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A Hobby Is Not the Answer For Me Either

My husband did indeed meet with another mental health professional, but he also decided to follow the first counselor's advice to "get a hobby" and joined the unit softball team. Baseball is his favorite sport, so he's enjoyed playing again and getting to know his new officemates in a social setting.

But to be very frank, I hate this new hobby.

We have a new baby who wakes up after he leaves for work in the morning and goes to bed at 7 PM. As it stands, he only spends about an hour with her each day after he gets home from work. On softball game days, he spends 15 minutes with her. I hate that she doesn't get any time to be with her daddy, and I also hate that I, as a stay-at-home mom, don't get any help taking care of her at the end of the long day. He heads to softball and I am left to put her to bed all alone.

I know these are common complaints for all mothers and not just military ones, but I find myself really torn here. Most of me wants to throw a fit and demand that he stop playing softball and start helping me more. I wonder when it will be MY turn to get a hobby and go off alone to do fun things I want to do, leaving my husband to handle baby's bedtime without me. Anytime the word "softball" is mentioned in our house, my gut turns into a knot and I start getting really angry on the inside. I really and truly don't like this.

But.

The counselor did recommend a hobby. He is having stress management issues and needs an outlet. And before we had the baby, he worked long hours for seven years and was deployed during three of them, and he never begrudged me my hobbies while he was slogging in Iraq and Afghanistan. I want to be as supportive of him as he has been of me during our marriage. And the three times when we PCSed to places for a five month school, he never nagged me to get a job or stop having hobbies. I sat at home and had fun while he worked and supported our family.

I am so conflicted about this and feel very frustrated. I want to do what's best for my husband's mental health, but I also don't want to feel like a single mom when he's in garrison, for pete's sake. There will be plenty of time for that once he's deployed again!

Thoughts? Do your spouses have hobbies that take them away from home, and how do you deal with it? He's away from home so much already that it's hard for me not to have hurt feelings that he's choosing to spend even more time away from me and our daughter.

I don't want to make him stop playing, but I don't like how I feel when he does.

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