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I feel like a roommate more than a wife in my own home

Posted by on Apr. 2, 2014 at 10:47 AM
  • 191 Replies
1 mom liked this

I'm new to the sight and hope to vent, learn and share with everyone out here :)  A little background info would help.  I have two kids 25 and 22 and 3 stepkids from my first marriage.  Everyone is out of the house except my daughter who graduates college in one month.  I married a wonderful man two years ago.  We dated for 4 years, but moved in only a couple of months before the wedding.  One week before the wedding, both his kids, 16 and 17, asked if they could move in with us.  I did not have a problem with it and was actually flattered the kids wanted to live with us.  All that being said, it's not the kids who are the issue, but my husband.  He does not realize I am the wife and other parent in the house, or that I've had to make a lot of adjusments considering the living arrangements.  I could not in good conscience say no they can't move in with us, but I was not prepared for all the changes.  His kids rarely go out or have friends, but they are good kids (no drugs or alcohol).  I commute 2 hours roundtrip and work 9 hr days (my husband is my age but lucky enough to be retired) When I get home, I like to sit and talk with him about our day and sometimes share a glass of wine before going up to shower before dinner.  His kids shared a car and I would usually get home 1 1/2 hours before the high schooler got home from activities at school.  Now that the car has been totaled by her, dad gives her a ride to school and picks her up after acitivities and gone is our time to talk before she got home every night.  But as if that's not frustrating, after we're all done with dinner, she sits with us in the family room the rest of the night and usually spends it texting, talking a little with us and sometimes curling up and dozing.  I love my stepkids, however, I usually have to wait till we're in our bedroom to have any conversation in private or have alone time and the only time alone in the house consists of maybe just a Saturday or Sunday but never really know until it happens.  Now when I walk in, there may be a peck on the cheek and it's frustrating always having someone listening to every word we say.  My husband doesn't understand why I'm angry, frustrated and feeling like I'm just a roommate who helps with the rent.  He also used to text 'goodnight' to his son in college every single night when we went up in our bedroom.  I explained nicely the first time how I felt and perhaps he can do that downstairs before we're in our room.  It's a small thing to ask, but he kept doing it and couldn't see what the problem was.  I said it was our only time alone all day and it took away from my feeling romantic and like I was the focus of his attention for a little bit.  Now a huge fight ensued because I wanted to see my daughter in a play at college (2 hrs away) and I asked if he would go with me.  He said yes, but instead of making other arrangements to have his daughter picked up after school, he kept me waiting for 45 minutes.  I did go ballistic about everything else going on, and he called me a lunatic :(     HELP!

by on Apr. 2, 2014 at 10:47 AM
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Tinkerbellmama
by Platinum Member on Apr. 2, 2014 at 11:06 AM
35 moms liked this

Um, you married a man with kids, his kids are going to be his priority.

Nothing you posted sounds awful to me, it sounds like a man who loves his kids.

It also sounds as if your frustrations are coming from the fact that you thought your life together would be just you and him and now you're pissed that you have to share him and your home with his children. Again, this is something people have to face when they marry someone with minor children. 

Polkadotted
by Gold Member on Apr. 2, 2014 at 11:08 AM
8 moms liked this
You are entitled to feel what you feel. I would continue to share your concerns with him. But honestly, I'm kind of on his side with not seeing the big deal with these things for the most part. Maybe try writing out your concerns for him to read.
andie646c
by Silver Member on Apr. 2, 2014 at 11:31 AM
6 moms liked this

With your adult children, when did you and their father separate or when were you no longer together? Was this a problem before then too?

All of my kids are kids, ages 1 to 11. They spend their days in my house, with me. The only alone time is when we go to bed. I would think it would remain the same until they have moved out. Even then, I know there will be late night phone calls and knocks at the door. I know this because I have been known to call my mom in the middle of the night needing help or asking a question. I've also called at dinner to ask how to make a certain meal. Children never stop being your children, even when they are grown. 

I know it's frustrating to never get time with him. The man you married will never be just yours and it can get very upsetting having to share him but it is reality. My advise would be to focus on LITTLE things. A date night once a week, maybe? Just you and him, no cell phones at all. You need that time to connect and his kids are plenty old enough to do without him for an hour or two. 

Also, maybe talk to him about buying a new (old) car for the teens, so that they are independent again.

jlg12678
by Gold Member on Apr. 2, 2014 at 11:49 AM
11 moms liked this

Sounds like you guys are not on the same page...he doesn't mind no alone time and you'd like some. I don't think either of you are wrong I just think you haven't found balance. 

I think maybe you guys should see a therapist or something...you need to figure out how to cut out some alone time together in a way that works for both of you and a neutral third party could help with that. There is nothing wrong with having a date night once a week that doesn't include the kids and there is also nothing wrong with making your bedroom a kid-free zone...you in turn will have to adjust to the fact that you agreed to have two minor kids move in your home...when the kids are there 24/7 you are going to have much less alone time as that is part of having kids.

Good luck with everything.

AmericanDream
by Gold Member on Apr. 2, 2014 at 11:55 AM
1 mom liked this
The very first time I made meatloaf I called my mom to ask if I had to cover it or not when cooking it. She laughed at me told me I should only cover it if I want it to turn into mush. Now, it is our little joke and every time I make meatloaf I pick up the phone to call and ask.

Quoting andie646c:

With your adult children, when did you and their father separate or when were you no longer together? Was this a problem before then too?

All of my kids are kids, ages 1 to 11. They spend their days in my house, with me. The only alone time is when we go to bed. I would think it would remain the same until they have moved out. Even then, I know there will be late night phone calls and knocks at the door. I know this because I have been known to call my mom in the middle of the night needing help or asking a question. I've also called at dinner to ask how to make a certain meal. Children never stop being your children, even when they are grown. 

I know it's frustrating to never get time with him. The man you married will never be just yours and it can get very upsetting having to share him but it is reality. My advise would be to focus on LITTLE things. A date night once a week, maybe? Just you and him, no cell phones at all. You need that time to connect and his kids are plenty old enough to do without him for an hour or two. 

Also, maybe talk to him about buying a new (old) car for the teens, so that they are independent again.

whatIknownow
by Emerald Member on Apr. 2, 2014 at 12:01 PM
3 moms liked this

What your husband is doing seems normal and appropriate. He seems like a good father who is involved with his kids.  Our lives revolve around our kids. That's just the way it is. Maybe your husband can carve out some "couple time" with you, such as when the kids are at their activities or on the weekends.

MavisH
by Member on Apr. 2, 2014 at 12:01 PM

Every couple needs to carve out some alone time to make a relationship work.  I'm not trying to get the man I married to be "just" mine.  Obviously, what attracted me to him was what a good father he is.  I don't mind the late night calls or kids needing rides and everything else that goes along with being a parent, but you have to make time for your spouse.  I've suggested date night once a week.  He says I'm too tired, not him, me.  I'm not tired to go out and have a quiet dinner with him.  But he rarely wants to leave the house if his daughter is home and now he doesn't get home until 7p most nights.  He can't buy a new or old car since the kids had 3 accidents in one year and his insurance spiked.  I'd like to add that their mom does not contribute regarding giving rides or helping with a car.

At ages 1-11, I'm sure you have your hands full and it's rewarding being a mom.  I loved every minute of it!  My kids are also independent and have active lives now.  It's almost depressing having someone sit home all day every day throughout the summer regardless of the beautiful sunshine and fresh air, playing on the computer or video games or texting up to 18hrs a day.  Dad does not have any rules nor does he reprimand.  My hands are tied because I get sarcasm from the son if I say anything and defense from my husband if I suggest the kids pick up their washcloths from the floor in the hall bathroom they use.

AmericanDream
by Gold Member on Apr. 2, 2014 at 12:05 PM
3 moms liked this
I don't see anything there that is out of the ordinary as far as day to day stuff. There are kids in the house so that pretty much means that you won't get much alone time. I can understand your frustration since you were not planning on them living with you but it doesn't seem like they are doing anything abnormal as far as hanging out until bedtime.

I think you need to suit down and calmly talk to your DH about how you are feeling and come to a compromise. I don't think it would be fair to expect them to go straight to they rooms after dinner but maybe they could have a set time they go to their rooms do you guys have a but of adult time each night. That's what we do here... Sd doesn't have to go to sleep but she does have a bedroom time.

The house had kids in it so you cannot just expect them to not be around. That is part of being a parent and you have to work for alone time. Maybe try planning a monthly date night? Our you could start going for a walk a couple nights a week after dinner?

And as far as going to see the play... Did you ask him to make arrangements for his daughter after school? If not, since you know he picks her up he probably just assumed that you guys would be leaving after. You have to communicate about these sorts of things.
jules2boys
by Gold Member on Apr. 2, 2014 at 12:06 PM
6 moms liked this

I do get the frustration you are feeling but I also agree with the other ladies and what they've said thus far.  It is frustrating when you married your DH you thought it'd be just the two of you, with your adult child really sort of having her own life (college filled life so far) and much alone time.  Then you agreed that his kids could move in (that was the right thing to do) but, you'd never lived with them and didn't realize (I'm guessing) that they're different from your own kids, they're more 'homebodies' than perhaps your kids were, so they're HOME all the time.  My own ODS16 wouldn't be home except to refill his wallet if I let him.  I get that.  YDS11 loves to be around people/family so he'll be 'home' more, I'm sure.  It IS an adjustment.  It sounds like your DH is 'used' to his kids being this way and he doesn't see the issue you're having.  He has you alone when you're in bed together, and maybe that's enough for him.  You wanted more alone time, to sit, talk, cuddle, sex, whatever, and he's still in the same mode he was when he was single, and it was all about him and his kids. 

Communication is what you need.  Find a time when it is just the two of you to let him know your needs, wants, and expectations that do NOT involve his kids.  The wrong way to approach this would be to say 'I can't stand it that we don't have alone time because your kid(s) is always with us in the living room, until we both go to bed.'   He'll hear that as an attack on him, his kid, and you'll be left to yourself.  Perhaps, instead, try appealing to another side of him.  "Honey, when you asked me to marry you, I was so looking forward to nights curled up with you on the couch, watching our favorite TV show/movie, just sitting and catching up with our day, laying in your arms while you played with my hair or rubbed my arm.  I enjoyed those times so much while we were dating and I had thought we'd still get to have that when we married, only more often!  Things have changed, and I'm happy your children live with us, but I sure do miss those times we had when we were dating and the time, alone, that I thought we'd have together once we lived together.  What can we do, together, alone, that could bring some of that back?  I miss being your sole focus when we're alone/intimate and I crave time, just the two of us.'  (obviously your own words and whatever you find attractive/sexy about him wouldn't be bad to toss in too).    This way the focus is on you, and him, and NOT your kid or his kids.  Remember, too, if one of the things that attracted you to your DH was him being a good father, a good provider, a good man who obviously loved his kids and was involved in their lives, bring that up too.  Let him know you're ok with him being so active, but you're wondering when he'll have time to add you in there too. 

It sounds like there are a lot of 'expectations' on both sides, but neither of you are spelling out those expectations to the other, you're just hoping to other will 'know' what you each want/need from each other. 

Good luck. 

KnowItAll
by Silver Member on Apr. 2, 2014 at 12:12 PM
2 moms liked this
I agree with the others that everything sounds very normal. Look at it this way, they are almost grown and will be out of the house in no time. In the meantime, just ask your dh for some alone time without blaming him or his kids for the lack of it.
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