Dh is driving me mad - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 04-17-2004, 11:33 PM - Thread Starter
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My dh is really starting to make me wonder...
He is so annoyed with my ds- who is 10 months old. All he wants him to do is sleep. He will not play with him- at all.
I try to model good behavior to dh- but he just does not get it.
He loves ds very much- but only wants to hang with him when he is sleeping- they nap together.
How do I talk to dh about this without accusing him of being a lousy father....
He also yells sometimes when ds pinches or grabs him- which does hurt- but ds does not know that!
I better go-
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#2 of 4 Old 04-18-2004, 12:31 AM
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Have you tried talking to him? Maybe start a conversation by talking about what you read in the Sears baby book about developmental milestones, different games you can play with baby at this age....maybe your dh is feeling intimidated and doesn't know how to relate to your ds as your ds gets older and can do more things?

I would just start a conversation, be very open-ended, ask him how he's feeling, what he likes and doesn't like about being a parent - don't tell him he's doing it wrong, just get him to talk and explore his feelings about your ds.

I would approach it as "here's some of the things I like to do with ds, what do you like to do with him?" Help him feel competent, not like you're telling him what to do all the time. Maybe dh should be responsible for bathtime - if they actually take a bath together and play with bath toys that's a lot of fun.

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#3 of 4 Old 04-18-2004, 12:34 PM
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Well, I've posted this before and sorry if it offends, but Mr. Hard Weiner isn't allowed to get off with these lame-ass excuses and behaviors (e.g. "Babies make me nervous" or "I'll play with him/her when he/she is older" or "He/She might get hurt while I'm on duty").

All of that crap is an attempt to get YOU to be the mommy of everyone in the house, including him, IMO.
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#4 of 4 Old 04-18-2004, 01:22 PM
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ugh! I just had a huge post (well for me) and lost it by hitting the back button accidently!

I think Quirky had an excellent idea about discussing baby milestones. How do your IL's react to your ds when he grabs or hits? That could be very telling but since they may have matured it might also be different than what your dh saw role modeled as a child. OTOH, some people are very anxious with small children and that isn't neccessarily an excuse to get out of helping. Unfortunately this is the internet so I don't think it is appropriate for anyone to jump to conclusions.

Role-modeling can be very helpful. If you can try to bring things into the conversation without it seeming like it is a direct attact on his parenting then you might get farther. (now that might bring on a whole other conversation about how you shouldn't ever have to be sneaky and it is wrong to be indirect)
An example might be "Today I was doing xyz with ds, ds did this and I found that I could do xyz to help redirect ds's behavior and show ds a new skill." But if your dh is like mine you may not get far with these discussions because my dh requires direct input.

If your dh is willing to spend time with your ds, even if it is napping than it is very likely your dh is interested in doing things with ds. This next idea may not have anything to do with your situation. Some men (and women) buy into the idea that women are more natural with babies and that the men aren't. If you have heard that over and over again it going to take some work to change that perspective. Maybe acknowledgement on the OP's part that this or that is hard for her to figure out(something to do with ds). And (though you may do this already) walking into another room while your dh is playing with the your ds (unless your dh is negligent than his parenting should be as valid as yours) so that your dh doesn't feel overanalyzed about something he may have a lot of insecurities about.

Now I know it may seem unfair to only talk about what the OP can do to help her dh but I do think that people can only control their own behavior so that it is the best place to start when you want to change your own life.

These are only ideas so if you read through and it wouldn't work for your life than don't do them.
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