Asking vs Demanding

CatnippedMarch 28, 2012

I'm trying to figure out if I have a valid reason to be off put or am over reacting or being rejecting.This is usually the time of year both DH and I plan to visit our children/g-children.Both sets of children live a distance away so we usually either spend a night or two with family or hotel.We have never stayed at my kids.

My DH has been to see my family several times because they live closer and I've had a couple emergencies to attend to(passings)also births.His live such a distance it is more expensive to go and he struggles to be able to go on his own.I have not accompanied him to his children's area yet but plan to soon.

He is upset with me because I have declined this year in favor of next year because finances are tight.His family were just here 6 months ago,a lot of money was spent, among other situations.So,now he is making double payments on cards and trying to figure out how to get himself to his kids this year.This reason alone should be enough for DH to understand we will be pushing financial limits but saying no to his kids is not his forte.

DH complained that since I would not be going,would not be "in the picture"he planned to do this or that(can't remember what all due to the fight that ensued)with a rude tone to me.

I asked him,"do we have enough money for hotel,dinners out,activities this year?"Knowing that he will want to do all these things when he goes there.He got so angry with me because I told him I would feel more comfortable in a hotel my first visit there.Our first visit to my family was spent in a hotel as well.

It is at the moment too uncomfortable to stay in his children's homes for me due to obvious tension and issues had during a couple visits to our area(issues my DH refuses to acknowledge and pretends didn't happen). They also stayed in a hotel.

Sooo,now I am the bad guy who is rejecting his child who expects us to stay in her home when we do come.No one asked me.DH nor his D asked.Hey,you and Catnipped are welcomed to stay if she feels comfortable doing so instead of a hotel.It's up to you two but that is an option.No,just when you come you stay here. Let me know if your coming.

The reason is, I suspect, because the other grown DD and her husband doesn't want us staying there if I come along so her sister is offering to buffer it(and I appreciate it but...).This DD is ultra picky and has some rigid ways which is her right.I would never expect DH to demand we stay there.But he demands of me.

Now that DH is going alone he will be staying at the picky DD's home who is the reason he's going in the first place not the DD who expected we would stay with her.Which I don't care but I'm not oblivious either..

I asked DH(to call his bluff)since getting a hotel would be an insult to his children and he wants me to go so bad, if we'd be staying a couple days at one DD's,the other couple of days at the others?I'm curious to the response he will receive.

Why are we staying at the other DD's home all week when we are going because of the picky DD?But yet DH labels me the trouble maker because I'd like a room and the sole person who has a lodging issue."YOU are the only one with an issue."

Now,yes this sounds immature.I acknowledge it.I should just be glad one of his kids are willing to tolerate me staying in her home.I am glad and appreciate it but I do not feel comfortable with it is my issue but this matters not to DH.

I need my own space and some privacy to clean up,sleep,a place to go if things get too hectic or there is some kind of situation I need removed from.

He demands to know why I want a hotel and my reasons aren't good enough. So, DH, why not ask picky DD why she has not offered her home and demand her reasons if I'm the only one with issue as he claims?Why aren't you picking up the phone?Just to get him to see my point. I'll be waiting till doomsday and the look on his face was one that says he will never question it bc he knows why.

DH has dropped the idea of me going this year(surprise).

Should I just stay where ever they expect and suck it up in the future or be firm on my decision to stay else where in the evening?And stop trying to make a point to DH so he will stop pinning all on me?DH is making a lot of misery because of this issue.

I'm tired of not being asked,being expected to do as he wishes and DH not compromising with me as I do with him.

Does it seem rejecting to decline staying there without being asked or consulted?I'm not trying to reject her.But I know what I am and am not comfortable with and DH trying to force me feels like a violation to me.

I can't believe I'm even having this issue.It's ridiculous to me.It just feels like my DH has no respect for my boundaries or my comfort zone but will go out of his way to respect his kids.I don't get why he can't respect both.

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Cat, I and husband do not stay over in our adult children's home...and we ALL get along fine and are actually a pretty close knit family. Oh, sure, we are welcome too, but for some of the same reasons you state we don't.

I like my privacy. I like getting in my vehicle and driving away when I've 'had enough' aka 'too much togetherness'. I usually am up each morning between 4 and 5am. It's 'me' time. I don't want to be quiet, I don't want to be in fear of waking up others. If I want to soak in hot tub, go for a run at a local park or just sit and quietly gather my's all about 'me'. It's a long habit from early years when I had to be up and going very early. I don't apologize to anyone, nor do I have to. My family knows 'it is just Mom being Mom'.

On the otherhand, I just might be snoring in a recliner by 9pm. Now wouldn't that be pleasant at my children's house! There sits Mom snoring in our face and doing battle with the movie the rest are watching.

When the kids come home, I usually (depends which kid and their length of visit) put them up at hotel (at my cost). They come for meals. Sometimes (again depending on which kid)the grandkids just enjoy swimming at hotel in the evenings together after a long day of events. Actually for you/DH that might be something for you to consider in the 'fight'...the evenings you two could have the grandkids come swim and relax with a carry-out pizza, the adult kids could come or instead be treated to some quiet time on their own.

I realize though that my reasons and what is going on between your husband and you as far as visiting the kids is not the same thing or same reasons. You hubby is going to have his nose out of joint no matter what you say or what your reasons are. He's being an unreasonable butthead. He's failing to take your concerns seriously . 24/7 together is something that is difficult on the best of relationships, 24/7 with strained relations would be a nightmare (or at least stressful and exhausting).

Actually in my humble opinion, husband should save a bit more so he can afford the hotel...and get off his pity party 'you don't like my kids' crap. If you would go under the hotel circumstances than you might feel more relaxed and perhaps even partly enjoy the days visiting with the adults and grandchildren. It really makes no sense just to toss you all together 24/7 and announce buck it up and deal with it. That makes things hard on everybody. Visits and vacations are meant to be fun and relaxing.

If he choses to continue not to compromise, let him go by himself, and do it without feeling any guilt. Marriage and relationships are two way streets, your husband appears to think you should be the only one to do any compromising. Not him, not his children, just you.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2012 at 8:09AM
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Justme,thanks for the response.I would feel more relaxed and comfortable without the 24/7 togetherness.DH has a hard time saying no to them out of guilt(extreme),fear(they will get angry.whoopdie doo as far as I'm concerned),and sometimes I think he actually enjoys the conflict(like men who enjoy women fighting over him).

He suggested a pay by the week room when we discussed this before.It is cheap,no pool,etc.If he pays for his kids room it has to be at least two stars with a pool(and yes I realize there are g-children involved staying there).Or I'd suggest taking the g-kids swimming,etc.So,he will either understand my feelings on the matter or I just won't go.He will be upset but I'm so tired of his crap.He has a knack of making me second guess myself wondering if I am the sole problem.It can be mind spinning at times.

He also called me a hypocrite.Then he comes home(after my post yesterday) and starts in of how he doesn't like his ex's partner because of what his kids tell him.Then when I express one of the reasons I'd like a room is because his ex is ALWAYS in the picture when he goes.There is no getting out of it.So,I tell DH perhaps his ex feels similar toward me and until I see for myself if that is the case I feel uncomfortable not having a place to go if it becomes a problem.

Then he had the audacity to say "she's not that type of person" and he doubted she would give me grief(he wouldn't see subtle passive aggressive if it hit him in the eye if she did pull it) because she has her partner there living near by.If she did,according to DH, he would probably have a problem with her behaving that way toward her ex husbands wife,lol.Then DH said "I wouldn't blame him if he got upset,if she did."

So,I'm the hypocrite and I think he is projecting.He throws this at me on top of everything else and does the exact thing he says would upset her man.

Maybe she would be nice as pie,IDK.IDK,until I experience it.He had to converse with his ex when he got home due to a situation that needed discussing(no problem)so the subject came up bc of that.He announced he had to call her like he was announcing a call from the red phone.

He also would look over at me toward the end of the convo as niceties were being said.What was said wasn't a problem as it had to do with something other than them but it was him looking at me expecting a reaction that was troublesome and I did not react-at all.

I just need to release it before he comes home tonight and hope there will be some peace after he does.Or I may meltdown,lol.I can't change him.I have to find a way to change my reaction.At this stage of my life I am already stressed enough ,sleep difficulties and all the other lovely occurrences that come with it without DH and his B.S. making it worse.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2012 at 8:05PM
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May I suggest some counseling or group therapy involving other couples with blended families?

    Bookmark   March 29, 2012 at 10:35PM
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Do what makes YOU comfortable. If that means getting a room for YOU and letting him stay at his kids' house, tell him he is welcome to stay with you but you understand if he doesn't want to... of course, it sounds like money is an issue. (that he doesn't want to spend it, unless it's for his kids?) And if he lets you stay home or at the hotel alone, don't harbor resentment that he chooses to be with his kids. Enjoy the free/alone time.

I apologize if I come across as cynical. I used to be so very optimistic until reality bit me a few times. Anyway, it sounds as if your husband is tied to his dysfunction and that is where he is comfortable. He wants you to accept it and keep him company, despite your discomfort. If he is happy there, not much you can do except do what makes YOU happy. Nobody should be forced on anyone... everyone is an adult and is responsible for their own relationships. It doesn't matter if your kids like him but his don't like you or vice versa (or any combination of so and so likes so and so but the other one doesn't like so and so, etc.) and it doesn't matter who likes or doesn't like whom. If you are more comfortable in a hotel, he should respect that. If he can't say no to his kids, they will enjoy having daddy all to themselves while you watch a movie, take a nap or a bubble bath at your hotel. Or if you really don't want to go, stay home.

It would be wonderful if everyone got along... we love our kids and want our kids to love our partner, and vice versa. But my dad had four kids and my stepmom. Two of us liked her, one didn't care for her but didn't dislike her and my sister openly hated her. My stepmom had three kids: One Jerk son, One laid back son... not a friend but got along with him, and a daughter that manipulated.. got along with him the best until she stabbed him in the back. Each one of us (my siblings/I & my stepsiblings) had our own feelings and behaviors that formed our relationship with the respective stepparent.

It sounds as if your husband has certain expectations from you in how you relate to his children? I believe that is one of the biggest mistakes made in step-families, unrealistic expectations. He should expect NOTHING from you or them, other than being polite to each other and if you choose more, he can be glad but expecting it will only lead to disappointment & resentment. If he is wise, he will back off and focus on his own relationship with his kids and allow you to stay in your comfort zone... even if it means you stay home or at a hotel. It doesn't really matter if you like his kids or not, it's not your job to like them and if you dislike them, as long as you are not impeding him from having a relationship with them... who cares? Not everyone likes everyone, that's life.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2012 at 12:22AM
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Marie,counseling would be a good idea.I have suggested it.DH won't go until I go by myself to "get my head straight first."
And that he has been to counseling and there is "nothing wrong with him."

Ima,I have also thought along the same lines as he is stuck(comfortable)the way things are.It is dysfunctional.I won't go unless I am able stay where I feel comfortable.

He wants you to accept it and keep him company, despite your discomfort. Exactly.

He said my thought process is strange because I should not expect anyone to ask me if I'd like to stay at his DD's because it is just expected we would as that is "the norm".

as long as you are not impeding him from having a relationship with them... who cares?I agree totally.

it sounds like money is an issue Yes because this will make the second visit in six months and monies were spent on tickets and rooms for his kids.

don't harbor resentment that he chooses to be with his kids. Enjoy the free/alone time.

I only resent he chooses to ignore my feeling and needs.I have no problem with him spending time with them at all.I do enjoy the free time and will while he is gone.

Thanks for the responses it has helped me cope.DH will not budge on this as far as thinking I am "the only one" who thinks the way I do ,"too deeply", and I am the problem.I don't think he will ever compromise when it's anything involving his kids.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2012 at 6:19PM
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Catnipped - I truly believe that you are married to my husband. You explained him to a T. Hope everything works out for you.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2012 at 10:18PM
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end-of-rope,I hope everything works out for you as well.My condolences to you for having to deal with a hubby who has such issues.

It would be so much easier if some of these men(and yes there are men who struggle with step father-hood to be fair and remarriage too)would figure out a way to balance roles.

They aren't used to wearing many different hats or realizing some hats need to be hung up(like wearing the perpetual ex husband hat of obligation/unresolved issues and using grown kids as an excuse to continue doing so.As opposed to acknowledging they can't let go and have a problem.Sound familiar?).

It's a one size fits all hat it seems(to the men who can pull this off and balance it all,great.).
I'll leave it at that but I could go's sooo frustrating,isn't it?.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2012 at 11:01PM
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