to think DH has an attitude problem...

(173 Posts)
printmeanicephoto Wed 07-Aug-13 14:17:28

He is v. uptight about the house operating efficiently and makes me feel like a failure because I can't manage to complete all the chores (the weekly shop, most of housework, errands, most of clothes washing, cooking and ironing) during school hours on my two days off (Thurs and Fri) so we can have a chore-free weekend. I work 3 days plus one or 2 eves a week.

He has a lot of responsibility at work, leaves at 7.30am and gets in at 7pm each day. He puts the kids to bed when he gets in and reads them a bedtime story. He sometimes does the washing up and tends to cook at the weekends (I cook in the week).

Although I am generally more laid back than him in terms of my personality, I rarely sit down on my days at home and am not lazy but somehow I just don't manage to get it all done. So by the weekend he is disappointed that he has to muck in for most Sat morning to get it all finished, taking his precious time away from our primary school age kids who he doesn't see much of in the week.

His disappointment is really affecting my self-esteem and is making me resent him. Is he being unreasonable or am I for not managing to get it all done before the weekend? Is our situation normal or do most people in our situation manage to have a relatively chore-free weekend with plenty of quality family time together?

printmeanicephoto Wed 07-Aug-13 14:18:47

Sorry the home link above was not intentional - don't know what I pressed!

HopeClearwater Wed 07-Aug-13 14:23:34

What are the pair of you having to do at the weekend?
Has he / you got very high standards?
How does he express his disappointment?

I'd say that if you are trying to get it done, but still not managing to finish it all, that he is being unreasonable. Only so much a person can do.

Longdistance Wed 07-Aug-13 14:24:38

If I was working as hard of you, and sorting the dc out, I wouldn't be able to everything around the house either. But, I'd get a cleaner, and get the food online shopping to cut some corners.

Here, this is for you h biscuit what a knob he is. Does he think you're a one woman juggling act?

YoungBritishPissArtist Wed 07-Aug-13 14:26:04

You're his wife, not the hired help!

If he's that bothered by it, why doesn't he pay for a cleaner?

He may work long hours, but you work v.hard too.

Cakebaker35 Wed 07-Aug-13 14:27:19

Poor you OP, sorry to hear this affecting you like this. I am a SAHM and frankly never get all the chores done during the week, too busy out and about and doing things with Dd. I do feel guilty about it sometimes but thankfully my DH is v relaxed about it and says he'd rather I was out making sure DD was having fun than dusting! He also says he thinks being a SAHM is about child care not house work so I'm v glad he feels this way. We always do some chores at weekends, I don't know anyone that doesn't tbh, but maybe everyone I know is just not v organised? blush
You do need a chat with your DH about how this is affecting you. My DH works similar hours to yours and still always helps out around the house, I do think it is an attitude thing though so not sure how you can change his view other than explaining how much you have on juggling work and home and that it's unrealistic - and unfair - for you to do it all and how he's making you feel. Who knows, you might be pleasantly surprised by his reaction if he has no clue you feel the way you do. Let us know how you get on.

badguider Wed 07-Aug-13 14:32:52

You have to start from the standpoint that you are not lazy and you're doing as much as you can.
So having assumed that, you either need a shorter list of chores / lower standards OR you need some help with the cleaning or you need to use some other labour-saving techniques like online shopping.

Whatever you decide to do, be confident with that initial assumption. If you feel you're not lazy and working hard then believe that to be true and stick up for yourself.

LeBFG Wed 07-Aug-13 14:37:21

I have a similar prolem to you OP - well, as far as differences in expectations for household chores. I'm a messy sort. I file by stuffing things into various drawers. I wash dishes when the whim takes me. When DP lived as a bachelor, he had a spartan, clean surfaces existance. So, as it's me doing the household stuff, he gets really fustrated at my lower standards. In the end, it's me doing them so DP has to accept that.

I would suggest talking this through with your DP - admit to what is realistic for you to achieve, you not DP, and decide either to
a/ accept lowering of standards to have work-free weekend
b/ continue with status quo but without feeling you're disappointing him
c/ buy in help for a couple of hours a week

KellyElly Wed 07-Aug-13 14:39:19

Considering you are expected to do the lions share of the house work and child care and work three days per week I would say you also have a busy life with a lot of responsibility. Maybe he needs to chill out a bit and realise what you actually contribute to family life.

printmeanicephoto Wed 07-Aug-13 14:41:58

He makes it obvious that he could do much better than me if he was in my situation and could easily get it all done. I have pointed out that people who think they can do everything much better than everyone else are annoying shits! Maybe it's a male thing!!

Cakebaker35 Wed 07-Aug-13 14:44:44

No OP it isn't a male thing, he is being an arse. Suggest you book yourself on a week's holiday on your own then see how well he gets on without you.

squoosh Wed 07-Aug-13 14:48:38

What exactly does he need to do on Saturday that he feel should be taken care of during the week?

I understand that some people have extremely high standards when it comes to levels or cleanliness and tidiness but when you have kids you have to be prepared to relax these standards. Otherwise you'll just spend a chunk of your life huffing and puffing and feeling resentful that everything isn't perfect.

Tell him you'd be more than happy for him to pay for a cleaner to come in a few hours a week as your days are very full as it is.

You're not the household skivvy.

newbeliever Wed 07-Aug-13 14:50:24

I have the same problem with my DH; and truth be known he would probably do a much better job than me with regards to keeping on top of the housework. However, in order to achieve this he would ignore the DCs and allow them to spend far too much time watching TV or playing on the Wii etc.

It really hits a nerve with me when he starts criticising me as I see my top priority being that the DC are happy, well fed and clean . . . Not that the skirting boards are dust free!

I work part time too Op - school hours Mon to Thurs - so similar situation.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Wed 07-Aug-13 14:51:40

Well I am going to throw a bone in...I think 2 days is plenty to do the laundry, cleaning and shopping....OP doesn't work out of the home on those days...the DH does...if I had two clear days like that I'd manage with no trouble!

One day for laundry and cleaning, one for shopping and odd jobs.

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Wed 07-Aug-13 14:52:23

Why work part time if you're not going to use that time to make the weekend a lovely, clear time for the family? Why not just go full time?

He is being an arsehole. I hate this 'I work full time' attitude some people have.

I assume you do the school run so get around 10 hours per week to do everything. So 1 working day.

If he is so bothered about having to clean on Saturday morning to do it on a Friday night. He should be splitting the chores not expecting you to do everything.

squoosh Wed 07-Aug-13 14:56:20

Because presumably she wants to work part time?

Why can't he relax his expectations to make the weekend a 'lovely, clear time for the family'?

Like cake I'm a SAHM and I can't get it all done, even with a division of labour (OH and I have always had a division of labour, though we do each others 'tasks' sometimes its based on which one of us does whatever best). Some days I get all I planned and more done, others I can't get out of my PJs.

Thankfully OH works at home one day a week and has seen for himself how sometimes it all just goes to hell in a handcart. I know he wishes that the house was tidier sometimes, but then he also knows there's nothing stopping him picking up a duster.

LucilleBluth Wed 07-Aug-13 14:59:18

I couldn't live like that, your DH is too demanding. We are a family of five, I'm a sahm and I still don't manage to do everything, there is always laundry piled up in my bedroom and I would constantly be nagging the DCs to be tidy, that's no life, family life is messy. For example we are now in the midst of the school holidays, I have DS1 in the playroom with all his guitar equipment out whilst toddler DD plays kitchen in there, it's a mess. DS2 has just asked to make blueberry muffins so the kitchen will be trashed soon, tis family life.

LineRunner Wed 07-Aug-13 15:01:29

No-one can do all that domestic work in - what? Ten to twelve hours a week?

It's just stupid to think it can all be done in that time.

I think your DH's attitude is terrible, so in that sense YANBU

But I think that between the two of you it should be possible to get everything done during the week, and perhaps you can work out a plan together. Online shopping is a huge help, get DH to do the washing up every night, don't iron anything you don't absolutely need to, don't clean the whole house every week, etc and so on.

You can agree with his overall goal while making it clear you don't accept his attitude.

Perhaps you could make a big list of all the things you do in two days. And I mean ALL the things you, from laundry and the shopping, to changing the toilet roll, and buying/wrapping the DCs birthday presents. Things you only do once a month, things you do once a year etc. Work out how long each thing takes you, and how often you have to do them. The you can work out how many hours a week it should take to get it all done.

I did this (on advice from someone on here) when DH wasn't doing his share. I also work part time, and have DD home with me on 2 days. It really helped put things into perspective to realise just how much time it takes to get EVERYTHING done. It takes us nearly 16 hours a week on average. That's including evenings wrapping Christmas pressents, or making birthday cakes, whitening the grout in the shower, or packing for holidays. Some weeks it's a lot more than 16 hours, most weeks a bit less. We fit a lot of that into doing bits together in the evenings when DD is asleep, or one of us cooking while the other does bathtime. It would have been really unfair for DH to expect me to fit in 16 hours of housework/life admin into the two days I have DD at home.

In the same manner, I doubt your DH's expectations are fair. I doubt he realises just how much you DO do. You probably only have about 6 hours between the school runs on your days at home, if you're lucky. If you work out how many weekly housework hours there are to be done, and take away the "spare" hours you have on your days at home, I'm pretty certain you'll still have a fair bit left to. This should be split fairly between you and your DH. If he wants his weekends free for family time, then he either needs to lower his standards, get in a cleaner, or he needs to do his bits in the evenings.

Also, what does he do on the evening or two you work? Does he get that time off? If you should be house-working feverishly while he's working, surely he should be doing the same? smile

Redlocks30 Wed 07-Aug-13 15:10:00

I am part time and DH works long hours. I view being part time as a benefit that allows me to get these jobs done otherwise I might as well be f/t and we can do them at the weekend. I would be pissed off if roles were reversed, DH had 2 days off and I had to do loads of housework on Saturdays as well. If he did something to ease the load, what would you rather-could he take over the shopping (can't you do an Internet shop?)

9-3 x 2 is plenty of time to get everything done though-what are you doing when exactly, maybe we could suggest ways to save time? Would you say you were pretty efficient with your time?

LineRunner Wed 07-Aug-13 15:12:41

Is the OP allowed to eat lunch, Redlocks? Because if so, I make that only about 11 hours a weeks to do about 20 hours' work.

diddl Wed 07-Aug-13 15:12:51

So he works 5 days, you work three.

On the 2 weekdays that you don't work-he expects you to do everything so that his weekend is free?

So, that's everything for everyone?

Everyone's washing, ironing, tidying up, hoovering.

All for the benefit of everyone.

Nice in theory!

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