Hi! I need some advice. I love my husband very much. We have been in a relationship for 5 yrs, distance for 1 yr, lived together for 1 yr and have been married for 3 yrs. This is both of our second marriages. All of our children are grown up and don't live with us. The problem I am having is that he keeps his ex-wife and their daughters together on a pedastal. While my daughter and I can do no right in his eyes.
His ex left him 7 years before we met. He didn't have another relationship until he met me. The ex-wife moved every belonging that was in the house they had together into her new relationship's house (literally, all that was left was the curtains!)...oh did I mention this new relationship was their children's teacher? Now according to my husband, he says they were physically seperated for a few months before she did this. They still lived in the same house, just him sleeping in the spare room. He says that she never cheated on him, she would "never do that, she was not that kind of person."Well, we live in a small town and I got to be friends with a person through work who used to be the ex wife's's former best friend. She had stopped being friends with her because she couldn't stand the way his ex-wife treated him and how she openly had an affair with this teacher. Many of his family members feel the same way. Now loving him like I do, it hurts me to think of how she hurt him and treated him, whether he was aware or not.
I voiced my feelings to my husband, but he informed me that if I thought he would ever speak unkindly about his ex, I was sadly mistaken. She was the mother of his children and he still considered her a friend and she was a wonderful mother and person. He wanted a good relationship for the sakes of the children. (His children are adults.) He said people didn't know what they were talking about, (his family and her ex-best friend)that she never cheated on him, she just fell out of love with him, then moved onto dating and moving in with this other guy in those few months.
My husband and I met online and dated for a year before I moved to his small town to live with him. What was odd and uncomfortable was that the exact month that I moved here, his ex who was living eight hours away at the time moved herself and their one child (who was in senior high at the time)
back to our small town so the daughter could be closer to her boyfriend that she had just met at summer camp here. Odd? Plus her new guy ( the teacher) couldn't move at the drop of a hat so he stayed behind for a year until his term was done. Strange coincidence that she had to move at that time? It made things a little unncomfortable for me, being a newbie in a small town. She still keeps my husband's last name, by the way. So there are 2 Mrs Twinkle Toes in this small town...awkward. Not just that, if she needed any "manly" chores done, guess who she called? Yep, my husband (fiance at the time). Wood for the winter? done! He was even going to buy her travel trailer so she wouldn't have to make payments on it anymore, for "US". I wouldn't accept that, I didn't want her trailer she had bought with her new guy. Besides the child support or putting the girls through college (which was wonderful, by the way, I hate dead beat dads), he would "buy" their things they didn't want to give her extra money. I am talking thousands here...on things he didn't want himself. The trailer was the line I wouldn't let him cross. It was supposedly for "our wedding trailer" as we were having a camping wedding. I don't think so! Was that bad of me to feel that way? Even after her other half finally moved here, when the kids came to visit (they both had grown and moved away by then) and were staying with her, when the new man had to go away for the weekend, they called my husband up to fix up the second bathroom in her house so they could have their own bathroom while they were visiting. This was even though her new man said he would do it when he got back after the weekend trip. My husband was just about tripping over his shoe laces to get out the door to do her bidding. Even though he won't do anything around our home except go to his job. I have to plead for him to take garbage to the dump or get water for the house. When he doesn't he blames it on me, saying he forgot because I don't remind him enough. These are the only two things I ask of him. I have taken over the yard work because it was getting embarrassing and I was tired of asking. When he did the plumbing in the bathroom, I had a big argument with him. I said it was disrespecting her new man, as it was their house together, and how would he feel if my ex showed up and did something like that, how would it make him feel? He said he was just doing it for their daughters and reminded me that I was fine with him interacting with his wife as long as it was in regards to their children. And I am fine with that...but his daughters were staying their for the summer and they only had to wait for 2 days before they would have a 2nd available bathroom. Really?? One bathroom for 3 people for 2 days was an emergency?
On top of all this, his daughter are very disrespectful to me and my daughter. When we have family get-togethers, my daughter and I do all the cooking and cleaning while his girls and their boyfriends are waited on. This past Christmas, though I had just had a surgery, my daughter and I got all of supper together, when 2 of his girl's friends showed up. They all dished up before my daughter and I andall sat at the kitchen table. We were now short 2 chairs. After my daughter and I had prepared everything for the last 2 days, it would have been nice for someone to offer to grab a couple extra from in the basement. But no, my daughter and I stood there feeling awkward about interupting their conversations and had to go sit in the livingroom down the hall. My husband felt this was just fine when I mentioned it later. It made both my daughter and I feel like we were worth less. When I took him aside and said it would be really nice and fair if his daughter's and their friends could help with clean-up as my daughter and I were tired. He ignored me and started washing up himself angrily passing me or my daughter the dishes, like how dare I expect his princesses to lend a hand. The oldest just smirks at me when she is doing something be-littling to me. The younger just seems to follow her sister's lead, as her sister is very domineering.
The home we live in is one of the places they built together. I have never felt like this is my home. Especially when I don't receive respect in it. This is also the house-plan she liked and it is neither mine or my husband's taste. I have asked him to touch up the paint just around the windows as it is peeling badly and I am very scared of heights. He said "that's your job." Then my mother-in-law who was visiting and is still great friends with his ex (after all she was the perfect daughter-in-law I am told too) had just got up from her nap and picked up the phone and called the ex and said since we hadn't had any lunch here yet and it was 1:30 maybe her and the ex could go out to lunch. I hadn't even had time too offer her lunch as she had slept from 11:30 to 1:30! So when she got back from the lunch date and the ex had dropped her off, she said the ex wanted to let my husband know the trim wasn't looking too good on the windows and they should be re-painted. Really?? This was none of her business! But as I said, this home doesn't feel like mine.
That's the thing with his mother too,...if we are all traveling to her area where his daughter's live in the area going to school or work and his ex and her guy are going to their town too at the same time, my MIL will have my husband's ex and her guy stay in the basement suite of her house and my husband and I are to find a hotel. My husband is okay with this. It makes me feel uncomfortable and several of his family members do not like this either. My husband says it is important that his mom stays close to his ex so the relationship with his mother and daughters don't break down. His daughter's are adults!! Not little kids at home anymore! I do understand and support his mom staying friends with his ex as she has known her for a lot longer than me. I am not jealous, I have my own mom who is a wonderful, supportive person.
But he never seems to even try to get to know my family and is derogitory about any or anyone in my family or his family that are not "perfect in his eyes". Made a mistake in their lives? Made bad choices? Kick them to the curb! They are not even worth talking to, in his eyes. My daughter has had it pretty rough growing up. My first husband was very abusive and from the time she was little, he has had a restraining order against him to keep him away from us. She had been raped at knife point as a teen-ager. And we were not well off as I raised her alone. She has had emotional problems and has made some bad choices in her life, due mostly, I believe, to gain aproval by the then current man in her life. She has really changed and improved her attitude this past year. Though she had to leave college due to a car accident she was in, she has gone on emotion meds, obtained a new job and is really trying HER best. Well his daughter's have degrees or in the process of getting one and never had to work at a summer job through their life. The one daughter is working at a good career but after working for just a couple of years is already talking about how she can't wait to quit work when she gets married... and he still pays for some of her bills. Because my daughter is working at a minimum wage job I have given her a few hundred a month to help her out (out of my own money, her father was a dead-beat). My husband pays his daughter 4x that plus their bills and education, plus whatever they get from their mom. He is resentful of the few hundred I give my daughter. Even though it's from my own paycheck. Oh ya, did I mention I work for him and his company? He has even told me that he is jealous of my daughter and wants her around as little as possible. He only wants her to visit when he isn't around. He feels she is disrespectful to him and can't let go about her former bad attitude. Even though she has really tried to have a relationship with him. I can't even have a camping trip with both of them along unless it's either just him and I or her and I. He doesn't want to be around her. After all he says, we married each other, not our families! And his girl's? all they have to say is the word's "thank-you daddy!" for him to say, "see, they really appreciate the things I do for them, your daughter doesn't apreciate the things done for her." Even his family are upset how he treats her when she gets along with all of them (except the MIL) and his girls are snobbish to his family. They won't even acknowledge them when they speak or message them. I told my husband that it is hurtful, especially to his one close sister. I was wondering why he didn't encourage them to talk to their aunt or acknowledge her. He said they didn't have to because she wasn't friends with his ex. His sister didn't want to be friends with the woman that cheated on her brother, but she never would speak bad of his ex around the girls. He won't see that she felt like I did, that she hated knowing this woman hurt her brother.
He says all the time that he loves me, ....but he never seems to understand that actions speak louder than words. Yes he takes me on wonderful trips, buys me gifts, but he doesn't ever reach out and touch me for no reason, or be affectionate. In bed even! His signal that he wants to make love? He lays on his back instead of his side (his position for sleeping). I am to know then that that's his hint. Now it just makes me mad! I am not possibly worth reaching over those 6" to touch me? I am to always come to him or make the first move?
He says he has made so many changes for me! Like what? Give me space in his house to live in and allows my small dog to sleep in our bed when he hates pets? I mean, what would he do if my ex was still in the picture? I always ask him if the shoe was on the other foot and it was my ex, how would he feel? He says that is totally different and there is no way of knowing because that doesn't apply.
I just don't know what to do. On the one hand, things are wonderful when it is just the two of us. And I do love him very much. But my daughter lives in our small town too and has no-one else here but us so likes to visit 1-2x per week. To him that is too much.
I know our kids are adults, but they are still a part of us.
Will he ever feel as if I am as important as the mother-of-his-children?
I am stuck between a rock and a hard place...he is my husband and my job. If I leave him, I leave both.
I do love him, and don't want to call it quits. I have tried talking to him and I have tried writing him letters, to no avail. Things get better for a bit, then he goes back to his old ways. He says that I am saying he is not supportive enough, yet he helps me financially and has been there during a difficult surgery years ago. But he doesn't seem to understand I need him to be supportive in the little ways, the emotional ways and the helpful ways. I want him to love me and want to be affectionate towards me. I need his help sometimes with home chores. I don't expect him to have to love my daughter, I just want him to respect her from where she has come from and what has moulded her. As a person.
What do I do?? How can I make him understand?
Sorry that this post is so long....there is a lot of build-up and I needed to vent!