Is it my fault?
Myself and my husband have been together for 12 years and married for 7 of them. We moved to Australia in 2010 and because he is blind in one eye from an accident, I became the bread winner for 3 years. I then fell pregnant with our second child and after a year off of work I was supposed to go back but my husband had finished all his treatment and was finally in a place where he was ready to work again and eventually got a job. I then became the stay at home parent. He's been working for a year now and making good money and getting lots of work but the downside is he drinks every night to deal with the stress and exhaustion. I've asked him to drink less because I don't want my kids to think drinking is a normal thing to do after work but he says I'm nagging him (I'm sure I am) and that I should be grateful I get to do nothing at home. So I got sick of watching him drink every night that I started back at work 1-2 nightshifts a week. This is making me so tired and then I snap at everyone (my husband's words). I just feel like I can't win anymore and having no family here, I feel lonely and sad.
On a side note, after my daughter was born, I was so sleep deprived and depressed that I wanted toend my life. I told my husband this and his reply was, "so do I". He has been through a lot in the last 9 years because of the accident that I feel like I can't ask for help because it will become a competition of who has more problems.
Am I being unreasonable?
Hi anniebtwitch. Changes in a relationship can lead to stress and you don't always expect that. It could be due to job changes, differences in parenting style, or perhaps a changing of expectations that has never really been openly discussed. It is not usually the fault or responsibility of one person in a relationship to step back, review the situation and look at how things can change for the better - it needs to be a joint effort. So really the question is what to do from here?
It sounds like an open conversation about where things are at for you both would be helpful - do you feel like that is something you could initiate? Perhaps start with some simple things and then as things progress you can begin to address your concerns. It does not need to be a competition about who has greater needs - more an acknowledgement that you both have things that you are dealing with and you want to know how to help each other. If talking is difficult maybe you could write each other a few notes now and then - some just simple message of care and concern - others more about what you are thinking and concerned about.
You also talk about feeling alone and sad. Have you thought about how you build your own support network and friendship group? Is there a mums group or playgroup you could perhaps join to meet others but also to hear how others cope with difficulties arise? Or perhaps is there a hobby you would like to pursue, or an activity you would really like to try (gym, pilates, gardening group, art group)?. Often when you have your own interests outside of the family it helps to improve your mood and your ability to work through difficulties when they arise.
On a final note, it sounds like the early days in your parenting were very tough - how did you pull through then? Perhaps there are some skills or strategies that you tapped into then that you could draw on now.
Feel free to come back here and chat as much as you like. We are hear to listen and support you as best we can - often our shared thoughts and experiences lead to some really interesting and useful conversations.