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Bringing up Husband

Discussion in 'Married Life' started by lakshmis66, Dec 17, 2007.

  1. lakshmis66

    lakshmis66 New IL'ite

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    Dear friends,

    I am glad I can share my feelings and still remain anonymous but get people to comment on what I am going through. Firstly let me thank all of you for this.

    I married my husband 15 years ago. I was 26 and he was 27. Ours was an arranged marriage. He was working in the US and I was born and brought up in Singapore.

    He was an only son and his parents were in Malaysia and his sister was in Singapore. When he came to 'see' me for, before we accepted the alliance, we spoke. He said that he had been away most of his life from his parents and he would want to have a joint family and take care of his parents in their old years. I was fine with it having come from a joint family myself. But I wanted to settle in Singapore as all my relations and family were here. My husband said he was fine with that as his parents did not like the US and his sister was in SIngapore.

    So it was settled and we were married. Immediately after my marriage I left my job in Singapore and went to the US. My husband had some loan to settle and he asked for a year to settle everything before coming to Singapore. I agreed and went to the US. His parents came to stay with us when we were in the US. That was when I realised how possessive my MIL was. She was totally mean to me. I only wore sari all the time. Once when I wore a chuddar to go out with my husband it became such a big deal that I had to change to sari and I did not go out with my husband that day. It was hard but I did not complain much then as I was newly married. When I did complain my husband ended up screaming at my MIL and me and then my MIL later when my husband was not home would pull out a drama that she is no longer needed and she is better of dead blah blah blah..... So in the end I did not gain by telling my husband. So I ended up closing myself.

    A year passed. We moved to Singapore. Both of us found a good job and bought a house and my ILs moved in with us. Again I had to give in a lot to maintain my senses. It just grew worse as now we were close to my family. My family was very badly treated. I was very close to my family but I never spoke highly of them in my place. But just the thought that my family and I are close and such closeness was not shared in their family was a sore point for my ILs and to a certain extent for my husband. I had gotten pregnant by then and had my son. My family was treated badly and was as much as possible kept away from my son. I grew more and more depressed and at one point I attempted suicide. After that I refused to get pregnant and went for abortion two times.

    My son was 2 years when my husband came up to me and said he wanted to start a business in India. I thought it was not a great idea purely because we were not born in India and it was difficult to do business in India as a foreigner. We fought and then finally I relented. My ILs refused to go with him as they never found India condusive. So my husband started his business there. As expected it is 10 years and it is still not doing well. My husband is frustrated but refuses to give up. I have been running the family totally as all our wealth has gone into his business. He has borrowed money from my brothers. His parents have also given their savings for the son and now I am facing the wrath of having bankrupted them. I am keeping them comfortable but it never occurs to them that the DIL is doing it, I am still facing wrath from them day in day out and if I start telling anything to my husband, he has no patience to listen, My son is in his teenage and growing up without a father's dicispline. I cnanot ask my ILs to move out as my husband has taken all their savings.

    Now he tells me I have screwed up his life as I had asked him to come to Singapore I do not get any compassion from him for what he has put me through. He tells me day in day out all the difficulties he is facing and when I say why don't you come back he says that I am not supporting him. Sometimes I feel why I should live like this as I get no financial/sexual/emotional support from him but am bearing burden of his parents his loan and our son. On the other hand I feel sorry for him as he is alone and trying to make things work for him for the last 10 years and still have not been successful while I am slowly becoming successful. This man is a very hardworking and smart man. I feel hurt by my ILs, lonely by my husband and feel guilty and ashamed when I see my family. I pray a lot these days but day by day I am losing my strength.

    Depressed[​IMG]
     
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  2. Ria2006

    Ria2006 Silver IL'ite

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    Well First of all, welcome to IL. Your story is indeed very taxing on you,

    One important link which seemed to be missing is, Are you staying by yourself for 10 years in Singapore with his parents?

    I think that s not great vaible solution in this scenario. I can understand it has taken its toll on you and your husband both.
    Since your husband showed keen interest to accomodate your interests in moving back to Singapore. I would have thought you would do the same when he wanted to start something in India. Why would someone opt to stay away from husband , no matter what.
    at least he was not ill tretaing you and your kid. There will always be issues with IL one or other kinds. But it s never advisable for wife to push away husband by herself.

    You are saying , you dont get any financial,physical support from your husband. But I think you made that strong choice 10 years back. So whatever you experience is consequence of that choice. I understand you would have had your reasons to stay away. But since significant amount of time has passed between you two. May be its good time for you revaluate your priorties and your life.
     
  3. lakshmis66

    lakshmis66 New IL'ite

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    Thanks Ria,

    I told my husband that I wanted to move in with him. It was not by my choice I stayed in Singapore. However he had borrowed money from his parents and my family that needed to be repayed. I am still paying off the loan - Something I can't do while working for Indian Rupees. Also his parents had given all their money and did not want to move to India. They had to be taken care of.

    When he started business in India, he was supposed to do well in the next 2 =-3 years and then he will repay the loans and we will move to India. That did not happen and is not happening. He is still borrowing money and not repaying. He is working hard but I guess there is an element of luck involved for business which is just not shining on his side. Hence we have a situation that he comes for a few days a month to Singapore and my son and I go there for a few days every quarter or so. But those days are spent arguing because of frustration on both our sides. I do understand that it is important for couples to be together but again our financial situation - something he put us in just does not allow it. And he is not ready to say " Don't worry! I'll take care of it!"
     
  4. Ria2006

    Ria2006 Silver IL'ite

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    Oh.. Thats really tough one for you.
    This seems like self-consumed husband. He needs to be practical first before being a businessman.If something is not working in 10 years , it will not work in another 20 years too.
    If I were you, I would try getting his close buddies do this favor to him. Men usually listen to buddies more than anybody else.
    Your all problem is stemming from your husband not acknowledging one failure in life. If he just decides he s done with it. It will all be over for you. So I would say instead of doing anything else, just get your resources channelised in direction where he could benefit from. He needs to taught reality and practicality. One cannot chase their dream alone in marriage. Marraige is about sharing dreams , letting go of some dreams, building on other's dreams.
     
  5. SoaringSpirit

    SoaringSpirit Silver IL'ite

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    Hi Lakshmi,
    I feel for you. You really are in an extremely tough situation. I think you have every reason to feel discontent about your current situation. I am sure your husband feels the same. Not many of us can claim to have the courage to endure if for 10 long years like you have. Hats off to you for standing so strong!

    Ria is right on the money when she says that you need to get your resources aligned to first get both of you to live under the same roof.

    First see if you can have a heart to heart with him and try to find out what is it exactly that is keeping him in India. Is it just the desire to prove himself a successful businessman, or is he shying away from the day to day responsibilities of running a household, or has he just got accustomed to staying on his own, what is it?
    Then have someone he respects and may listen to address the particular point.

    If that does not work, give him an ultimatum that he needs to let go of this business right away. If not right away you could give him six months and say that at the end of six months this will have to end. The purpose of giving him six months (or some reasonable but not too long a time) is that he will not feel like he is being pushed for immediate action. Secondly you will get some time to explore some ideas and options about how to manage the existing dependencies and start living together.

    Most of your problem is that you guys are trying to fight it out alone. This is just not right. This long distance situation is creating bigger problems for you both on the way to resolving the ones at hand.

    You are a very strong woman for holding it out this long. But you cannot live like that for an unknown and uncertain period of time. Men are usually not very action oriented when it comes to relationships and family. They will let things happen and sulk secretively but will not take action. So you have to stand up and take a strong stance.

    I really wish you the best and hope that you find a way out of this soon. I can only imagine how draining and stressful this must be on you. Keep us posted and may be we can all collectively think about ideas as things progress.

    Good luck.
    SS


     
  6. lakshmis66

    lakshmis66 New IL'ite

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    Thanks SS,

    It is indeed very gratifying to know that there are so many good hearts around.

    My husband is the sort of person who does not like to be told what to do. He has to come up with the idea to do it and until the time he realises it he will not succumb to any pressure by anyone. Such is his nature. Everytime I put my foot down I end up getting hurt and we go backwards in terms of relationship. I cannot make a decision to leave him as well (the thought has crossed my mind several times) is because despite his stubborn nature and male chauvanism I know for a fact that he loves me.

    I would liken his behaviour to a child who is looking for something and is working very hard for it and does not want to give up. Whether it is a matter of losing face or the fear as to what will I do next, he is not open to the idea of giving up the business in India. This is despite my reassurance that we can work it out in Singapore.

    Once I tried saying that I had decided to leave my job and move to India because I cannot take it living without him. It did not work as he simply said that I did not dicuss it before I left my job and that I cannot leave just like that when we have so many commitments.

    Girls, many of you are so lucky that your husband takes care of you. Cherish it please and for heaven sake don't take it for granted. I not only have to earn for him but have to take care of his parents while putting up with their wrath and not even able to talk about it. Sometimes I wish he were a jerk who bums around or who flirts so that it would be easy for me to leave him. But when that is not the case I do not want to make a hasty decision to give up and regret it later. I guess this is what people call the cost of financial independence for women.
     
  7. JayaJ

    JayaJ Senior IL'ite

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    Dear Lakshmi,

    First of all, its admirable that your coming out with your marital probs after 15 years. thats good.
    Like Soaringspirit has said, hats off to you for living alone and managing all the finances on your own for 10 longyears!!!!!!
    Bringin up a son, being on your own, managing disgruntled in-laws must be really HARD....kudos to you for being so strong and self-reliant. :cheers

    I agree with Soaringspirit....she has given really good advice. Do sit down on your next visit with your husband and find out what the real problem is..y doesnt he want to admit defeat and just return back to singapore? Being a hard worker is alright but if its not paying results, then, its foolishness. A smart person would not keepin doing the same thing that requires so much effort, he instead would channelise the same energy and effort into something that would give better returns.

    Like soarings.... has said, agree on a timeline with him and then, tell him its time to pack up the bags and go back to singapore. He can get himself a job or set up shop there in singapore and hopefully it would b a little more successful than in India.

    Why are your putting up with the bad treatment from your in-laws? Tell them that since your putting the food onthe table, they better treat you with respect. Be loving but be firm too. Dont let them abuse you. Dont take it. Your a strong independent, self-reliant woman. Behave like one. One important thing is: dont let any1 belittle you. What you have endured for the last 15 years on your own is an ADMIRABLE thing. Dont let othres tell you otherwise. Mind is a powerful tool. Keep your thots positive and everything will fall into place.

    I hope things work out for you. Please do keep us posted.

    Take care
    Jaya
     
  8. Nandhita

    Nandhita New IL'ite

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    Dear Lakshmi,

    ILites have given you very good suggestions for making things better with your husband. One this I feel is that, on a day to day basis you are living with your son and in-laws. If you get your in laws to behave better with you, you may not get troubled on a minute-to-minute basis and focus on how to mend things with your husband. I suggest you take professional counselling to keep your calm and stay yourself and assert yourself with your in-laws. Meditation and such things may also help. Coz I feel that no amount of discussions and arguments are going to make your in-laws behave better with you.

    And finally, hats-off to your patience and hope everything changes for the good.

    With Prayers,
    Nandhita
     
  9. lakshmis66

    lakshmis66 New IL'ite

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    Thanks Jaya and Nanditha,

    My MIL is 65 and I doubt if she will ever change. I respect her as an elder and she is always home which leaves my mind at peace when I am at work Else I have to depend totally on a maid which I am not comfortable doing.

    My MIL has a very bad tongue which stems from the insecurity she sees in me. She feels she has lost her son to me.........fact of the matter is she has lost her son to himself.

    I have learnt to disregard what my MIL says nowadays (It took me 15 years). When something is really wrong, I tell her firmly but do not wait for any answer. I do not backout from the respect I give her nor do I refrain from talking to her. But I have learnt to disregard what she says.
    What my ILs do only get magnified when my husband acts up. Then I start to think "I put up with so much crap and this is what I get?"

    I guess all of you are right. It is time I talk to my husband about an ultimatum = make it work or come back. I just need to think how I should parckage it such that it appears to be his idea.....
     
  10. Nandhita

    Nandhita New IL'ite

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    Dear Lakshmi,

    I do feel that you need to feel peaceful at home. Where else can you feel 'at home' if not at home. By treading such a fine line with your ILs you are subjecting yourself to more 'emotional pressure' I think. You can't change them. But please do learn to not only disregard them, but also convey to them very clearly that they cannot trample with your peace of mind. Even if that means being seen as disrespectful. At your heart you know the truth right. If they are trying to command respect stay happy by spoiling your peace of mind, they deserve something too. Things cant be very one-sided. That is why I suggested counselling, meditation etc.

    Regards,
    Nandhita
     

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