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Wifework. How to make an otherwise lovely man pull his fucking weight?

(147 Posts)
InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 10:04:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HotDAMNlifeisgood Thu 17-Jan-13 10:09:24

I don't want to do it all.

Help me.

This is what you tell him. Not us.

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 10:14:16

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 10:14:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mindosa Thu 17-Jan-13 10:23:21

Don't cook for him. Eat earlier with the children and tell him to look after himself because you cant do everything.

I did this and it worked a treat!

thefudgeling Thu 17-Jan-13 10:24:06

Watching with interest - I have the same problem. The only sense I can make of it is that his standards are way lower than mine. I am insisting on a cleaner though as I'm going back to work FT. Perhaps you could tell him it's non-negotiable?

elastamum Thu 17-Jan-13 10:24:06

Dont ask him. Hire a cleaner. Would'nt you rather have a row than a life of domestic slavery? I would

flowery Thu 17-Jan-13 10:24:06

Put your foot down about a cleaner.

Tell him firmly he's not doing his fair share and you are at breaking point from working 11 hours a day and doing it all, therefore it's up to him, in one month you are getting a cleaner if he isn't consistently doing his fair share without nagging, and the same will apply ongoing.

expatinscotland Thu 17-Jan-13 10:24:57

Puts his foot down about a cleaner? Fuck that. It's your lives together.

Get a cleaner.

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 10:25:32

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

brainonastick Thu 17-Jan-13 10:25:50

I would think you could claim a cleaner as a tax deductible expense? Would that sweeten the pill for your DH?

I agree, I would set out tasks for the week, fortnight, month. Agree you will ask him no more than 3 times, then you get a cleaner.

As you work from home, it is very easy for him to slip into the mentality that it is all your responsibility. Well, if it is all your responsibility, then it is also up to you to be able to decide that a cleaner is needed (assuming affordable of course). No arguments.

elastamum Thu 17-Jan-13 10:27:09

It seems he is getting his hobby time at your expense.

Work out how much leisure time you both get to pursue your hobbies and put it on a calender. Insist that this should be equal, so you either get a cleaner or he doesnt more so you do less. Put it all down in writing so he can see it.

Grit your teeth and stand your ground.

SueFawley Thu 17-Jan-13 10:27:17

Well, you've said that he will do anything you ask him to. That's a good starting point. Although I understand that you don't want to have to ask him every time.
But because he will actually do things when he's asked, I think you have a choice. Either, don't ask him to do something and feel resentful and put upon. (Understandably).
Or do ask him, he does it and you may feel slightly resentful that you had to ask yet again, but at least the job is done and you won't feel so put upon.

bigkidsdidit Thu 17-Jan-13 10:27:50

What flowery said.

elastamum Thu 17-Jan-13 10:27:54

He does more! Sorry

TigerFeet Thu 17-Jan-13 10:27:54

GEt a cleaner. You're doing the work, you decide whether or not you get to outsource it. If he doesn't like it, tell him that when he consistently pulls his weight for (say) a month, you'll let the cleaner go.

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 17-Jan-13 10:28:06

Get the bloody cleaner. He's not doing the work. You don't want to do the work. Pay someone to do it and you both win.

ClaraBean Thu 17-Jan-13 10:28:14

I agree with BeerTricks . Can you afford a cleaner? I think if you can, you just need to get one. It is unfair to expect you to do everything, you have asked him, and asked him, and he is still not helping you. So you make the choice to get a cleaner. Having a cleaner wont affect him at all, and will make a world of difference to you.
I hate housework. It is just relentless. You have my sympathy!
I must say you are lucky that he does baths, bed times and clubs most nights though. Dh is still at work at this time for us. I would love to not do bedtimes for once!

Bonsoir Thu 17-Jan-13 10:29:42

Why are you asking his permission to get a cleaner (and a dishwasher - you need one)?

elastamum Thu 17-Jan-13 10:29:48

Write a rota of the stuff he is to do. Put it on the fridge. Refer to it every single day and insist he does his bit before going off to his hobbies. demand your share of leisure time

Show him this thread.

Blu Thu 17-Jan-13 10:30:15

You've put your foot down over him taking his share, and he has ignored it.
So ignore his put-down-foot and employ a cleaner.

You both work long hours, and have a busy schedule. You need a reasonably clean home to do your professional job. So get one. And get a dishwasher!

We both work f/t and it is v stressful managing kids, work etc without help.

MadAboutHotChoc Thu 17-Jan-13 10:30:15

Stop doing his own chores - laundry, ironing, cooking, shopping etc.

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 10:30:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Abitwobblynow Thu 17-Jan-13 10:31:00

This is an assertiveness issue. For you.

The hardest thing about housework for immature lazy people to accept (I was brought up spoiled) is to absolutely swallow and accept two unpleasant facts:

1. it is deeply unrewarding because it always gets undone and
2. it never ends.

He has, like I did, learned to avoid these unpleasant facts because like I did he has learned that if he doesn't do it, you will.

So you need to change that behaviour (of doing it all yourself and getting all tied up in what he ISN'T doing) and calmly confront him and not give up. Spend 5 mins telling him all the lovely stuff about him, how much you love him his glorious big cock and how much he does for you. Then tell him that you don't feel that in this one and only area he acts as your team mate and that you feel let down and alone. Agree with him it is shit and never ends, but it just has to get done and can he meet you on this? Point out the benefits: if he leaves it all to you you get grumpy, and if you feel helped you are happy and more loving.

Give the final ultimatum: that you are really trying to talk about this, and how important it is to you, and if he doesn't choose to hear your sense of unfairness and be your team mate, you are going to employ a cleaner.

Then employ a cleaner.

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 10:31:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Blu Thu 17-Jan-13 10:31:36

"I must say you are lucky that he does baths, bed times and clubs most nights though. Dh is still at work at this time for us. I would love to not do bedtimes for once! "

No, she isn't lucky, she is still working, childminding, at that time!

Lovingfreedom Thu 17-Jan-13 10:32:17

He's out at work every day, extra work teaching music in the evenings, baths the kids every night, takes them to clubs and puts them to bed, does the washing up every night/morning...I don't often say this but....give the guy a break.

bigkidsdidit Thu 17-Jan-13 10:32:52

Can you get a whiteboard in the kitchen, and list jobs as they come up (everything that you just listed) and put one person's name by each

Seeing all his jobs undone might shame him into action?

HeyHoHereWeGo Thu 17-Jan-13 10:33:22

This would be a deal breaker to me, it really would.
He thinks it is ok for you to clean because you are only a woman and women like doing shit household jobs. Its all they are good for.
He is a man so he is above all that boring crap.
Fuck that.
Get angry and tell him he is killing your love for him.
Tell him with every sloppy shitty week that goes by you dislike him more as you see through him.
He does not have to be told at work everytime he does the same boring repetitive task does he?
So he just magically forgets at home?

It is bullshit, it really is.

bigkidsdidit Thu 17-Jan-13 10:33:54

But loving they work the same hours. When does he OP get a break?

Flisspaps Thu 17-Jan-13 10:34:01

Why is she lucky that he's at least doing a share of the parenting? I (and I imagine Cognac) don't need asking to do bedtime/baths etc. That's not luck, that's the sort of set-up that should spread throughout the WHOLE of the running of the family.

Lovingfreedom Thu 17-Jan-13 10:34:01

You both work very long hours and do lots of other stuff too - probably is worth getting a cleaner

TigerFeet Thu 17-Jan-13 10:34:46

The thing is, though, a cleaner isn't going to sort and put away laundry every day, or wash up after dinner, go to the dump, or mow the lawn, or clean the car or shop for birthday presents or make dentist appointments or sew cub badges on or write cheques for school or remember when parents evening

OK fair enough. Obviously some of that needs to be done regardless of whether or not he remembers. I think you need to ignore the rest. DON'T do his laundry. DON't wash up after dinner (I know this might seem minging and I would HATE it, but you might not need to do it for long). DON'T go to the dump, mow the lawn etc etc. Anything that he's agreed to do, that can be left, LEAVE IT. Employ the cleaner as well to give you time to do the essentials that he forgets.

I get that he's a lovely bloke and he's probably not doing it on purpose, but he's getting away with being a bit brainless about it all isn't he, because you're stepping into the breach and sorting it out for him. He needs to realise that if he says he's going to do something he needs to damn well do it.

Lovingfreedom Thu 17-Jan-13 10:35:17

It doesn't sound like either of them get a break - that's all I'm saying. They both work hard and do lots with the kids etc.

badinage Thu 17-Jan-13 10:35:34

I don't think getting a cleaner solves the problem at source.

Which is that for some reason, he sees housework as women's work.

Until you challenge that attitude and deal with it head on, it will never translate into sustainable change.

That's why he makes an effort for a short while and slips back.

This is fundamental.

Think about things that he does feel responsible for.

His job for example. Does his manager have to write out his job description repeatedly? Does he do everything that's expected of him for a short while and then revert to doing nothing until his boss gets on his back again?

Does he maintain his car? Does anyone need to nag him to put petrol in it or check the oil and water, or does he wait for it to break down?

It is no different with housework.

Except that he doesn't feel responsible for it.

He thinks you are simply because you're a woman.

Lovingfreedom Thu 17-Jan-13 10:36:39

Employ a cleaner to do the simple but time-consuming things that neither of you really have time for at the moment. You must be exhausted.

elastamum Thu 17-Jan-13 10:36:45

You can get a cleaner to do pretty much anything. I am a LP, I work full time in a demanding job. I have outsourced all my domestic tasks, cleaning, dog walking in the morning, washing, ironing. It means I have time to work mumsnet and do the important stuff with my DC.

You dont have to live like this.

Get help and make him do his bit. INSIST on some time off

TigerFeet Thu 17-Jan-13 10:37:36

Please please don't do lists and tick boards etc etc. This is still putting the onus on you to remember and to give him his instructions. The whole point is that as a fully functioning adult he should be able to see for himself that the lawn needs mowing/laundry needs sorting or whatever and that he should do it.

flowery Thu 17-Jan-13 10:38:42

If you give him fair warning then immediately it peters out get a cleaner he will have nothing to moan about when that happens.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Just employ a cleaner. Ignore his stampy foot and non-budging and just do it! You earn your own money, so use some of it for this!

You don't need his permission smile

bigkidsdidit Thu 17-Jan-13 10:41:12

Tiger tht might not have come across in the best way.
We have a list in the kitchen and now it's been going a while it works brilliantly - we both add things when we spot them and tick them off as we get round to it.

MMMarmite Thu 17-Jan-13 10:41:53

I'm a bit unimpressed by his inability to take criticism, it seems a very convenient tactic to get away with not doing stuff, cos then you avoid mentioning it as it will lead to a row.

Part of the problem is not just his lack of helping, but the fact that it is seen as "helping": currently housework is all your responsibility, it's taking up your mental space remembering what needs doing, and he is 'being generous and helping' when he just does a little. Whereas really housework should be a joint responsibility, neither of you is 'helping', but simply taking care of your own house.

Have you tried agreeing some specific areas for him to be responsible for, eg. ironing, bathrooms (preferably ones where he will suffer just as much as you if it they're left undone), and then just not reminding and not doing anything? Maybe you need to leave it it undone and not remind him, and eventually he'll realise he has no clothes to wear - a sort of natural consequence of his actions, rather than something coming from you.

Chopsypie Thu 17-Jan-13 10:45:10

I withheld sex.
Worked for us!

Do you think it would help to show him in writing how unequal things are? For example, make a long list of everything you do, compared to his short list. Take a weekly calendar and point out all the leisure time he has, including hobbies, compared to you.

Also point out that while you may spend equal time doing things -- for example, he takes the kids to clubs while you work and clean -- that going to the clubs is far more fun than scouring the floors. Giving baths is more fun than doing the bills. He is really leaving all the shit work to you. Why would he do that, if he really cares about you?

You haven't said if you do his laundry, cook his meals, remember things on his behalf, but it's worth considering not doing it anymore if he doesn't appreciate your work.

Oh and get a cleaner. If he won't contribute to housework, then he doesn't get to decide how it gets done. Why does he get to put his foot down when you can't?

Pootles2010 Thu 17-Jan-13 10:46:01

I think you need to make it into a habit for him - he's never learnt this, I assume because he's never had to (did his Mum do all housework and never make children do any?). You need to keep up at him about it - almost like teaching a child to do something.

I'd have a proper chat with him to start with, saying how you're really struggling and as you understand he doesn't want a cleaner, can he start to do his fair share a bit more as you're sure he doesn't expect you to do it all.

Then when he inevitably stops doing it, deal with it without makign a big deal of it - in a suprised sort of way - 'Oh, didn't you do the dishes last night dp?'.

Its difficult because you're home on your own all day - i work in office exactly same hours as dp, so i can just leave things if he doesn't do them, and then he has to when we get home, iyswim.

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 10:49:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 10:54:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

badinage Thu 17-Jan-13 10:54:51

Instead of concentrating on whether his mum did everything - in which case the blame gets diverted to a woman again - ask whether it was a case of his dad doing nothing. If that's where this sexist laziness was formed, that was his dad's fault and not his mum's.

This is why it could be a problem getting a cleaner - penny to a pound that will be a woman again cleaning up his mess, which will just reinforce the sexism.

As for the with-holding sex suggestion, I despair......how does that counteract sexism if women are seen to be using sex as a punishment and reward system? And what is she meant to do with a healthy libido FFS?

MMMarmite Thu 17-Jan-13 10:56:04

I think you have to put up with the faffing, just turn a blind eye. Getting him to do it is the key, rather than getting him to do it exactly the way you would.

I'm wondering what it is that makes him do those two loads? Is it after you mention it? Or for specific clothing? Or does he have an internal sense that 'two loads a week is my fair share' and the internal sense needs recalibrating?

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 10:59:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 10:59:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MMMarmite Thu 17-Jan-13 11:01:41

Haha, pale blue is very tricky ;)

Hmm. See, I do think it's a good idea to not just look at housework but at everything that needs to be done, when figuring out how equal things are. As it stands, he's doing things that you hate -- does he not mind them, or is it a sacrifice for him as well? Because if you are both doing things you don't like, that's a bit more equal. But it's still not fair if he has way more free time than you.

I think as you have already threatened to hire a cleaner, and he has shown that due to his inaction it actually is necessary, then you should just go ahead and do it. It makes such a huge difference.

Does he use your car? Would you pay for it out of your own wages?

badinage Thu 17-Jan-13 11:04:07

You just have to tackle the root cause here - which is laziness and selfishnessness borne out of sexism.

All the lists, charts, rotas and cleaners in the world won't tackle the fundamental problem which is that he thinks this is your responsibility because you're a woman.

Anniegetyourgun Thu 17-Jan-13 11:04:35

Or not spending money on things that would primarily benefit you?

TigerFeet Thu 17-Jan-13 11:05:27

bigkids oh I see, well if everyone's contributing to it then it's a good idea, one which I may have to steal grin

bassingtonffrench Thu 17-Jan-13 11:07:55

nurseries have cleaners, if you are a childminder working full time I would consider a cleaner a necessity. it will be tax deductible.

to be fair to both of you, you both sound very busy

another idea and what seems to work for me, is to pick a few things you refuse to do, tell him you don't do these things, and then wait for dh to realise that he needs to do them.

for me, I never do dh laundry or ironing, i don't clean the shower, I don't clean the hob top, i don't clean his side of the bed - a few other things also.

This DOES mean that certain things get disgusting, and I have to lower my standards - BUT on the plus side, he does notice these things, he does get round to them, and we don't row.

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 11:09:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

1charlie1 Thu 17-Jan-13 11:21:54

There is a theme here of not spending money on things that aren't desperately needed, you see.

Yes, there is definitely a rather unpleasant theme here of not spending money on things that aren't desperately needed BY YOU.

He sounds very selfish.

Do you think his 'not paying for anything that isn't necessary' and his 'not cleaning anything that isn't necessary' are connected?

Does he just have sort of low standards and expectations in life?

Just wondering if this is about more than just sexism and wifework. Like, maybe you have to convince him that it's actually really nice to have a nice clean house and a decent car and it's okay to expend some effort/time to get that. Maybe he just doesn't see the point and is thinking it's fine for you to make the effort because that's what you want.

Just to clarify, I'm not saying he's right to think that way, but maybe there's a bigger psychological issue here to address.

Dahlen Thu 17-Jan-13 11:28:39

Get him to read Wifework or just stop doing the things that benefit him. He doesn't like criticism? Simple solution: stop being a lazy arse. If he pulls his weight you'd have nothing to criticise him for. It's entirely his own fault.

Personally, this would be a deal breaker for me. OVer time, it fosters such resentment and can easily contribute to the breakdown of a marriage. A wife is someone you should cherish and want to share the load with; not a skivvy who should somehow accept the fact that she has to do the boring mundane domestic crap for a husband (a grown adult hmm) because she's less important.

1charlie1 Thu 17-Jan-13 11:33:09

Heck, I meant things that aren't desperately needed BY HIM! Sorry.

I had a serious chat to my DH about housework very early on. I said him not pulling his weight in the house would be an absolute deal breaker. And I meant it. I grew up in a house poisoned by my DM's resentment of her sole responsibility for the domestic load. All my parents' fights occured when 'critical mass' was reached by my mother. Very upsetting for me as a child.
DH is great. He is not a natural at cleaning (great at car stuff, diy etc - which is why I happily do MORE domestic stuff, just not ALL) but he has a good go, and takes on HIS SHARE, which is the most important thing.

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 11:37:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

InNeatCognac Thu 17-Jan-13 11:38:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Chopsypie Thu 17-Jan-13 11:44:20

Badinage, cognac my apologies, I was trying to be lighthearted.

BertieBotts Thu 17-Jan-13 11:47:42

I think I'd have to issue an ultimatum about the cleaner.

Bring it up again. When he comes out with "But we could do it ourselves..." point out that he doesn't do his share, though, and he probably isn't likely to do his share. Maybe give him some kind of deadline - for the next 3 months I want you to pull your weight, hopefully by the end of the 3 months, it will be habit. If you can't even keep it up for 3 months, then we're hiring a cleaner. Because I can't do it alone and, much as I love you, it doesn't seem to be in your nature to help with the cleaning stuff.

Most people would hire an electrician or plumber rather than deal with electrics or plumbing themselves - this isn't really any different, if it's something he's actually unable to keep on top of.

Avoiding problems until they go away doesn't work. It's not an adult way of dealing with things. I'm only really learning this now blush I'd rather throw money at things, although of course this isn't always possible.

I'm a bit blush because I can see a lot of myself in what you describe of him! I really don't like spending money on things which are unnecessary but I've been able to loosen up a bit recently. Dealing with a problem is much better than avoiding it, even if that creates another problem (shortage of money?) - you just deal with that too. I wonder if he finds the idea of <insert problem here> scary and that's why dealing with it isn't an option? Whereas if you just do it you get used to it and it's not scary at all.

moogalicious Thu 17-Jan-13 11:51:10

Another one saying you can claim back the cost of the cleaner - although only for the areas your mindees use, so eg the kitchen, bathroom, downstairs loo if you have one, front room, dining room...you get the idea.

Tell him this!! He will not have a leg to stand on!

dequoisagitil Thu 17-Jan-13 11:54:35

I'd have thought there was an economic argument for the newer car, plus benefit of reliability etc.

Your dh seems to put income above quality of life. Obviously without money, quality of life drops radically, but if you can use what you have to improve the way you live, you should.

MustafaCake Thu 17-Jan-13 11:57:05

Ugh DP (otherwise lovely) was like this and no amount of conversations about him pulling his weight more worked. Ever. It got to a point where it was a real deal-breaker for me in our relationship, it was like having an extra child in the house. Infact my 5 year old probably helped me more.

I'm afraid what worked was threatening to leave him and taking meaningful steps towards doing this eg getting house valued for sale and looking into benefits to support me in short term till I could get back to work.

I think it scared him TBH. Although I'm not sure how long his helpful behaviour will last!

Good luck OP I know how utterly shite and exhausting a life of just kids and housework can be.

Ah okay, that's really difficult then.

This may be going way out on a limb but -- you said he's sensitive to criticism, do you think he has low self-esteem? Maybe at some level, he doesn't care about nice things because he doesn't think he deserves them? Or he doesn't want to make a big effort to improve his life, only to find out he still feels the same way about himself?

I'm not suggesting any of this as an excuse for his behaviour (I hate those threads where the DH is an arse and everyone is all, maybe he's depressed) but just to suggest some new avenues for attacking the problem.

Have you openly acknowledged with each other that you have these different approaches? Do you think there is any room for compromise?

For example, maybe you get a cleaner OR a new car. Maybe you could see a financial counsellor to try to get a bit closer on your attitudes toward money (e.g., you could still spend the same amount at Christmas, but save a bit of money every month for it rather than putting it on a credit card).

Maybe getting closer as far as the bigger picture will filter down into the housework problem and make things better?

FarrahFawcettsFlick Thu 17-Jan-13 13:20:23

*You work an 11 hour day - get the cleaner. You can agree with the cleaner what needs doing and when.
*Garden - get someone in once a fortnight to mow and tidy.
These things you should have in order to run your business properly.

Get your answer ready, "you won't do it and I don't have time". Repeat, repeat, repeat.

Old cars cost and are unreliable. However, if you use this to transport the child/ren you mind then I would be very unhappy as your client knowing you were using an unreliable vehicle to transport my child. You could use this as an argument for the new car.

Look into tax deductions for these things. Do you submit tax returns?

AutumnMadness Thu 17-Jan-13 14:00:09

InNeatCognac, I had a virtually identical thread a couple of months ago here. It's just shit. And I agree with the other posters that it is many things mixed up - blindness to housework, refusal to take ownership of housework because deep deep in the subconscious it is perceived as women's work, confidence levels, attitudes to life in general.

I definitely do not have a solution. I still shoulder most of the house and family-work. What helped a bit is agreeing that DH will do three days a week in the kitchen, meaning he will do all kitchen work - planning a meal, buying ingredients, cooking and cleaning up. I love cooking, but daily kitchen duty is mind-numbing grind. I also ignore everything that has to do with him but does not impact me of DS - e.g. his family's birthdays, his socks, his shirts, etc. I will do his laundry when I feel like it, but I am not in the least bothered whether he has clean shirts or socks and I do not iron anything of his or worry about his dry cleaning. When he does not perform house tasks to standards, I complain, nag and accuse him of sexism. Yep, I am the evil nagging wife, but it's easier on my emotional well-being that trying to be a doormat cum workhorse.

It just sucks that we women have to fight this fight.

DopamineHit Thu 17-Jan-13 15:41:45

If I'm honest, I'm similar to OPs DH. I like to think I'm doing okay but realistically I'm probably a bit crap. OK - I'll make more effort.

2 points (not meant as defences and only my experience, obviously):

1) DW has higher standards around the house than me (she agrees that actually I'm not terrible - but her standards are high). Thus whenever I do something, she finds fault and almost always redoes it anyway, often while I'm standing there having just done it. This is not helpful.

2) Yes, sometimes we do ask some bloody obvious question, like where is the toilet cleaner or what washing machine prog do you use. It's annoying, I'm sure. Don't get annoyed - bite your tongue and just tell us politely - there's a good chance we'll remember after we've been told once or twice. DW asked me 10 times how to attach a document to an email before getting the hang of it. We all have blind spots.

HotDAMNlifeisgood Thu 17-Jan-13 16:35:08

The problem with getting a cleaner is that it confirms his view that housework = women's work, and it also just means that the cleaner will do his share, while you continue to do yours.

Of course, this solution does still alleviate your workload, so you may prefer to give up on the principle of the thing and just go for the practical solution.

If it's his beliefs that you want to tackle, then I think the only way is to show him that this is a dealbreaker for you, by taking steps to leave (and meaning it). If you prefer the status quo, it fundamentally means that this isn't a dealbreaker for you, and that you prefer to do all the shitwork if it means staying in a relationship with him. Only you can decide what your dealbreakers are. But you certainly can't make him change, unless he decides to do so. And he will need a very, very strong incentive (such as you indicating through your actions that this is a dealbreaker for you, and meaning it), since your conversations so far have gotten you nowhere.

expatinscotland Thu 17-Jan-13 16:35:45

See, this would have been a dealbreaker for me way back in the dating stage. I guess, well, my dad was an Army drill sargeant. He'd always say, 'You see someone living like swine, that's probably what you've gonna get.' I'd think, 'If he can't even be bothered to look after himself half-way decent, he must be a real zero in maturity stakes.' Some people don't think it's a priority, but you know, it is if you have a modicum of respect for yourself. And if you don't have it for yourself, there's not much chance you'll be able to demonstrate it for others.

So yeah, I'd go back to someone's flat and it was a complete tip, or their car, it raised big alarm bells for me.

Sure, no one's perfect, but if a person can't, figuratively, wipe his own arse properly, you can't really expect him to do it for someone else.

badinage Thu 17-Jan-13 17:34:03

Blind spots miraculously disappear if you do something often enough. If after years of living independently you still don't know where the toilet cleaner is kept or how to work a washing machine, it just means you don't clean toilets or wash clothes regularly enough.

BertieBotts Thu 17-Jan-13 17:36:09

I think the standards thing is a red herring. Sure, some people have impossibly high standards and they could probably stand to relax a little if their DP doesn't quite live up to them, but this doesn't sound like it's the case for the OP. He might have low standards personally for mess etc, but he needs to respect the fact that it's not OK to expect another person (and especially children) to live in the same way - in fact with DC it's vitally important because SS tend to take a dim view of people living in a pig sty all the time. Does he want to make it difficult for his DC to do homework because they can't find a clear space to do it on? Make them too embarrassed to bring friends home from school? Or make it difficult for a little one to crawl, or leave things lying around for a baby to put in their mouth? DS tripped on a glass I'd left on the floor when he was 3 and cut his face open. That was an eye-opener, and that was me being quite tidy - I suddenly got a lot more so!

So, either:
1. He thinks these scenarios are perfectly fine, in which case, he's not exactly being father of the year here.
2. He hasn't thought about it in that way at all, ie, he's only thinking about how it impacts on him - selfish.
3. He would notice these if they happened and would agree it's an issue, but he thinks that the magical housework fairy comes and does it all, so the problem of "mess being bad" doesn't occur to him.
4. He is aware of all of the above, but he knows that you will do it, and he doesn't really care about the extra work that is for you.

There are minimum standards that need to be kept for the house to be safe and appropriate for the DC, this is nothing to do with personal standards, it's just basic hygiene and safety as well as respect for other people.

expatinscotland Thu 17-Jan-13 17:38:27

'Blind spots miraculously disappear if you do something often enough. If after years of living independently you still don't know where the toilet cleaner is kept or how to work a washing machine, it just means you don't clean toilets or wash clothes regularly enough.'

And if they're not doing it for themselves, chances are, things aren't going to be any different if they move in with you, you procreate with them, etc. Sure, there are many cases in which a person changes after marriage, having kids, with time, etc. but someone who lives like a complete and utter minger on their own is who they are.

BertieBotts Thu 17-Jan-13 17:40:13

Well, or someone has different ideas on where to keep things. I always keep bin bags in the cupboard under the stairs, although occasionally leave them in about 3 places around the house if 've used one and not put the roll back. When DP was here he used them and put them in the cupboard under the sink - I was lost for ages because I didn't even think to look there!

Rch810 Thu 17-Jan-13 18:25:06

had to laugh out loud when I read this as until recently I could have written this! I have been having a really hard time at work and this has made him have to help me more......we will see how long it lasts......good luck!

Twattergy Thu 17-Jan-13 20:31:03

Get the cleaner. He'll quickly calm down about it once he realises that the sky hasn't fallen in as a result. Plus you will feel at least a bit more in control. Putting your foot down about that will help you put foot down about other things.

Katisha Thu 17-Jan-13 20:57:01

I tend to agree with op that getting a cleaner doesn't make that much difference. My suspicion is that people who like having a cleaner have a pretty neat house in the first place, not full of old stuff and messiness! Prepared to be shouted down here!

Katisha Thu 17-Jan-13 20:58:24

On the other hand, getting the cleaner shows him you really do mean business. Hit him in the wallet.

Pilgit Thu 17-Jan-13 21:57:14

badinage - get your point about the withholding sex thing, however it is more (in my case at least) as the more it went on the more I felt like he was my child and, as I pointed out, I don't really want to screw my son..... Libido - can i recommend the rampant rabbit.

theoriginalandbestrookie Thu 17-Jan-13 22:26:57

Katisha our house is pretty messy and I find it very helpful to have a cleaner. Means that all those once a week tasks are dealt with.

Sure there is still laundry, school bags, pack lunches, making dinner and my particular favourite(not) planning what to eat for the week, but I can testify that even as a messy person it does make a difference ( if you get a good one)

FastidiaBlueberry Thu 17-Jan-13 23:02:02

"badinage Thu 17-Jan-13 10:35:34
I don't think getting a cleaner solves the problem at source.

Which is that for some reason, he sees housework as women's work.

Until you challenge that attitude and deal with it head on, it will never translate into sustainable change.

That's why he makes an effort for a short while and slips back.

This is fundamental.

Think about things that he does feel responsible for.

His job for example. Does his manager have to write out his job description repeatedly? Does he do everything that's expected of him for a short while and then revert to doing nothing until his boss gets on his back again?

Does he maintain his car? Does anyone need to nag him to put petrol in it or check the oil and water, or does he wait for it to break down?

It is no different with housework.

Except that he doesn't feel responsible for it.

He thinks you are simply because you're a woman."

Amen

AnyFucker Thu 17-Jan-13 23:16:03

Get a fit male cleaner

Sorted wink

expatinscotland Fri 18-Jan-13 02:02:27

It's not 'help' or 'helping'. It's doing your fair share in life.

With the important difference that the OP is running a business out of the home and that business is childminding.

So she doesn't need his permission, for business expenses like a suitable car to transport her charges for business or a cleaner to make the workplace suitable..

You'll never change this person, OP, because he's fundamentally who he is and showed this to you when you went to his flat before you married and he didn't even see himself as worth a fat rat's arse. He was perfectly happy living like pond scum.

That's by the by now. Would have been a dealbreaker for some, but that's water under the bridge now.

Forget rotas and managing him because, as others have pointed out, he doesn't need that at work, does he? No? Well he sees wifework as yours because you have a pussy.

So you need to outsource it because he's never going to change.

But do your children a favour and teach them that women are not domestic appliances because believe me, enough of us are bringing up our daughters not to accept partners who feel that pulling one's weight in life, however boring and tedious, is the domain of one person. Do your fair share or get knotted! See someone on their own who can't even wipe their own arse as an adult? Leave skidmarks because life is way too short for pisstakers. And love, love is respect. If you don't have it for yourself, you'll never have it for anyone else. That means working as a partnership, swings and roundabouts, give and take.

My daughter is 7 and learning this. My son is 4 and learning this. They live in a family and we're a team. We work together, in good times and bad.

The era of, 'I have penis, therefore wifework is not a priority,' is gone the way of final salary pensions, staying with one company for life and buying a house on one salary - the way of the dodo bird.

Just hire the cleaner and buy the new car.

And take a leave from Xenia's page: he has stuff to do, you have stuff to do. He doesn't do it, it doesn't get done.

Fuck it. You are both working FT.

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Fri 18-Jan-13 02:20:12

Hire a cleaner.

Sort the car out.

When he whinges about the cleaner simply tell him that yes 'he could have done it himself' but he chose not to. End of.

When he whinges about the car tell him you need it to do your job safely. End of.

It's clearly not about 'not having the money' it's about 'not wanting to spend the money' and until now you have let him 'win' because it 'appeared' that you would be going against his will to do those thing, but actually - he's been going against your will not doing these things. You should have equal say and up until now you haven't.

Tell him you will keep outsourcing the things he says he will do, if he doesn't do them himself. He might actually believe you now smile

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Fri 18-Jan-13 02:24:16

I don't think you can change the 'thinking for everyone' stuff, but don't take his stuff on too.

MrRected Fri 18-Jan-13 03:14:56

Well said Expat!!

Op this is the best advice you will get...

mirai Fri 18-Jan-13 03:40:01

I think everyone who's going on about a cleaner is missing the point. I don't think the OP minds the cleaning so much as the constant, never-ending, mental commentary that she has...

Planning for the week ahead, who needs to be where and when
What needs to be remembered for the DCs? Is their PE kit clean?
Are we running low on groceries?
Must book that hotel for the weekend away!
Must get something to sort out that stain
If we put £X on the credit card this month we can pay it back with £Y in April
Can't relax with this cuppa, washing machine finishes in 10 mins and if I don't hang things out immediately they'll start to smell
Hmm must order some more batteries
Have to call my mum back about that problem she's having
This skirt has a rip that needs sewing
When did we get that chicken? Is it still in date? What goes with chicken do I need to go to Tesco's?

All of this wifework that men just do not do. A cleaner won't help with it. I wish I knew what did!

Katisha Fri 18-Jan-13 08:04:31

Yes. Get the cleaner but not do much for the actual cleaning as to make the point that something Has To Change. Ditto car.

Katisha Fri 18-Jan-13 08:05:51

so much not do much. Wish my phone wouldn't do this...

FergusSingsTheBlues Fri 18-Jan-13 08:12:33

I have another adorable but lazy man. My solution was to teach my son (helicopter style) how to clean up after himself. It has shamed dh into action, praising a 2 year old for scraping his plate/cleaning up his spilt milk/toys.

Another thing that worked was i refused to pick up any of his clothes for over a week. When he ran out of socks, i asked him innocently whether he had put them in the basket?

I dot think getting a cleaner is the solution. Its about respect. His mum did EVERYTHING for him, but im not as nice.....

FergusSingsTheBlues Fri 18-Jan-13 08:15:15

You both work FT? Just sa that...you dhould be getting a cleaner! Your spare time is too precious!

amillionyears Fri 18-Jan-13 08:28:22

This is what I would try.
Look into the whole cleaner issue. Tell him you are doing that. Find one you like, how many hours they would do, price etc. Inform him a bit as you go along. He cant complain about you looking can he?
You can tell him you are just looking at this stage, because you are.

Then present him with the details [when he is in a good mood]. Tell him how much, how many hours you have worked out you want them for, which chores etc.

Sometimes, people need some time to adjust their thoughts.

Might work? Good luck!

FastidiaBlueberry Fri 18-Jan-13 08:39:28

I must admit I find the idea of a man being adorable or lovely or whatever, apart from the fact that he has a most enormous sense of entitlement enabling him treat me like a skivvy because I'm not quite as human as him, really strange.

Cognitive dissonance I think.

MadAboutHotChoc Fri 18-Jan-13 08:51:04

Yup, adorable but entitled/lazy/selfish/sexist?

Yuk!

fiventhree Fri 18-Jan-13 09:04:00

He is selfish and there is also a bigger problem here, much bigger.

He thinks he is in charge. And also you think so too.

He is not your dad . If you need a cleaner get one, and just tell him. Try tling him how to run his job and see how he likes it.

No more chances- he's had plenty.

It took he years to learn, re the same problem, that he does t do it because he doesn't want to, and he thinks he's more important than you and that your needs don't matter. And there are no consequences to him of staying that way.

Until you put those consequences in place. Do NOT fear his disapproval. You are his equal

StrawberryMojito Fri 18-Jan-13 09:05:27

I think this guy obviously has his faults but I dont think he sounds deserving of some the nastiness on this thread. They both work full time, him with additional work twice a week, he still takes on the nightly bath/bedtime routine and the club run, both jobs OP hates. He hates housework, OP takes those jobs on. OP says she gets a 2hour break each day...does he? He is (extremely) frugal, she sounds (maybe) profligate...they actually sound like they are quite a good balance.

If you can afford a cleaner OP, get one. Just maybe wait until you've paid off the Christmas credit card bill first.

LemonDrizzled Fri 18-Jan-13 09:15:58

I lived with a man like this for 28 years. AT our wedding my DF said in his speech that H suffered from "simulated domestic incompetence!" How we all laughed at the time!

Many years later I came to see that he just didn't think someone as special as him should have to be bothered with taking out the bins, putting money in envelopes for school activities, picking up his dirty underwear or sending Christmas cards to his friends. After all he had me to to all that for him. Eventually it killed all my love and respect for him and I walked out. After a wobbly few months guess what? He manages fine! He seems to have clean clothes and a tidy house and only has a housekeeper and a gardener to look after him!!

Get tough now for the sake of your marriage. Don't let him get away with it. He learned this from his parents. You don't want your son to be like this do you? Or your daughter an exhausted distraught servant? Maybe go away and leave him in charge for a week. Tell him it will break your relationship! Because it might...

Miggsie Fri 18-Jan-13 09:21:29

Stop doing his laundry.
Stop organising anything he should and could do for himself.

Get the kids more involved in tidying...then when he turns up he can join in too. Always funny when a man is challenged by a 5 year old to ask what is wrong with them that they can't tidy up.

I don't know a solution to getting a partner to think about paying for lessons and dinner money etc - the trade off here is that DH does all the DIY and any carpentry needed around the house, while I do the organising extra curricular stuff for DD.

Your DH sounds a total drone - my friend left her husband as he was an extra child who would never grow up and she found life so much simpler without him.

Gettign a cleaner would be treating the sympton but would not be a cure.

FergusSingsTheBlues Fri 18-Jan-13 09:29:43

You didnt read my post properly....i fixed the problem. How? By shaming him and by letting him suffer the consequences of not putting his clothes in wash etc. And he has always more than pulled his weight with chilscare etc. Years ago he refused to make me a cuppa for me in front of his parents, i went ballistic at him later on and now get one handed to me every evening. You lot are too quick to write off men. They can be trained but you need to nip these irritations fast.

boodles Fri 18-Jan-13 09:30:18

If you got a cleaner could it help on your tax return, as you work from home, business expense or something?

MMMarmite Fri 18-Jan-13 11:10:51

"You'll never change this person, OP, because he's fundamentally who he is and showed this to you when you went to his flat before you married and he didn't even see himself as worth a fat rat's arse. He was perfectly happy living like pond scum."

Wow expat, that's a bit harsh. So his priorities when he was younger weren't being lots of things and making his flat look nice. Nothing wrong with that, some people don't care that much about material things. Obviously with young children and a childminding business in his house, his attitude to upkeep now needs to change. But don't write him off as useless just because in his younger days he wasn't bothered about having lots of nice stuff.

MMMarmite Fri 18-Jan-13 11:11:18

* buying lots of things

ginnybag Fri 18-Jan-13 11:54:17

Ok, come at him from a business perspective.

Your mindees parents are paying you to care for and spend time wt the DC.

They are not paying you to:

Wash your husbands pants
Clean up his mess
Pay his bills
etc etc etc

Therefore, the only 'home' related tasks you should do during your working day are those relating to you business and mindees.

(I am aware it's not that cut and dried but bear with me....)

Ask him how his Boss (the person who pays him!) would react if he started doing housework for you during his work days. Point out that your mindees parents could do the same.

Your home isn't your home for 11 hours of the day, it's your office - how many offices don't have a cleaner?

And your car isn't the family car - it's your company car. And it needs to be reliable and safe, or you'll have problems meeting your job spec.

FastidiaBlueberry Fri 18-Jan-13 12:22:06

"You lot are too quick to write off men. They can be trained"

Like dogs?

Is it possible to feel respect for someone you think of as needing to be trained like a dog so that he can behave like a human adult? Would it be possible to feel sexual desire for such a low-achieving person? I just really can't get my head around this. Do people really have such low expectations of men that they can actually fancy one who needs to be trained and respect him as an equal? See, I think that expecting men to be that low-level, is writing them off. I'm sure some men can be trained, but I personally have no interest in the ones who can be and need to be. I'm only interested in the adult ones who I consider my equals, not some kind of low-achievers I can train. I think we need to aim higher, fellow MNers.

brainonastick Fri 18-Jan-13 12:30:41

Well, I think we all get house trained at some point in our lives, otherwise we would be feral. Unfortunately there are lots of mums (and dads) that don't think they should train their sons, only their daughters. So if your husband has never been trained, then you should maybe give him a steer to enable him to become an equal partner. That said, if they are resistant to change or can't see he need or it, then more fool them, they will end up with pissed off wives and ultimately potentially losing their families.

SweetSeraphim Fri 18-Jan-13 12:43:07

I agree completely with FastidiaBlueberry

I cannot understand the concept of training men. They're not some sub-species who need to be whipped into shape ffs. Why would you want someone like that?

With regards to the OP..... fucking hell, I really don't know what you can do about it. He can't be arsed to do anything, and basically just lets you get on with it until you nag him hmm Very disrespectful, and you need to sort it out.

badinage Fri 18-Jan-13 12:51:48

Agree with Fastidia.

The truth is, as soon as we accept something as our responsibility we make ourselves learn how to do it. Because we also accept others' judgement if we keep fucking it up and we accept there will be consequences for that.

It constantly amazes me the excuses women on Mumsnet make for why men who hold down jobs, drive cars and generally manage to put one foot in front of the other on leaving the house, undergo a sensory skills drain when they walk back through the front door.

It's not because they can't see tasks that need doing, or that they can't remember birthdays or how to work an appliance.

It is because they don't think they are responsible for it because in their view, it's women's work.

LemonDrizzled Fri 18-Jan-13 13:00:53

Good post badinage

I'm glad you youngsters are wising up!!

LurcioLovesFrankie Fri 18-Jan-13 13:08:52

Agree he is an adult who is taking the piss.

Keep a diary for 2 weeks, record everything you do, everything he does. Include in what you do any occasion on which you have to prompt him to do a task. Put this down as "had to micromanage DH as he is incapable of organising/taking responsibility for his own workload." Couch it in this sort of management-speak to make the analogy with a failing employee totally clear (I am assuming he does not do this in his job/would not tolerate a subordinate or teamworker doing this).

First step - read this yourself and decide whether (1) "his whole attitude of expecting me to do the shitwork is disrespectful and a complete dealbreaker" or (2) "the plus points of him outweigh him being a complete manchild on this issue, but we need a cleaner to bring about a workable compromise".

If (1), sit him down, get him to read it, and issue an ultimatum - "shape up on a permanent basis or I file for divorce."

If (2), engage cleaner (to be paid for from joint account). Present it as fait accompli. If he kicks off, sit him down with the diary and tell him "it's the cleaner or I file for divorce."

MustafaCake Fri 18-Jan-13 13:13:55

Just a warning about getting a cleaner...... it is lovely but does not solve the problem.

S/he will ensure your house is clean and tidy when s/he leaves but with kids and messy adults around it will within hours soon become messy again. Also the cleaner will not do the cooking/washing/ironing/food shop/domestic tasks and they will still fall to you.

So get a cleaner by all means but do not expect it to change your life as there will still be a million things for you to do!

amillionyears Fri 18-Jan-13 13:19:54

re men training.
Yes some of them need to be trained.
As do some women to be fair.

In an ideal world, find out what they are like before you marry,move in with them, or get pregnant by them.
But if you havent done that, then you can end up in the ops postition.

Worse, some of them seem like one thing, but further down the line, they can reveal their true colours.

Perfect men or perfect women dont exist.

The other way of doing things is to remain single.

BertieBotts Fri 18-Jan-13 13:25:17

Sorry, I think adults need to take responsibility for themselves. I am shit at cleaning, keeping house, generally being organised. I don't expect any other adult to teach me to do these things, especially not a partner. DP made it quite clear early on in the relationship that he didn't want to be my life coach - as someone said earlier on, how can you respect someone when you're having to teach them really basic skills of adult life?

Sometimes I will ask him for advice on stuff he's better at than me, but generally I make my own way, asking for advice on here, trial and error, looking at websites (flylady etc) - it's my responsibility, it's not someone else's to teach me. So I didn't learn as a child/teenager? That's kind of tough grin I'm trying to teach DS so that won't be a problem for him!

FastidiaBlueberry Fri 18-Jan-13 13:33:31

Well, yeah.

I didn't learn how to be a parent from my parents - they were shit at it. So I had to learn how to do it from books, peers, Mumsnet, articles, etc.

It was my responsibility to learn the ropes. No-one else's.

You can miss out on learning stuff when you're young, but if it's stuff you need to function as an adult, a partner, a parent, a worker, a colleague, when you're older, it's no-one else's responsibility to teach you - it's your responsibility to educate yourself.

brainonastick Fri 18-Jan-13 13:35:11

Well, dh (dp then) couldn't cook when we first got together. I made it very clear that I would not be doing all the cooking and it was unfair. He agreed, and gradually picked up the cooking skills with me helping him. Now he does all the cooking for the kids, most of it for us, and cooks Christmas lunch, roasts etc.

I would call that 'training', and don't see what's wrong with it. We had a skills deficit, he learnt, we overcame it. Just the same as if I had some inclination how to learn how to set up the computer etc. It's just helping each other to do stuff, like friends and partners should do.

What would be wrong is, after my initial shit fit raising of my concerns, he didn't take it on board and change. Which is the situation the OP is in.

EldritchCleavage Fri 18-Jan-13 13:39:47

OK, it's about more than sexism/housework, though that is definitely in there.

I am the stonewaller in my marriage. DH is the spender-activist who makes me very nervous with his boldness about debt, buying stuff etc. It is a big problem and we are working on it together.

This is a communication issue and also a power issue. Stonewalling is a very big problem. It means sabotaging decision-making and reserving the power to veto decisions rather than negotiate through them. But then, acting unilaterally is exactly the same. So I would try and tackle it on those terms. You both need to arrive at a means of functional decision-making. (Functional does not mean that both of you will absolutely like every decision unreservedly). And crucially, if you decide something together, neither of you should back-track. That's pretty corrosive in a relationship, I think.

I would also talk about the underlying values that are driving your separate attitudes, like how you want to live, even if quite small things. DH now gets that I desperately need us to have more financial security from savings, financial planning etc. I completely get that he cannot put off all progress and change to some unknown future date, he wants a concrete plan of action for now, and that will involve some spending/debt.

FastidiaBlueberry Fri 18-Jan-13 13:40:21

Yes that sounds more like training in the sense of a worker in the workplace getting trained on how to do stuff.

I'm much more comfortable with that concept of training, than the training like dogs concept. grin

Interesting how the word "train" can have such different connotations...

FastidiaBlueberry Fri 18-Jan-13 13:43:46

Sorry x posted with Eldridge.

FergusSingsTheBlues Fri 18-Jan-13 14:01:12

fastidia, not trained like dawgs! Tis an unfortunate fact that many foolish mummies in previous generations did not expect much from their sons in terms of domestic input. My dh is one of them, sadly. My son is showing promise as a tidy wee boy because he is beginning to do things automatically. My dh is pretty good now, but the first couple of years consisted of me saying things like "empty the dishwasher please" "can you make the bed" etc cos im no skivvy. The final hurdles are breaking the socksonthefloor habit.

Whats wrong with the word training? Hes trained me to be more careful eith money, by nature i chuck it about and hes a tightfisted git in some ways, so we are a good match. We can all learn from our partners.

badinage Fri 18-Jan-13 14:07:21

Foolish mummies?

What about lazy, sefish and entitled Daddies?

Why don't you mention them eh?

Stop blaming women for men's behaviour

God give me strength.......

brainonastick Fri 18-Jan-13 14:09:04

I think Eldritch has hit the nail on the head with the idea of 'functional decision making'. Whatever the problem, the partners in a relationship need to be able to discuss and agree on a course of action like adults, including making some compromises for the mutual benefit of both. It sounds like the OP is the one making all the compromises here, and the dh is making none, and doesn't feel that it is important that he does so. That's the problem in a nutshell.

FergusSingsTheBlues Fri 18-Jan-13 14:16:46

Whether we like it or not, most of the men who do f all around the house were raised by indulgent mothers who let them get away with it. And most of us im sure had mothers who did the vast majority of the housework and child rearing while dads went out to work. And some of those mothers happily slaved after their sons like they did their husbands.

My husband is 40. He had a typical seventies upbrining in that sense. Im quite sure that any families where fathers were enlightened and pulling their weight around the house in those days were NOT raising useless boys. My husband was spoiled. My son is not.

expatinscotland Fri 18-Jan-13 14:51:50

'But don't write him off as useless just because in his younger days he wasn't bothered about having lots of nice stuff.'

Where did I state that material things and 'lots of nice stuff' has anything to do with looking after yourself such as picking up your own dirty clothes, throwing away your wrappers, etc. All the things that make a place not look like a hovel?

And look how he is now. An adult who can't be arsed to take basic care of their lives is . . . an adult who can't be arsed to take basic care of their lives.

I don't find anything adorable or lovely, either, about laziness.

InNeatCognac Fri 18-Jan-13 15:08:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

badinage Fri 18-Jan-13 15:11:21

Ok if we're talking in generalities and stereotypes here and you're saying that seventies mums did everything in the home and expected their kids and husbands to do fuck all, how come so many of their 40-something daughters learnt how to clean a loo and use a washing machine when they got a home of their own?

Neither of my parents showed me how to do those things, but I had to learn as soon as I became a responsible adult. If I still couldn't or wouldn't do those things in my forties, I can't see many men blaming my mum or dad for indulging me. They'd quite rightly blame me for being a lazy fuckwit who saw it as someone else's responsibility and not mine.

expatinscotland Fri 18-Jan-13 15:18:42

My idea of a hovel, and I saw a few in my dating days, and also hovel cars, is a real mess. People who don't seem to know what a bin is, or bleach or soap.

Flisspaps Fri 18-Jan-13 15:27:41

Yay for the new car. Good work grin

theoriginalandbestrookie Fri 18-Jan-13 15:41:56

So glad you got your new car - so important to have a reliable one in this weather.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Fri 18-Jan-13 15:52:07

Yy badinage. These men whose indulgent mums did everything for them - did they live at home till they got married? Or did they spend at least some time in halls/bedsits/flat shares and therefore have to learn some basic life skills if not already taught.

I never had a hoovering lesson, a washing up lesson, a cooking lesson except at school. I figured it out, same as DH did.

Also to the PP who mentioned different standards not being the problem - DH is much tidier than I am and that is a bit of a problem (he does blitzes, I do a bit at a time). That's different standards. But we both like to eat, to go to work in clean clothes, to not scrape dried food off our plates before we eat - so we both cook, launder and load the dishwasher. Different standards there would be one doing beans on toast and the other beef Wellington, not one doing nothing while the other does everything.

TreadOnTheCracks Fri 18-Jan-13 15:52:17

Try leaving the laptop open on this page?

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-528682/Men-housework-sex-wives.html

I hope you find a solution.

My DH has his set jobs which he does,, bed changing, bathing kids, bins etc, but I did have to put my foot down, throw a few strops (and show him this article) to get there.

TreadOnTheCracks Fri 18-Jan-13 15:52:31
ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Fri 18-Jan-13 15:54:43

OOh lovely smile

What did he say - or hasn't he seen it yet?

InNeatCognac Fri 18-Jan-13 16:17:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FastidiaBlueberry Fri 18-Jan-13 16:23:46

"most of the men who do f all around the house were raised by indulgent mothers who let them get away with it."

So their fathers didn't have any input into their upbringing then?

JustFabulous Fri 18-Jan-13 16:33:06

But you can't. As you are knackered and you have a whole thread about it.

OneMoreChap Tue 22-Jan-13 21:06:47

TreadOnTheCracks

Oh please! A link from the Daily Fascist? that, moreover says:

A survey found that "house-husbands" who do laundry, washing up and ironing also spend more time in bed with their female partners as a reward for their work.

Incidentally, OP, if he's making you feel like this he's not a lovely man. No cleaner? Who made him the boss of you?

Inertia Tue 22-Jan-13 22:24:10

Glad you are getting the car.

Totally agree with Expat and Ginnybag's posts above. Given what you've said about his approach to what he regards as wasting money,it might be worth pointing out that you'll lose a hell of a lot more than the wages of a cleaner if your childcare setting is deemed unsatisfactory by Ofsted. And that if basic daily clearing up isn't done then you'll need to have the cleaner come more often.

Your house is your workplace, and it needs to be maintained to appropriate levels of cleanliness. A cleaner won't solve all the problems caused by him not thinking about what needs doing, but it'll free up a chunk of your time to enable the jobs to be more fairly shared.

FastidiaBlueberry Tue 22-Jan-13 22:34:36

Well actually, every time a study is done it shows that there is a correlation between how much sex a man has and how much housework he does.

Of course some people are stuck in the mindset that this is because women as the gatekeepers of sex, are doling out "rewards" in the shape of sex. Sex is something they perceive as something women "give" men and men "get" from women, not something two people enjoy together.

But for people who don't buy that version of sex, the "more sex" thing is explained by the absence of that low-level simmering resentment that appears to be a feature of so many hetero-normative relationships and a genuine love and affection which means that women actually want more sex. It's very hard to respect someone who is freeloading off your labour and it's very hard to feel sexual desire for someone you don't respect very much. Also, if one person isn't physically doing all the housework, she's going to have higher energy reserves than another person who is. It's not rocket science, is it?

OneMoreChap Wed 23-Jan-13 15:01:35

* FastidiaBlueberry*

Of course some people are stuck in the mindset that this is because women as the gatekeepers of sex, are doling out "rewards" in the shape of sex. Sex is something they perceive as something women "give" men and men "get" from women, not something two people enjoy together.

as the Daily Nazi suggests, oddly enough.

As I said, if he's making you feel like this he's not a lovely man. and I'm amazed the OP tolerates him, never mind sleeps with him.

FastidiaBlueberry Wed 23-Jan-13 21:19:15

Are you?

I'm not.

Women are constantly told that to consider how much housework men do as a dealbreaker or a really important test of his character, is berserk. It's trivial, we're told, FGS if he's lovely in every other way, let that minor thing go - if you don't, it's because you're obviously shallow and have issues, this is simply too trivial to discuss. Regularly on Mumsnet, people are desperate to tell OP's with the same complaint, that this is not worth focusing on.

In that cultural context, why is it surprising that lots of women have a blind spot about this? That's what we're supposed to have.

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