Carl’s Story

I am a young father 25 years of age with a now 9 month old baby girl.  I have been with my wife for three years now two years married.  We have always been really close or what I thought until now.  We have been dealing with a lot of ups and downs for a good two months now.  Separating off and on this time being the longest nine days.

I never understood what she was going through until I heard from friends that it could be postpartum depression.  I then researched it on the web only to see that everything fits to the T.  To sum it up in this brief email I feel rejected from my wife, like she has given up on me now that she has her baby girl and that is all she is concerned with, not our relationship together. 

She has told me that she feels that she has gone about all of the nine months alone and she has become use to it to where she thinks she can do it alone.  I have been in school, going on three years now, all of our relationship and I work full time, I have done my very best with the time I have and love her and my daughter to no end. 

Her mother does not help the situation, she has also become angry and distant from me I guess due to what her daughter has discussed with her, the two of them have always been very close talking at least five times a day if not more.  I don’t think she sees that her daughter may be experiencing postpartum depression. 

I wish that I could take all the blame and change myself to help the situation but I have done all the changing in myself to where if I change anything more I will not know my own identity.  After I tried to correct more and more, lessening my classes and cleaning cooking dinner before she got home, taking more and more care of the baby, and still falling short, that is when I threw my hands up and didn’t know what else to do. 

That is usually when we split up.  Now is when I am realizing that there is more then meets the eye-postpartum and understanding what a women experiences different then a man during and after pregnancy.  I have searched the web top and bottom and your website offered me the best help and the ability to read the stories of other fathers.  I need help and I don’t want to loose my family.  If it is to just talk with someone.  I feel lost….

2 Days Later

Thank you for getting back with me, I was impressed at the timely response.  My wife and I went out Friday night to dinner.  It was very nice, we need the good times when just her and I can get together without any other worries.  It feels as though she is ready for me to come back home but I find myself reluctant to go back, afraid I guess just as she is.  I know that the PPD is still there but I have been hesitant to bring that up with her that she could possibly be going through it.  I am willing to do whatever it takes to make her happy and give her the time that she has been telling me she needs. 

It is Saturday morning just getting back from spending the night and morning with her.  I am going to go back over there around 2ish to take her and my daughter to the pool at her apartments.  We will see how it goes, I am just going to give it time and her space to figure out what she truly wants or the PPD to run its course hopefully it will.  I will write to you later or call, thank you, I needed someone to help guide me through this. 

6 Months Later

Well I am writing from a different location other then at home with my wife and daughter.  Like you just said unfortunately sometimes things go from bad to worse, and they have.  We have tried, it seems that we can only be together for a few days till things hit the roof again.  I am at a point where I just do not know what to do, I love her, she loves me, we just can’t seem to live together.  I am at a point where I think I am getting my own place.  It seems to me she has a lot of anger left from her past, and I know I contribute my part, it seems that we feed negatively off each other when things get to this point, and can’t find a way back to each other. 

 

11 Responses to Carl’s Story

  1. Zip says:

    I feel like this is going to happen to me. I am very sorry for what you all have been through. I rarley post or respond to posts, but I am truly scared my wife and I are headed in this direction after reading all of goings on so similar to my own life.

  2. J says:

    Yeah me too! What in the heck do you do! This is Aweful!

  3. Mark says:

    Carl, like you I too am experiencing similar things, however, as I too have been counselled…Make no Rah decisions. Your wife needs you now, be suportive fromthe distance. Things will fan out

  4. Justin says:

    I am feeling the same way but the only difference between my wife and yours is that she is willing to seek help and at this point I am happy with that for now. I am going to take it one day at a time.

  5. Steve says:

    It sounds like im not alone. Ive been separated from my wife for 2 years now. we have 2 boys. The last 3 or so years has been a complete yo-yo of other relationships, lies, running, suicide threats…and the only ones who really get hurt is the kids. Its painful but seems like its more common that I originally though. All of you hang in there

  6. ben says:

    This sounds exactly like where my girl and I are headed. I dont know how I can be any more supportive. I work over 200 hours a month. I pay more than my fair share of bills. I’m up for every feeding making bottles and changing daipers. I cook, I “clean” (meaning I declutter the house), I take the baby out. Give her time to herself, still I’m a worthless piece of shit she regrets to no end. I have tried everything from making more money by flipping shit off craigslist. I buy her chocolates at the store, and I’m an asshole because its not the right kind and “obviously dont know [her].” This ultimately leads to how we are “fundamentally different” and on “borrowed time” her words. I’ve been told in every way how inferior to her ex I am etc.

    I’ve begged her to go to counseling with me, and we got one visit in. She hates the lady already because she isnt sitting there blaming everything wrong in her life on me. Now it’s excuses not to go.

    Its been 5 months since our baby boy was born. He is heaven. He isthe onlysource ofjoy left in this house. We were good until about 2 months ago and the shit hit the fan. No catalyst. I’m home every night. I don’t cheat. I take her out etc. Im not the best but I’m certainly not the worst. I just want to see us all come out on top of this and be a family. You guys aren’t alone. I wish to God there was an easy answer. We dads have to be bigger men and be able to show strength and love in the face of adversity. Hang in there.

  7. George says:

    Simillar occured to me as well. Starting approx. 1 month after giving birth to twins, two fantasic boys, my mother who lives in other town far away visited. As mother has parkinson she were afraid to hold one month old babies. After 4 days my wife asked me to departure mother home as she can’t stand her anymore. She haven’t heard of my mother ever since, however, every week she mention my mother how bad she is and how she don’t want her in her home ever again.
    Few months ago she also complained about some photos of kids that I sent to my mother. Her opinion was that i wasn’t allowed to do that since photos are taken with HER digital camera.
    She is more wealthy than I am and we cant compete in buying stuff for kids etc. However, every $ I earn i put into household. I don’t spend on myself at all.
    I work my job as well as help with her business, but that is no enough, as she speaks.
    Almost every day she complain about my lack of funding for kids, household etc. That is really exhausting since it last for 7 months already.

    Last months I spend working almost all day, or helping at home with kids etc. When i come home she give me “why are you here?” look and hardly says “hi” , but that sounds more like “I hate you go away”.

    She keeps telling me that i am bad man, that i don’t help her in any way, that everything I do is not enough and that I didn’t worked good or enough. When I ask her – So, this is only money issue? She yells that that’s crap, that is not money issue at all and that I need to check my mental health.

    When I tried to explain her that she was quite different prior to giving birth she denies it, as well as she denies existence of any kind of illness like PPD. However, she have problems with her thyroid gland hypothyroism and Hashimoto diagnosis about 6 years ago. Since than she is on hormonal drugs for thyroid but it seems that hormonal changes after birth disrupted condition.

    Yesterday evening, after I was with kids alone outside for some time, when we came back she told me she don’t want me to live in HER home anymore and that i need to leave, otherwise she will leave somewhere. When I asked where she replied “you don’t have to care about it”. After this argument she suddenly fell asleep and I managed kids for night feeding etc.

    I explained what happened to her mother and partially to her father, as I am now in office and it seems I will sleep here for some time.

    Bad thing is she visited physician and explained that I am bad husband harassing her, so they didn’t noticed that problem lays in her. Now she thinks she is perfectly fine and I am the one with mental problems.

    From now on, I really do not know that action should I take. Any answer would be appreciated.

    Thanks!

    George

  8. Joseph says:

    Hey everyone,

    I too am faced with pretty much the same situation as you. I am a 25 year old married man and father of a beautiful 6 month old daughter. My wife has dealt with depression many years before having a child but this time around it’s much different.

    Like many of you I really didn’t know what to do. It seemed like everything I tried to do to help just ended up hitting me in the face. As if I wasn’t good enough and she didn’t respect me enough to let me help. I was frustrated. Truth be told I still get frustrated but I have realize something. We as men want to help. We want to fix things. But in these cases we cannot help or fix what our wives are going through. Unfortunately, from my experience anyway, all we can do is be supportive and loving. This is VERY hard to do sometimes as I get very frustrated when I feel like I’m not being appreciated or respected for my efforts. It takes grace and patients… ALOT of patients at times.

    Where it changed for me was when I was seeking council from a good friend about the situation I am faced with. One thing in particular helped me. He said that when my wife is venting or going on about something I need to ask her one question- “do you want me to help or do you want me to just listen?”. Just by asking such a simple question in those, sometimes heated, moments it clarifies a lot. If she wants the help she will say it, but if she just wants you to listen then that’s all we have to do. Unfortunately when we try to help or fix things it can come across to women as having no regards for their feelings or being completely incompetent of understanding what they are going through.

    After giving it much thought about how I approached many of our conversations I realized that I needed to resort back to a book I read before. It’s called “Love and Respect”. Whether you have Faith in god or not this is a book I believe all couples should read together. If you are not believers then take it for face value. The techniques used to help couples communicate better and the message is revolutionary to how relationships should work. After reading this book it opened my eye to things that I didn’t even realize about myself. Being a man- I had no idea why women would think/feel and do the things they do until I read this book. That’s not to say you will have the cornerstone on the female brain- no not at all- they still don’t. But it will give you a better understanding of why they react to what we do and how we should react and vies versa.

    Since taking this advice and slowly working with my wife I have been able to finally get her to accept help. It’s a slow process but it’s worth it for the ones we love.

    While working through this you can try some techniques that help me stay on track:

    1) Always remind yourself:

    when I would come home from working 12-14 hr days and nothing in the house would be done my initial feeling is frustration. (How hard can it be to just clean for 30 mins or one hour out of the day) then I remind myself- PPD IS CRIPPLING my wife who has had so much love and fun in her heart is ripped out and covered but darkness. It’s like climbing a mountain for her to just get out of bed in the morning. Then on top of climbing a mountain she has to take care of this new fleshy ball of need that she has just met 6 months ago.

    2) After reminding yourself do it again and do the chores around the house with NO resentment.

    3) take time once the baby is sleeping to hang out with her. Just you and her- be silly together or play a game
    If she is in no mood for that maybe get her a treat or something she enjoys and just sit together.

    4) Always say words of affirmation.
    I love you
    You’re beautiful
    You’re such a great mother
    I don’t know how you do it but I’m amazed at how well you take care of our child.

    5)Patients!!
    if things are very tough right now it may take sometime for her to let you in.

    This has worked for me this far. Hopefully it can help some of you out as well.

    God bless,

    Joseph

  9. R A says:

    oh man.. . my wife and I had our first baby girl just last month… im not sure if breastfeeding has to do anything with PPD but i dont even know what to do to hold my family together…
    last night we agreed to watch a movie online but like “every-time” we couldn’t choose the movie we would both like to watch so I just put a random comedy movie since i knew she is suffering from possible PPD (havent consulted with a dr yet). not only she flipped at me but insulting my family which it was rude and judgmental but i forgave her right away cuz i know she doesnt mean it and shes nice person.

    since last night til now, she is questioning our marriage and even meeting with me 3 years ago. we have ups and downs like everyone else but generally we are/were happy according to myself but she denies it and believe she wasnt even happy from 1st date

    Ive asked her what is it that upset you?
    she said i dont fulfill her needs
    what are your needs?
    IDK thats her answer

    we are living in UK with no family here. we are two Canadians. we have decided to move back to Canada but she insists to live separate and not to be together anymore.

    Im trying to understand what im doing wrong… i work 8 hours a day, go home and take the dog out, help her with the baby and cooking.. and yet she says i dont spend time with the baby at all.

    believe me if i cld breast feed i would take over everything..

    hard times.. very hard times.. i pray everyday for a miracle to save my marriage and life. Would be hell for a baby to live without a dad and for me to miss out on her daily developments .. she just started to smile at me and say coo coo .. im in love with my wife even a lot more now that we have a baby. i dont ever imagine my life without my wife and my daughter.

    i pray for you guys! stay strong and god bless

    R

    • Andrew says:

      I am going through the same thing.
      My wife says i never do things properly and it breaks my heart i cant handle this anxiety of not knowing how she wjll react when i do something.

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