My partner and I have been together for almost fifteen years, we have two children (ages 7 and 9). We mostly get along, it’s clear to me that we will never agree on 100 percent of things, but we can usually come to an agreement. At least that’s how I feel. Sometimes it happens that the partner cheats, but totally. Maybe once every six months. Mostly it’s because of a little thing, like if we go to the cottage, when he has a lot of work and his son plays floorball and it’s complicated… Sometimes it’s just so much that he explodes – and at that moment he blames me for everything. That he has a terrible life, that I’m incapable, that he has to take care of everything, that I don’t support him, that he never imagined his life like this. Usually after a few days he apologizes to me that he didn’t mean it like that, sometimes we let the conflict go and move on.
At first I was very confused, how could he even say such a thing. Then I learned to ignore it, I told myself that it was probably some kind of accumulated stressful emotion, that I wouldn’t take it seriously and personally. But as the daughter and son grow, they are more aware of these outbursts. And it annoys me, because the children see what contemptuous words he is able to say to me, I am afraid that he is setting a bad example for them. And they sometimes ask him if he doesn’t like his mother anymore. And he’s sorry.
Please could you give me some advice? Do you think there is anything that can be done about the explosions? Should I explain it to the children somehow? And is there actually a model to get rid of those explosions? Thank you, Klara.
thank you very much for your question and for your trust. I think that many of us experience something similar in our relationship, you are certainly not alone.
Even from a distance, it is difficult to judge what are the exact reasons that lead to the accumulation of energy and the subsequent “explosion”. In general, you can touch on topics related to stress, communication, releasing tension, experiencing stress together and communicating it to each other. Maybe sometimes it is too much for the husband. And he would like to put all the blame on you. Everyone knows that sometimes.
It must be added that family life with small children, even after everything we have experienced in covid and today, close to war and constant price increases, is simply quite demanding for each of us. And it’s good to have a big scoop of grace and ice cream on hand. That’s probably the first thing.
The second thing that is good to say is that a person should not forget himself in difficult moments. And he should take good care of himself. In order to cope well with a conflict, to look for its solution, or at least to be able to listen to the other person, he must feel himself as well and healthy as possible.
It should be noted that it is important whether the husband himself feels the need to change something. His own internal motivation is the best. If you are saying that he feels sorry for how the situation affects the children, I think he may be interested in looking into these situations himself.
On the one hand, there are well-functioning groups, for example the League of Open Men organizes seminars for better management of aggression and stress. The husband can also consider individual therapy, because it is no longer just for a person who has crossed the “line”, but is a good prevention to prevent a person from crossing the line at all. Much of how we behave in our families is closely related to how we saw our parents behave. Or we often take stress out on our loved ones, which in reality belongs somewhere else entirely.
A good way may be to try to release the aforementioned “overpressure” continuously and not let it accumulate into an unmanageable form. Open up to each other and release pressure. Maybe it would be great if your husband could tell you what doesn’t suit him sooner.
I wish you many good things. I believe that everything will turn out well.