My husband often puts me down in front of my family and friends.
Yet in private, and in front of his family and friends, he is lovely. He is a very good husband, caring, kind and generous. We get on very well but whenever we are with my family and friends he becomes snappy, shouts at me and is rude to me.
In fact, he gets moody and storms off. Whenever we argue he portrays himself as the victim and struggles to apologise.
I also recognise I avoid confrontation, especially this type of situation. Recently my mum came over to stay for the weekend. She gets on with my husband really well. It was mostly a lovely weekend, but on a few occasions he was really shouty and rude when responding to very basic questions.
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My mum picked up on this and asked me what was happening with us. Being publicly humiliated by the person who is supposed to love and support you is not OK. Likewise we can easily get into a debate about something and not realise that the way we are putting our argument across has become a touch bombastic and we need to dial it down.
But in this case, your husband is clearly making an active choice. However, the worst case scenario is that he is deliberately domestically abusive towards you and if this is the case, you need some serious professional help to safeguard your own emotional and mental wellbeing.
People do unacceptable things for all sorts of reasons. It may be that he feels undermined by you in front of your parents and friends.
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But the important thing here is that none of these possible explanations can be used as an excuse. Then you can give it due consideration and work out if there is some way in which you interact together that needs changing. Doing it publically and in the manner you describe is very unlikely to get anyone the result they want.
You tell me that your husband is shy in public. This may be what underpins his outbursts.
I suspect your husband probably does quite like the sound of his own voice because makes him feel more grown up than maybe he does deep down. From what you tell me, these behaviours have been going on for a long time. All this storming off he does is really akin to a teenager being told to behave — I suspect he feels like when you do this and so how and what you tell him needs to be clear and have more meaning for him.
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This might seem really daunting but you are describing a systematic set of behaviours that he can quite clearly control when he wants to and these behaviours will continue to degrade and distress you. So they have to stop — one way or another.
Long term, it erodes who we are and can ificantly impact on our wellbeing. Your husband may be taking advantage of your fear of conflict and you have every right to feel desperate. I strongly suggest that before you make any moves though that you get some help for yourself.
Eight years is a long time to feel so unheard and on the receiving end of such bad behaviours. Abusive behaviour often survives best in isolation. People get scared that others will notice and judge. If you have a relationship worry you would like some help with, please send it to askammanda relate.
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