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I have a sinking suspicion

October 18th, 2006 at 06:38 am

You know the one, that you're being taken advantage of? Yeah, that one...

I'll just start by saying I love DH and I know he loves me. But we're all grown, and we know that loving someone doesn't mean you always treat them the way you should, and doesn't mean you don't take them for granted.

So, with that being said, I'm starting to feel like I'm getting a pretty crappy deal aroud my house, and I'm about fed up with it.

Monday I got home from work before DH. Actually,he'd been off work a few hours and was at my dad's cigar store, but whatever. I got home, built a fire in the wood stove, started dinner, put laundry on, yadda yadda. He gets home, sits down in his chair and says something to the effect of "There's a fire going and dinner's cooking, all I need are slippers and a drink and I'll be happy."

I looked at him and simply said "You know, I thought the same thing when I got home from work."

ARRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGH!!!!

I know the example above may not seem like much, but it is as they say the straw that broke the camel's back. We both work full time, we both do our own personal laundry, but that's where the equitable split of labor ENDS, and I'm getting fed up with it.

He cooks once every other week or so, but hasn't washed a load of dishes since we bought this house in July. Washes his own clothes, but dirty towels and sheets could sit around and moulder to rags without him thinking to put them in the wash. Likes to snuggle the cats, but hasn't touched their litter box in a year and a half. It goes on and on an on...

I get home around 6p during the week and have 5 hours before it gets to be bed time. I start dinner, do dishes, put on laundry, clean the cat box, fold laundry, sweep the floor, take out the trash (!!!), put on more laundry, and DH will yell from the den "Hey, whatcha doin'?" WHAT? What the hell do you think I'm doing?

Long story short, I'm starting to feel more like a single mom than a married woman with no kids. It's been annoying for a while and it's starting to move towards creepy. I have to remind him to take medicine, I have to remind him to collect days worth of dishes from around his chair and at least bring them in the kitchen. I go to the fridge and find out he's left an empty milk & OJ container in their rather than setting it out on the counter (or heaven forbid even rinsing it out and putting in the recycle bin).

I've asked him nicely to help, that didn't work. I've broken down in tears about this, that didn't work. I made up a chore list (because he asked for one saying he didn't know what needed to be done), and that didn't work. I'm running out of options and it scares me. I found out he almost cheated on me about a year ago, and he said it was because I was tired all the time. Well what the #$*^!@ do you expect when I work 8 hours and then come home and work 4 more?!? No wonder I'm tired all the time...

At any rate, I'm getting more and more frustrated and, as you can probably tell, I'm starting to seriously resent my DH. Any practical suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

6 Responses to “I have a sinking suspicion”

  1. kimiko Says:

    The division of labor in the households is never fair to the women, even in this day and age. Same thing happens in my home, my mom does all the house work after her 8hrs and my dad came home, put up his feet and relax. But at least they spent those hours together talking about their days and having fun being with each other. I saw some experts on TV suggested that the way to deal with husbands who flake out on housework is to compliment them whenever they do something, however small. Supposely, by building them up to be the capable man of the house, they'll more incline to do housework. I've found it's easiest to ask someone to join you while you're doing something rather than asking them to complete the chore alone, at a later time. So ask him to dry the dishes while you wash, bring out the sheets and stuff while you launder, etc...

  2. Broken Arrow Says:

    Wow, this is terrible. No one should have to get into tears over something like this.

    I wonder if your husband knows just how much all this bothers you?

    Whatever it is, please talk to him about it. It's better than harboring resentment, I can assure you!

    Oh, and another thing? No man (or woman for that matter) should cheat! You make a vow, you stick to it, damn it! Perhaps it's my personal bias tainting this, but it doesn't matter.

    I will say that if someone is that close to cheating, it means there's something seriously wrong here. I DO highly recommend talking to a marriage counselor or taking some seminars on it.

    Honestly.

    It's vital to take effective actions before things slide further into oblivion.... Frown

  3. jodi Says:

    My situation is a little different - I only work PT (DH worked FT, then was a FT student, during which time he helped out a lot more), but once DH is back to work FT, I will go back to doing a bit more of the housework since I am home more. Although DH is at times clueless, he does have good intentions and responds well when prodded. So I don't know if this will help or not, but I will try.
    1. I keep a running list on the dry erase board in the hallway of things that need to be done. It's more for me, but I have found that DH will be more likely to do something if it's listed right in front of his nose. We both get satisfaction from checking things off the list.(we actually draw a line through them instead of erase them - it's nice to see what you HAVE accomplished!)
    2. We know our strengths. We both like to cook - we both have our specialties. Last night I bought a roast home and asked him to throw it in the oven for me. Then he gets to cook it the way he likes. He gets raves for his chocolate pie, so he is more likely to make things like that (things that he is "famous" for). I do most of the baking, soups and casseroles, etc. Also - he doesn't mind vacuuming, I do - so he does it, but I do more of the decluttering and laundry. Since I have bad eczema on my hands, he does more of the tasks that require chemicals or being in water. Are their tasks that your DH is less aversive to? Can you strike a deal, such as you taking over all the laundry if he does the dishes?
    3. Let the small things go. It drives me up the wall that my DH will drop his pants and underwear on the floor two feet from the laundry basket. But, after 10 years together, I will have to accept the fact that I was able to get him to stop leaving his socks in every room of the house, but that I can't get him to put his clothes in the laundry basket. Oh well. I do things that annoy him too, but sometimes it's a choice to let things go. I don't mean that with everything, because clearly there is an unfair division of labor here - but maybe you could accept some of the smaller things if some of the big ones changed.
    4. Doing little things for each other helps. DH tends to leave his dessert bowl on the living room floor while watching tv. I pick it up on my way through more nights than not. I certainly don't have to - I could resent it. But if I am going there anyway, I will do it. He does little things for me, like pulling my car up and starting it if I am taking the kids somewhere. Or running out to get the mail and paper.
    I know, I'm pretty lucky with my DH, but I hope you can find something useful here. We tried a chore chart a few times, but it just never worked. I really wish you good luck.

  4. LuckyRobin Says:

    Well, tell him I need help and I need it NOW. Then tell him what you want him to do. Every day. Specifically. By what time. Yes, you may have to lay it out as if he were a little boy, but since he's kind of acting like one...well, do it. "I made dinner tonight for you and now I want you to wash dishes for me, please. Thank you." "I need you to change the sheets on the bed and wash them and dry them, too, please. Thank you." "I'm really tired tonight, I'd like you to make dinner, please. Thank you." "I need you to change the litter box, please and take out the trash, also. Thank you." Say it like you can't imagine he would possibly refuse.

    If he asks what you are doing, say, "Something I really need help with." Then put him to work beside you.

    And as for the medication, ignore it, make him be responsible for it. Tell him flat out that you are not going to remind him when to take it, he is a big boy and he can remind himself. He can set his watch alarm to go off when he needs to take it.

    Then there's always the old "If I get some help here with these chores we can finish them early and then go have sex." I doubt very much he would turn that down. LOL Of course, don't do the reverse, don't say "We're not having sex until you do these chores." That's blackmail, instead of incentive and would likely backfire. Good luck.

  5. Broken Arrow Says:

    Then there's always the old "If I get some help here with these chores we can finish them early and then go have sex." I doubt very much he would turn that down.
    Oh yes, it's definitely safe to say that most guys wouldn't turn that down. Big Grin

  6. tinapbeana Says:

    thanks for the support, all... a lot of these i've tried, including the thank-yous (i thank him when he brings me dishes to do, for pete's sake!) and asking for help. i frequently get the "yeah, just a second" or "let me finish this inning" reply. asking again gets the same, and anything more than 3 feels like nagging.

    as for the sex thing, well, i'm not a with-holder by any means but it's a whole 'nother conversation that i'm not sure i'm ready to have online...

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