To think that a man isn't a child?

(51 Posts)
DescribeTheRuckus Thu 27-Feb-14 17:31:59

When my DH and I moved in together, it never for a moment occurred to me to take over tasks that he was perfectly capable of. He needs ironed shirts for work, therefore he irons his own shirts. I cook meals, he cleans up after. When the DCs came along, I did the majority of the feeding, and I was at home for a few years, so I did more stuff around the house naturally, but even then, that did not give him a 'pass' on helping around the house, or being an equal parent when he was home. How does it happen that women, whether they work or stay home, completely take over a man's life?? I hear other mums complaining about the amount of ironing they do, and are utterly baffled when I tell them just to let their DPs sort out their own ironing...they seriously look at me like I've gone nuts! Am I being unreasonable to think that our DPs should be treated as grown adults with responsibility, instead of being taken care of?

MrsBungle Thu 27-Feb-14 17:34:21

I'm not sure how it happens, I've never ironed dh's clothes either! We share house-work although I do more as I'm home more.

Wolfiefan Thu 27-Feb-14 17:35:15

YANBU in the slightest. I cook for everyone but DH is perfectly capable of ironing a shirt etc. We have roles. I cook. He washes up. I do more with the kids during the day. He does most of bedtime routine. Holidays? I'm certainly not packing for him!
We are a family. He is a parent. He's not their sibling!!
Is it men or is it women who actually want to do it all?

Bowlersarm Thu 27-Feb-14 17:35:50

Maybe their part of the housework job share is the ironing. Maybe their partners do other chores.

CaptainHindsight Thu 27-Feb-14 17:37:01

I know the look you speak of. Its called jealousy grin

All those thinly veiled protests of hopelessness all wrapped up in a shiny bow of "Hes only a man"

<rolls eyes>

How do women respect these men? Or even find them remotely attractive?

Nothing unsexier than a lazy man-child.

Goblinchild Thu 27-Feb-14 17:38:08

There are a few of us around, and thankfully some of us are raising our children with the same attitude. I married an adult with a reasonable skill set.
We could be the Anti-Stepford Wives Club.

susiegrapevine Thu 27-Feb-14 17:38:11

yanbu this baffles me too! dh has always done his own ironing except on occasion when he has done something for me - usually child care related which meant he was running out if time to do his shirt so I did it for him. still shared equally smile smile

Goblinchild Thu 27-Feb-14 17:39:50

'Maybe their part of the housework job share is the ironing. Maybe their partners do other chores.'

That's how we sorted it Bowlers, OH irons, I cook.
According to preferences and talents, but it doesn't mean that we are either mentally or physically incapable of managing without the other.

EurotrashGirl Thu 27-Feb-14 17:39:50

Women in my family don't do ironing. grin

CaptainHindsight Thu 27-Feb-14 17:41:13

Ironing? What is this phenomenon you speak off?

The only thing I iron is my hair.

The dryer sorts the rest.

Famzilla Thu 27-Feb-14 17:43:50

I used to be one of those women.

Truth is, due to an abusive upbringing I was incredibly insecure and had no concept of what a normal, mutually-respectful relationship was like. Whenever I got into a relationship I would try my hardest to do everything for the other person, trying to make them "need" me. Trying to be the perfect girlfriend. If I was indispensable then they wouldn't leave me right?

I'm not that person anymore, but I always feel a pang of understanding sadness when I meet women who act this way.

Pobblewhohasnotoes Thu 27-Feb-14 17:44:00


I think I've ironed dh's shirts once, and only probably because I was doing some ironing at the same time. I rarely iron, if he wants a shirt ironing he does it.

We parent as a team. When we're both at home we both parent DS. One of us will do bath and bed and one of us will cook.

I would never ever marry a man who wouldn't change a nappy, cook or clear up. I don't need two kids.

A couple should be a team, not a wife and a man child.

grimbletart Thu 27-Feb-14 17:45:09

We have always shared according to what we hate most (hopefully you can hate different things) and who has the most time. When we first married we both had similar time. When the DCs came along I had more. When I returned to work full time we were both the same again. Then he retired and I worked and he had more time. So it went….

I would say one thing though. It's a common complaint about DPs not doing their share of household chores and expecting their shirts ironed. Not on. But also not on is the female partner expecting her other half to always take the bins out, maintain the car/change the wheel or put up shelves [smiles]

magimedi Thu 27-Feb-14 17:45:52


I could never love, let alone marry a man that was not capable of (and did) domestic tasks.

And any one who says it's a generation 'thing' really pisses me off. My DH is late 60's & can cook, clean, sew, iron etc etc. He's always done it & I don't think we've ever argued over domestic work in nearly 30 years of marriage.

I will admit that he does most of (such) ironing as needs doing as he enjoys it - strange, I know!

LumpySpacePrincessOhMyGlob Thu 27-Feb-14 17:46:20

The best one is when a man does, say, look after his own flesh and blood for an evening then other women tell you how good he is. confused

ISeeYouShiverWithAntici Thu 27-Feb-14 17:46:25

I do all the ironing. For the whole family, including my husband.
I dont know where the on button is on the vaccum cleaner and i havent cleaned the bathrooms in about 8 years
so <shrug> I cant get wound up about doing something that is not directly related to my own possessions. I figure it all works out to a fair split, and thats what matters, right? Not any one task?

LumpySpacePrincessOhMyGlob Thu 27-Feb-14 17:47:41

My dad's in his sixties and does most of the housework and cooking as mum isn't well. When we were kids she did most of it as she worked from home. It is not a generational thing at all.

WooWooOwl Thu 27-Feb-14 17:47:55

You could just as easily turn this around and ask why grown women don't bother to work and support themselves financially as soon as they have children?

Life within a marriage is a team effort, what difference does it make to anyone else if some couples decide that one person will do the domestic stuff and one person will earn the money?

Both are things that need to be done.

CaptainHindsight Thu 27-Feb-14 17:48:12

grimbletart My lovely Dad would not let me leave home until I could wire a plug, change a tyre, build flat pack furniture and negotiate a tough sale.

I bloody love my Dad.

Pobblewhohasnotoes Thu 27-Feb-14 17:50:30

DH can sew better than me. Sewing just gives me the rage. The tool box is mine from I lived on my own. grin

If I met a man who said they would never change a nappy, it would put me off. It's not attractive.

Pobblewhohasnotoes Thu 27-Feb-14 17:52:52

Woowooowl I think the difference is what's agreed within a marriage and both parties are happy with and a man who expects the woman to do it as it's her job, because he thinks a wife is there to run around after him.

Troglodad Thu 27-Feb-14 17:53:13

I don't know how it happens, either. It's certainly not something I've ever asked for or wanted, but I've had to squish it a number of times - especially ironing which as a man who learnt quite young how to iron a uniform and did it lots, I find civvy "don't-worry-I'll-do-all-the-ironing" type ladies can't do very well - the one exception being the matriarch of my family who has now sadly passed away but was obviously beyond reproach in all things.

I hate to say it, but as someone who dislikes it I think sometimes when women take over and barge men out of such stuff, it's enforcing a domain, sometimes even taking power/independence from a man in a small way. I feel guilty for saying "no, I'll look like a sack of spuds" - and truth be told have crept off with my "ironed" shirt before to iron it again. Properly. smile

DescribeTheRuckus Thu 27-Feb-14 17:55:38

I am so happy to have found you all!!! I was really feeling in the minority, honestly.
WooWooOwl I do that as well...I worked full time and saved up for when we had kids, then went back to full time (and am still in) uni so that my job prospects and earning potential are better (and so that I could support myself and DCs if necessary). Some of the women I talk to are doing exactly the same...working full time AND doing EVERYTHING for their men and children!

Love the idea of the Anti Stepford wives club!! grin

Kendodd Thu 27-Feb-14 17:55:52

I tried to iron one of DH's shirts once (I don't do ironing) he said he'll do them himself in future, I think it's because I'm rubbish at ironing and he didn't want his shirts ruined.

WooWooOwl Thu 27-Feb-14 17:57:15

I think my DH is there to do certain things though, because he is a husband and is far more capable of doing traditional man things than I am.

Like clearing the guttering and fixing stuff and taking out the rubbish.

I would be pissed off at being called a child just because of those things because oddly enough, I bring plenty of other stuff to the table, as I'm sure most men whose wives do their ironing do as well.

Quoteunquote Thu 27-Feb-14 18:00:42

I am amazed when I read threads here that people are prepared to live their lives with people who don't muck in .

Why would you want to skive after an adult, it's just degrading.

I would never of lived with DH if he was the kind of person that expected someone else to compensate for his failings, and I doubt he would of been interested in me if I was playing the pathetic poor female me card.

I just wonder where all the suckers come from.

Goblinchild Thu 27-Feb-14 18:01:21

We are a very logical household, now composed of 4 adults.
Very little sexist and entitled behaviour stands up to logical scrutiny, and if you have divergent talents then deciding which chores to take on is easier.
Yes, there are some bits that everyone hates, which is where a rota comes in. smile

Pobblewhohasnotoes Thu 27-Feb-14 18:04:29

Does it stem from mothers who do everything for their sons? So they then expect their wives to be the same?

I'm fully aware there are women who can't do anything themselves either.

DescribeTheRuckus Thu 27-Feb-14 18:04:51

I do get that it might be based on how people are parents didn't really 'do' gender role stuff...if something needed to be done, one of them did it, regardless of the kind of job it was. My DH and I are the same. Because I work from home, I am more able to do house things, but we both do stuff that needs doing...I am very willing to clear gutters, take out trash and cut the lawn if that stuff needs to get done!
I'd much rather cut the lawn than iron! smile

DescribeTheRuckus Thu 27-Feb-14 18:07:28

Yes...the mum doing everything for the sons runs strong in some of the women I know, as well as in DHs family, but I just can't get my head around man in my family would ever sit around while their wives ran round doing everything for them!

Yanbu at all with your post!
But yabu in the fact neither of you need to own an iron, a quick tumble and decent fold up & put away and my my iron became redundant many years agogrin

DescribeTheRuckus Thu 27-Feb-14 18:11:03

Ha! I wear my dryer out regularly...DH is just particular about creases!

I recently had to ask him where we kept the's been in the same place since we moved here 6 years ago! grin

Goblinchild Thu 27-Feb-14 18:11:38

'Does it stem from mothers who do everything for their sons?'

Maybe, combined with laziness and a tendency to wipe their boots on anything with Doormat written on it.
OH had been living alone as a student/impoverished academic for a decade before I lived with him. Taught him all those out of the nest survival skills.

I ironed DH shirt once very early on in our relationship.

He took it from me, said thank you for doing that for me but you don't need to.
And then went upstairs and re ironed it because he likes a crease or something in the sleeves.

He irons all his own clothes, plus the DCs school uniforms and my work clothes.
I clean the bathroom. I change the sheets.
I also fold the laundry because I like having piles of clean clothes smile
DH either cooks or washes up and does the ASC pick up, supervises DC homework and walks the dog at stupid I clock in the morning, me and ds1 walk the dogs in the evening.

The rest of the household stuff? Well, one of us does what ever needs doing whenever we are home. Isn't that what adults do- if you see that the Hoovering needs doing or a wash putting on or the kitchen cleaning you just do it?

captainmummy Thu 27-Feb-14 18:16:17

I remember a friend coming round with her son to play with ds1 (about 2 at the time) when DH came home from work. He took one sniff and whisked ds1 upstairs for a nappy change and friends mouth literally fell open. 'He's really going to change a nappy? My dp would puke! '

I was a bit hmm (i'd let him puke)

I've also got other friends who won't do 'womens work' and the wives just let them angry

Others find it odd that I dont make DHs packed lunch. If I were making my own, or the dcs, then one more wouldbe no problem, but I dont make any. He is perfectly capable of putting together his own lunch. Tbh once dd needs a packed lunch then it will probably fall to dh to do it as he is doing one already.

We dont iron, so if dh wants anything ironed he does ot himself.

Goblinchild Thu 27-Feb-14 18:21:01

I've just remembered, years ago when DD and I were at a friend's house.
There was a sudden roar of outrage from the playhouse and there she was with her arms folded, yelling 'No! Irons are for Daddies' as friend's DD tried to get her to participate in domesticity. grin

AWUGAAWUGAlookoutitsaMAN Thu 27-Feb-14 18:21:02

My wife and I specialize by all sorts of tasks - primarily on the basis of ability, then time/opportunity, and we divvy up the rest equally.

Does anybody have any particular reason to believe this is inherently inferior to everybody doing a bit of everything? I can think of several reasons why it's a good idea.

Also, can anyone think of a reason why not doing ironing (of which you are perfectly capable) makes a man a giant baby if that same man cops it automatically for replacing bits of the car engine/dealing with a smelly problem with the drains/guttering/being obliged to go and deal with a burglar you can hear downstairs/endless tedious gardening/whatever else, without his wife being a womanchild? :P

georgesdino Thu 27-Feb-14 18:24:15

Never ironed for dh, never made him a packed lunch, only made him a sandwich a handful of times. Yeah Im the worlds worst wife and no I dont care.

whatsagoodusername Thu 27-Feb-14 18:25:01

I have on rare occasion ironed DH's shirts when he's been running late. I don't save him much time when I do it and he usually ends up finishing them off.

Last time, DS (3) told me off for using Daddy's iron. grin

Well personally I find the idea of man jobs and woman jobs ridiculous
What if for example a plug needed changing or the bin taking out or my car had a flat tyre? Would I wait until DH got home from work? Of course not, I would deal with it.

The same way when DH gets home before me, should he not take the washing out or Hoover or start dinner until I get home?

What if one person who did the woman/man job was sick? Who would do it then?

My friend won't do anything she considers a man job. She phoned me last winter to say that she had no heating and was my DH home? I said no, and told her to open the taps under the boiler to increase the pressure to see if that made the pilot light come on. She said oh no I can't do that, I'll wait for DH to get home. It was 1pm. Winter. And her DH wasn't coming home til 6. But she would rather sit in the cold than look at the boiler herself.

Goblinchild Thu 27-Feb-14 18:27:10

No, I find womanchildren annoying too.
My dad was often posted overseas, and if my mother had waited for his return to put out the bins, change a lightbulb, sort out a leak or dig the vegetable patch then things would have got a bit silly.
As for not doing things ad hoc, OH doesn't notice if the kitchen is grubby, I tend to fix things with tape and staples instead of properly, DS doesn't care if the bathroom is clean or not and DD can't prioritise.
So according to talents and strengths and a rota for the rest works for us.

MrsBungle Thu 27-Feb-14 18:44:12

I don't get this 'mens' and 'womens' jobs either. I'm perfectly capable of obtaining a ladder, climbing up it and removing some leaves from a gutter. I can also tie a bin bag and walk it outside to the bin. Women-children are equally as annoying as man-children.

Thattimeofyearagain Thu 27-Feb-14 18:46:13

My boss is one of those women! She once confided in me (Xmas do, had a few wine) that she likes him being depend in her . I was shock

Thattimeofyearagain Thu 27-Feb-14 18:46:41

* dependant

DescribeTheRuckus Thu 27-Feb-14 19:21:46

I am glad people brought up the womenchildren...I don't know how that happens, either, and my SIL is one of those...would rather sit in the dark than figure out how to change a makes me sad. Certainly, there are jobs I don't like to do, but I am fully capable of doing most things.

LessMissAbs Thu 27-Feb-14 19:42:51

I can't be bothered to cook. We have no DCs so its not an issue. I eat a funny diet anyway. I can iron but DH does it much better than me, so I persuade him to do my stuff, which isn't that much. I hate this idea of "traditional man stuff". We both put out bins, I love hoovering and cutting the grass and DH sometimes helps. I like decorating, so does he.

I remember doing Home Economics at school (when girls had to do it and boys got to do Technical Drawing instead) and getting the worst grade possible and the comment "LessMissAbs has no interest in this subject whatsoever". I was very pleased with that. I always intended to go onto an academic career, eat M&S ready meals and get a man who didn't want me to look after him like a second mummy.

maillotjaune Thu 27-Feb-14 19:55:07

I've ironed for DH and he has ironed for me. Actually I iron very little whereas he has to iron shirts so I'm the main beneficiary. Other stuff shared on the whole.

I also know some women who moan about 'having' to do all the housework etc. but look at me like I'm crazy when I suggest they get their partners to pull their finger out. Just don't get it.

FraidyCat Thu 27-Feb-14 20:01:10

There are a fair number of men in the world who think it's a woman's job to do their ironing. There are at least as many women who think it's a man's job to pay for things.

Pointless sexist thread.

Bearbehind Thu 27-Feb-14 20:08:19

I don't agree with just doing your own portion of something, ie ironing your own stuff but not your husbands but definitely agree that both parties should contribute to the household tasks.

ReadyToPopAndFresh Thu 27-Feb-14 20:24:57

The best one is when a man does, say, look after his own flesh and blood for an evening then other women tell you how good he is.

Some of them post about it on facebook... Has a man ever in the history of the internet bragged that his wife cooked him dinner? Or looked after the children while he went out for the night? Ever?

As for men being gutter cleaners and fixers of cars... hmm I don't know any men under 60 who work on their own cars. They are too automated now a days and they have to pay someone else to do same as we women folk do..

Gutter cleaning as far as I know is always outsourced as well

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