Depressed husband-advice please - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 07-28-2014, 01:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Depressed husband-advice please

I am currently 7 weeks pregnant with my 3rd child. We have a 5 year old and 2 year old and this pregnancy wasn't planned.
Ever since we found out I was pregnant, my husband has been making "jokes" about trying to miscarry. I've tried speaking to him about planning for a third child and he's told me he doesn't want to think about it or talk about it. He's also recently told me he's really stressed at work, feels like he can't handle the two kids he has and isn't sure if/how he'll be able to handle a third.
I have my own fears and doubts but do my best to move on and get excited about having another child. I understand my husband's reservations, however as it is I feel like I do all of the work. I also work full time in a high stress job (advertising), I take care of both kids myself after work feeding them dinner, giving them a bath and putting them to bed (juggling work deadlines at the same time). My husband typically gets home after the kids are asleep. I keep the house cleaned, I'm even the one that mows the lawn.
Given that he's already stressed by the little amount of interaction he has with the kids, I'm worried about the amount of work that is going to fall on my shoulders when the 3rd arrives and how my husbands mental state will be. Part of me wants to tell him he's off the hook and ask him to leave (at least this way when I'm doing all of the work I won't have to be doing it with an unsupportive husband in the house). But I know that's probably not the best solution. I know he's tired, but I am too (especially given that I'm the one who's pregnant). Advice please?
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#2 of 8 Old 07-28-2014, 02:04 PM
 
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I don't have any advice but I wanted to send hugs! Stay strong Super Momma!
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#3 of 8 Old 07-29-2014, 07:51 AM
 
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This is tough. So sorry you're dealing with all this while pregnant.
My mom dealt with this from my dad when we were growing up. He has a hx if significant depression & anxiety. My mom told him once & I clearly remember this- "you need to get your s**t together or leave... If you're not here, at least I don't have one more person to take care of since you are NO help" or something to that effect. My parents were able to stick together but there were some tough times. My mom insisted that he get some medication at least which was very helpful. My dad also worked very long hours-- as a coal miner (17+ years of 12 hour rotating shifts, underground, unsafe working conditions, some weeks getting only 1-2 hours of natural sunlight). I suspect this related heavily to his mood issues as his mood improved significantly when he was able to get a job with a natural gas company & was outside 90% of the time with (still) long, but steady hours. Perhaps this is part of DH's issues? Offices can be awful places to work with terrible artificial light/long commutes/ etc (not that you aren't aware if this!) would he be willing to make some changes? I know this would weigh heavily on my own decision making in a case like this. I liked the book _the_depression_cure_. It's all able therapeutic lifestyle change to treat depression. Perhaps DH would be interested in reading & motivated to make some changes? Best wishes mama & hugs to you!
XX Sierra
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#4 of 8 Old 07-29-2014, 08:14 AM
 
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If you want to keep the marriage intact, you may just have to accept that it's up to you to raise the kids. Some men (and women) are just not up to the task. They try, but they just can't dredge up what it takes to be a hands-on caregiver.

There doesn't seem to me to be *too* much reason for your husband's distress over having a third child since as you describe it he isn't fully involved in the household and parenting as it is. And this is even considering that you are also working. Does he know that you also have ambivalent feelings about this? If you are friends, lovers, and true partners, even if he deep down doesn't want this child (or even, I'm sorry to say, quite up front, since he is making appalling comments about miscarriage) then he should at least support *you* as you carry and raise this child (and the others). He may not do a great job of actually running the household or raising the kids, but if he can't even commit to you, as you are (pregnant and optimistic), and accept your fears, hopes, and struggles with an eye to a lifetime together, then that looks like trouble to me.

Have you talked to him quite frankly that no matter his thoughts and feelings on the issues, this is going to happen and that you expect him to give his love and support to the best of his ability. This means no more whining or miscarriage jokes and to pull his weight in the household (you may have to specify). You are both adults and you have a job to do and that's just how it is. We don't always like or want what life hands us but we can accept it and meet it with equanimity and our best effort.

Parenting is often not very good for marriages. Some marriages survive and some don't. I had to accept my husband's limitations (and they were significant) because I love him and I know that he did what he could. Now that we have an empty nest we are very happy together. Parenting was not our best episode. But at least we pulled in the same direction and didn't doubt the commitment of one another.

It's also possible that that your husband's attitude will change once the baby is born and he bonds with him/her. But even if it doesn't he should still do his best by his family, daily. You could let him know that this is OK and that you want to do this together.

Best wishes
Puma
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#5 of 8 Old 07-29-2014, 01:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all for the support and advice.

Unfortunately I discovered today that I'm having a miscarriage so I suppose that eliminates the third child issue. My DH has been on medication for depression/anxiety for about 10 years. He is an over-achiever and puts a lot of pressure on himself to perform at 100% everywhere, all the time. Parenting throws a lot of curve balls and that can be tough to navigate, especially with his personality. While I'm devastated by my (our) loss, I do hope some good can come out of it and perhaps my husband will have a wake up call of sorts. Parenting is hard and I think the most important thing is that my husband and I do what we can to support one another (though clearly that can be challenging at times). I genuinely appreciate the feedback you've given me and wish you all the best.
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#6 of 8 Old 07-29-2014, 02:00 PM
 
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So sorry to hear of your loss, Lalaland! I hope that you are OK.

Please stay in touch here as you need. I'll be thinking of you

Hugs,
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#7 of 8 Old 07-29-2014, 03:00 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lalaland17 View Post
Thank you all for the support and advice.

Unfortunately I discovered today that I'm having a miscarriage so I suppose that eliminates the third child issue. My DH has been on medication for depression/anxiety for about 10 years. He is an over-achiever and puts a lot of pressure on himself to perform at 100% everywhere, all the time. Parenting throws a lot of curve balls and that can be tough to navigate, especially with his personality. While I'm devastated by my (our) loss, I do hope some good can come out of it and perhaps my husband will have a wake up call of sorts. Parenting is hard and I think the most important thing is that my husband and I do what we can to support one another (though clearly that can be challenging at times). I genuinely appreciate the feedback you've given me and wish you all the best.
I am so so sorry about your loss. Xo
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#8 of 8 Old 07-30-2014, 06:11 PM
 
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So sorry to hear my husband is also suffering from depression, and I find it really hard to keep it from becoming contagious.

I do hope he figures it out - in the mean time, take care of yourself!
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