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Are My Feelings About My Husband/marriage Normal?

Hello everyone,

I need some input on whether the way I am feeling about my husband now is normal, or if I am simply overreacting.  This might be a little long, so please bear with me.

A bit of background - I live int he United States and have lived here for a long time.  I am a professional, earn a good income, own a home, work pretty hard, etc.  I met my husband on one of my trips to Nigeria-- he is a medical doctor and was doing okay at home when I met him.  We dated, largely long distance, as I was here and he was in Nigeria.  We eventually got married, and he has now joined me in the U.S.  We have been married for a little bit over a year and half now.  Since he has come, he has not been able to work as he is preparing for different medical examinations.  So i have been the one working and taking care of us, while he takes his exams.  I pay the mortgage (i owned the house before he came, so no wahala there), I pay for two cars (mine and his), our health insurance, car insurance, feeding, everything.

The problem is that I sometimes feel completely unappreciated by my husband.  I hold a pretty time consuming and stressful job, but I feel like he expects me to work, pay the bills, take care of us, and still do everything domestic that a "typical housewife" would do.  He helps out less and less around the house.  Because he is "so busy studying" he spends very little time with me.  Sometimes I even go to work and come back and he does not even have 20 minutes to sit with me and ask "how was your day?"  "how was work?"  When I try to talk about it, it is like all i do is complain and he is not responsive. 

I think he is disrespectful to me sometimes in the things he says-- sometimes he tries to compare me to the wives of other men who are more domestic, but forgetting that those other women also do not work the kind of job i do and are not the ones supporting thier homes.  I feel like my emotional tank is getting drier everyday with him, and recently, all we seem to do is argue.  Like today, we went to church and came back, and he locked himself up studying. He has not even said one word to me all day.  It's like he is always upset with me, for what I do not know.  Also, he never is able to see where he has done anything wrong.  Whenever we have arguments and we try to resolve them, I always begin by apologizing even if I do not really believe I have done something wrong.  i apologize to him for the fact that I offended him.  Getting him to say sorry to me or any form of apology is like pulling teeth.  I can count on one hand the number of times he had apologized for anything.  As far as he is concerned, I am the one who is always wrong.  Moreover, he gets offended too easily.  he is many years older than me, but, honestly, I don't see him acting any more matured than me.  When he tells me that I caused an argument,  I apoloigize, but then I tell him, even if I was doing something wrong, as the man and the elder one, you should not have responded in kind. 

Recently, I asked him to help me do something with my car and he said he had no time.  I told him that his time is more flexible than mine since I have to actually be in an office every morning,s o it might be easier for him to do it.  He does not.  He got offended and said i was saying he had nothing doing.  I never said he had nothing doing, I know he is working hard for his exams.  What I meant was that he  has a better ability to flexible  with his time - I don't.   It's like he thinks because he is studying, my work is not as important as his.

I understand that this is a time of sacrifice for me and I do not mind supporting us until he gets on his feet.  I have absolutely no problems with that-- i knew that coming into the marriage.  I also know that i am not perfect and, yes, I admit, I am not the most domestic woman out there.  But I try, I make the effort.  What i want in return is to be appreciated, for me to feel like he really cares about me, that he is there for me emotionally, that he does not take me for granted.

He is a private person and would be offended if i went talking to others about my issues with him.  But when I try to talk to him, all i get is more blame back, the conversation may end up in an argument which makes matters worse.  And, another thing, when we have an argument, he won't speak to me for days, I am not used to that.  SOmetimes when we argue, he tells me if i am tired of carrying the load i should just let him know now so that he can go back because he had a good job in Nigeria. 

Most importantly, I am beginning to feel like my love for him is going away.  I used to be madly in love with him, when we met and married.  Not so much anymore.  And, the scary thing is, I am beginning to miss being single!  I know the grass is always greener on the other side, but I would be lying if I said I don't feel down and alone.  What should I do?  Any input is appreciated.

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25 answers

it's not normal,but i cannot judge from ur own stories alone. . .just be wise!

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How true! some will even take all the generosity and spend on another woman they feel more comfortable with, where they can feel like a king.

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@clarinette

Marriage sometimes takes more than love to be successful. Respect, obligations, compromises, agreements and more.

These signs are not platable but sure, with little patience, maybe u can overcome

but, hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm!

Be wise and careful, dont invest all, Mind u it maybe a gameplanned marriage too. America Wonder.

I wonder what our men are turning into, tail of the family, middle of the family or head of the family. Thank God for some matured ones though but its becoming an all scene thing to see men transfering their responsibilities to women without even a show of appreciation nor concern.

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Ater reading all of these comments-- I think the thing to do is to set boundaries and make clear the type of behavior that is acceptable to me and what is not and give him the option to work together towards a healthy marriage.  The commit the rest into God's hands

He is a good human being and I believe he does love me.  I think he might be under stress and feels insecure about being financially dependent-- but it is not an excuse for his behavior.  When he was in Nigeria and I came to visit, he took care of me financially, even helping to sponsor my plane ticket at times.  So I am sure it is really difficult for him to not "be in charge" financially.  And, yes, I think it is a good idea that he gets at least a part time job, I think it will ease his own feelings and would be of help to me.

Thankfully, he has his papers so he does not need to stay with me because of that.

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Is that my dearest lover, mon darlink, the only original and authentic gucci handbag in my wardrobe outta my collection of fakes, my one and only nafdac certified bone of my bone, my one and only triple combo of Autocheck/Carfax/Carproof half man, half adonis, i don miss una, where have you been? How are you? Where you disappear to? I don vex and only a one-week shopping trip to Dubai, via Milan and Paris with your private let (plus all expenses on you of course) can cool my head down, so which private hangar should i meet you at, lol.

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Agree with busybody, there is absolutely no excuse for him not working part time at the very least. A Dr friend of mine moved to the US from Nigeria with his wife and 3 kids and he wrote his exams while being the family's breadwinner because his wife mostly stayed home with the kids. They were very stressful years for the family but today, they are doing very well.

I don't care how busy he is with schooling, a married man should bring in an income when he's physically able. It's  not like he lost his job and he's earning unemployment checks before something new comes. Sadly, only a very small group of my Naija born-and-bred brothers can handle such generosity from a woman and not misbehave, you see, that sense of entitlement and "awuf" is too strong. He's probably convinced himself he deserves all you are doing afterall he rescued you (in his mind) from lifetime spinsterhood so you should be very grateful.

Poster, don't mean to hurt your feelings but you are spoiling this man and the story will likely get worse if you both continue like this.

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Most women don't really know men(genesis of their  problem)

QPOSTER--A House is build through wisdom and by understanding it's established.

What u r going through r not signs of a Good Marriage. . .

A long lasting happy marriage is also  about knowing your partner,being supportive,and being nice.

Know who u r  dealing with;i hope he doesn't have hidden agenda.

Be wise and be careful . . .

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@Sissy and Sisi

This situation is like the proverbial putting all of one's eggs in one basket, odikwa very risky.

Instead of goading her that he would return to Naija, why doesn't he just man up and do that, no chance cos he loves being indulged and petted, the lazy bum.

If he was simply frustrated because he was finding it hard to get a job, i would have understood, BUT FOR CRYING OUT LOUD, all he is doing is the conversion courses and examinations his educated ar'se knew that if he came to the States, he would have do before being allowed to practise, and this takes time, so what is his beef?

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thats my main fear 'cause usually this set of folks are very super unappreciative when they finally gets what they want. after getting his license he might then realized she isnt good enough for her blah blah . . and finds fault with whatever she does, haven witnessed so many instances of this, its almost  too scary not to have ill feelings in this case. however, like you all have pointed already, hes probably dealing with the frustration of not being the man of the house and his egos and probably the stress from his new country not being what he expected. there is still that hope that he might change hence the importance of having patience.

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Ditto on all Busy_Body's posts!

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@ SA lady,

You ain't a week person so scratch that, its just that everyone's patience, self-esteem and tolerance level is different. I have also learnt that relationship and marriage is a different ballgame, hence reason communication is very very important to sustain one. Communication has broken down between these couple and the other one where the man has 10 mistresses and counting, the ladies to bending over backwards to please their men, yet the men keeps acting and carrying on like ingrates, yet they are still being advised to keep mollycuddling and pampering and indulging them, i.e. brush their own feelings under the carpet because they are not relevant.

Isn't marriage supposed to be about two people? What about their own emotional needs that is being neglected, and left to fester? And situations like this is now so common, you wonder if it is our/their Mothers to blame for raising spoilt men? How long is this trend going to continue for?

Back to this thread, what if he doesn't pass those exams like outstrip said? Or God forbid, what if he abandons her after passing/ getting his stay like some people have mentioned?

So my dear, you are not a weak person, perish the thought, the OP needs to learn to put her foot down and help her husband's pride and get a job.

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I read this post yesterday and decided to move on to other posts maybe because I didnt know what to say. Moving along to other posts, I found one about a women whom her husband is sleeping with almost ten other women and has infected her with an STD, again the man is resentful of her success blah-blah-blah.

To be honest I still dont know what to say about these posts. All I know is that I was really affected by the pain that these women are going through. I started to wonder if I am a weak woman and a coward as I was thinking back about my past relationships and the decisions I took, those that I left when I realised that things were not in place or just not a relationship I should be in.

Or maybe, it was the love in me for the next person that said, if its true that I love this person and that I am honest and true to them, then I should love them enough to let you go and give them th eopportunity to be be with the person they are suppose to be with, because right now she is waiting for you and you are busy waisting your precious time and love on me when you could be giving it to somebody that will appreciate everything about you. Somebody who will treat you the way they want you to treat them in return.

These posts talked to me a lot and now am left with one question to answer am I really that weak. Poster I admire and respect your strength.

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^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Someone must be a super human being to be able to do carry out this list, i.e feels no pain, does not need to be loved and super strong.

I wish the poster the very best

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makes sense. definitely agree. patience is the keyword here . have patience hes still in the transition phase. its not always a smooth and easy transition for many. although it still doesnt excuse his nonchalant behavior but have patience

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poster--D problem in your marriage seems little,but it's a big one.

Studying 4 his exams is not an excuse

He avoids u. .in otherwords,your presence irritates  him--if he really loves u,he'll make love 2 u everytime.

He complains about u not being domestic enough--this simply means,u r not his no 1,u r not d woman of his dreams.

find a way 2 make him open up. .talk to him calmly and respectfully.

Try 2 find out d kind of woman he really wants.(if possible cunningly)

i hope u don't nag--nagging  means hell to men.

How long have u been married?Does he wants children?Does he have a wife and any children back home?

Try to reach to d real root of your problem. .dig out causes and find a solution.

if he doesn't respect and appreciates u,then u don't have a marriage. . . .Good luck!

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There is nothing wrong with a man who should be the head of the family succumbing to insecurity and feelings of inadequacy, you shouldn't allow yourself to rest on your laurels because of the immature and childish and selfish stance he has adopted.

The only piece of advice i currently have for you is that he needs to find a part-time job as soon as possible, afterall if he was in the US on his own studying the same course and wasn't married to you, he'd have had to work to sustain himself.

AND WHAT IF HE DOES NOT PASS HIS EXAMS? WOULD YOU BE ABLE TO HANDLE HIS ALREADY OVER-INFLATED EGO AND CHILDISH OUTBURST? YOU BERRA QUIT OVER-INDULGING HIM AND STAND UP TO HIM AND SQUARE UP TO HIS LAZY AR'SE TO GO AND GET A JOB.

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Wow, i happen to be going through the same "problem" now so i can clearly identify with your feelings in this issue. In my case, my husband is currently not working for well over 5 months now. I foot almost 90% of the bills, catering for myself, the kids, and him. Initially, i had complained bitterly most esp when i felt that he wasn't really appreciating my efforts. He also compares me to his colleagues wives telling me that i am not woman enough since i find it difficult coping with work, taking care of the kids and domestic work . I had made the "mistake" to retort back by saying that he is clearly not man enough since most men i know take care of their homes irrespective of the woman's income and of course all hell was let loose. Suffice it to say, i never really kept quiet on the issue as i kept telling him that i wld appreciate it if he can pitch in by doing some domestic work, and been with the kids on certain days so that i can rest and though he objected to this initially, he is slowly coming around. I guess u ve to get him to understand that u need his love and understanding(and i do this via text messages, since having a conversation with him on this almost never works). Trust me when i say that his behaviour is largely due to the fact that he is incapable of taking care of u let alone himself. Communication is the key here. Good luck.

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Thanks very much for the various inputs-- i am taking it all in,

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Dear. The situation is pathetic. People wil give u different advices here on NL, Dat u eventualy dnt know which to pick. My sincere advice is PRAY AND PRAY. Something tels me that his agresion is due to the fact that he's finincially dependent on u, He has a sense of insecurity.just be patient and keep doing good,

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i really like outstrip's advice. . .

another take, it could be that he's working soooo hard cos he's not comfy with the idea of being 'kept' by his wife(this tallies with agathamari's 'gender roles'), this could also explain his accusing you of having said he's not doing anything when you mentioned the flexibility-time thing. i suggest you take this into consideration before going with the whole 'he'll dump you as soon as he gets a green card' group. . .

it could simply be insecurity. . .i cant advice you on how to deal with that, maybe some of the other ppl here can!

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another user wants to use another man pickin.

why dont we learn. he is obviously trying trying to earn himself enough air miles for a flight. he wont be the first. i dont know why you guys bother going "home" to bring these good for nothing ungrateful people. we dont have conscience anymore

my only advice would be stop throwing your good money after bad one for now and hope he is not making you send his parents money like some shameless bros do.

hope you learn fast and be smart

good luck

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@ Poster

Been there, done that myself.

I hate to sound negative but the moment your hubby passes his exams and/or gets his greencard, he is gone. As hard as you try to please him and work your Bottom off to make sacrifices to foot all the bills and sponsor his education, don't expect any gratitude cos you won't get any. None.

When that sickening attitude of his turns from bad to worse, there ain't no turning back. Be prepared to face the painful existence in the coming years together, like some would say seek God for a miracle, otherwise do what you think is best for yourself. In my case, I hung on way too long in this futile matrimony with the wrong man.

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Hmm,very sound,deep and objective,I'm so loving you now Outsrip

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Honestly I think things will get much better for you guys. I think one thing people fail to keep in mind is that when times are hard is when you need to strive to be closer. Your husband does not see this. He does not realize that he is defining the success of his life by the success of a career. What if he never passes the board (God forbid) will he then say that he will be misreable forever? Or maybe he passes the exam then he has to start fixing the things that he did wrong that has probably gotten his marriage to a point where his wife sees a different person.

I will just be honest and say that I can understand his frustrations but what you should not accept is him making you feel like you are not a good wife. don't ever accept that and you have to let him understand that. The other thing I always hate to hear in marriages is saying you are sorry even when you know you are not the one at fault. Sometimes that works when it is not a big issue but when it is issues that are eating you up but you just say it for the other person to be happy then that is not healthy.

Bottom line do not give up on this marriage. It is just too soon. I think you can still make him see reason. Ask him what will happen after he passes his exams and start working. Would he not want a wife that is sweet and loving rather than a bitter resentful one? Tell him that you guys can have the best of both worlds by building on the one you have now regardless of the situation. The foundation is what matters. Above all be patient with this man. I think you have been doing a wonderful job. Keep it up and I believe you will be happy for it

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Hmmm,quite an epistle.Plz gv me time 2read it again 4beta undstanding.BRB

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