Note: Mumsnetters don't necessarily have the qualifications or experience to offer relationships counselling or to provide help in cases of domestic violence. Mumsnet can't be held responsible for any advice given on the site. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Please describe your decent, 'normal' relationship with DH/DP - what's it like?

(52 Posts)
Clipbo4rd Fri 23-Aug-13 23:58:44

I've only posted once, and my situation and all the answers I got really enlightened me to the fact that my own relationship is terrible.

However, I have no real idea what a good, decent and 'normal' one is like as DH was my first serious boyfriend, my parents had a rubbish marriage, just staying together out of habit.

So please can people try and explain what their relationship is like, how does your DH/DP treat you, how do you spend your time together, how do you talk to each other, show your appreciation etc etc.

Bit strange I know, but I'd really, really appreciate an insight in to how my own marriage should be.

Thanks :-)

MrsWelly Sat 24-Aug-13 00:19:06

DH and I have been together four and a half years. We argue, but we always make up. The one in the wrong apologises, and the one in the right accepts it with grace. It is then forgotten about, not crowed over forever more. He treats me with love, kindness and respect. He buys me flowers, or other little things he thinks I might like. We laugh together, a lot. We have plenty to talk about, but we are equally good at companionable silence. We always enjoy spending time together, whether we are just sitting in the house watching DVD box sets or going out for a date. He spoils me a bit on my birthday or Christmas, but I don't take it for granted. I know that he loves me. I love him and trust him implicitly.

All this is the total opposite of my previous relationship. If I hadn't been in that shit one, I wouldn't know how good this one is.

Life is too short to waste with someone who doesn't treat you well, OP. it's not necessarily about specifics, you're not happy, because of his treatment of you. That's the bottom line.

Having had a crap marriage and a good one, I feel very well qualified.

No point scoring. I say sorry when I am wrong, even if he is wrong too.
I tell him I love him, thank you, you look good, well done, and I need this. He does too.
He knows my needs and views are important, even if he disagrees. His too.
He has his things that he watches, does and thinks. I have mine and we can do some things together. We make sure we check in about these things (like, are we watching a film tonight or do you want to watch GoT while I MN?).
Own time is good. He has his friends and I have mine and then some in common.
I love him. He loves me. This is not just words. He behaves as if he loves me. Ditto me.

Note that both me and MrsWelly have been in shit relationships. No need to stay in one.

Space2000 Sat 24-Aug-13 02:39:50

I'm not sure I can explain what a good relationship is like either, and probably means I should finish my relationship/tweak problems.
So I will watch this thread.

ratbagcatbag Sat 24-Aug-13 02:47:49

I tell my dh I love him about twenty times a day, oh and his ass is gorgeous wink he tells me he loves me the same.

Best way I can describe is we are a team, we pull together and it's definitely more noticeable since dd (24 weeks) has arrived.

He makes me laugh and smile.

We can argue like cat and dog and it can be nasty but we sort it, and in the ten years we've been together its probably equated one big row a year.

I can share anything with him and him me.

SourSweets Sat 24-Aug-13 04:27:05

We never swear at each other, we only ever talk to each other with respect, occasionally he will get a bit passive aggressive to which he gets a stern "do not use that tone with me".

He tells me I'm beautiful, when I'm in my gross old nightie with no make up on. He'd never ever criticise my appearance and neither would I to him.

We've just had a baby and he shares the responsibility completely and with no reluctance.

We have hardly any spare money so we never go out or buy each other things, but we'll make little presents or write each other notes instead. Yesterday he bought me malteasers because I was having a hard day with the baby and they're my favourite.

He always makes the dinner, I always thank him for it.

I put the washing in and he takes it out.

For us it's all about little things, and working together and making life easy for the other.

Kirstywirsty Sat 24-Aug-13 06:12:42

This is a lovely thread and a refreshing change

Wishfulmakeupping Sat 24-Aug-13 06:22:06

We've been together for nearly 11 years we met when I was only 19.
He is a very good friend, he puts our little family first and he can make me laugh more than anyone I know.
We have our little arguments like everyone but we respect each other and don't take each other for granted.
He's a brilliant dad to our little dd she adores him.
And he's gorgeous too smile

PAsSweetOrangeLurve Sat 24-Aug-13 07:56:59

Have known DH for 18 years, in a relationship for 11 years and married for 8.

We laugh a lot, similar sense of humour and we take the piss all the time. We touch quite a lot as well - not just cuddles, but pats on the arm and quick affectionate stuff like that. We argue and fall out but get over it and move on.

When I look at my DH I see my best friend, the person I trust most in the world and the person who I feel most comfortable with.

Licketysplit123 Sat 24-Aug-13 07:59:13

Love this thread, this is just what I needed. Something to aim for!

MrsPear Sat 24-Aug-13 08:07:04

Can I butt in and ask a quick question to those in a good relationship - how much time do you spend together?

ratbagcatbag Sat 24-Aug-13 08:10:31

Hmmm, we both work at same place but different offices, so car too and from work daily (1.5hr total) then until around 7:30 in an evening when we will both do what we want, so dh p,saying computer games, me mnetting or reading. Then bed around 9-10 smile

LemonDrizzled Sat 24-Aug-13 08:21:40

Another one who escaped a bad relationship (28 years) and is now in a great one (2 years).

He is easy going and tolerant and doesnt take offence or sulk. We can discuss problems without anyone huffing or getting upset. If I am tired/hungry/premenstual and being a grouch he is kind to me and absorbs my prickles without reacting back. And if he is gloomy and negative I cuddle him and give him treats and he cheers up.

We have happy sex with lots of giggling and naughtiness but if one of us is feeling tired or not in the mood we have cuddles and sleep instead.

We talk a lot about our mutual goals, our future together and how to reach it. In fact we just talk a lot about everything! We both show an interest in each others DC and care about them and their feelings. I like being with him and he likes being with me.

Thanks for this thread it is lovely!

GemmaTeller Sat 24-Aug-13 08:40:32

We've been together 20+ years,
We've had our ups and downs and some big arguments but at the end of the day we're there for each other.

He looks after me when I'm ill (various medical conditions), brings me tea, books etc, lets the dogs on the bed, brings me fat old cat for a cuddle. He does all the cooking and washing up, reaches stuff off high shelves for me.
He is very protective of me when we're out and about.

I do all the gardening and diy (he's just not interested), organise all home and family appointments/get togethers, bring him a cup of tea in the morning, and most importantly (to him) look after him when he has a depressive episode.

We have lots of kisses and cuddles, watch tv in bed at the end of the day, chat in the dark, walk the dogs together for a hour each day and chat all the way round or play 'what would you do if..'

I supported him financially when he set his business up and ten years later he did the same for me.

FatalFlowerGarden Sat 24-Aug-13 08:41:29

We have only been together for a couple of years but having been in an abusive marriage I know a good relationship when I'm in one smile

The overriding thing for me is a feeling of peacefulness and 'rightness' that I have with him. That's the only way i can describe it. Previous relationships have given me a knot in my stomach, even when I've thought I was 'in love'. He and I are proof of the old cliche that 'when you know, you know'.

Yes, we argue, but we always say sorry and talk it through afterwards. I trust him. I smile when I think of him. I respect him, and he respects me. We're proud of each other's achievements and don't undermine each other. We notice when the other is stressed or tired or down, and we try to make things better, even if that just a big hug and pouring a glass of wine grin. We banter, and tease, but only gently - we don't try to hurt each other with words. We say 'I love you' every day, but the most important thing is that both of us know there's so much more to love than saying it. And we're a team - we try to make each others lives easier, not more complicated.

Neither of us are perfect! And I long ago gave up on all that soul mates crap - it's a lie. You do have to work at things, but I think that means being mindful of each others needs, not slogging away at something that's dead in the water.

It's been a long time coming though! He doesn't live with me atm and I miss him every day. But I know that being apart for all this time will actually just make us stronger in the long run. The thought of spending the rest of my life with him makes me feel extremely happy.

GemmaTeller Sat 24-Aug-13 08:42:41

MrsPear we are married and both work from home, so spend 24 hours a day together shock grin

Even my sister said 'how you and xxx spend all day, every day together, I'll never know'

ThePlEWhoLovedMe Sat 24-Aug-13 09:20:45

He never swears at me or calls me names, he never hits me.
He never puts me or anything i have done down - he supports my decisions.
He respects my need for space. He respects my need to chat on the phone to my mates and to have a separate social life on occasions.
He does a good tag team when it comes to disciplining the kids.
He does his share around the house without being asked.
He is not emotionally needy - is strong and independant.
He tells me he loves me ....he shows me he loves me.
He is not stingy with money - and makes good choices managing finances.
We never row - he leaves me alone when i am pissed off - but is there for me if I need him.
He has never given me cause to think he has cheated - and we both lock our phones/tablets/laptops and do not know each others passwords.
He keeps my secrets.
We eat as a family every evening.

12 years together. Not married.

fifi669 Sat 24-Aug-13 11:54:35

My relationship isn't perfect but it's pretty damn close I think!

We've known each other 7 1/2 years, together for 2 1/2. We were both in pretty shite relationships before so it was refreshing for us both.

We talk about everything. The big, moral questions, (which luckily we agree on), the small things and the utterly bizarre things that pop into our heads.

We both work and study with the OU and we support each other and make allowances at busy times wrt housework and DS.

DS isn't his biologically, but is in every way that counts. There is nothing sexier than a good father in my eyes! Even when we'd only been together a few months and DS fell ill he stayed up with me through the night taking turns rocking him to sleep. He's never been anything other than the best dad to DS and is actively involved in all decisions regarding him and the more mundane, everyday tasks.

We make time for each other, even if its just cuddles on the sofa watching a film rather than going out somewhere. We are very affectionate to each other, hold hands, kiss, cuddle.

Meals are made by whoever is home first, housework is shared though we do seem to have evolved into our own roles,eg I do DIY, he does the ironing.

We hardly argue, though we've had the odd humdinger which seems like the end of the world at the time. However, we are both quite logical so it's always resolved once emotions have dimmed. He understands when I'm hormonal/jealous/low and how to comfort me. I do the same for him.

We have fun! There's alot of banter and pisstaking, we try not to take ourselves too seriously.

I can't imagine being without him, he's my mr wonderful 😄

deliasmithy Sat 24-Aug-13 12:31:23

Op,

I think shared values are the most important part of a good relationship above someone's day to day behaviour.

I don't think there's a rule around how much time you spend together makes for a good couple as it goes back to values.

Bottom line for me is I'm far happier in this relationship than I would be outside of it.

gemdrop84 Sat 24-Aug-13 12:40:44

Communication is key for us I think. We hardly argue but when it's happened we talk it through, I feel able to open up to him about how Im feeling. We make each other laugh lots and make time, not just for sex but cuddles, kisses etc. He's generous with money and cracks on with housework, does his fair share of childcare etc. Been with him for 7 yrs, we got married last week. He's my world.

SuperiorCat Sat 24-Aug-13 12:41:33

We speak and behave respectfully towards one another.

We do nice things for one another - I don't get showered with flowers and diamonds, but if one of us pops to the shop we will pick up a bar of chocolate for the other.

We share the workload, in different ways - he is main breadwinner but he pulls his weight at home.

We share what we have - money is family money, not mine or his.

We are kind to one another, if it is a choice of putting ourselves out slightly to do something nice for the other then we will.

We back each other up with the DCs, but if one says / does something the other doesn't agree with - eg if I let them do something DH is uncomfortable with, we never undermine the other in front of the DCs (or anyone else) any disagreements happen privately.

We have many shared values on how we as a family live our lives, this is in spite of very different backgrounds.

We have a good sex life, we have peaks and troughs of libido / frequency, but it is an important aspect of our relationship and helps maintain the closeness / intimacy.

SuperiorCat Sat 24-Aug-13 12:42:09

Forgot to say we have been together over 20 years.

sparklingstars Sat 24-Aug-13 12:47:06

This is a great thread, it confirms that not staying married to my ex was the best thing I ever did smile

Really pleased for all of you in lovely relationships, it's great isn't it? smile I hope that people not in them find one soon.

Yorkieaddict Sat 24-Aug-13 12:55:55

I think its different for everyone but I feel safe and loved with DH. He is not one for saying how he feels and discussing emotions, but he shows me he loves me every day. Little things like letting me take the car to work so he has to walk, and just generally being a kind and considerate husband and father.

My parents had an appalling marriage while I was growing up, so I guess like some other people have said, I am able to appreciate a good relationship having seen the alternative.

dashoflime Sat 24-Aug-13 13:04:49

The main thing about my relationship with DH is that I always have the sense he is on my side. He wants the best for me. Also- it is always safe for me to be angry or disagree. He might be defensive at first but he will get over himself and think through what i said in the end.

yy to admitting to being wrong and to letting things go- we both do that.

In terms of what we do together: In the week we cook for each other and watch TV. At the weekend we go out places as a family.

Housework: he's OK but its still a work in progress- theres still a lot of stuff around the house that neither of us have properly claimed responsibility for. Sometimes we sit around in filth eating take aways.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now