Hello. I have been with my husband for 12 years and although I do still love him, I have concerns constantly about whether or not it is time to throw in the towel. First, let me say that it is not all bad, and some of it is pretty darn good - he makes me laugh, he is a good father (well...he's better than mine was), and our "personal" life if pretty good. Unfortunately, we have some fundamental differences in our beliefs and personalities that really concern me, and have for almost our entire relationship. Here are the issues, and I'm sorry in advance for the ridiculously long novel:
- He's a racist, and it sickens me. He is not blatant in front of me because he knows how I feel, but he will make subtle comments that he thinks are ok. He openly admits it and says that a person is entitled to feel how they feel and I have no right to tell him otherwise. He says that if I lived where he lived and had to "put up with them" like he did, that I would feel the same way. He does not say obvious things in front of our kids because he knows that I would lose it, but I am afraid that something is going to slip out one day. Our son is 5 and when he tells us a story about a friend, my husband always asks what they "look like" trying to figure out if they are black or white. My son has started telling stories like this: "John, he has brown skin, was playing basketball with me." The first time I heard that I told my husband not to ask what kids look like anymore because it's not right for our son to immediately think about that.
- He is lazy. He has gained about 35 pounds since we met and he doesn't seem to care. I am not somebody that would ever intentionally say something that would hurt another person's feelings, so I don't tell him that I think his belly is gross and that he now has jowls and multiple chins. I am in shape and look essentially the same as when we met. I know that metabolisms change over time, but this is different, he just doesn’t care and has let himself go. He talks about his belly, or says that he needs to lose weight and then sits on the couch with a pack of cookies. He is not active at all and does not have any interest or desire to go out and do anything with me or the kids. His cholesterol is literally through the roof and he's a heart-attack waiting to happen.
- He drinks and drives. He is not an alcoholic and only drinks a few times a month, but he always drives home when he shouldn't. We have fought about this incessantly, and he just doesn't care or thinks that he's above it. I am terrified that he is going to kill himself or someone else. Before we had kids, I used to actually go and pick him up when he was done drinking. He would call at 2am and I would get up out of a sound sleep and go get him. At the time, we didn't have enough money for a cab and this was the only way that we could avoid fighting. Now, he's just too cheap or selfish to call a cab. I'm not sure if he honestly believes that he's OK when he drives like that, or if he just tells himself that to feel better about it.
- He is selfish. I think that if me or my children were in danger, he would fight to the death for us, but if it's a choice between something that me or the kids want to do and something that he wants to do, 8 times out of 10 he will pick himself. He will watch TV all night after getting home from work instead of interacting with the kids. Now that the kids are getting older and growing out of the baby/toddler age, I do think he's getting better about it, but he still chooses himself first.
- He has a Peter Pan complex. He has refused to grow up and still thinks he's 25 and single (sleeping in, going out with friends whenever he wants, doing whatever he wants whenever he wants). He still insists on sleeping in on the weekend, and I'm not talking until 8am, but much later. For years now we have each slept in on one of the weekend days - it started when our oldest son was a horrible sleeper and we were just wiped out and it just stuck. I will sleep until about 8am, or possibly 8:30 if it's been a particularly rough week. He wants to sleep as late as he possibly can and doesn't think that there is anything wrong with sleeping until 10:30 or even noon. He wants to go out with friends whenever he wants and doesn't understand why I would get upset about him being gone 2-3 times a week. He no longer does this because he said it's not worth the fights, but he never lets me forget by saying that "he's not allowed to go out like he wants to".
Wow, this sounds a lot worse than I thought. I've never shared all of this before and I guess I was holding a lot inside. I just don't know when it's time to give up...