Fox News and Facebook are destroying my hubby's life!

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That's a broad statement--but I don't know how to phrase it better!
Hubby is 66, still working FT (he LOVES his job!) and travels quite a bit. He has developed this 'habit' as he travels--he walks in the hotel, turns the TV to FoxNews and it's on the entire time he's in the room, sleeping or awake. He also has a continual feed of FB on his phone, so it's blowing up all day and night while he spars with "the left wing". Then when he's home, he continues this way of living. He treats our home like a hotel! The TV is on within seconds of him arriving home and even if I can coax him to the kitchen to eat dinner (he prefers to eat all his meals in bed)--his phone it right at the hand and he will barely talk to me as he watches the FB feed roll by.


He does work hard. He also relaxes hard. He will sleep for 3 days straight (I know this sounds impossible, but he does) so, a trip of a week is followed by 3 days of "downtime" in which he is asleep, with the TV blaring (he's about 75% deaf) and if I dare to turn the sound down, he wakes up and says "I am watching that!!".


B/C he will not turn the TV off, I cannot sleep in the bedroom with him, so I moved downstairs to the spareroom. He watches TV so loud, I have more than once texted him (at say, 2:30 am) "please turn the sound down".


He will not talk to me, he thinks I am dumb for not "keeping up" with the news--but I do, just not 24 hours a day! I check my FB once a day or so, but he has become so belligerent in his posts--our whole family has unfriended him.


The combination of the deafness, the LOUD TV viewing and the eating in bed and just never knowing if he's going to get up and engage with the family, or talk to me or want to spend time with me--I feel very abandoned and alone.


We NEED to move to a more "senior friendly" home. He has fought me on this tooth and nail. We have a split entry home, I run up and down stairs all day long. One car garage, which houses HIS car. I have to schlep groceries, etc across the driveway and up 7 steps into the house. Laundry is downstairs. 16 very steep stairs to the attic, 7 stars down off the porch--but since he NEVER goes downstairs or in the backyard, he doesn't see the problem. He walks in the house and goes to bed. Period.


I guess I could live with this sleeping dynamic, he's done it since he had a liver transplant, and I'm used to it. But the TV is SO depressing and angry, he's absorbed all that anger. FB is just a place for him to spout his super right wing views.


We did our trust planning yesterday with the attorney. Attorney asked if we were making any major changes in the next couple of years and I said "We plan to move" to which DH quickly said "No, we're not going anywhere". I looked a fool. Later asked him what he meant by that and he said "Oh, I was just teasing". (Any time he hurts my feelings, he always says he's just teasing).


I'm feeling so very at a loss with him. I don't *work* anymore, but I DO take complete care of our house, cars, money, meals, budgeting, family things etc. Basically, all he needs to do is go to work, I ask zero of him here at home.


Yes, he has depression and is on 4 meds to help with that. He quit going to therapy b/c he said he was "cured". He refuses to acknowledge the hearing loss, which is worsening and he misses so much.


I cannot make him change, I open my mouth and he is immediately in "shut her down" mode.


Retirement looms. I ask what he plans to do and all he says is he just wants to sleep. I believe it.


I have posted about parts of this "whole" before--but we're at a crucial point here. I want to move--he's never loved this house, so I do not get that. I am seriously looking at buying a duplex, he lives in one side and he lives in the other. It sounds crazy, but I'm beginning to think that's what I might just do.


I AM making an apt with an ENT and an audiologist. He has to go---I will not stand by and let him lose what hearing he has left. If it's MY voice he doesn't want to hear, the I'll deal with that.


Just a rant/vent. I am so beyond frustrated with him.

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Again--wow, thanks. I feel better simply having gotten all that anger out of my system and hearing some pretty great comments.

Once upon a time, yes, this man was a Prince Charming. Incredibly handsome (still is!) Truly. I was BABY when we met (barely 19!!) He is 5 years my senior and had been in the Army and was more traveled and far better educated than I. We dated for a YEAR..Because I wanted to graduate college--but in the end, we decided it was better to get married now (I was 20 by them still a mere child!) and get HIM through school, and then me.

Well--best laid plans. By the time he was done with school we had 2 kids and a mortgage and he was traveling. It wasn't like now, when you can take most of your classes online) there was no "online"---you had to physically be in a classroom--so my higher ed ended at my Junior Year in college. 3 more babies in quick succession and we had a full house! 5 kids in 9 years--what was I THINKING? :) They're the joy of my life!

Once hubby had his degree and began having the 'affair' with work--it's how I felt, he got his first job and he was 100% invested in it---he changed. Work became his great love, then sports, then hiking and climbing, then the kiddoes, then me. It was the 80's and jobs were scarcer and we survived more than one layoff--anybody else remember the 14% interest rates on houses in the 80's? Scary times!

Over the years we have adapted our lives to always put work first. Always. As I have said, he's a great worker--and he loves what he does. I know a big part of the fear or retirement is the sense of obsolescence that will surely come. W/O work, who IS he? I am mom, wife, grandma, homemaker, singer, caregiver to an elderly mom---he is an engineer. When he retires, I DON'T....my job actually will get much worse.
We're not atypical. Lots of people are in the same boat.

I KNOW that his depression is due in part to never have dealt with feelings of inadequacy that his mother instilled in him. He feels guilt about bringing HepC into our family and the resulting consequences (none of us have it, so it's dang hard to catch!) he feels guilty about the $250K the transplant and ensuing TX's cost us--we're still living in our very small "starter home" and I have had to work AND take care of him many times. Guilt over not being a better dad. Guilt over being an idiot about the motorcycle wreck which happened the day before a grandchild was born and I had to spend 3 months caring for HIM, when I had 3 new grandbabies born in that period of time and I couldn't give my daughters the help they needed. Even guilt and anger that I was so severely sexually abused by a brother and he never got the chance to beat him up (brother died 5 or 6 years ago, I forget).....guilt, guilt, guilt.

One thing I have learned in therapy is that ANGER is THE GO TO emotion for many people, esp men (sorry guys)...when what they are really feeling is sadness, frustration, loneliness---ANGER is an "ok" emotion for men, and they go there, rather than deal with what they really feel.

I know when he was routinely seeing his psych doc, he was really making strides...then he stopped. And reverted back. I know it's hard to change and I KNOW it's hard to look at yourself and say "I have to be different, I have to change"...and then follow through.

As for the meds--he's on Cymbalta, Vitamin D, Vitamin A and Thyroid meds (they don't think his thyroid is low, its a mood booster, supposedly). His liver is FINE. He is expected to live a normal lifespan. Most people would be overjoyed by that--for some reason, it depresses him.

He would not, under threat of ANYTHING, allow me to sit in on a session or even speak to his therapist. I have to respect that.

Last night he called, which, when traveling, for him, is unusual. He'd had an incredibly bad day--missed his flight, got a hefty speeding ticket, forgot to return the rental car keys, forgot to leave the jobsite pass at the hotel for the next engineer---really, just an awful day. All I did was listen to him (45 minutes) and say the appropriate soothing things. Finally, I told him to get out of the car, go to his hotel room and crash for 12 hours. Told him I loved him and let it go.

And that's how I plan to take it. Like I said, just love. And forgiveness. Hopefully he will be more amenable to making some changes when he sees that I am trying to help him. He's going to be furious about that audiologist's apt, but its more than a month away.

If you lasted through this whole post, thank you. I am feeling much better. Will see my therapist tomorrow and we will be working the whole hour on this subject.

(I'm wondering if "Hospice Sucks" or "prolife" will comment on this post :) They're everywhere today!!)

Thanks so much for the caring posters. We all shore each other up, and it's nice. I can't talk to anyone but my therapist about this stuff. And y'all.
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Sorry, Midkid58, I missed that fact.

The reason that I suggest getting more involved medically, is that helped me and my wife a lot when I got more involved in her treatment.
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Cmagnum, the poster, MidKid IS in therapy.
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Since he's not going to therapy, then whoever is giving him 4 meds for depression needs to know what is going on.

Please don't take this wrong, but it may help your own stress level to see a therapist yourself.
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He said, “I just made a leap of faith and hoped it wouldn't be as bad as my parents' marriage".

I, too, was raised by parents in a toxic, miserable marriage. What “we” never learn growing up is that a successful relationship takes work. And mutual respect.

We are conditioned to cast all the blame outwardly. And blind to why that Does Not Work.

I am not making excuses for your hubby. But spending your first 18-22 years with no positive modeling RE marriage/companionship = an epic setback in personal development.

Took me years to realize how much I parroted Mom’s endless chorus of “If your father/stepfather would be different, I would be happy.” And Dad’s chapter-and-verse about Mom.

Took me even more years to understand why those attitudes are utter bunk. And what to do about it.

Playing the victim and “poor me” takes on a lot of disguises. And damaged people have an astonishing lack of self-awareness.

I had to do a LOT of work to be a real partner in my relationship. It was scary and uncomfortable. And I actually wanted the change!

Midkid, do you ever wonder if hubby dumped his psychotherapist because they exhausted his favorite topic (himself), and the therapist was steering the conversation toward family life? Specifically, hubby’s role in your home life??

Sorry for the ramble. In short, my heart goes out to you, Midkid. You are clear-headed and amazingly strong. That will serve you well.

But don’t be TOO strong. Take little “resets” as needed. 😊 ((((hugs))))
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Point of order, Midkid.

This bit: "I asked why he ever got married in the first place--meaning, what made him think it was a good idea, since his parents marriage was so toxic--and he said "I just made a leap of faith and hoped it wouldn't be as bad as my parents' marriage"."

No.

That explains why he didn't run a mile from the thought of getting married at all.

It does not explain why he chose to marry you. He didn't stumble over you and think oh well maybe it won't be that bad. He met you, he loved you (or loved that you loved him, or that you made him feel strangely happy, whatever), he chose to be with you, and even his parents' terrible example did not deter him. It's not quite the same.

I have a very good friend with a husband a bit like yours except that he has an absolute aversion to music or noise of any description, sort of a mirror image if you like, and he's an economist instead of an engineer. Now: my friend will tell you that her visa was about to expire and, sobbing, she wailed "now we'll have to get married - !" and that was the only reason her husband tied the knot. Baloney. It explains why she, who was having a whale of a time as a flighty young thing in London, shed her feminist principles and got married. It does not explain why her borderline ascetic man allowed her into his house, his life and his heart, nor why they are still together more than thirty years later and just as incompatible as they ever were.

Just because these men are crap at doing anything about love - to the point that it makes them feel so useless and at sea they'd rather drop the whole subject - doesn't mean they don't have any. If there's one thing they can't bear, it's being unable to understand something even when they put their minds to it.

Noise cancelling headphones. Do they work, does anyone know? Could you try out a pair?
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I agree with CM, that someone who is on 4 meds for depression ( really? 4?, I'd love to know what they are) who acts like this, his therapist is in need of some feedback from the outside world.
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I think the good wold be someone knowing that his meds aren't working. Maybe you could go with him to a session with his therapist and ask what can you do to help. Of course he would need to agree with this idea.
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I don't know if I will step into his therapy....I don't know if he even has me down as his "go-to" person on any medical stuff. I've never asked. I cannot see how talking to his therapist would help--from what he has said, she has a really good handle on who he is and what is the problem. It's the implementing the changes/goals that are so hard. (Trust me, I KNOW).

It's not autism--not bipolar, it's depression, basically, and the meds are not helping. Also a tremendous amount of guilt laid on very thickly by a mentally unstable mother--who fairly recently told him he was a "mistake" she was planning to divorce his father, but got pregnant and had to stay in the marriage. (He has an older brother who IS the actual reason they married). You just didn't have out of wedlock babies in the late 40's! This made him feel awful, and much less "loved" by his mother. He deals with all feelings and emotions by stuffing them down, then lashing out---so unhealthy. Withdrawing into his shell and the noise that drowns out the hurt.

He's an engineer- if you KNOW an engineer, then you know what I'm talking about. Laser beam focus on what interests them, but only on that--unless they have been raised better ( 2 of my S'sIL are also engineers, but much more stable, emotionally).

I agree, Barb--lots of mutual agreements and a lot of lowering of expectations on my part. I have to humble myself and accept my own failings too. I'm very likely not what he thought I'd turn out to be either.

He did say something very telling a few weeks ago. I asked why he ever got married in the first place--meaning, what made him think it was a good idea, since his parents marriage was so toxic--and he said "I just made a leap of faith and hoped it wouldn't be as bad as my parents' marriage". So sad. That's all he ever saw, and he expects no better.
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And I thought I was the only one.

My friend/roommate has MSNBC or CNN blaring all day, and I get frequent texts while at work about the latest outrageous tweet and I'm so sick of it. Even during an expensive cruise last year he had this crap on in our stateroom all day, some vacation! Like many people here have done I offer my companionship only when something is on other than news. This year he mentioned an even longer cruise and I said "no way". I'm not paying all that money to feel like I'm not even away from home.
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