TV Watching Husband

SAC - posted on 10/18/2011 ( 27 moms have responded )

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I don't normally do this, but have come to a point where I am at a complete loss anymore.

I have been with my husband for almost 35 years and we will be ?celebrating? our 29th Anniversary in less than 2 months. The children are grown, though the youngest does still live here on our property (not inside our home). My challenge is this:

I have always done my best to be a non-nagging type of wife (I have seen so many run their husbands off) and make him feel warm and loved in his home. What I mean is, I showed him how much I loved him in the ways that he liked...hot meal on table when he got home, hug and kiss when he walked in the door, ran errands he needed run, baked and cooked from scratch, gave him huge birthday parties every year for his birthday that I spent months planning and preparing along with cooking for 3 days to a week getting ready because everything was homemade from scratch...I gave myself to this man heart and soul (except what I have always given God). We have raised 3 sons together while everyone else was becoming a blended family...we stood strong through the years.
My challenge comes where the TV is concerned...as much as I don't like the word...I have come to "hate" that TV and so often want to just smash it!!! It pulls my husbands attention so very far away from me that I feel as if I am walking through life alone with a "dummy" that sits on the couch. To his credit, he works very hard...I understand this, but when he is home, he watches TV. He will do yard work or help anyone who asks (except me). For the past several years, it has been a joke between my sons and me about their father's TV stare...he just gets so focused there and doesn't hear a word I say (or at times our sons either), but should someone come over he is at full attention. It absolutely breaks my heart! I have worked extremely hard for many years to have the best marriage I could and try to keep it alive for when the kids were grown. Now they are grown and I find I don't have much of a marriage...it belongs to the TV.
Yes, I have tried talking to him. I even left earlier this year and went through a reconciliation. It has been just a few months since I have returned and he again won't even go to a friend's home or out for a hamburger...he just stays focused on that..........TV!

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Teresa - posted on 11/25/2011

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The TV is your enemy so I would get rid of it. You don't neewd cable just get rid of it. I watch so little tv it doesn't warrent me paying for it.

Miste - posted on 10/30/2011

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I truly can associate with you it is almost as if I become a "football widow" and also lose my husband to the tv and it does not help that the TV itself is 46 inches as well. I have choosen to look at this as "my time" and I invest on doing the things that I want to do and I maintain being productive. I watch what I want, I write, read a book, go to Starbucks, visit with my grandchildren, garden, pray, etc. Make a list of things you would like to do and this may also be the perfect time for YOU! I hope this encourages you.

Carla - posted on 10/19/2011

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Ya know, honey, we are humans. We try to overcome our youth, which sometimes wasn't so hot. We usually have crumby role models for marriage and parenthood. Then you put two people from different backgrounds together and expect paradise--and then we are so very disappointed. I hear exactly what you are saying, in fact, you could insert my name instead of yours, and it would read the same. But I bet there are thousands of women out there that could say the same.



There are many reasons men and women are different, but I have realized recently that multi-tasking is the biggest gulf between us. I would have DIED to have had a little help when I was working, raising at LEAST 3 kids at any given moment, cook, clean house, laundry, chauffeur service, doctor, nurse. This didn't happen, and I was very angry and bitter. God gave women the multi-tasking ability so we COULD do all these things. He didn't give it to men. My husband would sit on the couch watching TV, and I would swear he looked sad. So, of course, I would question him, and he said 'I'm fine!' I didn't believe him. But he was tired, and watching TV was his rest. I didn't get any. Through our trials, our separations, divorce papers, etc., I have found out that he really was fine, that he was 'comfortable' being married to me. In my 40s I was offended. In my 60s, I am flattered. Was he the most romantic man? No. Was he pulling the car out of the garage in order to go to Susie's party? No. He was overly strict (I felt) with our son (my bio son, his adopted), and I felt he was cold. When his dad was laying in the hospital dying, he took his wife's hand and told her he loved her. The kids were shocked. They had never seen their folks show any type of affection to each other. You see, I expected him to act the way my dad did, and that wasn't the way he was raised. He worked, and a lot of the time it was two jobs, to keep a roof over our head and food on the table. That was what his dad did, so that's what he did.



I know you have regrets about the way the children were raised, so do I. But children don't come with instruction manuals, we just have to do the best we can with what we do have. Have you sat the children down, now that they're older, and explained things to them? Do they know what a hard time he had as a child? Do they understand that that type of abuse damages a child, and as a result, they bring childish behavior into their adult life?



My husband isn't as spiritual as I am, and that worries me sometimes. In fact, we just had a talk about that yesterday. I long for a man that will take the reins and check on MY spiritual temperature. That hasn't happened yet. And I say yet. God isn't done with him, and I have to have faith that what God says He ordains will happen. There's a phrase in the Bible that has given so so much comfort--'at the time appointed'. At the time appointed our daughter will come home (we haven't seen her or our grandbabies since 2000). At the time appointed our family will be united, because God said our family would be saved. At the time appointed my husband will hear God's whistle and come running. This is the faith we live by.



Things are not perfect, honey, and they may never be, this side of Heaven. But God gave me my husband, I know that as sure as I am sitting here typing to you. And if He gave me him, he must be what I need.



Start praying for him. Tell God he's a good man. Tell Him he needs help, and if you can do anything, to let you know, otherwise, you deposit him in the Father's lap and have faith He will work things out.



God bless, honey, you will be in my prayers.

Carla - posted on 10/19/2011

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I understand your dilemma, honey, I, too, have a TV couch potato. We are celebrating #39 next month and he retired 3 years ago. He swings from frantic busyness to 'the zone' and doesn't see or hear anything else.

I have learned to craft and sit near him. He loves me, I know that, it's just him. I have analyzed our life, and find that his good qualities outweigh his bad ones. I know doing things by yourself isn't fun, but maybe if you DO starting doing things, asking him if he wants to go with, but if he doesn't want to go, fine. When you aren't there to get him a snack, he might decide to tag along ;)

I know you are frustrated, and I am not making light of it, but sometimes we just have to work with what we have.

God bless, sweetheart

Alisha - posted on 01/16/2012

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You two should watch the movie Courageous together... see then what he feels about the TV. That is a tough spot to be in and I can't even imagine how frustrating that must be. Perhaps ask him what he wants out of life and make a list together of things you would love to do as a couple. Tell him that you don't enjoy watching TV as much as he does and that you would like to do things together that you both would enjoy. Get involved in a Bible study... something... anything! It can be very tempting to tell him he is wasting his time, which is what he is doing, but then he may not listen to you when you want to make a list of other activities besides the TV... keep your credentials with him and don't insult him as badly as you may want to. You do however, need to be honest with him and explain to him that you feel it is getting in the way of your marriage and hindering how amazing you two could be. I also suggest reading the Love Dare... excellent book for both of you!

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Rosa - posted on 09/23/2012

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I HAVE THE SAME PROBLEM DEAR!my hubby always watching football,we dnt go out ecept to shop!he is crazy about his team and talks alone shout with the tv and i feel so lonely,i tyied so many times to show him i need communication but always back to square one....all in vain hard headed men they are!

SAC - posted on 01/04/2012

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@ Hannah "Incessant attention"? I don't dote on him and his every move...I actually have a life! I would like to feel as if I have a partner in that life. Besides all of the things I have done for him over the years (many because I knew it was what he liked and wanted from me), I have also ran my own businesses (usually something meant to just help when we needed it). I now do Affiliated Marketing and build web-sites...along with in the background selling some things on Ebay, make candles and soaps (which are sometimes sold through Ebay, but most often done by special order), make baby blankets to sell (and give) and many other things that I like to do...I keep myself busy. I gave him what he asked for and now, I want away from his...how shall we put this nicely...taking advantage and not Loving me in the ways I need as I have done for him. Ever heard of the book "The 5 Languages of Love" by Gary Chapman...says a lot about human nature and the need we all have within us to be shown Love in the ways that makes us feel good and returning that Love to another in the ways that makes them feel good.



And...marriage in man's eyes is only paperwork also. I just don't believe in divorce...it is a personal choice. If he wants a divorce in the end...so be it...but I will not be the one who files for it. Be Blessed All



Check out some of the things I do to keep myself busy...Ebay...I am Americanheartbeat. Newly launched website...still working on it and tweeking... http://www.theproflightsimulatorgame.com Work on Squidoo platform http://www.squidoo.com/finding-your-way-... http://www.squidoo.com/how-creative-idea... (shows a little of my candle work) and others...no I don't just stand over my husband and hover over his every little need and want.

Hannah - posted on 12/18/2011

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wow. aaaand, the difference between "divorce" and "leaving" is paperwork...

Hannah - posted on 12/18/2011

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omh. He is doing everything in his power to escape from your incessant attention. Do your own thing, go to another room and read a book, leave meals uncooked, make him see what you do and at the same time LIVE your own life and your husband will wake up. Really. Television is going to break up your 35 years of (what sounds like to me) a terribly depressing relationship? Then how about living for yourself? Take an art, dance, yoga, bible class DO something outside of being a slave to your husband, because he hates it anyway. You can not be in a mutually beneficial relationship when you are completely neglecting your life by not finding your own desires and putting every ounce of your happiness in the hands of someone else. It will never work.

Linda - posted on 12/07/2011

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I am very sorry that we misread your post. Please forgive us. I will pray for wisdom for you as you travel this path. Continue to pray for your husband even as you don't live with him. Perhaps God will one day touch his heart.

Carla - posted on 12/07/2011

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Sorry, honey, when you said you couldn't find happiness inside the marriage----. I pray the Holy Spirit whisper comfort and peace to you.

God bless

SAC - posted on 12/06/2011

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Okay...hold on...did I ever say divorce? I do not believe in divorce...I am only leaving him...I can no longer see where God wants me to be so miserable with someone who does not walk with him. That does not mean I am divorcing him...I am only leaving. I don't believe that takes me away from God...it takes me to where I can listen more peacefully to the messages that God is whispering to my heart without the distraction of feeling so alone with someone else.

Thank You ladies...please do not read more into my words than are stated.

Carla - posted on 12/06/2011

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I'm sorry, honey, but I have to stand with Linda on this one. What you ultimately do is between you and God, but if we didn't bring up this terribly important and valid point, we wouldn't be doing our jobs.

That both of you are terribly unhappy is obvious. It is never one-sided. Please take time to ask the Lord what's wrong here and listen to Him carefully. IF (and I say IF) some of the fault lies with you, divorcing him and moving on is only taking your problems elsewhere. I can say for a certainty that this was our problem, and when I started listening to His Voice and changing myself, my husband changed as well.

We are praying for you, truly we are. NO ONE wants to see divorce happen. God bless

Linda - posted on 12/06/2011

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I am so sorry that things are not any better. However, the only Biblical grounds for divorce are unfaithfulness or an unbelieving spouse unwilling to stay with a believing wife. I agree there does not seem to be anything to celebrate here, but perhaps you will have to look for contentment in God. I do not believe you will find you have a closer walk with the Lord when you are ignoring the Scriptures. Could you perhaps just take a little time apart...and extended vacation with a family member for a while and pray about this?

SAC - posted on 12/06/2011

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As we approach our 29th Anniversary, I cannot say I am celebrating. At a time when we should be rejoicing in something few others truly accomplish...I find nothing to rejoice about within our marriage anymore. Sadly...I have decided I have had enough and am leaving as soon as I get my business to a point I can support myself...again.



It is not just the TV...though, Teresa...throwing it out has been something I thought of many times, but resist the temptation. Elizabeth...I have watched those movies and many others...it's the type of thing I am drawn to when I do watch. He has seen them also and it does no good.



I have reached a point where I can no longer compete with the worldly things in my husband's life, so I have chosen to just remove myself once again, but this time I will not look back.

Elizabeth - posted on 11/13/2011

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I'd use the TV to get to him! I would rent some Christian movies like "Fire Proof" or "Up" to get him thinking, and plant some seeds.

Watch shows about things that you guys use to like to do together like tennis or hiking maybe traveling.

There are tons of movies shows out there that you could find that will help him see you point of view and start to understand.

I had a problem with my husband on the computer too much and then there was a big power failure that lasted all day. It was amazing he found out that he could live without a screen infront of him and the other ppl that live in the house are kinda cool to hang out with.

SAC - posted on 11/10/2011

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It would be nice if it was only football season...it is all year round though. I do things to keep me busy, but there comes a point where you don't want all of that...you just want to know you are important to your mate. Sigh...

SAC - posted on 10/26/2011

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If he is...he has been for years. No, I just think he prefers going into TV land as opposed to living life...just my thoughts. He doesn't have a bit of problem responding to anyone who comes over or doing what he wants to do...

Depression...no, I am the one who suffers with depression problems and his actions only make it worse when I am depressed myself. Sigh...

Thanks for taking the time though...I appreciate the input.

Linda - posted on 10/25/2011

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That is tough. I read your post but couldn't think of anything positive to say. Fortunately, Carla said it! I just had one thought. Is it possible your husband is clinically depressed?

Carla - posted on 10/21/2011

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Anytime, SAC. I don't always have the answers, but I have two ears, and am always here.

Carla - posted on 10/20/2011

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I know, baby. God knows, too. Pray, give your husband to Him. That's about all you can do.

SAC - posted on 10/20/2011

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My husband is not a big on the TV sports fan...he watches all the detective shows...over and over and over again. It's always something shoot-em-up with him. Though I don't watch near the TV that he does, I know when he is watching something he has watched a thousand times before and that is where I get so bothered. He could almost recite the program from beginning to end. Sad.



If he would take the time to go with me shopping or anything, it would be nice. He just doesn't share in much of anything with me except if I watch a program with him. That's where I struggle...I give, he takes and doesn't give in return except the rare occasion or when he thinks I am going to leave him (which is not something with which I threaten him). The only time he listens to me is when I get to a point he sees I am very unhappy and thinks I might be thinking about leaving. Then, he comes out of that TV world and pays attention to me. It's hard working through finances alone then being accused of doing them wrong when something happens. I have literally handed him everything and told him to take over...doesn't work...he will hand it all right back to me and walk away...he refuses to help with the financial stress or any other stress in every day life...he just dumps it on me and lives in his TV world. I don't want to Divorce him as I don't believe in Divorce, but I do often think: "If I have to do it all alone, I might as well be alone."



No matter how I have tried to approach talking with him, it goes in one ear and out the other within a few days. At times, I talk with his brother...I always know when he has said something to him, because his mannerism changes for a day or two. Sadly, it always goes back to the same thing.



I try hard to stay focused on the good, but it is so hard to do when you don't see much more than...he is a hard-working man. Sigh...

Carla - posted on 10/20/2011

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My husband LOVES to watch Michigan State University football. When he was working, he took every Saturday off during the fall season. Now he's retired, he plans his Saturdays around the game. I have figured out, after 39 years, why the guys are running after that poor guy with a ball, and if they tackle him, they're not gonna get in trouble ;) I either sit and knit, trying to keep up with what's going on, or he goes upstairs and watches it. He asks for so little, I can sit for a couple hours and share a game with him.



We all have to do things we don't particularly like to do. I hate laundry--but if I don't do it, we're in trouble! If sitting watching football for a couple hours makes my hubby happy, I sit there. He doesn't like going yarn shopping, but he goes with me. We ARE learning ;)

Angela - posted on 10/20/2011

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My husband loves the TV too. From time to time I say to him "Anything we could both watch together?" He knows I won't watch the sport! And we might watch a movie together or something like that.

It's good to get into craft projects (I enjoy this myself) but I don't get opportunity to do it as much as I'd like because I work full-time too.

SAC - posted on 10/19/2011

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Thank you...a lot of wisdom there...things I know...things I try to hold onto...thank you for reinforcing. I know I am not alone (as there are many other women who probably feel the same), but here I often feel that way.

SAC - posted on 10/19/2011

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Thank you Carla...very encouraging. Thing is I do things to keep me busy...I want time spent with my husband though. I feel as if he has forgotten why we got married to begin with...

Things I do...work online, crochet, make candles, dabble in photography, garden, raise chickens, take care of all the other animals we have (and that is a bunch), sew, cook, paint what-nots, and many other various assorted crafts. I keep myself busy, but it isn't the same as having a true mate. I go to my best friends and relax at times, but it just isn't the same. I just want to feel like I am actually a part of his life instead of a fixture. I have been crafting since the early years of our marriage...I have often encouraged many young mothers and newly married who talk about boredom to find something they enjoy doing. I have plenty of things I enjoy doing and can keep myself occupied plenty...I just want my husband to take notice and spend some time with me before we die.



I too have analyzed our life together, but I look back and see where I have often been the steady hand and the one to say everything will be okay...God will provide...God won't put anymore on us than we can handle...

I find that I am the one who has kept everything running and going. I have often had to correct his words to the boys at times (he was a troubled youth) and teach them what is correct behavior when he seemed to be stuck in childhood behavior. After he finally decided to let go of many of his vices and be a real family man, he just seems to have gone so far away in many other ways. I know he is tired, worn out, and well...seems unhappy to me. He says he is not, but he does and says some of the strangest things that leave me feeling he despises me...he says he doesn't. I am often left feeling he just doesn't care about me anymore...just wants me there to take care of everything...oh, he will at least get his own drinks and snacks.



There is trouble with our children now that they are older that truly comes from his influence and I kick myself in the rear for not leaving many years ago and helping to create them...I always prayed things would get better...now I feel I made some very bad choices for my children by staying with him. I try very hard not to let it eat at me, because what is done is done. He is a wonderful man on many levels, but spiritually he has not grown the same as me. We are of two different worlds when it comes to God and I believe that is what hurts most. I have spent years hoping and praying and what I received has been the strength to get through what came our way and be the calming effect in our world.



I cannot truly say that the good out-weighs the bad or vise versa...I see them as being equal in him. Sad.

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