly told him he was GRATING on my nerves, we have discussed the "lights" before and I'm not going to repeat myself.

Surprisingly, he asked what would bring back my "smile", I told him to stop interrupting me and/or getting out of the house so I could finish my project would be a big help.

So he did, and was very nice on the way out.

LOL?

Maybe I should try to find some humor in this as you mentioned. He has hurt my feelings so much lately, I've lost that perspective. We have another situation brewing where he wants me to do something I don't want to, I intend to hold my ground but perhaps in a more lighthearted way. Wish me luck

Thanks for the help so far, I appreciate it.

Leah
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Old 01-31-2011, 04:17 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to manage moody behavior - ideas?

Sounds like you handled this morning well.
I'd love my H to ask me how to bring my smile back.
But I would be cautious in the event that his niceness of late is connected to his wanting you to do something you don't want to do.
Like you, I don't bounce back to "warm" after being verbally harangued.
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Old 02-01-2011, 08:39 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to manage moody behavior - ideas?

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Originally Posted by credamdóchasgra View Post
Sounds like you handled this morning well.
I'd love my H to ask me how to bring my smile back.
But I would be cautious in the event that his niceness of late is connected to his wanting you to do something you don't want to do.
Like you, I don't bounce back to "warm" after being verbally harangued.
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Me too!!!! I think OP was very restrained just coming up with two suggestions -
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