I was taken aback at his response and went to the public restaurant bathroom. I was in a stall for two minutes when I heard the door open and, “Mommy?” My husband had taken our toddler out of the highchair and just put him in the women’s bathroom for me to deal with.
I am appalled by this little stunt — it seems like he was taking his annoyance out on our innocent little guy, who was so confused. I’m not sure how to address this with him when I know he’ll either get extra angry and act like it was a joke.
Appalled: That’s no “little stunt.”
As described, your husband’s behavior is a serious failure of emotional regulation, therefore you must take it seriously to protect yourself and your child. He “blew up” over a minor disagreement, resented your maintaining reasonable control over your own time, was intolerant of your (mild) displeasure, prioritized his anger over his child’s safety, had no regard for the child’s emotional health, and has done some version of these enough for you to start curbing your own behavior — “not sure how to address this with him” — in an effort to manage his reactions — “I know he’ll … get extra angry.” Check, check, check, check, check, check.
I urge you to do a Mosaic Threat Assessment to get a more detailed assessment of your risk, and to bring your concerns to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, 800-799-SAFE or thehotline.org. The time to use these resources is when it feels too soon to, not when it feels too late.
Dear Carolyn: I had a hysterectomy recently and have shared this with just a few trusted people. I was adamant about not sharing this with my mother.
In the past, when I’ve shared info about any health issue, large or small, I’ve regretted it. She always manages to imply that something I did wrong caused my problems: “You wear too much eye makeup so naturally you have dry eyes,” “You are too competitive in sports so naturally you have knee pain,” “You don’t follow my advice on” nutrition/lifestyle/whatever, “so naturally you have X.” She then has relentlessly offered unsolicited advice and if I choose to ignore her “helpful suggestions,” I’m warned that I could have further health issues.
Honestly Carolyn, I’m extremely healthy, live an active lifestyle, and this was my first surgery and I’m beyond pregnancy age. The surgery was successful and I’m getting on with my life.
My issue is my husband. He says this surgery is a big deal and “as my mother,” she should know. I completely disagree. I don’t see any benefits for me, or her, in sharing this information. Am I wrong?
— You Can Pick a Pseudonym
You Can Pick a Pseudonym: When it’s his mother and uterus, he can tell.
When it’s yours, his job is to — in ascending order of decency — zip it, accept your decision, and respect your judgment.
I’m sorry the people closest to you think they have a vote in your intimate decisions. Maybe it’s time to stop giving them one. And consider the mom-to-spouse pattern that may have gotten you here.