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Thread: Just a lull or should I be alarmed?

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    #1

    Just a lull or should I be alarmed?

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    So this month, will mark two years DH and I have been doing this long distance thing. And up until recently, I thought we were thriving. But lately though it has just been blah. Honestly it changed when he moved from living on the ship to living in the barracks.

    Every night, we have an approximate time we talk and FaceTime. But lately there isn't much to say so we just end up talking for a couple of minutes and then just stare at each other. But I guess it really bugs me that while we are Facetiming I can tell he is just watching TV so in my mind "why bother"? Before he went into the barracks, he'd have to talk in his truck so there were no distractions, we could talk and feel like the other person was actually listening.

    It's gotten to the point, I don't care if we talk or not, since the conversation is not of much substance. He doesn't ask me about my day and when I try to talk to him about my day, he always ends up talking about how stressful his day is. I have a hectic job too, but when I come home I get to come home to four kids, two german shepherds and three cats. Somehow that is less hectic than him going to his barracks room in the evening and vegging out in front of the TV and Facetiming me half interested. It's left me feeling very detached from him.

    I guess it came to a head yesterday. All week he was telling me he was going with the guys on a bike ride. So I talk to him at 1, tell him have fun. By the time it got dark, i started texting him. Nothing. Our time came. Nothing. He didn't get back to his room till 11pm. Bike ride my ass. So I was pissed that he wasn't upfront with me, texted him and told him he didn't have to lie. But he should have at least texted me to let me know we would miss 'our time' or that plans changed. Instead I get nothing

    So basically I'm left feeling like he doesn't value our marriage anymore. When he's home on the weekends, it's ok. But I think I'm just getting tired of feeling like when he is down there, I never have his attention or that we are communicating. It's probably wearing on me.

    I know he's probably left thinking I'm mad cause he went out... So I'm also upset he is completely missing the point. I don't have a problem with him being with the guys, but the cumulation of his disinterest in me and the kids is getting to me.
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  2. One does not simply Ewok into Endor
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    #2


    I'm so sorry. I don't know your living situation, so he's with you guys on the weekend but is gone during the work week right? Jeez that's got to get old so fast and to have to deal with that for two years, I can't imagine. When will that be over with? Are you guys close to the end of it? I wouldn't be alarmed really, maybe a little because of the fact that he never wants to hear about your day... but for the most part, to me, it sounds like you guys don't have much to talk about. DH and I end up just staring at each other a lot too and that's when we realize we need to take a break from chatting for a while so we have something to talk about when we do talk. Maybe set something up so you guys talk every couple of nights instead of every night? Ugh, I'm so sorry I'm not of much help. I hope the rest of your time apart passes quickly.

    <3 Anthiea <3 KittenMittens <3
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    #3
    Quote Originally Posted by germy View Post


    I'm so sorry. I don't know your living situation, so he's with you guys on the weekend but is gone during the work week right? Jeez that's got to get old so fast and to have to deal with that for two years, I can't imagine. When will that be over with? Are you guys close to the end of it? I wouldn't be alarmed really, maybe a little because of the fact that he never wants to hear about your day... but for the most part, to me, it sounds like you guys don't have much to talk about. DH and I end up just staring at each other a lot too and that's when we realize we need to take a break from chatting for a while so we have something to talk about when we do talk. Maybe set something up so you guys talk every couple of nights instead of every night? Ugh, I'm so sorry I'm not of much help. I hope the rest of your time apart passes quickly.
    He's stationed in San Diego on a ship while I stayed back at our previous duty station in Nevada which is an 8-9 hour drive away. Mostly for the benefit of the kids and my career as well as his retirement. He is retiring in two years and we plan to stay here so it didn't make sense to uproot the kids and my job when in a few years we were going to lose half his income and come right back. This way, when he retires.... I can support him and we both won't be unemployed job hunting

    So I stayed back so I could climb the corporate ladder & keep the kids stable, and set up our plans for when he retires. It sucks on a daily basis but we have been doing our best. He comes home on the weekends he doesn't have duty but still, it is stressful. Basically, every six weeks, unless I go down there... I won't see him for three weeks to a month.

    Best case scenario is this ends in a year, worst case: Sept or December 2017 when he retires
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  4. Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
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    #4


    Do you think it would help to set some ground rules for Facetime (or even just IM/phone/etc.)? DH and I have felt that way with each other, like we're not saying anything because we're both distracted by something else in the background. So we made an agreement that we won't have any extraneous activities going on when we're Skyping. No TV, no reading the browser in the background, just us talking. I would SO much rather have a good 10 minute talk with him than spend 30 minutes trying to have a conversation with him when half his attention is elsewhere. It sounds like ya'll feel the same way so I would go back to that - just because he's now in the barracks doesn't mean he HAS to have the tv on.

    Sometimes it helped me to sort of structure the conversation too. Like I'd say "tell me 3 things about your day and I'll tell you 3 things about mine" so that kind of gave us a framework and it stops one person from interrupting or dismissing the other person's day. I think it's easy when you're apart, because you don't see the stress or as much of the impact, to assume that the other person's day was just la-di-dah chilling out.

    About the bike ride - I completely agree that he should have texted you and I think it's not unreasonable at all to tell him that.
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    #5
    Quote Originally Posted by CPANavyWife View Post
    He's stationed in San Diego on a ship while I stayed back at our previous duty station in Nevada which is an 8-9 hour drive away. Mostly for the benefit of the kids and my career as well as his retirement. He is retiring in two years and we plan to stay here so it didn't make sense to uproot the kids and my job when in a few years we were going to lose half his income and come right back. This way, when he retires.... I can support him and we both won't be unemployed job hunting

    So I stayed back so I could climb the corporate ladder & keep the kids stable, and set up our plans for when he retires. It sucks on a daily basis but we have been doing our best. He comes home on the weekends he doesn't have duty but still, it is stressful. Basically, every six weeks, unless I go down there... I won't see him for three weeks to a month.

    Best case scenario is this ends in a year, worst case: Sept or December 2017 when he retires
    That had to have been such a hard decision although it is an incredibly smart one, but oh God. that it's one more year and not two.

    <3 Anthiea <3 KittenMittens <3
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    #6




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    #7
    If you haven't already, I would tell him, as calmly as possible and focusing on what you feel rather than anything being wrong, what you told us in the OP. Ask if he's willing to commit to turning off the TV and ignoring other devices during your scheduled time because of what that will do for you.

    Are either of your readers? Perhaps you could read the same book and it would give you something to discuss. That could work with certain TV shows, too, if that's more your thing. Actually, there are tons of things that could work, if you think creatively. You could play board games over the phone, or alternate doing little writing challenges for each other ("my favorite memory is", etc.). When DH and I were long distance while dating, I read him a chapter of Harry Potter every night. We weren't talking to each other or interacting really, but it was extremely special to us and really bonded us. Sometimes talking on the phone (or Skype or Facetime) feels unnatural because it doesn't really allow for the pauses that happen in natural conversation. That's totally normal. But you can find things to help carry the conversation.

    And maybe talking every day isn't great for you guys. It might seem like a setback of some kind, but there's nothing wrong with taking M, W, F off if that ends up making the conversations you do have a bit better.

    I hope his is nothing more than a wrinkle you guys can talk your way out of.
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    #8
    Even happily married couples living together run out of things to talk about on a daily basis.
    I'd call it a lol and not expect long convoy every night.
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    #9


    I went through a brief period with DH and I too. I'd call and all I'd hear him doing is going through facebook, playing a game, and in general just not talking to me or listening. Finally I got really upset and after the last straw phone call I sat down and calmly wrote an e-mail explaining how I felt that we only get like 10min of talk time during the day and I felt like the lowest of priorities and felt like he wasn't calling me to talk to me but rather it was a chore for him since he couldn't take time away from whatever he was doing. He called back after receiving the e-mail profusely apologizing realizing he wasn't doing that and that his intentions weren't to upset me.

    Perhaps you could write a letter/e-mail to your DH? I find that when you can type out a well thought out response you tend to not get overly upset and you can address your feelings entirely without leaving anything out. The key is just to talk to him about your communication woes and see what you guys can figure out to make everything work.

    Also I think maybe discuss that you don't appreciate being lied to about the bike ride. That you had no problem him being out, but you are mad that he didn't properly communicate his plans. There maybe a fairly decent explanation that he has, but I don't know your DH enough to guess what that could be. I'm sorry you are going through this. But I wouldn't worry that this is the downfall of your marriage or anything. Everyone has their ups and downs, and it's all about how you communicate feelings, and set guidelines to attempt to prevent future situations.

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    #10
    What about if you switch it up a little?

    DH has been gone a lot this year. He's in school now. We really felt like we had to Face Time every night, when possible, since we didn't have that opportunity before. It put a lot of pressure on us. The kids thrive on FaceTiming him. So, he was doing it right before their bedtime. Well, that's when I'm busy getting everything ready for the next day. It just wasn't working and led to frustration on both ends. We compromised and now, he FaceTimes them at 8pm. I might pop my head in and say hey, but it's their time. Then, much later, when kids are asleep, I'm in bed, and he's done for the day, we talk on the phone for about 30 mins. It has really helped. There isn't the pressure of FaceTime. Neither one of us are distracted. He turns his tv off and we are able to just relax and talk.

    I'm sorry you're going through this!
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