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How do you fulfill your role as a wife/mother when you have a demanding baby?

(72 Posts)
WhisperingSeagrass Sun 22-May-16 09:41:07

DH works full time and I'm on mat leave, going back to work 3 days a week soon.

Apparently my roles and responsibilities include feeding everyone healthy meals, cleaning, anything domestic (although he makes allowances for ironing), making sure we are all well turned out/groomed, looking after everyone's health (ensuring he has healthy food available etc). Apparently this is what all mums do. I also do most of the baby care including night wakings but 'can't even get that right'. It is my fault baby doesn't sleep well and wants to be held all the time (according to DH) as I am with him all day/night and have failed to reach him to sleep/play independently. He is right in some ways.

DH is annoyed because he thinks he does everything. Admittedly he does help and he cooks now and then. But he is helping me to fulfill my role, and keeps reminding me of that. He's a high earner, takes care of all bills, paperwork, DIY, car related things, he also takes out the bins as they are 'his' roles.

I would love to have it all together. I'd love to be the sort of mum and wife he wants. I really thought I would be before DS came along.

I am just so TIRED. I hate leaving baby to cry and grizzle while I cook and clean. Right now I'm not interested in food, I'm too tired to eat. I've been 'cooking' a lot of ready-made things or pasta. I am irritable and snappy all the time. I feel like such a failure. DH keeps comparing me to his mum and to all the 'millions of other women with babies who still manage to run a household and look after their families properly'.

Any coping tips? Any time-saving energy-saving ideas?

Elllicam Sun 22-May-16 09:45:59

Your DH seems a bit of a wanker. Ready made meals and pasta are fine, you have a baby. Could you get a sling and a cleaner? Also have a talk with your DH about being nicer to you.

Kikibanana86 Sun 22-May-16 09:46:18

I don't think you need any tips, I think you need to think about how unsupportive your H is being.

Most women find it tricky doing all the things you've listed and doing it all well,so he's talking utter bollocks. Especially with a young child.

I have 5 under 8 and it's only now the youngest is 2 and a half and at pre school in the afternoons that I'm actually finding all those things doable.

SendTheNextOneIn Sun 22-May-16 09:46:32

Are you his wife or an employee?

Kikibanana86 Sun 22-May-16 09:47:54

God I'm so glad I'm single 😂

Elllicam Sun 22-May-16 09:47:59

Also loads of babies don't sleep well, my youngest is 22 months and still needs night feeds and cuddles. It's not your fault if he doesn't sleep to your husbands standards.

AnyFucker Sun 22-May-16 09:48:31

Your husband is a first class prick

I refuse to give you any advice that in any way colludes with his abuse of you

Tell the Little Hitler to fuck right off is the only way forward that I can see. It would make your life immeasurably better. Failing that, go see your HV or GP because it sounds like you have PND (certainly partly mediated by how he treats you) and tell them everything you have told us here

There is nothing wrong with you, but there is a lot wrong with him.

ParadiseCity Sun 22-May-16 09:49:05

Your DH is a twat. His role as a husband is supposed to involve treating you with love and respect and he seems to have massively failed in his role.

travailtotravel Sun 22-May-16 09:50:45

Your husband is a prize twat who believes he still lives in the 1950's and wants a Stepford Wife.

HardleyWorthit Sun 22-May-16 09:53:49

What a prick.

I'd love to meet all these 'millions of other women'.

As others have said there is absolutely NOTHING wrong with you and you are NOT as failure.

ipsogenix Sun 22-May-16 09:57:16

I have all the same problems as you, but a nice husband who supports me and cares about me and ds. This phase of life is really hard. Be gentle on yourself and tell your husband to get a grip.

HardleyWorthit Sun 22-May-16 09:58:34

Forgot to add my 9 month old doesnt sleep either- lots (most ime) of babies are the same. I keep telling myself that this will pass as it did with my older dc. Right now you are giving your baby the love and attention that it needs. Please don't beat yourself up about it. flowers

ipsogenix Sun 22-May-16 09:59:57

Also it's a really good idea to buy every housework robot going, if you have the money. I have the following:

Dishwasher, tumble dryer, two irobot roombas, and a Braava.

They absolutely rock, and are totally worth the money. If your dh insists that his jobs is earning the money then tell him that you need some of that money to pay for outsourcing some of your responsibilities. Buy robots. Teach your kids to empty the dishwasher.

If you don't have room for a dishwasher and tumble dryer, put them in the hall or the dining room or whatever. Life is too short to spend doing housework.

HappyNevertheless Sun 22-May-16 10:01:07

Sorry he is a twat and no you haven't 'failed'.

Fwiw as a sahm, I saw my role as looking after the dcs. That's it. My role didn't include cooking, cleaning the house, flung the shopping etc. I saw myself as doing what a nanny would do and it certainly didn't include preparing healthy for HIM (I did note that the healthy meals were essential for him but not you).

Not sure how you can change that. I suspect that, even if you were back at work full time, he would still see your role as doing all that (I'm still the biggest earner and whatever crap).
Maybe leaving him on his own with said DC for a week would help. See if he can actually cook healthy meals too and ensure that your baby sleeps through the night... But I doubt he would accept the challenge. How dare you asking him to look after his own child during his previous holidays!!!

gamerchick Sun 22-May-16 10:05:07

Is this the husband who kicked off over the salmon?

Dollius01 Sun 22-May-16 10:08:32

God not another of these utter losers. Where do they all crawl out from?

Seriously OP, life is too short for this shit.

Eminado Sun 22-May-16 10:08:56

Your husband is a first class prick

I think this is the truest, most accurate, succinct and appropriate reply I have ever seen on MN.

As the mother of a nearly 3 yr old who was reflux-y, non sleeping, bottle refusing, scared of strangers etc etc i can assure you I am only just "getting it together". And I am not the only one.
flowers for you.
And🖕🏼to your husband, from me.

Dollius01 Sun 22-May-16 10:09:17

No, it's not even the salmon man - it's yet ANOTHER of these pathetic mummy's boys (unless OP has name changed)

Mishaps Sun 22-May-16 10:09:49

It is a challenging time when the children are little and a supportive partner is worth their weight in gold.

I suggest that you arrange to go out for the day at the weekend and leave your OH to do everything - make sure there is no food about, so he has to shop, in order for him to get a better picture. If he does it better than you (some hopes!) then you can ask him for a list of tips!

Seriously he really does not grasp the complexity of your task, or the sheer exhaustion - he needs some first hand experience.

Didiusfalco Sun 22-May-16 10:10:59

Yes, time and energy saving advice: get rid of the H who is placing all these demands on you.

It's complete bollocks that there are all these women out there coping amazingly, cooking banquets and living in pristine houses whist juggling babies single handedly.

Dollius01 Sun 22-May-16 10:11:18

He's too entitled to "get" it. It's women's work, you see.

Eminado Sun 22-May-16 10:13:21

I don't think a day is long enough to teach him, as he would have had a full night's sleep.

He needs to be woken up at random intervals about 2-3 thousand times for him to grasp how tired his wife is, then be left with the baby.

AnyFucker Sun 22-May-16 10:14:09

I wouldn't leave a rabid dog, never mind my precious baby, with this arsehole

TheWeeBabySeamus1 Sun 22-May-16 10:14:29

What a prick. I had this from my Ex partner (please note the emphasis on Ex) after I had my son. Apparently every other woman in the world could cook, clean, do all the childcare, get dressed up to the nines and perform bedroom gymnastics a few days after giving birth, so why couldn't I?

I'll tell you something, life got a whole lot easier once he was gone. Just saying.

maybebabybee Sun 22-May-16 10:16:12

flowers OP.

Your DH is a total arse, sorry. My baby is 9 weeks. I do cook (as I love it and my DP is shite at it). I also do the majority of the night wakings but this is because a) I am breastfeeding and b) DS is very calm and night and literally just feeds for 10 mins and goes back to sleep, so it isn't a massive ask for me. However: DP does the vast majority of the housework. I simply do not have time in the day. If I do I will pitch in here and there but by and large dp does it. He would also happily do night feedings and all the cooking if I asked him to.

He is also a high earner and does all the DIY etc, I don't see what that has to do with anything.

Looking after a baby all day is extremely emotionally demanding, never mind physically tiring. You aren't the one with the problem here, your DH is.

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