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He wants me to be proud that he was "good" while I was away

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Conflicted1 posted 6/9/2013 18:20 PM

Weekend was a mixed bag for me. Was away most of the week on a business trip. Posting in JFO because I feel overall like we took a step backward to day 1 in some ways. WH insisted on picking me up from airport this night even though it was pretty late. +1. He's been very loving and attentive since I've been home. +1 He has been communicating and telling me how he feels and listening to me. +1. But then he says to me "my feelings were hurt that you didn't say you were proud of me for being good while you were gone" WHAT?!? In my mind I wanted to tear him limb from limb. That would be like a teenager saying they were hurt that I didn't say each time they brought back my car-- thanks for not crashing. Sigh. -5.

SisterMilkshake posted 6/9/2013 18:50 PM

Did he say he was proud of you for being "good" while you were away? No, because that is expected behaviour to have of our spouses. Ridiculous!

With that kind of logic we would be needing to be constantly patting them on the back for every single thing they did. Thanks for putting the toothpaste cap back on, thanks for going to work today, thanks for pooping in the toilet and not on the floor.............

NoraLee posted 6/9/2013 20:02 PM

How was he good while you were away?

I do believe in positive reinforcement - especially when there's so much "negative" after Dday. By positive reinforcement...I mean:

Thank you for letting me see your phone without making me feel bad about it

I notice the efforts you've made since taking the 5 love languages test. You make me feel cherished

I appreciate how patient you have been when I cry - lash out etc

It means a lot that you are taking great pains to avoid her at work. It makes me feel safe

But I draw the line at thanking my husband for not running around with a gutter slut behind my back. That should be a given.

Skan posted 6/9/2013 20:03 PM

Aaahhhhh, what a little wanker he is! "Gee, honey, thank you SO much for keeping your willie out of someone's v-jj while I was gone! And thank you for continuing to breathe! And I'm SO proud that you managed to make poo-poo in the toilet instead of your pants! What a stud-muppet you are!" Oy!

putonahappyface posted 6/9/2013 22:53 PM

Could he be referring to porn or compulsive masturbation? It sounds to me like he managed to refrain from "acting out" in this regard, which reeks of addiction. However, my history/situation tends to lead my thoughts in that direction.

Regardless of what he's referring to, it's an immature statement. He's got a lot of work to do!

stronger08 posted 6/10/2013 02:28 AM

Sadly his thinking is still all about him. If he really wants to change that needs to be addressed ASAP. Until that time comes he is just going through the motions.

TrustGone posted 6/10/2013 06:46 AM

I have one just like him. He was validation for everything he does. Tomorrow I am having surgery and will be in the hospital overnight. I told him this weekend that I expected him to spend that night with his parents. At first he blurted out he wasn't staying at his parents. I just looked at him and then he said really sacastically " OK!! I will spend the night with my parents." It is closer to his job than we live and he knows I trigger badly when he is home by himself. The last time he was home alone, exactly a year ago, he invited OW back into our home and new bed, the day before our last annivesary resulting in DDay#2. He also wants a pat on the back for everything he does around the house (which isn't much) and his job (we don't share money).

They really just don't get it. I have started making him validate everything "I" do for him to see if that doesn't help his mind set. When I wash his clothes now, I say "I have washed, dried, folded, and put away all of your laundry, so your clothes are all taken care of." I do thank him for mowing the grass and always tell him he did an awlsome job and it looks so much better. To me it is stupid to have to do this, but I know he craves validation. No way in hell would I however thank him for keeping his pants on. I would have to go out and buy a calandar and gold stars and give him one everyday for being a "good boy". Maybe this way he would see how stupid that was to even say anything like that. It sounds like he may have some FOO issues that require him to seek validation and positive reinforcement. I know that my WH#2 has this issue and it partially lead to his cheating as he said he never felt appreciated for what he did for us. He needed OW to give him his ego-kibbles. It was all about him and his needs and wants. It sounds like your WS also has the same mentality, as do most of the spouses that cheat, JMO. (((HUGS)))

LearningToFly posted 6/10/2013 11:24 AM

My WH needs validation for everything too. He announces everything he does. He goes around telling everyone how hard he works. (yet he had time to carry on an affair in the midst of multiple family crisises...how did he pull that one off, I couldn't even find time to relax for a moment). He IS constantly validated at work. He is a male elementary school teacher surrounded by nurturing women. His IC cheers him on for every step he reports he has taken in being honest, vulnerable, and speaking up. Of course he hadn't told the counselor he was in the midst of an affair and he was only being honest, vulnerable, and speaking up to her. She was the greatest validator. She told him how much she admired all he did. How he was so strong and such a great father to our kids. How I was so lucky to have such an emotionally available man and such a HUNK at that. How he was so intelligent, so whole, such a REAL MAN. That he deserved the best and of course SHE was the best. He ate it up and refused to talk about our issues because she was saying the opposite of what I was. Even now that he has switched his morning emails to me instead of her, he thinks I should be jumping for joy. I don't see much in the way of actions and he doesn't show any sorrow in what he did yet I am supposed to be impressed that he is being "vulnerable" and listening to me.

The hardest thing for me is seeing how much my son is like him. He is smoking but he wants me to acknowledge that he isn't smoking meth. He is going to school for just a few hours a week but he wants me to acknowledge that he is in school sometimes instead of holding him accountable for the days he cuts. (and we get the letters from the school). He is using drugs but he wants me to stop complaining because they aren't "dangerous" drugs. He is in trouble with the law but he wants me to be glad its not because he is murdering someone. Its the entitled thing. Both my WS and teenage son have it bad.

Conflicted1 posted 6/10/2013 12:24 PM

I so appreciate the varied responses. The culmination of what you all said is exactly where my mind went. I didn't laugh outloud when he said it to be respectful and immediately realized that FOO and addiction are probably the source of it. I have really started connecting immature thoughts and behaviors of his to that as they come up rather than pouncing. In fact he said it himself that it sounds silly when he said aloud that he felt that was something to be acknowledged. Long way to go for sure.

Ashland13 posted 6/10/2013 13:24 PM

That's classic NPD. (I'm no counselor, but it reeks of it!)

And many of your responses are...the outside validation. It's all ego-related and Perv, for one, is to the point where he will fish like this, too.

It can be draining, can't it?

DD is showing signs of it and it makes me very sad. I'm trying to help it go away for her as much as I can. And am trying to learn if it's a learned thing we do or we do things because we should-the other way-is that the learned thing?

FWIW, it can come from childhood and be either b/c of neglect or overpraise. And in the instance of Perv, I could imagine it going either way. If I mention him, maybe it won't be generalizing.

MoreThanMe posted 6/10/2013 21:24 PM

Omgah! I hate that b.s, My husband pulled the same crap- I asked if *I* got the 'mother of the year" because I didnt beat my children this month.
What do they expect? Oh honey you're awesome- you managed to do the bare minimum to rise above the level of pond scum! Thats exactly the husband Ive always wanted. Omgawd.

Conflicted1 posted 6/11/2013 13:29 PM

Does an NPD ever actually think they are? I skirted the subject with him and he doesn't see many of the traits in himself that I or others see. Perhaps because right now he is in MC and is feeling torn down and depressed but Asland's comment had me doing a little research on it and he sure does seem to fit or at least borderline based on my laypersons assessment. Not sure if it would be appropriate to talk to his IC and ask him to eval for that.

[This message edited by Conflicted1 at 1:31 PM, June 11th (Tuesday)]

Winter Snow posted 6/11/2013 21:47 PM

I got this too.

I think it means they haven't done the work they need to do. They have quit the affair but mentally they are white knuckling the urge to do it again. Therefore they want credit for hanging on and fighting the urge to re- offend.

Nature_Girl posted 6/11/2013 22:45 PM

STBX wanted to be lauded & praised every day for every thing he did. I was to thank him for going to work. Thank him for coming home. Thank him for taking the kids outside to play. Thank him for emptying the dishwasher. For paying the bills. For putting gas in the car. For changing a light bulb. I was to thank him for liking the food I cooked for dinner, and I don't mean the polite "thank you" when someone gives you a compliment, I mean thank him for eating it and having the courtesy of saying "this is good" versus "it's disgusting".

Every. Day.
Every. Day.
Every. Day.

I felt like a synchophant. Like he never could trust that I appreciated him unless I was saying it multiple times a day about every single mundane, routine act of being alive. I mean, really? I have to thank you for coming home each day? Really?

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