I'm a stay-at-home mom currently, until my kids get to school age. My supposed significant other is the main one who makes money in the house, and I take care of groceries, house duties, the kids etc. He is older than me and sometimes I feel we don't get along as well as we did when we first met. Since we've had our sons, it seems like he disregards what I say and gives me the cold shoulder – basically stonewalls my feelings. I breastfeed my newborn, and I asked him to get me lactation cookies to help my milk supply because it isn't the best, but it's getting my baby's weight up. It's enough, but I want it to increase. He tells me "I never knew a female to depend on cookies to breastfeed."
When he said that it felt like he completely downplayed my efforts to breastfeed my second son, as I was unable to for our first son. He was just as unsupportive then. It isn't hard for him to buy an $8 pack of cigarettes but $20 or more for lactation cookies is over the edge.
Sometimes I wish we didn't live together. I know he is the provider and pays the bills, but am I wrong for feeling this way, and for being hurt by the absence of understanding and togetherness I thought we once had? What should I do to resolve our issues? Am I being too unreasonable?
You're not being unreasonable. It sounds like you need support right now, and instead, you're getting criticism and judgement. The breastfeeding stuff is really hurtful.
Has your partner come with you to any medical appointments about breastfeeding? If not, ask him to join. Your doctor will be able to explain what's happening here. Sometimes witnessing another person's struggle – in the presence of a professional – helps with empathy. It should, at least. Lots of childcare stuff is a mystery unless you're in it.
Therapy might also be an option. I'm not sure that the guy who objects to the cost of lactation cookies is going to jump at the chance to sit through an appointment that might cost more than $20. But perhaps there's something short and sweet – something that could be accomplished in a class or session. Look up options for family therapy. Also ask your doctor for counseling options for parents who feel disconnected after having children. There might be support groups, resources, etc.
Sometimes you wish you didn't live together. That has me wondering what some other options for support might be. Do you have family or friends in the area who might be available for more companionship – or to house you if you decide to leave where you are? Think about reaching out to more people, more often, and be honest with yourself about what keeps you there. It is OK to do an overnight elsewhere. It is good to ask for help when you need it. He's not the only one who can give it to you.
Readers? Did the cost of things like lactation cookies become a conflict in your world? Any good recipes? What about the dynamics between two people who have such different responsibilities each day?