Prudent in marriage?

luckyluck34

I posted previously about some issues we had with my spouse. We seem to have resolved them. However, I learned that he a) has been checking my phone several times to see who I'm texting and what I'm doing in times of conflict "just out of curiosity"; b) has been taking notes and journaling our fights. I asked him why.

He said that he is jornaling because he just wants to keep sane and have a record of something in case he needs personal therapy or we need couples counseling in the future so I don't change the story. He says he's being "prudent" in marriage and if I have a problem with it I'm a controlling person. He said that he hopes I'm also a prudent person if he beats me and drinks a lot, I wouldn't tolerate it. He believes it's a good thing.

e.g.: He got us a puzzle to do together. We were doing it together but he seemed to compete, not cooperate. I asked to relax and do it together. He kept pushing pieces where I was putting them. I turned and asked: "Could you please work at a different spot? I've been doing this one, can't you see?". He stormed off saying: "Why don't you do it on your own, you're such a negative person, you can't see anything from another person's perspective", and went to sleep. I apologized, tried to apply humor, talked, but he wanted to sleep. In the morning the first thing he did was apologized and said he overacted.

Now he's saying that he won't tolderate me treating him like I did on the occasion of the puzzle. He will record everything. But he says he's not building a case against me and he's not going to use it against me because he says he simply won't be able to.

He started journaling when we started fighting over MIL. We went to therapy back then and it helped. We seem to have resolved those issues. Yet, he wants to keep the record of it just in case. He also keeps journaling other fights to see "often we do it".

In my opinion, it's not that often. He agrees and says he knows happy couples fight sometimes and we are okay. He just wants to keep track on how often we fight and not to let me beat him up.

For whatever reason I don't feel right about journaling the fights. I'm an idealist at nature, and to me it's kind of betrayal of the unconditional love vowed for when we were getting married. I don't journal fights with my parents, friends, or anyone else, and hope they don't I explained this to him. He said he doesn't fight with anyone but me (he doesn't have many friends, and all family live far away and keep in touch rarely), so I'm the problem. He got mad at me for not liking his journaling and said that he thinks that I "want to beat him up and by him journaling I can't do so, so I'm controlling and unhappy". This hurt deeply that he thought so of me. I told him that we need more therapy and I can't open up in a marriage like this one, I'd feel on a trial. I'm scared to raise a concern that will be redorded. I also do not want to beat anyone up. I have never heard of anyone complain about that to me.... not that kind of person....

I asked him to schedule a visit to a new therapist, since he doesn't like the two previous therapists we went to. He believes they were on "my side" and sleezy but I thought they were ok.

Do you think it's ok to be prudent in marriage? What does it even mean? Is it normal to journal fights? Can he use it against me? Should i do the same?

thanks in advance.

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Comments (12)
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H B

My heart aches for you, good luck in figuring out what works for you. Trust your own gut and heart in what bothers or does not bother you. There is no rule book for what is ok or not (journaling) if it makes you uneasy. Ideally you could talk this through, but that takes two people. Good luck. ETA you get to decide what makes you comfortable or uncomfortable, as does your husband. But you don't get to tell each other how you should feel about something -- so he can journal, you can feel how you wish about it, and he doesn't get to tell you how to feel about that, but he (as a spouse) should care about your feelings. How that ultimately resolves is up to the two of you, as a married team it would seem positive to work together. I guess what feels super sad (to me) is that it sounds like he is preparing for adversarial interactions, that's not optimistic. that it could be pulled out at any time in the future to (mentally) "beat" you with...there are websites that can help assess if there so emotional abuse or controlling tendencies. My apologies if I've read too much into that. Do take care of yourself!

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nancylouise5me

If you like the therapist you are seeing, continue to go to him/her. Go by yourself if it will help you work your way through your husband's childishness. Cause that is what it seems like to me. He is acting like a child. I am thinking along the same thoughts as you. He will use it against you at some point. He is keeping track of all the bad times between you two. And what he may be writing may not even be the way it is. Will you remember what the fight was about 4 months, 6 months, a year from now. He can whip out a journal and say, look, look! You were mean to me. You are right, it would seem like you would have to watch every word you said in this marriage. You couldn't be yourself.

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luckyluck34

I just also want to add that in the morning after I calmly told him that it's upsetting to me that he's keeping track of our fights for the future,


he told me that he was mad at me for "picking the fight" and "wanted to burst in a fight but decided against it because he loves me". In his opinion I just picked another fight by asking calmly if he was keeping record (because I found him holding his phone during our argument and him screaming "don't hurt the kids" to a committed mama like myself, as if recording, suspicious). And then I found out about journaling for the last year.


To me that is invalidation of the feeling. He's saying he's mad at me for being upset with him, but because he loves me he forgives me for having that feeling.


He he also keeps saying that if he wanted a divorce, he'd not survive through all the crap I make him deal with (not sure what that means) and he'd just leave.

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sushipup1

Did you get any help from your previous thread in the Marriage Forum?

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luckyluck34

I'm waiting for my appointment with the counselor who my husband doesn't want to see. I also asked him to make a couples therapy appointnebt and waiting for him to do so. He picked his own counselor.

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lilacinjust

I'm sorry that you are still not being treated the way a loving husband should treat his wife. I don't know you, but everyone deserves to be loved without rules, score-keeping, penalties, gaslighting, malice and pain.

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luckyluck34

I'm a little upset and disappointed having learnt about him journaling.

Like said above, I do believe it IS score keeping. He expects me to act like nothing happened and be all sweet, but I can't. He gets mad I'm not all happy and shining and then either withdraws or yells....I'm at wits end how to act around him.

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lilacinjust

I can't recall- do you have children with him, lucky?

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luckyluck34

I do, a preschooler and a toddler.

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colleenoz

Honestly, whatever the therapists have said, he is an abuser. He is score keeping and building up what is to him a body of "evidence" to castigate you with at an unspecified future date, and trying to make _you_ feel guilty for being unhappy about this. He is accusing you of "picking a fight" when you ask what his motivation is for recording your argument and doing what looks suspiciously like manufacturing "evidence" (yelling "don't hurt the kids") and then trying to make himself look like the good guy by saying, "oh but I forgive you because I love you".

This man is a borderline (if he hasn't actually passed clear over the line) sociopath and IMO the farther and faster you get away from him the happier you will be in the long run.

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H B

Colleen is right, this is controlling behavior. Save your kids and yourself.

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Beverly Hills

He sounds nuttier than rat poop in a pistachio factory. Seriously, I think he has mental health issues.

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