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OP. In brief, what are you going to do? Simple question.

 

I wish I knew... it's easy for people to look at a relationship from the outside and say that's crazy, I wouldn't put up with that, end it etc... but would any relationship last if those impulses were always acted upon.

 

I want her to come up here and acknowledge what she did... to apologise... all would be forgiven then, we all make mistakes, but it's been a day. I'm not sure she even knows why I'm upset, but as I said, is that worse?!

 

I guess the sensible thing as most have been saying is to bite the bullet and talk to her. Isn't that always the answer... but knowing me I won't have the courage, we'll go to nbed angry and somehow in the morning it will be my fault for making her angry.

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I think at this point in my life I have less tolerance for crap not more. I have been with my husband over 30 years and in that time he has pulled some spectacular crap people would have left for less but he has grown up since and wouldn’t pull that stuff anymore. But he also knows now I’m fully prepared to walk if he does.

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Marriage therapy could help you get a better dialogue going about handing disputes and better communication.

she knows I'm upset, she clearly remembers the moment I got upset because it was the last thing we spoke about. She has come up several times asking what we are doing about lunch
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Please Beternal. Give me a break here. L.

 

This is not about a "mistake" . Everyone can make mistakes. No one said either that it was "crazy".

 

What it is is total disrespect and lack of consideration for you, not to mention an appalling lack of ordinary manners.

 

Why, may I ask, do you NOT have the courage to talk to her. Scared? If so, why so?

 

And no, "talking" isn't always the answer. It isn't the answer when a) you are scared to talk to her, and b) talking won't do any good.

 

How does 40 years of this look to you, OP?

 

And more importantly: what is in this relationship for you? In what way is it nurturing and improving your life? Bottling up resentment and anger is not good for either mental health or physical health.

 

Would I be correct in saying you had some doubts about this relationship right at the outset?

Edited by LaHermes
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I have two questions:

 

What are your ages?

 

Has she always been like this towards you?

Lost

 

Mid 30s and she has never been the best at expressing emotions, and it's at times like this that you end up wondering whether it's just her... or whether it's just not for me

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Sounds like it is just her. She shown zero consideration for your feelings, plans or inclusiveness into her life. "These are my friends, you aren't invited" Pretty harsh...

 

At this age she should know how to treat people properly, especially her husband she says she loves.

 

Why don't you suggest marriage counseling and see what she says. Frame it as "We have been having some issues and I think OUR marriage could really use a professionals help in making it better" She will probably just discount your feelings but it is worth a shot.

 

Without a third party showing her how uncaring and thoughtless she has been towards you I don't see this getting any better ever.

 

Think about it. She planned a 5 day vacation with someone else and didn't even mention it to you.

 

Lost

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If it were me I would pack my bags and get out of there. And then go "Oh am I supposed to tell you?"

 

I agree.

 

OP, why have you allowed this for so long? And, why did you ever agree to babysit? I'm sorry, but you have become a complete doormat!

 

This woman does not respect you!

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I said it was a little inconsiderate of her to just plan something with him because it has often happened in the past where they go and do their thing and I am lumbered babysitting the gay couple's adopted son

 

Wow... you are a better person than me I gotta tell ya.... that would be a HARD no from me if I were in that situation. :p

 

It's one thing for her to go off and do her cycling trip... and a totally different thing for them to expect you to babysit. Completely ridiculous!

 

ETA based on your title: She doesn't need your permission or approval to go off somewhere with her friend, assuming she is a fully grown adult... If it were me I would run it by my partner out of courtesy but I don't need permission to go out with my friends... I also wouldn't ask my partner to babysit one of my friend's children... I think this is an all around strange dynamic that any of this is even happening.

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This is a question for another post... but how do you deal with those people that never make the first move in resolving arguments? Obviously everyone thinks they're right in an argument, otherwise it's more of an educational instruction than a disagreement... but take this as an example:

 

I have been in the study working since 9 am... she knows I'm upset, she clearly remembers the moment I got upset because it was the last thing we spoke about. She has come up several times asking what we are doing about lunch (I said I'm not hungry), dinner (also not hungry) ((it's amazing how being upset can turn off your appetite!))... and she has also pointed out that I'm 'moody'...

 

...but does she not see what she did was wrong?... if she does, why is she not addressing it, if she doesn't, is that worse?

 

What do you do when one person is always the one 'caving' to approach the other to resolve an argument?

 

Hopefully me acknowledging this fact merely makes me the 'stubborn one' rather than the 'ignorant' and/or 'petty' one (whichever is worse).

 

I'm mid 30s... life is frustrating... somethings you look at things and wonder how can this be happening?...is this not obvious? (although I tend to let dishes drip-dry and this annoys her, so maybe I too am guilty of missing the obvious common-sense things in life!)

 

I'm rambling

 

....So you are a grown man who is sulking in his office wanting for his wife to read his mind and apologize.....all because you think that opening your mouth and telling her wth is your problem is weak? or caving?

 

If this is how you think and behave....no wonder you two have big issues in your relationship. What you are doing is immature and childish. You have a problem, YOU open your mouth and talk about it. She can't read your mind.

 

Your questions are really bordering on silly....Like if she thought it's wrong, she wouldn't have done it in the first place. If she cared what you think, she wouldn't have done it in the first place. If she didn't think she can get away with treating you like dirt, she wouldn't be doing it.

 

Conflict avoidance will get you nowhere....or rather exactly where you are right now - angry and stuck. Meanwhile she is acting like nothing happened and all is fine and why? Because you are just going to sulk for awhile, maybe whine about it for a bit, but then she'll waltz off on her trip and you'll be home doing what? Stewing on your growing resentment but too afraid to speak up and once she is back, you'll pretend all is well again? Come on....put on your big boy pants. You teach people how to treat you and you are teaching her that she can treat you like garbage and it's all good.

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Have skim read all the comments! Well first and foremost, I think you need to be way more assertive and stop being such a doormat! What your wife said is contradictory. She said something to the extent of "These are my friends so that's why you're not invited". So if these are her friends, not yours, WHY are you expected to babysit their child all the time? You are completely being taken advantage of and that gay couple are rude too.

 

If all the three of them go out, why are you actually not invited? I understand maybe if she was to go out one-on-one with her gay friend or that female friend. But if the gay guys are going out as a couple, why can't your wife invite you and you go as a couple too? Of course she's allowed to have friends but if it's a group thing and you're never invited, she's excluding you and not sharing her life with you. And you are also expected to look after the child and that is not your problem or your responsibility at all.

 

This gay couple are also excluding you and being rude to you. And after all that they expect you to babysit! Their child is their problem. I would even question their parenting skills if they're always trying to dump their kid on other people and they just wanna go out and have fun.

 

I know you love your wife and marriage is a commitment. But if your wife treats you like this and she doesn't even understand that it's wrong, I wonder if your marriage can last. She is very rude to you and she doesn't feel bad at all. The problem is that people don't change. Not unless they want to change of course. You could try marriage counselling and try to work it out.

 

Your wife needs to understand that she is not single and she needs to make you part of her life. She can have friends but she needs to consider you in her decisions and everyday life because she's not by herself, you are there too. She needs to show her love and commitment to you by including you with her friends, on holidays, and so on. It's incredibly rude to make all these plans with her friends and trips that you are not only not invited to, but that you know nothing about!

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Hi, I’m sorry, your wife is being very inconsiderate!

 

I honestly would be upset and don’t think you are over reacting at all! She sounds like she prioritizes her friends over you.

 

Is there anyway you can sit her down and discuss why this bothers you more thoroughly and why she has to be gone without you for five days?

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So if these are her friends, not yours, WHY are you expected to babysit their child all the time?.. Their child is their problem.

 

This is what I honed in on. I think you said in one of your previous posts that the gay partner had suggested you and he do something together while the others were off cycling? Why is he not looking after their kid? If the pair of them are going on the trip that you're being excluded from, then it's their responsibility to get the kid looked after by one of THEIR relatives or friends. I can't believe your wife has the cheek to expect you to babysit, nor that she can book trips away and not even discuss it with you. That's not what married people do.

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Unfortunately it's become a power struggle. Your role is being passive aggressive. Hers is just doing whatever without thinking. What seems like the romantic notion of opposites attract is really more of who's right type of thing. Take your focus off the trivia such as character assassinations of her friends. Try not to convince yourself that you never get angry when in fact you do, but disguise it in pouting and sulking.

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What would I do in your shoes? It's best to have the discussion when you're feeling mellow. Sit close on the couch and hold hands, because with that connection and closeness, it's harder to start yelling and express things in anger. I'd say: I really love you and want to spend the rest of my life with you. That's why I married you. I want it it work, and to prevent bitterness from building and killing any love we have over the years, there are some changes that need to happen, and I want you to also tell me things you'd like to improve in our marriage.

 

The only time I will ever agree to baby-sitting anyone is if it benefits me, because I have my own children and am trading babysitting hours with another couple. Or when I have grandkids, and want the joy of spending time with them. (Just saying you are busy on that day you're "told" you'll be babysitting, or running out with friends to avoid it, is not being honest about things and camouflaging the problem.)

 

We are a couple, and couples keep each other in the loop about important things ahead of time like: I will be home late from work. I am planning a vacation with friends for next month. Even if those are not important things for you to be informed about, I'm a different person, and I'm asking for your consideration to let me know what's going on in advance. When I'm not informed of things ahead of time that also affect my life, it makes me feel like I'm not important to you, and that my opinions and say-so are irrelevant. We're a team, and should be consulting with each other on things that affect the both of us.

 

And then give her time to make that effort. If she doesn't, she doesn't care about your happiness. Marital counseling is also a good idea, and could also be used as a last resort if this conversation doesn't pan out. You were drawn to each other because you find things in each other which are lacking in yourselves. That's quite common in couples. But sometimes the thing that drew you to a person repels you later when the newness of the happy surge-of-hormones state has gone away. Time to hit the reset button and work on a new and better way to work together. It could happen if you keep the discussion within the bounds of "I feel like this when" instead of attacking statements like "You never do this" etc.

 

Good luck and let us know how it goes.

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OP. It actually comes down to this:

 

"I married her knowing that's what I was getting into".

 

As in your colourful analogy about the priest and the stripper.

 

And there's this:

 

"She has thyroid issues so can have some pretty bad mood swings, but on her medication she's lovely."

 

 

So, off her medication is when she binges on unannounced expeditions to wherever for xyz number of days? You say that on her medication she is "lovely".

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This is a question for another post... but how do you deal with those people that never make the first move in resolving arguments? Obviously everyone thinks they're right in an argument, otherwise it's more of an educational instruction than a disagreement... but take this as an example:

 

I have been in the study working since 9 am... she knows I'm upset, she clearly remembers the moment I got upset because it was the last thing we spoke about. She has come up several times asking what we are doing about lunch (I said I'm not hungry), dinner (also not hungry) ((it's amazing how being upset can turn off your appetite!))... and she has also pointed out that I'm 'moody'...

 

...but does she not see what she did was wrong?... if she does, why is she not addressing it, if she doesn't, is that worse?

 

What do you do when one person is always the one 'caving' to approach the other to resolve an argument?

 

Hopefully me acknowledging this fact merely makes me the 'stubborn one' rather than the 'ignorant' and/or 'petty' one (whichever is worse).

 

I'm mid 30s... life is frustrating... somethings you look at things and wonder how can this be happening?...is this not obvious? (although I tend to let dishes drip-dry and this annoys her, so maybe I too am guilty of missing the obvious common-sense things in life!)

 

I'm rambling

OP

 

It's time to stop being passive aggressive with the "I'm not hungry"

 

Next time she talks to you, you say in your own words:

 

You're right. I'm mad about the booking trips and making plans without consulting me. I need to understand your expectations for this marriage.

 

and leave it in her court to explain and then you take from there. she is acting as a single, when she is legally, officially, technically married.

 

Then you decide what you will and won't accept. And you tell her.

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When she's on her trip, don't answer any of her calls, texts, emails. I think she could use some major perspective. My husband tells me almost everything he is doing except pooping. I think what's unfair is that she never makes you a priority in her life, ever. That's sad. I think you should write it all down, and tell her how you feel. If she blows you off, is it really a good marriage? She won't change. Imagine another 10 years after you have kids where you are dumped all the responsibility of caring for them, while she does whatever she wants. I could not live like that - the never ending insecurity. Good luck! Don't leave the premises or courts could bring it as a case of abandonment, and it goes to her. You could try to change the locks to also make a point.

 

You don't have to yell to be assertive and make your needs known. You also don't need to yell to fight. Did one of your parents yell a lot, so you choose to not yell?

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There's a fine line between holding firm and making threats... or that -for-tat mentality.

 

Simply telling her that it hurts and I should be consulted clearly didn't work since her friend came over otherwise this wouldn't have happened.

 

I'm open for ideas as to how I can demonstrate it to her

 

I haven't been through your situation, so it is difficult for me to place myself in your shoes. My answers are based on mutual respect, which is something I highly value.

 

Firstly, I'd be genuinely unavailable. I believe in helping others out but it seems to me she's taking your help for granted. My take is that she knows you're usually available and therefore she automatically assumes you'll do her last minute requests like babysitting. Therefore, be genuinely busy with work or friends. You made other arrangements already, therefore you are unable to cater to her last minute requests. You will not drop prior engagements for last minute requests, unless they are an emergency.

 

Secondly, I'd communicate my concerns with her. Be straightforward, no insulting nor blaming.

 

Andrina, suggested something (totally new for me) that I really like.

Edited by greendots
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What I would do if I were you:

 

First of all, I think it's great when both spouses have their friends. I have a local best friend whom I've known ever since I was 9 years old. During pre-COVID-19, we'd spend all day outings for shopping, walks and lunch once or twice a month throughout the year. Nowadays, we're reduced to a 3 hour phone chat once a week during the evening. Note these appointments are scheduled, therefore, we're not infringing upon anyone's time. Our spouses enjoy their solitude with various hobbies, intellectual pursuits or relax by watching the evening news on TV. They're tired anyway and we all enjoy our own space and time.

 

Having said that, none of us impose on others such as taking advantage of free babysitting services, house sitting, dog sitting, errands, favors and the like. We simply do not assume and presume that other people will do our bidding for us nor do we take turns out of obligations either. None of our friends use us either. No one is beholden to each other. Let's be clear about this. There's an unspoken code of behaving like decent, very honorable human beings. We respect each other and never cross the line. Using people is intolerable and unacceptable. It's down right inconsiderate and disrespectful. None of us has the nerve to use each other.

 

If it were me, I'd have a talk with my husband regarding his scheduled cycling activities with said friend. These outings should be reasonable. Your wife should spend quality time with you because that's the purpose of marriage. If she prefers her friend over you, there's something wrong with her and your marriage because this arrangement is abnormal.

 

As for presuming that you will automatically babysit all the time, learn to speak up and say, "NO." Don't be a doormat. Who are you? Mary Poppins? :eek:

 

As for your impending house guest, Jane, again, say, "NO."

 

You have more deep seeded problems in your marriage other than your wife's cycling friend, your free babysitting services and house guest, Jane. Have a serious discussion with your wife regarding your concerns. There is complete lack of respect and empathy from her to you. Those are very serous problems. Fix your marriage with professional marriage counseling.

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The first time anyone attempted to drop off a kid for me to babysit without asking me would be the end of it right then and there.

 

Sucks to be that kid, however, it is not your responsibility at all.

 

And that attitude of mine is separate from the whole not being told of the trip.

 

Totally unacceptable parenting and at minimum bad manners towards you.

 

So it ruins their plans. Um, hello, there were no plans to include you so why would that be your problem?

 

As usual, crazy wants to set the agenda. and it will if you let it.

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As OP said:

 

"but not EVEN TELLING ME?! "

 

I cannot begin to understand how you would organise a five-day expedition and NOT tell your spouse.

 

No one thinks it strange that a spouse would go "missing " for,in this case, five days. Would OP not even wonder where she was?

 

I cannot get my head around this.

 

Does OP's spouse simply return from the expeditions and everything carries on as usual.

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