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In asking for help in writing a letter to my dh re his attitude (may be long)

(188 Posts)
pingu2209 Sat 09-Feb-13 21:13:22

This sounds really pathetic but I would really appreciate some help in writing a letter to my dh re his attitude towards me and housework.

DH is really annoid at me about the state of the house and the amount of washing that has not been put away. However, he does't help me AT ALL in the house, he just moans and moans at what I haven't done. I can't speak to him about it as he is so angry and he goads me as I am talking to him. I want to write him a letter that he can read it again and my side of the story sinks in.

So many of you write excellent responses to posts on here, that I believe you could come with some great scentences and lines that I can use in my letter to DH.

My DH works full time in the City and commutes for 1 hour 20 mins each way. He has a stressful job and earns a good wage. I am a dinner lady working 5 days a week, 9 till 3 in the village we live in. I walk a mile each way every day, have little stress but it is an active job for 5 hours a day (plus my walk).

His salary pays for the mortgage, cars, utilities, food, clothes. My salary (£540/month) pays for the luxuries such as the children's after school and weekend activities, take aways, cinema trips, babysitters etc.

Before and after school I look after our 3 children, aged 5, 7 and 9. The 9 year old has SEN and has major temper tantrums regularly. Mon, Tues and Wed I have a full schedule of after school activities and either a Thurs or Fri we have a play date.

On a Saturday my dh takes DS2 to football for an hour in the morning, whilst I take DS1 and DD to swimming. Swimming is 1 1/2 hours (lesson followed by a swim club), DD doesn't swim so I have to keep her entertained for the 90 mins.

On a Sunday morning both boys play rugby for 2 hours. All of us go as DH feels it is 'family time' where 1 parent watches 1 boy and the other parent watches the other boy - and looks after DD.

After football and rugby I cook a meal for the 5 of us for lunch, do washing of clothes, shopping and tidy the kitchen. DH likes a roast on a Sunday too. I then look after DS2 and DD for the afternoon by taking them to the park, doing arts and crafts with them and doing their homework with them. Once that is done I start all over again on cooking dinner for the 5 of us.

DH is tired all the time and his way of relaxing is to sit in front of the TV. DS1 would easily sit with him and watch TV for hours on end. But DS2 and DD won't do that so whilst he is 'looking after DS1' I am trying to keep DS2 and DD entertained. But that is the 'harder' job. DH WONT not watch TV as he says it is his only time to relax after his extremely hard job.

DH does nothing. No washing, no cleaning, no cooking, no tidying of the kitchen, no shopping, no housework at all. He doesn't even put the bins out. He will eat a meal and leave all his dirty plates on the dining table and walks out of the room to the TV, expecting me to clear everything away.

All of this I do not mind, I would put up with all of it, have done for 16 years! What I can't stand is that DH gets into the greatest of bad moods because the house is messy with the biggest issue of all being that although there are clean clothes, they are not put away in the wardrobes and drawers. They are in a massive pile on the landing. We have to riffle through them each day to find what we need to wear.

I HATE putting the washing away. Every now and then I will sort it into 5 piles and each person has to put their own clothes away. The children hate doing it, but as I do everything else I really don't think it is too much to ask. However, DH COMPLAINS that he has to put his own clothes away too!!!!

I'm not saying I don't have time to rest and relax, I have about 1/2 hour in the mornings and about 90 mins on a Thurs and Fri evening. I spend my R&R drinking coffee and sitting in front of my computer on Facebook or Mumsnet! But I am allowed some time to myself surely.

DH is all pissy because he can't find the boys' rugby gear for tomorrow morning. Yes it is a nightmare going through Ben Nevis of clothes, but he does nothing so I don't think he has the right to complain.

Please help. Am I being unreasonable generally? Would you help with some lines that I can use in my letter?

pingu2209 Sat 09-Feb-13 21:22:49

Oh God, it really is long. Sorry I just wanted to give you all the information.

Believeitornot Sat 09-Feb-13 21:25:52

Not helpful but why not put the washing away? It's becoming a big deal but if it was put away little and often then it wouldn't blow out of proportion.

But as for the letter - I wouldn't know where to begin. Would he respond to a letter?

flattyre Sat 09-Feb-13 21:30:55

Putting the washing away is my worst job so huge sympathies there, but....I'm not sure about writing a letter, can't you try and talk to your husband. And how olds are DCs - do they out their clothes away properly? Is so why not continue the five piles and if DH's are the only ones left on the landing that's his problem.

pingu2209 Sat 09-Feb-13 21:34:01

Believeitornot, Primarily I HATE doing it, and as there is so much else to do it is easy to chose other things to do instead such as cleaning the kitchen, playroom, cooking a meal, hoovering the downstairs etc. That is of course when I am at home, I'm not at home all that much anyway.

A huge amount of my time is sorting out the children too. The boys fight and my DS1 has a lot of tantrums that I need to referee. It is very time consuming and draining. It isn't his fault, it is linked to his SEN.

Secondly, because I am not at home much I do at least 1 load of washing a day on the week days and then about 5 a day at weekends. It is a job I do 'inbetween' other jobs, I will pop a load in the washer and unload the dryer and swap the clean wet clothes with the clean dry ones. I then quickly dump the dry clothes on the landing.

There are 5 of us so there is a huge amount of washing, it only has to go 2-3 days and it has become a big job to do. It isn't as easy as keeping on top of it.

HollyBerryBush Sat 09-Feb-13 21:35:02

I cant understand why washing is dumped on the landing either.

Surely its not difficult to put in piles as you iron and shove in a drawer, rather than dump on the landing. I iron, hang it, and each person has to take their stuff and wardrobe it as I do it. I only do mass iron once a week.

Although having said that, I have a movable unclaimed sock pile that moves round the house.

But Im equally perplexed at a dinner lady working 5 hours from 9 til 3, do you get a lunch break grin

stifnstav Sat 09-Feb-13 21:35:52

Are you going to be penpals?! Why write a letter? Why not just speak to him?

Divvy up a list of things that you can each do, including some crap jobs you can do together such as putting the clothes away. DH and I put the clothes away and have a chat about stuff a few times a week, its nice to just have a chitchat and the bonus is the crap job gets done without too much thinking!

pingu2209 Sat 09-Feb-13 21:42:12

My hours are 9.30 - 5 (with half an hour for a break) - so 5 hours a day. However, the primary school drop off is 8.45 and a third of the way to the secondary school I work at. There is no point walking home as by the time I get back home, I would have to leave again to get to work in time, so I drop my children off and then walk on to work. I usually get there at 9.00 so I am on my feet working for 5 1/2 hours a day (but paid for 5!)

The reason for the letter is that over the years when we have had an issue that we can't resolve by talking, we write a letter to each other putting our point forward in a calm way. It has worked, honestly! It is a hard read the first time, but it allows us to reread and think calmly about what the other person's feelings are.

HildaOgden Sat 09-Feb-13 21:45:41

Cut back on some of the unnecessary luxuries and hire a cleaner to blitz the place for 4 hours a week.It will cut out all the crappy stuff.

Life is too busy and too stressful for you both to keep trying to do it all yourself.Choose your battles would be my advice.Cut out the takeaways and get a cleaner.

SamSmalaidh Sat 09-Feb-13 21:53:16

I find it outrageous that he expects you to cook for him and then just gets up and leaves the table! Disgusting behaviour! I'd make it clear that one person cooks, the other person clears up (with the children's help).

As for the washing pile, why not get 5 small named baskets for the landing and put each person's clean clothes in the right basket for them to put away?

So you have about 5.5 hours of free time a week. How much does your DH have?

BluelightsAndSirens Sat 09-Feb-13 21:54:20

We are a family of 5, I work tyke same hours as you, our children are around the same age (although no SEN issues here) and my husband works maximum hours 6 days a week - I also fucking hate putting washing away so this is what I do...

Cut back on their clothing and make sure no one is getting changed every 5 minutes or dumping clean washing on the floor to look like dirty washing.

When they come home from school/clubs they change into pjs and pjs are worn for a couple of times before being washed and they only have 2 pairs each which means they get washed, dried and re-used.

Jeans, school skirts etc are worn till dirty not washed after each wear - school shirts are fresh each day.

We only have 2 sets of bedding each so it's wash one use one per week.

I do a wash load at a time which means wash, dry and put away before I do another one, I have a basket of hangers to hang as they come out of the tumble/air dry.

As far as your DH leaving his plates for you to deal with you need to tel him its not on and that he is setting a bad example to the DC, every one should pitch in.

Does he think his job is more important than yours because he works longer hours?

That's bullshit btw, we all work hard in every role we do, house work is much easier if you both spend an hour or 2 on a Sunday doing it and that goes for sorting washing organising kits and uniforms before they are needed etc.

skullcandy Sat 09-Feb-13 21:55:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GreatUncleEddie Sat 09-Feb-13 21:57:07

If you fold the washing. It is just as easy to put it in five piles as one. But of course everyone can put their own away.

Roseformeplease Sat 09-Feb-13 22:01:39

Buy a box, or bag, per person. As it comes out of the dryer or is dry / ironed, put it in their bag or box. They then empty them into their rooms. I get my children to do this and I do mine and my husband's. But the doing absolutely nothing is appalling. Give him a list of jobs he must do:

Clear and lay table
Wash up etc

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 09-Feb-13 22:02:10

Dear husband,

Grow the fuck up, I a, not your mother nor am I your maid

Love wife.

That should do it.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 09-Feb-13 22:02:36

Am not a,

Arion Sat 09-Feb-13 22:04:52

Pingu, I think you should ask this to be moved to relationships.

People - she works, her lazy arse of a husband does NOTHING at home (apart from creating mess) and you are concentrating on the clean clothes pile and why she hasnt put it away.

Pingu, apologies if the comment about your husband offends but he does sound lazy and you sound overworked and in need of a rest. Even if you were a full time SAHM he should be doing more than he does, and as you work as well, there should definitely be a fairer split of household work.

Arion Sat 09-Feb-13 22:06:17

Ok, cross posted with some more helpful posters!

Wants4 Sat 09-Feb-13 22:11:45

There may be 5 of you, but you have a cleaner coming in once a week, and you are out most of the time, how dirty can the house be?
I have 4 dc so therefore alot of washing. But I keep my washing basket empty most of the time, that might mean putting on a wash at 9pm, but needs must.
I have eliminated ironing by careful folding and use of drier. Clothes then put in hot press, which is emptied once a day when I put all yesterdays washing away. Takes ten mins tops if you do it daily.
However, NO-ONE in this house would leave their dirty delph on the table for me to clear - right down to the two year old. Those old enough load the dishwasher, the younger ones leave their plates on the side. You have allowed your dh to disrespect you for too long. Don't bother with a letter, write a timetable for chores for EVERYONE- as simple as emptying dishwasher or putting out bins. And sit down together to discuss it. Also cut down on some after school activities or start sharing lifts with other parents. I also work part-time, can never understand why some people put themselves under so much pressure to be everywhere. This is your life too - but you don't seem to have any hobbies just for you? (Apart from MN of course).

CadleCrap Sat 09-Feb-13 22:17:38

Sorry OP, you're not really getting what you asked for - instead everyone is telling you to sort out your laundry pile. I understand the letter thing works for you.

If it is any consolation, my DH is a SAHD and does all the washing, but he doesn't put it away. It is obviously a univerally hated job.

What not start with what you wrote in your OP. He might not have realised the hours you work. He also has needs to understand active childminding and passive (ie watching TV).

pingu2209 Sat 09-Feb-13 22:19:16

Wants4 - I don't have a cleaner coming once a week. I don't have a cleaner at all. I'm not sure why you said that? The reason the house gets messy is because from 6.30am till 8.30am and from 5.30pm till 7.30pm 3 children are in the house - it may not be all day, but my children can wreck a room in 5 mins, think what they can do in 4 hours.

Personally I think my issue is that I do everything. If my DH did more around the house, it would then leave me free to do the washing pile.

I would still hate doing the washing, but at the moment I can genuinely pick any of a whole range of jobs to do rather than put the washing away.

pingu2209 Sat 09-Feb-13 22:20:58

I like the phrase active childminding and passive - that is good. He really thinks that sitting on the sofa watching TV with DS1 is enough. The children could be beating the cr@p out of each other infront of him, and he can zone them out.

HildaOgden Sat 09-Feb-13 22:21:49

Hire a cleaner.Seriously.It's the solution that would make both of your lives easier.

Working,commuting, is too short to argue about housework.Especially when there are 2 salaries coming in and no childcare fees.

whois Sat 09-Feb-13 22:22:47

I think your problem is more than the washing. Seeing as you both work, albeit you're not out for as long as him, he really should be doing some work at home too. At the very least picking up after himself and taking his dirty plates to the dishwasher.

Do you enjoy going to the rugby? Sounds like shit 'family' time to me. If he took all the DCs to rugby you would have a few child free hours and could blitz they're washing piles.

If you are looming for a way to improve the washing process rather than improve your husband, how about everyone has dirty and a clean basket. When there is enough for a wash take a basket, wash & dry and dump into the clean basket. Then it won't get mixed up. Also maybe supervise the getting changed times a bit more, make sure clothes actually ARE dirty that go in the dirty pile. A pre pubescent child shouldn't need a new shirt every day for school, and skirts/ trousers should last a week at least.

Can the family afford to buy in some help? Seems you could do with some and a bit of a rest.

pingu2209 Sat 09-Feb-13 22:23:14

But cleaners don't sort the washing and put it away though. I would end up having to 'tidy' in order for the cleaner to clean - tidy means putting clothes away. The job nobody wants to do.

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep Sat 09-Feb-13 22:23:29

Sorry, but the main thing I would write to your husband is, "Who the fuck do you think you are?"

When he's at home, all he does is sit on his arse in front of the telly and bitch about your housekeeping skills?
He just walks away from his dirty plates on the table?

I'm getting angry on your behalf, OP, are you not angry yourself that your husband basically sees you as a servant?

deleted203 Sat 09-Feb-13 22:23:30

I think sock and I may be sisters...

I'd simply say, 'I'm doing my best. If you don't like it, then either chip in and help or piss off'...

whois Sat 09-Feb-13 22:26:02

Ps I HATE putting washing away too... My own washing is still on the drying rack from last Sunday and I'm about to be forced to sort it as I've put this weeks washing on!

pingu2209 Sat 09-Feb-13 22:27:10

Whois - I do enjoy going to the rugby. The boys love rugby, I want to be part of their rugby, I want to support them in the things they enjoy doing... even if it means standing in the pouring rain for 2 hours in a muddy field! For me to not go to the children's activities and stay at home to do the cleaning feels 'demeaning' to me. I'm not sure why I feel that way, but I do.

HildaOgden Sat 09-Feb-13 22:28:57

If the cleaner is taking care of all the other household tasks,then it frees up a hell of a lot of time to put clothes into a wardrobe.

It sounds to me like you are both using this issue 'who puts the clothes away' as an excuse to row,when really the true problem lies elsewhere.If that's the case,and you make the letter all about clothes-sorting,then you will just sound irrational I think.

frustratedworkingmum Sat 09-Feb-13 22:33:27

OMFG! i cannot BELIEVE people are giving the OP advice about putting the fucking washing away when her DH does FUCK ALL in the house. Have i walked into a parallel 1950s universe?

Fuck the washing - Im the same, i LOATHE putting it away, i refuse to stand and iron too - life is TOO SHORT for that shit, if something is particularly creased then i iron it other than that, its not done - saying that DP is a builder so lives in jeans and t shirts so he doesn't need shirts ironed, but that would be the thing, if HE wants his shirts ironed, i would, SHOCK HORROR point him in the general direction of the iron and probably ask him to do mine while he was at it.

I was going to say show your DH this thread but i think there must be something in the water that has addled some of the other posters brains as they have completely misread the OP.

Hire a cleaner, he can pay half. That should help, you could ask her/him to put the washing away for you if its THAT important. If it doesn't bother you then he will have to suck it up, or maybe do it himself. You are a wife and mother, not a skivvy!

mrsstewpot Sat 09-Feb-13 22:37:20

Why the hell are folk giving out handy housework tips or suggesting hiring a cleaner or even suggesting OP gives up family time at the rugby so she can stay at home and do yet more housework?!!!

Am I missing something? OP's OH does nothing, sweet FA, to help around the house!

Agree with boulevard - are you not angry OP? You need to challenge his attitude.

My first thought is: why are you working an extra hour for free each day at work? If you have to get there early, make yourself scarce so that you don't get roped into starting duties before your official clocking on time.. Read the paper, have a cup of tea etc. You don't sound like u get much time to yourself so make that half an hour for you. Or make them pay you for it and the extra money might pay towards a cleaner!!!

SamSmalaidh Sat 09-Feb-13 22:40:17

You need to work out how much down time he has vs. how much you have. It doesn't matter who earns more, or what proportion of your time is spent on paid work/childcare/housework, so long as you both have equal amounts of free time.

Expecting you to behave like a waitress in your own home is just disrespectful though.

whois Sat 09-Feb-13 22:41:48

Whois - I do enjoy going to the rugby. The boys love rugby, I want to be part of their rugby, I want to support them in the things they enjoy doing

Ok that's cool, wasn't sure from your OP if you agreed with the family time at rugby thing or if it was your husband. That's great you enjoy watching yor boys.

Are you doing your husbands shirts? If so stop that and point him in the direction of a shirt service, usually by commuter train stations and in the city. Husband hands over dirty shirts and cash on the way to work, collects clean and ironed shirts on his way home.

Bit still, biggest problem is the lack of respect and fair division of labour.

Pingu - haven't read your whole thread but I totally get you about the washing. We always seem to have mounds and mounds of it, I hate putting it away as well. It's a never ending cycle.

Other than that, I can't really help. Both DH and I are lazy arses, but we both do bits and pieces. I work FT and he is a SAHD at the moment.

Sorry, that didn't give advice about your dh. I do same hours as u in school but have time to do bits between morning drop off and starting work which helps. Dh also works long hours but if he IS around then either he cooks tea or he clears up if I've cooked. Most of the time I have to do both cos he is very late though. At weekends he will do a food shop. Cook. Hoover. Irons his own stuff. Help with 1 ds's homework while I do the other. Etc. I do have to ask him to sort clean washing and he will do it but wouldn't think of doing it himself. All the other jobs I do. He has never cleaned the bathroom or dusted or made the beds. His standards are generally lower than mine I think but he would NEVER leave his dirty dishes on the table for me to clear away like a skivvy. I would throttle him!!!

He does need to do more. Maybe you need to go away for a few days and let him experience how much you do.

HildaOgden Sat 09-Feb-13 22:48:07

I suggested a cleaner so that both of them could do away with housework.

To all of you calling him a lazy you commute for 3 hours a day,do a full days work and spend your weekends at your kids activities?Do you honestly feel like doing housework too???

I didn't suggest that OP do the housework,I suggested they spent some of their hard earned cash (of which their is plenty spare for luxuries) to free both of them from chores,or at least to ease the load.

I honestly believe that a family with busy jobs,busy family life,and jobs that provide extra cash are actually being quite petty moaning about housework when they could easily 'outsource' it if they wanted a simpler life.Not from a sexist view at all....I just firmly believe this is an easily solved problem.

BluelightsAndSirens Sat 09-Feb-13 22:49:00

I gave advice about the fucking washing because it is a hateful job and I get that so offered advice.

I read the op and thought fuck putting up with that lazy bastard but couldn't think of anything constructive to offer so struck to the washing help.

Even without a DH the op will still struggle with piles of washing if she doesn't sort out er, sorting it out.

This is AIBU not relationships so yes op yabu to feel the need to write to your husband to ask him to stop being a feckless lazy entitled twat within the home.

Oh and stop pilling washing on the landing - it's hostile.

And I don't iron anything for DH because we are adults and can both use the iron.

BluelightsAndSirens Sat 09-Feb-13 22:51:09

It is lazy to not help out in the family home.

Commute or budget meetings all day aside, it's a family environment and everyone should want to help keep it running.

pingu2209 Sat 09-Feb-13 22:55:01

Whois - you will probably not be surprised to know that, yes, I iron his shirts every day. I know he won't use the ironing service because he is really tight on money and won't spend the money on it. Or a cleaner!

I don't iron all his shirts straight from the dryer (well they are on the landing arn't they !!!). My DH has so many shirts that if I ironed them all they would only get creased in the wardrobe (landing floor). Also he likes to choose his shirt each evening for what he will wear the next day. So I iron him a shirt every evening. Sometimes he will forget to bring one downstairs until just before we go to bed, so he will go to bed and I stay up and iron it.

I need to list the jobs I do that I do that he can do instead. I will then say that I will ensure the washing doesn't build up from Ben Nevis into Mount Everest on the landing, AS LONG as he does the following jobs.

1. Ironing his shirt every evening - that he can do himself
2. Putting the bins out and the recycling so it doesn't build up in the kitchen
3. Clear up the dining table after a meal.
4. Put the washing up in the dishwasher at weekends and emptying it
5. Looking after DS2 and DD on Saturday afternoon, rather than putting the TV on - he will hate this one more than anything.

A thought...... Yes, he works long hours and has a big commute but If he was single he would have to do a lot of the stuff for himself that you do now.Food shops don't do themselves. Nor ironing, dusting, cleaning the cooker. Hoovering. Cooking. Washing of clothes. Remind him of that fact. Either he starts helping out with some of that in your family home or tell him he can get his own place and do it ALL himself!!

nomorebuttons Sat 09-Feb-13 23:00:35

One thing that I found useful with my teenager when he behaved in a similar manner was giving him a choice. So, do you want to do job a) or job b)? Most of the time he'd actually agree to do either one or the other before he even realised that something had been asked of him.

SamSmalaidh Sat 09-Feb-13 23:02:15

He sounds horrendous! What kind of man expects his wife to stay up ironing his shirts shock

BluelightsAndSirens Sat 09-Feb-13 23:02:30

Do you have separate finances?

My DH has 6 shirts for the week and we buy new and Ebay the used ones every 6 months - I wash them and he irons them - he also irons all our Monday uniforms on a Sunday whilst I bathe the DC and sort their book bags out for the next day.

I cook, he cleans up afterwards.

Your DH needs a kick up the arse but I still maintain my first post about washing. smile

Yfronts Sat 09-Feb-13 23:02:41

List all the chores and get everyone to put their name to various chores each day. You and your DH are entitled to the same amount of time relaxing.

Agree that it's best to put the stuff in piles as it comes off the line/machine.

Invent some new rules for everyone - everyone to take their plate to sink/everyone to do chores etc. Sit down and discuss them and explain they apply to DH. Nominate him to cook the Sunday roast.

Stop picking things up after him. Leave his plate. Leave his dirty clothes on the floor.

BluelightsAndSirens Sat 09-Feb-13 23:05:14

Just picking up on point 5 - can you do something as a family?

Yfronts Sat 09-Feb-13 23:05:25

Agree get a cleaner too.

But can you go away for a few days to enable him to understand how much is involved in looking after the kids/house cleaning/cooking. I know he works long hours but so do you.

ledkr Sat 09-Feb-13 23:06:17

He sounds like a controlling sexist arse to me. I'd be doing fuck all for him to be honest. Who dies he think you are his wife or his fucking skivvy?
I can't believe people are giving op advice on putting the washing away why can't he put the washing away?
I probably do a bit more than dh Cos I'm part time but he appreciates how hard it is looking after the dds as he does it himself when I work.
If he comes in to a mess we tackle it together or he baths kids while I get on.
Yesterday the house was a shithole when he got in as dd1 was ill so I'd was looking after her and dd2 who is a menace.
He started helping tackle the kitchen as soon as he came home.
It's OUR house and OUR children so why wouldn't he?

Yfronts Sat 09-Feb-13 23:07:33

1. Ironing his shirt every evening - that he can do himself
2. Putting the bins out and the recycling so it doesn't build up in the kitchen
3. Clear up the dining table after a meal.
4. Put the washing up in the dishwasher at weekends and emptying it
5. Looking after DS2 and DD on Saturday afternoon, rather than putting the TV on - he will hate this one more than anything.

Agree with all this. He should also cook a main meal - a roast to give you a break from cooking.

ledkr Sat 09-Feb-13 23:09:47

dh likes a roast on a Sunday does he indeed?

And why the hell are you cooking again after a roasts if we have Sunday lunch then it's boiled eggs for tea.

Yfronts Sat 09-Feb-13 23:10:07

OK so to help him along, you need to with immedicate effect

1 stop ironing his shirt
2 Stop putting the bins out and recycling
3 Leave his plate on the table
4 Stop emptying the dishwasher at weekends
5 Hide the TV

pingu2209 Sat 09-Feb-13 23:16:00

He really won't understand my view on this. He really can't see what is wrong in his behaviour. It will end up in the biggest row going.

expatinscotland Sat 09-Feb-13 23:17:45

FFS, does he think he lives in a fucking hotel with concierge services and is dining in a restaurant every night?

You stay up to iron a shirt for him? He leaves the table like you're a waitress?

Just no.

And he's tight with money?

expatinscotland Sat 09-Feb-13 23:19:29

'He really won't understand my view on this. He really can't see what is wrong in his behaviour. It will end up in the biggest row going.'

Then don't do it! Leave his fucking plate at his seat and he can stack another one on top of it.

ledkr Sat 09-Feb-13 23:22:08

So what pingu? Let him row. Tell him calmly and once that you will not be doing these things anymore as you have realised you are doing more than your fair share and the fact that he expects you to do everything for him. Point out that he'd be doing these things himself if he didn't have you.
Then just stick to it like glue. Let him rant away.
The bit about him liking to pick his shirt and getting you to iron it is very telling. It makes him Sound like a pompous self entitled prick of the highest order. Ask him why he feels it is your job to iron something which he wants to wear. Seriously ask him and see what he says.

SamSmalaidh Sat 09-Feb-13 23:22:12

He treats you like shit and doesn't see a problem with his behaviour... I'd ask myself if he's worth having around. What does he bring to your life?

ledkr Sat 09-Feb-13 23:23:46

I think I'm going now as this thread has made me feel as if I will implode with rage.

redbobblehat Sat 09-Feb-13 23:24:31

only letter i'd be sending would be from a solicitor divorcing the lazy swine

op you deserve a partner, do you really want to be with this person?

Wants4 Sat 09-Feb-13 23:27:30

Pingu - so sorry I thought I read you had a cleaner - getting over migraine.
Also did not put my point across very well. What I meant was you are all in the house evenings, weekends. Why are you doing it all? Children well capable of picking up things, putting clothes in wash, tidying playroom. You are not there on your own iyswim to be cleaning etc. DH is an adult?
Under no circumstances would I be entertaining children, cooking cleaning etc while DH watched tv.
But I am a very vocal bitch dragon.

manicbmc Sat 09-Feb-13 23:27:32

Get rid, OP. Then you'll just have 3 children to run around after, instead of 4. And you won't care if things are done. And he will have to have the children every other weekend so you can have a proper rest.

It sounds like you need one.

Crocodilio Sat 09-Feb-13 23:27:45

Then tell him to fuck off, and mean it. Your life would be easier without him in it.

BluelightsAndSirens Sat 09-Feb-13 23:30:02

You don't have 3 DC you have 4 sad

ledkr Sat 09-Feb-13 23:30:50

Op before I go let me say this. I faced death many years ago. I actually thought if die. I'd had a short but happy life with no regrets,lots if fun and time to myself and some great memories.
Life us just too short to it yourself through this.
Don't sacrifice your memories waiting on a fellow adult and being tired and put upon.
Seize the moment and make some changes.
If he still wants a servant let him find one.

redbobblehat Sat 09-Feb-13 23:59:35

also just imagine how much he would have to do, in how own place, he would have to do everything lol
that would serve him right

notnagging Sun 10-Feb-13 00:00:23

Op this was me a few months ago & I realised if I didn't make changes I was going to have a breakdown. I have 5 ds & my dh who works long hours. I decided I wasn't going to put up with it anymore. The problem is if you have been together for 16 yrs & doing everything it takes time & retraining to get people to see your point of view. Now the kids have a rota, I don't do dh's washing or ironing. I don't do as much washing as u. Everyone gets one load & they have a dryer in their rooms. If I did everyone's washing altogether that would drive me nuts too. I don't think you have to leave the bastard. You know your dh best. Write him a letter & explain his you feel. Good luck op

whois Sun 10-Feb-13 00:14:35

To all of you calling him a lazy you commute for 3 hours a day,do a full days work and spend your weekends at your kids activities?Do you honestly feel like doing housework too???

No, but when I'm in a 'busy' phase and at work until 2am I still manage to put my breakfast dish in the dishwasher at home. Admittedly I don't do much else until the weekend.

pingu I like the sound of your husband less with every post, the shirt thing is horrible and demonstrates a total lack of regard for you. Would be fantastic if you could stop that and get him to do it himself or use a service! I don't have any advice to try and make him see how U he is being :-( You sound v nice!

AThingInYourLife Sun 10-Feb-13 00:30:33

Dear Recommended Family Lawyer,

I need to divorce my lazy, disrespectful pig of a husband for unreasonable behaviour.

I need someone who can represent my interests and make sure I leave my miserable marriage with a decent settlement.

Yours etc.,


How does that grab you?

Iaintdunnuffink Sun 10-Feb-13 00:50:13

Wow, the only note I would leave him would be "who the fuck do you think you are?" I once asked my husband that for much, much, much less.

My Dad used to work long hours and spent lots of time travelling for work. I was brought up in a house where it didn't matter if you had just got off a plane, had exams the next day, hadn't done anything important, if you ate you helped clear up. You picked up after yourself and chipped in with cooking. I've had my own battles with my husband, he got worse when I went back to work! But I could never imagine living in a house where someone eats then regularly doesn't help tidy up, or is happy to sit there while someone irons their clothes.

Do you think he really recognizes your job as work? Of course it's only part time so you can just fit in everything else.

Iaintdunnuffink Sun 10-Feb-13 00:54:58

I used to commute more than 3 hours a day, do a full days work, be on call 1 week in 3. Then still managed to clean, wash, cook, buy presents, go out with friends, be pleasant and helpful person. I must have been fucking amazing or had special time bending powers

StuntGirl Sun 10-Feb-13 01:25:29

Have I accidentally clicked on stepfordnet? Why is everyone reinforcing what her shitty husband is doing? "No pingu you're not quite the perfect little housewife - iron and fold your laundry like your master husband demands, there's a good girl".

Firstly the nightly ironing - FUCK THAT. He wants a shirt ironing? He can manage to work that complicated piece of machinery The Iron I'm sure. Non negotiable.

Secondly the treating you like a waitress - FUCK THAT TOO. After dinner he helps clear the dinner table and wash up/load the dishwasher. Non negotiable.

The criticisms of your standards? He can help or he can get to fuck. Seriously.

Or you can go on living this one sided relationship weird master/servant dynamic. It's up to you.

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 10-Feb-13 01:32:06

Perhaps I was to hasty in my suggested letter,due to further info I have revised it a little.

Dear husband

Grow the fuck up,I am not your mother nor am I your cleaner however if you do not buck up your ideas I will become one of your creditors.

Clean up after yourself, learn some decency and how to work the iron and whilst your at it try to avoid being so vile.

Should you decide to ignore this request please deposit 20% of your total monthly income before bills, into my bank account by the 6th of every month and you will find the rooms to let pages in the local paper available for purchase at any good newsagents.

Love wife

TheMagicMumber Sun 10-Feb-13 02:04:43

Hmm, city banker, tight with money, controlling at home. What a horrible stereotype your husband is. He sounds like a dick.

Do get a cleaner. Don't ask, just get one. You earn too. It's not his money.

Our cleaner does washing and putting away. And ironing. It's brilliant.

Pingu - I agree that your post on 09 feb 20:55 is the right approach. What you are asking of him is more than reasonable and recognises that he works long hours and is not expected to pull his weight 50;50 but that you both deserve down time and that this is what's needed to achieve that and make you a happy family.

Stand your ground, it's non negotiable - good luck!

peggyblackett Sun 10-Feb-13 07:08:27

OMG this is an eye opener. Fark me, are we still living in the 1950s?!

Tell your DH and kids to get a grip and help out.

peggyblackett Sun 10-Feb-13 07:09:57

Oh and stop ironing. DH can iron his own work shirts, or pay for an ironing service. Ironing is quite frankly a waste of people's lives.

fuzzpig Sun 10-Feb-13 07:24:04

What a monumental arsehat.

I think with your very busy lives it isn't surprising you can't keep up with the housework. I wouldn't be able to manage all that. A cleaner would help.

Although it wouldn't help your H's shitty attitude.

Total side note op, but have recently minimised everyone s wardrobe (family of seven) & putting away sooo much easier!

ledkr Sun 10-Feb-13 07:38:53

I had another though if you are still there.
It is your job and duty to raise children who can form healthy relationships in the 21st century. Because not many families live like yours the next generation will think the same. Therefore your children will find it difficult to have balanced relationships as they just won't find girlfriends or wives who will wait on them. When I see my sons with their partners and one with his child I am glad their example was a balanced one.
I am also safe in the knowledge that dds will never be a mans servant.
I really hope you do something op.
Your husband really isn't typical of most men today.

ThereGoesTheYear Sun 10-Feb-13 07:39:21

I'm shocked at all the posters telling you how to be a 'better housewife' and ignoring the fact that your husband treats you like an indentured servant.

You should each have the same amount of free time each week (him sitting watching tv whilst ignoring a child is free time).
You should have the same amount of cash to spend on yourselves.
Even if the 2 things above are in place, the disrespect has to stop: he has to stop walking away from the table as if he were in a restaurant; and he has to stop handing you a shirt in the evening to iron.
How about you go to rugby and he stays at home to sort out the washing if it bothers him that much?
And for the purposes of calculation, since there is no break between school run and work, that's your working day. And getting the children up and dressed and fed isn't a hobby either, is it?

JakeBullet Sun 10-Feb-13 07:55:21

I agree he sounds like an utterly lazy arse despite the fact that he works hard during the week. You are his wife and he is treating you like a servant, my exH was like this (and note I said EX). Life was stressful for a year after we left and I would NEVER go back to him. Life with me and our DC is soooo much better without him.

How is your OH otherwise with you? You are not a skivvy, a waitress, a laundry service or a cleaner. You also work for the luxuries, personally Id be stashing some of that cash so I had a running away fund.

In the meantime get the children helping with things like tidying their rooms, making their beds and putting their clothes away. Hire a cleaner.....tell him this is non-negotiable and he either pays up or shuts up about the house....or even better rolls up his sleeves like a grown up and get cleaning.

flow4 Sun 10-Feb-13 08:15:26

Good grief pingu, how stressful. Threads like this make me glad I'm a single parent, to be honest.

I'm another one who thinks you need to do less and your husband needs to do more. I also think a change of perspective on a few key things might help. How about...

- Instead of thinking of your salary as paying for 'luxuries', think of it as paying for the mortgage and a cleaner. Your DH can pay for all the other bits that everyone tends to think aren't really needed anyway, so aren't valued.

- Instead of thinking that you work 5 hours per day, think of the fact that you work from the moment he leaves the house in the morning until the moment he gets back - say 7:30am-6:30pm, with 30 mins off at 9am and another 30 mins off at about noon. You therefore work the same hours as him, and you both need to share the 'evening shift'.

- Instead of thinking of his commuting as part of his working day, think of it as time he gets to himself. I commute about an hour a day, and I know I relish the head-space, and the freedom to listen to the radio, wind down and think before I get home and start cooking for the kids.

- Instead of thinking about what he doesn't do, think about what he does do. Is it enough for you, in the wider scheme of things? Does he have other strengths and redeeming features that you haven't mentioned here, which you like so much that mean it's worth putting up with him being a lazy arse?

As far as I can see, the whole point of being in a relationship when you have children is to share the work and have an ally with whom you can 'face life' more easily and happily. If your husband is taking more than he gives, then you might as well be a single parent... I can guarantee life will be easier than what you describe here - because at the very least, you will not have someone moaning at you for the way you are doing things.

Euphemia Sun 10-Feb-13 08:32:20

^ what flow4 said.

Grown up partners get on with what needs to be done. They don't just do what they feel like.

MidnightMasquerader Sun 10-Feb-13 08:51:39

Your mistake, Pingu, was to post this in AIBU, the last bastion of the Stepford Wives. I cannot believe the people giving you advice on how to do even more housework... hmm hmm

Your libido must be on the floor, right??

How can you POSSIBLY fancy someone who treats you like a skivvy, like a maid, like a servant??

Fucking hell, threads like this depress me. sad

<squeezes lovely, helpful DH>

flow4 Sun 10-Feb-13 09:03:22

Dear husband,

I am unhappy, exhausted and stressed. We have very different perspectives on a lot of things, and I would really like us to understand each other's perspective better. I don't seem to be able to explain to you face-to-face what is bothering me, so I am writing this letter. I hope it helps you understand.

Some of this may come as a shock to you, because I have been plodding along without complaining (much) for sixteen years. I'm sorry I haven't spoken to you about all this sooner. But really, I have only just realised how much it is bothering me.

I am doing much more work than you in this family. I don't think you will agree, because you think of me as working just 5 hours a day. But in fact, I am working - either in my job or with the kids - from the moment you leave the house in the morning until the moment you get back. The same hours as you, in other words.

Because of this, I strongly feel we need to share the evening and weekend 'shifts'. I am just as tired as you by 6:30pm, so I really do understand your urge to sit down in front of the TV and do nothing for a bit. Can we please discuss how we could both get some time to relax in the evening?

I hope I don't need to explain all the details of what I do, day in and day out, but I will if you need me to. I would like to believe you realised how much work is involved in looking after three children and a house, but I do sometimes worry that you might have forgotten.

We need to share the work that still needs doing when you are at home. At the moment I am doing all of it, and it is not fair. Things need to change. For instance, if I cook, you need to clear up. Sometimes you need to cook. And you need to take responsibility for doing your own ironing. I feel incredibly insulted and taken-for-granted when you walk away from the dinner table without helping to clear up even your own plate, let alone the children's. It makes me feel like a waitress or a servant, rather than your wife.

I would like you to think about what household jobs you would need to do if you lived alone: shopping, laundry, a bit of cleaning, at least some cooking... To be honest, I think you should be doing at least that much work around the house now - and probably more, since we have three children.

I have been asking myself whether life would be easier or more difficult without you. At the moment, the sad answer is that it would be easier. I would be tidying up after just three people, not four. I would be able to get the kids to help more, which at the moment I cannot do, because they can't see why they should do anything, when their daddy does not.

And most importantly, at the moment I feel like my life would be easier if I lived without you because at least I would not have someone moaning at me. It is incredibly stressful and sad, to cook and clean and wash and iron and care for you, and still have you moan about what I am doing.

So... I need you to do some very practical things: I need you to share the evening and weekend work with me, and I need to you stop moaning at me.

I have lots of ideas for dealing with specific tasks and problems. We can get a cleaner, for instance, if you don't want to do much more housework. You can use a laundry service, if you don't want to wash and iron your shirts. We can have a rota, so everyone - including the children - know what jobs they have to do, and when. I'm sure you will have other ideas too.

I really hope we can resolve this. I love you, and we have spent sixteen years together. When I married you, I hoped we would share our lives happily, and we'd be 'allies' together, each of us giving as much as we take. I don't think our relationship is like that any more, and I want it to be back like that - equal and balanced and supportive and loving. Do you?


ledkr Sun 10-Feb-13 09:09:00

Ok. Dh has to work tonight till 12. I have a day off.
I was up with poorly dd so he got up with dd2 who woke at 6.39
I woke at 7.30 and told him to go back to bed as he is working late.
As he went up he said thanks and leave the kitchen ill clear up.
I will make sure I do it so he can relax knowing he's got work at four.
Just an example if how normal people consider each other. Dh is a pushover and if I wanted to I could have stayed in bed until lunchtime get up ignored messy kitchen and watched tv. He's too nice to say anything and loves his kids so would see to them.
The fact is I wouldn't do this because I love him and care that he might feel tired and not have any time to himself. Simple really.

ledkr Sun 10-Feb-13 09:15:06

Nice one flow. I'd add "if you don't think the jobs I do and looking after the children are hard work then why do you avoid them when tired?"

Fucking hell.

Well he sounds like a charmer hmm

Dear DH,

In reference to previous conversation, it was established that you dislike housework and like to watch tv to relax.

Funny enough I have realised I also HATE housework, and prefer relaxing on the computer.

In order to ensure that we remain equal parents with equal rest time your new jobs that must ve done every day/week are x,y,z.

Do them or I will leave you.

Love pingu.

notnagging Sun 10-Feb-13 09:21:57

Silent mammoth. I did the same! I also minimised the cutlery, plates, cups & chucked out loads of junks. somedays we have a massive tidy up. I call it a flash mob clean ( there are 7 of us). Then the kids have to do a room each on a rota. It's not perfect but were getting there. Dh is my biggest problem with tidying up. Some men have been ruined by their mothers & he genuinely does not see mess. I am determined not to repeat that with my 5 boys.

flow4 Sun 10-Feb-13 09:22:47

IME, blokes don't 'get' rhetorical questions ledkr! hmm They seem to respond better to direct statements and questions, so I think it would work better to rephrase that as "I know you understand that it can be hard work looking after kids, because you don't want to do it when you're tired. So please can we agree how I can get a break from it when I'm tired, too?"

(Actually, perhaps it's not just blokes... I think I might respond better to that too! grin )

Perfect, flow, absolutely perfect!

Ledkr, he won't see her as being as tired as him so will think he's justified in having a rest.

RandomMess Sun 10-Feb-13 09:26:09

That is good flow.

Pingu as a short term solution folding crates are good for sorting clothes into and part of the bed time routine is for each person to but their own clothes away.

Good luck with making progress on the real issues.

TheLightPassenger Sun 10-Feb-13 09:26:59

flow, that letter is fab. Good luck OP.

NynaevesSister Sun 10-Feb-13 09:28:35

Of course a cleaner can put the clothes away! We had a similar issue and simple fact was OH just could not do his share and I needed him to do his share. So he pays for a cleaner who comes in once a week for two hours. You tell the cleaner what you want done. Get one who does ironing. Get her to put clothes in piles as she goes. First thing everyone does when they come in is pick up their pile and put in drawers.

Honestly even if all she does is the kitchen and hoovering it takes so much stress off. And then you can focus on the real issues which like yours were the passive parenting he did.

Hissy Sun 10-Feb-13 09:30:53

I've asked for this to be moved to relationships, as AIBU is not going to give the support and advice you really need. I often despair of the AIBU Spechul Blend of posters tbh.

This is not a housework issue. (get a cleaner) this is a dreadful lazy, entitled H issue.

He has no repect for you, no love, admiration, value. He sees that you have no right to down time, and will moan at being asked to merely put away his own clothes.

My abusive ex had similar issues when I asked him NOT to stuff the towels over the rail in a bunch, but to feed them flat so they could dry properly and not go musty. Oh the outrage he had!

Your's is not a marriage, it's a slavery contract. Writing a letter is a total waste of time, he'll never agree to take on work in the relationship that he feels is beneath him.

you're worn down, the relationship is seriously unbalanced, your children are also seeing that they too have bugger all to do to help you. You have to change this dynamic ASAP.

Get the cleaner, H can pay for it, seeing as he's doing Fuck all to help, and your DC put their own clothes away. As does H.

flow4 Sun 10-Feb-13 09:31:41

God knows why I'm single. I'm straightforward, direct, don't play games, can ask for what I want, don't get my knickers in a twist and am not at all terrifying to men ! grin

CatherineHMumsnet (MNHQ) Sun 10-Feb-13 09:32:33

Hi - we're about to move this thread over to Relationships, just popping in to let you know in case you're wondering where it went....

Bobyan Sun 10-Feb-13 09:32:59



Hissy Sun 10-Feb-13 09:33:05

I'd also suggest that you go for some counselling to talk all this stuff out. You need to gain some strength in this family.

Atm it's in everyone elses best interests that you don't get that strength, but tough tits to that, enough is enough!

Hissy Sun 10-Feb-13 09:39:32

I love TeWiSavesTheDay's letter, that's actually more reasonable.

No amount of appealing to his nice side will work. It looks like he has'nt even got one.

Strong, line in the sand, do this or else is the only language this poor excuse for a man will hear.

spiritedaway Sun 10-Feb-13 09:41:53

Suggest he takes the kids out for an hour on Sunday and you sort the clothes. . in reality it will take 10 mins so you gain cheeky mn minutes. I also suspect you may have too many clothes as we used to.

clam Sun 10-Feb-13 09:47:14

We are currently having a stand-off about putting laundry away. I'm meant to be doing it (sorting the non-iron stuff into people piles) but I said I'd do it when dh has helped me to change the sheets on the beds - or done them himself (I have a broken leg and can't do it alone). He hasn't done so, so the over-flowing laundry basket remains on the floor in the corner of the bedroom. He's made a couple of sarky remarks about it, which I've returned right back.

Are you scared of your dh, pingu?

Hissy Sun 10-Feb-13 10:01:42

spirited, this bloke is not going to want to take the kids.... Not his job, and besides OP needs no OFF time.

Clam, you have a broken leg? FFS, that is when you do FUCK ALL housework for crying out loud. Get him to give you the stuff to sort out into piles from the comfort of the SOFA!

HE takes it up and puts it away.

IF your iron can adjust to a position where you can SIT on a chair and do it, then OK, if not, HE does it.

How fucking dare he make sarky comments. You have a broken LEG ffs.

Hissy Sun 10-Feb-13 10:02:53

Clam, he sleeps on the bed, if he wants to continue to do so, he can change the sheets too. <mutters>

Rikalaily Sun 10-Feb-13 10:05:36

My dp doesn't do any laundry at all and not much cleaning but the difference is I am a full time SAHM and he does help out with other stuff. We have 4 kids, 3 at school, toddler at home, he works usually from 4am to 4pm (his job involves alot of driving and manual labour). He sorts the bins, all decorating, gardening & DIY, helps bath/shower kids, settles the youngest to sleep every night, cooks at the weekend and sometimes on weeknights, does all of the food shopping, walks the dog, cleans up most of the dog poop, loads the dishwasher, washes any pans etc that have to be hand washed and tidies the kitchen after dinner when I cook.

But most of all he never ever moans if something isn't done, he knows that if his clothes are not in the wash basket, they won't get washed. If I ask him to do something (like hoover up etc) he'll do it. I get a lie in on a Sunday, if downstairs needs hoovering he'll do it and he always cleans the kitchen then too if it needs doing (usually doesn't as it's done after dinner) at a minimum he'll empty the dishwasher, wipe the sides down etc.

I hate washing too and with 6 of us there is ALOT. I mainly keep on top of it by folding everything into individual persons piles as soon as it's washed and dried (rarely iron) so it's ready to be put away straight away. The school age kids put thier own washing away and they tidy thier own rooms, I'll give them a good once over every now and then but they know that the floor needs to be clear and the furniture neat and tidy so I can hoover and dust in there.

Your husbands attitude stinks and he needs a major kick up the arse, you're supposed to be a team, supposed to be supporting each other but for the last decade and a half you have been holding up everything, I'm not suprised you are knackered. Stuff the letter, just show him this thread. He should be ashamed about leaving his dirty dishes and clothes for you to pick up after him like a 3 year old, ashamed about leaving you to work into the evening while he sits on his arse in front of the tv and ashamed for moaning and whining at you when he could chip in and get on with it and everything would be done before the kids bedtime. Most of all he should be ashamed for behaving like a spoiled, entitled mummies boy, if he were single he's have to wash his own clothes, cook his own meals and clean up his own crap. You are his wife, not his skivvy and anything you do for him you do out of choice, not because it's your JOB and he needs to understand that and appreciate you a million times more.

EvenIfYouSeeAPoppy Sun 10-Feb-13 10:11:32

I started reading this last night and was torn between hmm and shock at the first clutch of posters telling you to just out the laundry away.

Now, I haven't read all replies <commits cardinal MN sin> but I do hope some people have pointed out that your H is setting the worst kind of example for your children, all of them, as well as treating you abominably?

The fact that your H more or less insists upon your DD spending her whole weekend trailing round after your DSes' activities also worries me - it seems she is being trained to learn that girls/women are not important in that respect too. It's really not fair on her.

poozlepants Sun 10-Feb-13 10:28:20

Dh can be a lazy arse as well and I would suggest writing down all the things you have down in the past week with the amount of time I spent doing it. Include all things family related including helping with homework etc. Give it to him and ask him to find somethings on the list to redress the balance. If he doesn't then stop ironing his shirts, washing his pants etc. I stopped ironing DH's shirts as he complained once too often that I did a crap job. He moaned and groaned but in the end he had to do them himself.
I am liking whoevers idea it was to have boxes for everyone clothes- I think I might do that as we all hate putting clotes away as well.


This was never an AIBU in the first place; I hope you realise that now. Its not about the laundry either; that's just the tip of a very big iceberg.

Your mistake has been to put up with his shoddy treatment for so long (perhaps thinking that once he was married to you he would change and be more helpful at home. Wrong on all counts there as has been proven).

Your H treats you as both a skivvy and underpaid and overworked housekeeper; how do you think your children view you?. Probably the same as he does. Your H is showing them what he likely learnt from his parents as a child i.e woman does all the housework whilst man works in office and does nothing at home. I would put a pound on it that his own mother runs around after her son and her H even now.

What do you want to teach them about relationships Pingu - all that both of you are doing currently is teaching them damaging lessons about relationships and how they are conducted.

superstarheartbreaker Sun 10-Feb-13 10:35:59

I can't believe the 'put the washing away' avice. FGS this women is doing EVERYTHING as it is. Ok your dh has a stressful job but so do you; putting up with his crap. Why can't HE put the washing away/

Imaginethat Sun 10-Feb-13 10:43:33

I know it's not the point but how is the rugby morning family time given that you are split, and when does dd get to have the others watching/waiting on her? Sounds as though the needs of the males in your house are prioritised over the females

wordyBird Sun 10-Feb-13 10:49:53

No you aren't being unreasonable. This is a deeply unfair situation. You BOTH work full time: in your case you work a long p/t day AND care for house and children, which is longer hours than he does.

However, he has time to himself while you do housework and care for the children. You have so little time to yourself you actually know how many minutes per week it is.

He does nothing at all, and doesn't even clear his own plates?? Surely you would expect your children to contribute more than that, never mind your H!

He complains if something isn't to his liking, rather than tackle the job himself....angry

You pay for children's luxuries out of your p/t salary, while he actually works in the City. Well correct me if I'm wrong, but salaries there tend to be far higher than average. Do you have an allowance yourself? Does he pay for children's luxuries too? Because, whilst he does pay the bills, I would imagine there is quite a bit left over; and I have a feeling you personally are not being treated as an equal, financially.

He is coming across as childish and entitled, and worse.

...and now I see Hissy has had this moved to Relationships - bravo Hissy. You are now in the right place, pingu, for you have a more serious problem than laundry here.

biff23 Sun 10-Feb-13 10:50:20

I couldn't cope with this at all. He's being very lazy and unreasonable. I had similar but dh would happily do things if I asked him, he just doesn't see what needs doing. We made up a rota for every chore, every day and split them. Worked a treat. We stuck it on kitchen door and there was no ambiguity. After laundry, I sort all clothes into piles on our bed, I deal with mine and dad's, dh sorts his and ds's.

You definitely need to sort this out or you will burn out.

pingu2209 Sun 10-Feb-13 11:02:41

My DD is still only 5 and she does Rainbows on a Monday, swimming lesson on a Tuesday and a church club on a Wednesday. Thursday/Friday we have a play date, sometimes it is her friends, sometimes the boys.

I want her to join Stage Coach for 3 hours on a Saturday but their age groups are 4-6 and 6-11. As she will be 6 at the end of July she would only be in their youngest group for a few months before moving up.

I am aware that DD doesn't do anything for her at the weekend, but she will do from September onwards.

I think I should be totally honest (not that I haven't been), but I don't do anything (other than iron DH shirt) after putting the DC to bed at 7.30. So I watch TV/look at my laptop whilst my DH is also doing nothing/watching TV.

My routine is generally to get up at 7 and have a coffee and scan of Facebook/Mumsnet for half an hour, whilst also getting the children their breakfast. The laptop is on the dining table so I drink my coffee whilst they eat. I then ensure they are dressed (no mean feat), have their dinner money, their book bags are all ready, teeth brushed, and get myself washed and dressed. I put a load of washing on and put wet clothes in the dryer before we leave the house at 8.30.

After school is manic. I am out (or going back and forth) of the house until 5.30 on Monday, 6.30 on Tuesday and 7.00 on a Wednesday. The only days that are more relaxed are Thursday and Friday. I have a coffee and look at my lap top whilst I am cooking the dinner and clean the kitchen up etc.

If I did housework after 7.30 it would mean more is done, but I'm knackared. I have been on the go in a physical job all day. I just want to sit down. Do does DH. I accept that the house is a mess and that is the quid pro quo of getting evenings to just rest. My DH doesn't accept that, he thinks I should do the housework/put washing away.

If I suggested to DH that he does more on a week night I know he would say that he was too tired after a long commute and hard stressful day. He can't see that I have also had a long day and I want to sit down too.

Lueji Sun 10-Feb-13 11:11:25

From previous suggestion (which was great):

Dear husband,

Grow the fuck up, I am not your mother nor am I your maid.
We are getting a cleaner and you will start pulling your weight around the house. Its state is just your responsibility as well as mine.
I suggest you start doing X, Y and Z (open to negotiation by exchange with other chores).

(and to finish it off, for the great MN motto)
Or, fuck off to the far side of fuck and then fuck off some more.
And, in the process, tidy up and clean your own home and handle the children every other weekend and 2-3 days per week.

Love wife.

PS - don't bother arguing this.

Hissy Sun 10-Feb-13 11:24:51

Darling, this is not about you clocking in and justifying what you do all day.

this is simply a matter of you saying 'I do everything, and IF i ask for help It's opposed vehemently'

That is your situation WRT the house/kids/life.

It's a symptom of your situation, it's the real, every day manifestation of being in a relationship with a man that has no respect for you or for his family, that is entitled to insult you and complain where as you are NOT.

Your boys are growing up in an unbalanced and WRONG environment, you are witnessing them being trained to go on and be the same as their dad, and your DD the same as you.

Either they will stay single forever as young girls of their age will be brought up with enough self respect and sense of equality to reject dinosaurs such as these, or better kick their arses into line.

Your DD will most likely end up in an abusive relationship. Her very life will potentially be at risk.

I know you are worn down, feeling beaten and helpless, that's what has happened to you these last 16 years, (and I'd suggest more, perhaps in your own childhood) but you have the strength to do something about this.

You don't know your true strength. Look at all this crap you have put up with your entire marriage? All this time and only know you are asking if this is crazy. It is, and YANBU.

From today, your eyes are open, you can see that no-one should live like this, and your children are suffering and will do so in the future, it YOU don't end this situation now.

I'm not saying LTB right now, but you need to send a clear shot across the bows, that he shapes up, or ships out. You have reached the end of aa very long tether.

I know the strength it takes to do this, but it has to be done. As I said earlier, you may need counselling to help you garner that strength, but there is no plan b.

If you can't quite do this for yourself, please do it for your DC, this is of of the WORST kinds of upbringing they could possibly have.

In the long run, any upheaval will be worth it.

EvenIfYouSeeAPoppy Sun 10-Feb-13 11:26:14

IIWY I would register your DD now for the 4-6 group, which she can presumably still be in while she is 6. 6-11 is such a huge span of abilities and interests that she might enjoy the younger one initially. She can move in a year when she's nearer to 7.
Presuming the boys do activities in the week too, is there any way of sharing ferrying with other parents? Your schedule sounds exhausting.

I think if you both pitched in in the evenings you probably wouldn't mind doing the laundry so much, tbh. It's a rare parent of young dc that gets to sit down at 7.30 IMO and E. (Ours aren't in bed that early, admittedly - it is a bit early for the 9 and 7yo perhaps? Or do they get time to read in bed?) I do more in the evenings than dh (he works 45+ hours out of the house, I work 25h from home and do school runs etc.), but he gets up first and gives the dc their breakfast, so I don't mind.

I don't think your dh 'can't' see that you're busy and tired too. I think it's more that he won't.

OneHandFlapping Sun 10-Feb-13 11:34:28

I feel like I've stepped back in time to the 1950s here.

Why are so many posters coming up with helpful suggestions for folding the laundry?

The main problem, Pingu, is that your DH is a lazy arse who thinks his sole contribution to the household should be financial (and doubtless sexual too). This leaves you with all the childcare and domestic shit, despite the fact that you work too.

There is no fairness or equality in your relationship at the moment, and I suspect he won't change.

expatinscotland Sun 10-Feb-13 11:46:17

Gees! My dad had to do his university degrees in the evening, after a full day at work. He used to go straight from work to uni, till 9 or 10PM, Mon-Thursday. So his day stretched from 6AM-10PM 4 days, a week.

On Friday after work, because he had no classes, he'd bring home a pizza dinner on the way home from work and then take over my sister and me. All day Saturday, he'd take us out of the house entirely. All morning and afternoon.

Sundays in between studying he'd muck in at home as much as possible.

Never complained. And he was in his mid-30s, no spring chook, when he finished. He said that's what a person does or don't become a parent.

When he had to work abroad, first thing he did was suggest a cleaner and gardener to help my mother when he was away.

No separation of finanaces, what he made was family money.

And he ironed his own shirts because he didn't see my mother as a maid.

They've been happily married nearly 49 years.

frustratedworkingmum Sun 10-Feb-13 12:52:28

Wow - Pingu you do not have to justify your routine to your DH, much less to a group of random women on here.

Instead of a bunfight - can we not just do what the OP has asked. She doesn#t want a row with her DH, she doesn't want to tell him he is a lazy arse (he isn't, he clearly works hard) but she wants to tell him that she needs him to help her more. If she doesn't this resentment is going to fester and take her relationship to a place that she doesn't want it to go. Not good.

If i were you pingu i would write something along these lines.

Dear Mr Pingu

I could really use some help, I know that you work really hard and give your job 100% and I appreciate that you do that for us. BUT i work equally as hard to facilitate that, i take care of the children and the house and I am happy in my role. However, I AM struggling with the fact that at the weekends I am not getting a break and would feel we were working more as a team if you could help me with XY and Z (or maybe be less specific if you haven't thought about what you need help with). Simple things like helping clear the dishes whilst you probaby just "forgets" to do it, would be of great help to me and make me feel less taken for granted. Also, if we pull together a bit on the chores it will leave more family time that we could spend together, not just watching the kids do their thing, but actually doing stuff together. Could we perhaps enlist the kids help here? get them to help by putting their laundry away? Then All i need to do is put it on their beds for them. I really don't like that particular job so some help there would be great?

I hope you don't mind me writing this down becuase i dont want you to think i am criticising, just asking for a bit of teamwork as we have got into this routine now and i'm finding it a bit rubbish. I appreciate that you are tired, but I am tired too - would you want to work 7 days a week with no rest? It would be too mundane and monontonous, and your company don't expect this of you. I kknow family life needs attention every day but working together will make it feel less of a chore at weekends?

Thankyou muchly, my lovely, sexy, DH, now - what shall we have for dinner tonight? Do you want to fetch some wine on the way home and i'll cook us our favourite meal and we can talk about how we move forward?

frustratedworkingmum Sun 10-Feb-13 12:56:12

oh, sorry, i didnt realise that you worked too - i dont know why i missed that, i read it in the op - daft mare - all the more reason to be asking for some teamwork - not help, its not YOUR job, its both of your jobs to be parents. I would definately second the cleaner option - you absolutely CAN ask a cleaner to fold laundry as part of her role - im sure there will be cleaners who think that is quite a nice little job actually.

MadAboutHotChoc Sun 10-Feb-13 13:03:02

You both should have equal amounts of leisure time and equal access to finances.

He is definitely a lazy, entitled and selfish man and you are enabling this behaviour although its good that you are doing something about this now. I agree with those who say that the situation is setting poor examples to your DC.

MadAboutHotChoc Sun 10-Feb-13 13:05:06

(and if you get nowhere, I would stop doing all his chores - let him do his own washing, ironing, cooking etc)

FlouncingMintyy Sun 10-Feb-13 13:25:54

Reading your op made me feel really sad op.

Am also beyond disgusted that your first flurry of replies are either having a go at you for not putting the washing away or making suggestions for finding ways to do it.

I despair of Mumsnet, sometimes, I really do!

FlouncingMintyy Sun 10-Feb-13 13:31:36

Reading your op made me feel really sad op.

Am also beyond disgusted that your first flurry of replies are either having a go at you for not putting the washing away or making suggestions for finding ways to do it.

I despair of Mumsnet, sometimes, I really do!

expatinscotland Sun 10-Feb-13 13:34:00

'Dear Mr Pingu

I could really use some help, I know that you work really hard and give your job 100% and I appreciate that you do that for us. BUT i work equally as hard to facilitate that, i take care of the children and the house and I am happy in my role. However, I AM struggling with the fact that at the weekends I am not getting a break and would feel we were working more as a team if you could help me with XY and Z (or maybe be less specific if you haven't thought about what you need help with). Simple things like helping clear the dishes whilst you probaby just "forgets" to do it, would be of great help to me and make me feel less taken for granted. Also, if we pull together a bit on the chores it will leave more family time that we could spend together, not just watching the kids do their thing, but actually doing stuff together. Could we perhaps enlist the kids help here? get them to help by putting their laundry away? Then All i need to do is put it on their beds for them. I really don't like that particular job so some help there would be great?

I hope you don't mind me writing this down becuase i dont want you to think i am criticising, just asking for a bit of teamwork as we have got into this routine now and i'm finding it a bit rubbish. I appreciate that you are tired, but I am tired too - would you want to work 7 days a week with no rest? It would be too mundane and monontonous, and your company don't expect this of you. I kknow family life needs attention every day but working together will make it feel less of a chore at weekends?

Thankyou muchly, my lovely, sexy, DH, now - what shall we have for dinner tonight? Do you want to fetch some wine on the way home and i'll cook us our favourite meal and we can talk about how we move forward?'

No wonder there are so many miserable women married to self-entitled, disrespectful twats on this board.

Thank you for treating me like shit. Treating me like a skivvy is so sexy and lovely, let me lick your arse cook your dinner some more. I don't want to upset you, baby, but could you please consider wiping your own arse from time to time? No? Okay, well, thought I'd ask.

expatinscotland Sun 10-Feb-13 13:37:43

Is the cleaner going to bring her server friend every night to clear his plate after he's eaten? Is she coming every evening to iron his shirt?

Oh, that's right! The cleaner isn't coming at all because the lazy husband is too tight to hire one (and the OP doesn't have access to his money, from the sounds of it).

RobotLover68 Sun 10-Feb-13 13:46:20

What Expatinscotland said

Dear Mr Pingu

I'm knackered. Either pitch in and help or fuck the fuck off and I'll do it on my own without anyone criticising my standards


Mrs Pingu

GiveMeSomeSpace Sun 10-Feb-13 14:13:10

OP - I often remind myself of some guidance someone gave me about raising children. "Is this the way you want things to be for the next 18 years?" It works for relationships too.

The problem you have is you've got to unwind 16 years of bad behaviour - and it is very bad, lazy, selfish behaviour.

If you can't be having a sensible conversation with him about how warped all this is, then you've got much much bigger problems than laundry, I'm afraid.

Do you want this continue for the rest of your life?

clam Sun 10-Feb-13 14:44:48

@ hissy
To be fair, dh has spent the last four weeks working 13 hour days, shopping, cooking, cleaning, fetching and carrying for me, bringing me countless cups of tea, breakfasts in bed, ferrying the kids here there and everywhere. My one contribution to the feast was to sort the underwear from the comfort of my sofa/bed for someone else to put away in drawers. I'm not LTB just yet! grin

PrincessUnderpaid Sun 10-Feb-13 15:08:30

H and I had a similar situation, don't get me wrong he's usually very helpful but he seemed to believe in the washing fairy and I'd had enough, so I just stopped washing his clothes, he noticed after his work gear wasn't ready on a Monday morning and then freaked out, messed around with the quick wash and had a reasonably damp and miserable day. I now get a LOT of of help with the washing.

peggyblackett Sun 10-Feb-13 15:17:30

Well said expat (as usual). It boggles my mind why anyone would think that pingu's DH is being even reasonable. DH and I both hold down demanding management roles, have 3 kids (one of whom is profoundly disabled) and manage to have a relatively tidy home. How do we do it? By sharing everything.

I hope you manage to get it sorted pingu, but I think the problem is much bigger than a few items of unfolded laundry.

TurnipCake Sun 10-Feb-13 15:27:57

Bloody hell some replies on this thread are heartsinking.

OP, you want advice on writing a letter because you're desperately trying to get him to empathise and see things from your perspective.

That ain't going to happen.

Let's take a look at things from his perspective?

He will never hire a cleaner - he already has one - you. You are a cleaning appliance he has sexual access to. Not even clearing away his dishes after supper? He treats you beneath contempt.

To get a shift in his actions (i.e. not being a lazy, entitled git) you need a shift in his fundamental attitude, conscious and unconscious thoughts and probably undoing things he saw throughout his childhood - rather like your children are seeing now. If he won't lift a bloody plate, think you're going to have any luck in changing him and getting him to show you, the mother of his children, a shred of respect.

ledkr Sun 10-Feb-13 17:13:14

Dear mr pingu.
Who the actual fuck do you think you are eh?
If you want a shirt sort it yourself fgs you are not disabled in anyway and I am not your fucking maid.
You are not a king and owning a penis does not mean you have to have everything done for you.
I was not put on this earth to see to your every whim and have the same right to happiness and fulfilment as you do.
So I'm not doing it anymore.
What you gonna do about that then eh?

kittybiscuits Sun 10-Feb-13 18:23:41

There are some shocking posts on this thread OP. You were clear in what you asked for and I'm appalled by the 'I've got 14 children and I still manage to put the washing away so my lazy twat of a husband can sit on his arse watching telly' brigade. Glad to see some sensible suggestions that might might give your H the necessary rocket he needs. Have you decided what you're going to do about him yet?

neontetra Sun 10-Feb-13 18:52:59

Pingu it is a shame you are not married to me, sorting the clothes is about the one household task I actually do, while my dh does all the others! To be fair, I also do most of the child-care at evenings and weekends. I am aware I can be guilty of taking dh for granted at times, though, and assuming that because he works shorter and more flexible hours it is fine for him to do everything - which it isnt, of course. If you still love your dh and think he loves you and want to be with him, then you must find a way of showing him how his behaviour is hurting you, and how he is taking you for granted. Not angrily, i would suggest, as this may provole a defensive reaction. But if you show him how unhappy you are, then if he still loves you he should listen. I would.

Hissy Mon 11-Feb-13 07:24:20

flouncing this thread started life in AIBU, and the oh so spechul blend of posters there did the tiresome and misplaced shark-circling, blood in the water attack thing, looking for the most opportune way to kick a poster, regardless of what her real circumstances are.

The first flurry of bullshit posts was what prompted the request to move it to here.

I'm hoping that there'll be better support for the OP here.

Adversecamber Mon 11-Feb-13 08:54:27

Your DH is lazy and just expects stuff, it needs to change but by the sounds of it will be really hard.

It does sound as if you have a lot on after school with clubs and play dates, pretty much every day. I actually think this is also a bit of a problem though not as much as your lazy DH.

DowntonTrout Mon 11-Feb-13 09:53:35

Can I suggest that HE clears up after your evening meal while you do what needs to be done with the children.

Instead of you both sitting down at 7.30 if you both did 30 mins of jobs that would amount to 5 hours of stuff that didn't need doing at the weekend (by you!) You would both be finished by 8pm so not much difference and you would both still feel you were getting down time, plus that 5 hours you have freed up could be proper family time.

I know the problem is getting him to see that. But just a little bit every day adds up to a lot over a week.

BeCool Mon 11-Feb-13 10:19:00

As everyone has commented there are lots of changes to be made to equal things up.

I'd just like to suggest that the one thing that can change with immediate effect is all this shirt ironing. Pingu please let this fully functioning grown adult take care of his own fecking shirts for a start. I can't think why on earth you would be doing them?

BalloonSlayer Mon 11-Feb-13 10:31:27

oooh OP please don't leave your tumble dryer on when you're out of the house or asleep. They catch fire so easily. < frets >

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ThreeTomatoes Mon 11-Feb-13 19:39:27

I can't imagine how you'll get him to see things from your pov either but a couple of things you can do, which I can't imagine how he could argue with:

Don't wash his clothes or put them away. To his reaction repeat as often as necessary, without entering into discussion: "They're your clothes, you wash them." "They're your clothes, you put them away." Add "I'm not your slave." (I say that a lot to dd! grin)

Don't iron his shirts. "They're your shirts. You iron them. I'm not your slave."

I've never been able to understand why women do the above for their partners, I just don't get it!!! OP, my dd is 9 and she does her own laundry!! From start to finish. (We don't iron in this house).

Unfortunately most other things affect you and the kids so it's difficult to just not do them, but the unimportant houseworky stuff you could leave and when he moans say "If you want it done, do it. It's your house too, I'm not the maid."
Don't enter into discussion.

Re time out - start taking time out yourself. Go out on a Saturday afternoon for e.g., meet a friend for a coffee, leave him at home with the kids. Or sit down in front of your computer and refuse to do the stuff you normally do, tell him to do it instead. "You say your TV time is your time to relax, my time to relax is this coffee with my friend. Your turn to pick up the slack." When you get back, moan that the place is a mess or he hasn't started getting tea ready grin.

How d'you think he'd react to all that?

Bobyan Tue 12-Feb-13 07:47:06

Reading Frustrated's post just made me bring up a little bit of sick in my mouth.

Thankyou muchly my lovely sexy DH?!?!

WTAF are we reading different treads? She's his wife, not his slave.

frustratedworkingmum Tue 12-Feb-13 22:19:15

Err, i was being ironic!

pingu2209 Wed 13-Feb-13 23:18:37

I thought I would give you all feedback. I have not ironed DH shirts this week at all, he keeps saying it is PMT. Then today we both had the day off to visit DS1's special school for his annual review.

School is an hour away and on the way home he asked me if I had calmed down and would I be ironing his shirt this evening. I said no as they were his shirts and he could iron them himself.

I said that walking through our front door was like walking into the 1950s as he did nothing and I did everything. I said that we needed to discuss his attitude to me being his maid and waitress, as well as cook and cleaner.

He said that he had a fair point over the amount of washing that had built up and needed to be put away. I said that if he could see the washing pile needed to be put away, why did he spend 3-4 hours watching TV on Saturday afternoon whilst I was cooking and doing the children's homework with them? He said that hardly any of the clothes were his, and that the majority were the children's clothes. I said that as the children were 'ours' he should have helped with their washing too.

I was on a role.

I said that as I did the cooking and all the planning and shopping for the food/household bills, that he should at least clear the table up after eating, not just walk away and leave me to clear the table when he went in to the lounge to watch TV. I said that he was treating me like a waitress.

I then said that it wasn't on for him to go to bed and leave me downstairs alone to iron his shirt each night. It was taking the piss.

I said there was active and passive childcare and that him watching TV with DS1 was passive but leaving me to spend hours on arts and crafts every weekend afternoon was active childcare.

I said that he never takes the bins out any more and over the spring and summer pays for someone to come and mow the lawn, so he doesn't even do the garden either.

I said that if there were 100 jobs to do in the house, I could only fit in the time to do 80 of them. He doesn't value the 80 I do, but moans about the 20 I do not. I said that he has no right to moan when he doesn't even do 1 of them.

So far it had been a calm, but firm and one way conversation, but then DH tried to tell me how to do the washing pile so that it was to his liking; I flipped my lid. I said don't give me fucking housekeeping advice when you do bugger all. I said that this wasn't about the housekeeping, it was about his attitude.

He was quiet and said nothing. When we got home, before we got out of the car, he said that he knew I was right but that he didn't like housework and wanted me to do it. He would rather I gave up my (very badly paid) job and I kept a tidy house but he knew that wasn't fair. He said that he would try and do more.

I felt a bit better, but after the 2 mins it took to leave the car and get to the front door, as we walked in, he asked "so, are you really not going to iron my shirts for me any more?"

I have a feeling this is not over.

Lueji Wed 13-Feb-13 23:24:25

Good on you for having this conversation.

My usual line of reply would have been that I hate housework too. And I'd rather pay someone to do it and work elsewhere.

If he asks again if you are going to iron his shirt, you can ask him what he is going to do while you iron it.

And you can also remind him that if when he is living alone, then he has to do 100% housework.

Good luck with it. smile

Lueji Wed 13-Feb-13 23:28:32

He said that he would try and do more.

That's not good enough, is it? Trying.
He should be promising to do more. He should specify what he was going to do from now on, even.

It reminds me of a recent episode of "Little Mosque".
The use of "I'll look into it" to avoid doing something the person didn't want to do.

In any case, please don't iron any more shirts, or do his clothes until he really contributes properly. Even so, leave it as conditional of him keeping up with it.

expatinscotland Wed 13-Feb-13 23:30:00

'he said that he knew I was right but that he didn't like housework and wanted me to do it. He would rather I gave up my (very badly paid) job and I kept a tidy house but he knew that wasn't fair. He said that he would try and do more.

I felt a bit better, but after the 2 mins it took to leave the car and get to the front door, as we walked in, he asked "so, are you really not going to iron my shirts for me any more?"

I have a feeling this is not over.'

WTF. He wants you to skivvy. He's not going to do shit. And this whole thing with his being tight with money.

Pingu, the writing's on the wall here.

Do not back down and start ironing his fucking shirts.

He sees you as a domestic appliance.

God, where did all the stepford wives come from with their laundry-sorting advice? Is this one of those wind-ups by Greensleeves?

If this is real, then that last conversation sounds good. I would just add 'you don't like doing housework/laundry? Well, guess what? Nor do I! So, what shall we do? How can we get the kids to do it instead?

manicbmc Thu 14-Feb-13 00:07:24

Well done for calmly saying your piece. I really hope he stops being a dick.

Jux Thu 14-Feb-13 00:26:12

Oh well done, pingu! Stick to it.

I firmly believe that adults are equally responsible for their environment, so he is as responsible for the state of the house et al, as you are. So glad you're not ironing his shirts (may I suggest that if he is not helpful, then you stop washing his clothes too, just do the kids' stuff). He needs to set an example to his children, just as much as you do.

(My pet hate is people who won't clear their own dishes; dh is guilty of this, but is gradually getting the idea that no-one here is his waitress.)

wordyBird Thu 14-Feb-13 00:53:02

Wow pingu. Good for you!

Hissy Thu 14-Feb-13 07:38:54

'trying' to do more is a crock of shit. A decent man, one that understands he is HALF of a parenting/household team KNOWS he has to pitch in, regardless. He'd apologise profusely and just get on with it.

IME, men that say they'll 'try' mean that they probably won't try very hard (if at all) but trot out the BS excuse 'I only said I'd try' when challenged.

He has no fucking intention of doing his share. None whatsoever.

All this shit stuff he's dodging, in his view, IS your job.

He sees this inaction to be his birthright, his human rights, and to deny him of this will go against his very grain.

What kind of monster did his mother live with? Why on earth did she make her son THIS much of a total COCK?

I'd hang my head in eternal shame if he were my son.

You have to see though, that if your DC grow up in this, they'll think no differently. You have to put a stop to it, as much for their sake as yours!

You did brilliantly btw, the conversation you led was perfect. You are so strong, don't give up!

Hissy Thu 14-Feb-13 07:46:22

Oh, and when you come home, feed the kids, sort them out etc, but then SIT down and do nothing.

Don't clear the table, don't iron his stuff, don't do ANYTHING that you really don't have to do. It's STILL not 'fair' on you, as 50% of the childcare needs to be him too, but you can't involve them in a standoff.

Perhaps tell him that when if you split, he'll have to care for himself, until he finds some other poor dogsbody... But tell him that women prepared to put up with that shit are few and far between, so he'll be looking for quite some time.

Meanwhile, you'll have less to do if he's gone, he'll have the DC for visists, and have to do everything for them, while you sit on your arse at home and eat chips, if you want to. Moving on, almost ANY bloke out there knows you have to pull your weight, so when you find your next H, he'll do a MUCH better job of being a partner..


fuzzpig Thu 14-Feb-13 07:48:00

So he blamed you being assertive on PMT?! What is he, a poster boy for the Misogyny Society?! Arse angry

needasilverlining Thu 14-Feb-13 08:06:14

Brilliant stuff, pingu - now fgs don't give in! Mn is cheering you on!

pingu2209 Thu 14-Feb-13 08:19:23

I really don't have a problem with doing more than 50% - I am around in the house longer than him and he can't do the childcare stuff Mon-Fri as he is at work.

I forgot to say to you all that part of the conversation I said that his priority was that I kept the clean washing pile down and put away. But my priority was to keep the children fed, homework done, at school and all their clubs and keep the kitchen and bathrooms clean and do the hoovering downstairs so it looked semi presentable.

I also said that 'cooking' wasn't just the physical act of being in the kitchen for the 30-40 mins whilst preparing and cooking it. It was also the planning of what we were going to eat, food that fitted into the activities of the day/evening, ensuring that the ingrediants needed were defrosted/in the fridge. That 'shopping' meant thinking in advance of all those things too, as I didn't just throw anything into the trolley.

He said that he needed boundries to be firm and not fuzzy. He said he needed actual jobs to do rather than 'I need you to help out more'. I said that from now on, he could put the washing away and do the bins and on a weekend afternoon he needed to spend 1 of the afternoons doing something with the children such as arts and crafts - not just watching TV with DS1.

I reminded him that 6 months ago he said that he thought it was utterly dreadful that the boys went to school with unironed trousers and sometimes muddy shoes. I said that at the time I agreed with him but we agreed that he would iron their trousers and polish their shoes as I couldn't fit any more into my day. He did, for all of 2 weeks and then dropped doing it.

When I reminded him of that, he said he knew that he hadn't been doing it, but hoped that him doing for a while would show me how much better the children looked and that would have been enough for me to take up the job! I queried him on how he actually thought that came across and he admitted that he was being unfair.

I said his priority and genuine thought is that all he has to do it get himself ready, but it was my job to do everything in the house and for the children. I said, when he does anything (which is very rarely), he says "i've done X for you". It isn't for me - it is for us.

His valentine card today reads:

"I do appreciate you every day, and will do all I can to make you happy even if it means changing my ways to become more of a 21st century man and not one who lives in the 1950s. Thanks for being there for me - I am grateful."

I do hope he means it.

MadAboutHotChoc Thu 14-Feb-13 08:21:08

You go girl!!

I agree he is not taking you seriously but I am sure you will ensure that he realises you mean every word you have said smile

He would rather I gave up my (very badly paid) job and I kept a tidy house

Please please do not consider giving up your job as with the way things are (i.e him being tight with money and viewing you as no better than a skivvy) - you need your independence. Employers sadly view women who have been out of the job market as unemployable. You have far more to offer than being his unpaid slave - the bloody cheek of him!! grrr!!!

bunchamunchycrunchycarrots Thu 14-Feb-13 08:51:37

Pingu you rock. grin

Ok good start. But whatever you do now - don't start ironing his shirts again. This is one task that he has to do if you don't.

And since you hate sorting laundry, and he hates seeing it out, that can be his job too. Do not move on this. Every time he brings this up, say "we agreed that was your job".

The rest will probably have to be achieved by repeated nagging I'm afraid. I find the "you do this and I'll do that" method works well - ie "You take out the bins and I'll change DD". Or "ok - the dishwasher had to be emptied and the bins taken out. Which one do you fancy?"

Go Pingu!!! I'm glad your DH is listening. It won't be easy for him to change, but I think he finally understands where you're coming from. Don't back down, you are, as you said, on a roll. Stay strong!!!

ThreeTomatoes Thu 14-Feb-13 09:29:03

Wow Pingu your second to last post is one of the most satisfying I have ever read on MN!!! Look at you go!!

I have a feeling it'll be a long hard slog before he does actually keep to his word - but i suppose there is a glimmer of hope in that he did admit to the way he thinks and a (sort of) acknowledgment that it is unfair. He knows he doesn't have a leg to stand on. The bloody cheek of him though!!

Good luck!!

ledkr Thu 14-Feb-13 09:30:09

Well done pingu. You are hopefully on your way to a far more enjoyable existence. I'm surprised you lasted so long.
Another reason for this is that if you were ever ill or he found himself alone he needs to be able to effectively parent his children
Don't let him patronise you now though he's not "helping" you he's taking responsibility for his own damn life fgs.
Oh yes and remind him that pmt is a defence for murder. .

expatinscotland Thu 14-Feb-13 09:55:47

And now that you've said no more ironing shirts or putting washing away, don't fucking do it!

It's his job. He doesn't do it, it doesn't get done.

Jux Thu 14-Feb-13 10:54:20

Same with the bins.

I don't think it's too much to ask that he cooks once a week, perhaps Sunday evening when you've already done a roast for lunch.

FWIW, we have a roast every Sunday. DH does the veg. He is very, very proud of his roast spuds.

Go Pingu!! cheering from sidelines

Read through the whole thread and it was so satisfying to read your last two posts! It sounds like he's taken it in, I'm sure its not the end of it cos bad habits can be hard to break, you'll probably have to keep on nudging, but brill you've took the first steps and he's acknowledged it!

His valentines is sweet really (as long as he backs it up with actions)!

undercoverhousewife Thu 14-Feb-13 11:44:17

Well done Pingu! You gave yourself better advice than many posters did! I can't believe many people told you to just put the washing away! Once you had done that, your DH would no doubt have found one of the other 19 jobs you hadn't done (81 now done) and moaned about that instead. It will never do your relationship any good if you are his servant/ housekeeper/ mother. That's not romantic for either partner. If he is happy for you to give up work then presumably he is happy without your salary. Can you not therefore instead get him to pay for a cleaner for 5 hours a week (or whatever). Yes, a cleaner won't put your clothes away but she will save you time on other stuff (eg bathrooms cleaned, house hoovered, shirts ironed) so you might then have time to train the DC to do it themselves ;-) nobody should be putting another adults' dishes in the dishwasher after a meal (unless that other adult is engaged in, say, mopping the kitchen floor at the time).

theoriginalandbestrookie Thu 14-Feb-13 17:33:59

Sounds like a little progress. TBH I would still be looking for an ironing service and a cleaner.

With my crystal ball I can see into the future. For a couple of weeks he will put out the bins and iron a shirt or two, then he will stop.

You will need to engage in constant reminders on a war of attrition. Easier to stop it now whilst he is in engaged mode on the subject and get in the help you so obviously need. We have a cleaner 2 hrs a week which costs £25 so £100 per month and it makes a massive difference. Cleaner also does ironing at home so once a fortnight she takes away DH's shirts to be ironed. It makes our life (well mine mostly) massively easier.

For certain jobs then you just need to stop doing them. Bins is an easy one and should be quickly done by him. If he forgets to do them, don't remind him and don't do them yourself, just leave them hopefully he will remember next time.

Hissy Thu 14-Feb-13 19:27:13

Hope your valentine to him, pingu, was to give him notice that if he's NOT a 21C man by this time next year, he'll be an Every Other Weekend man.


pingu2209 Fri 15-Feb-13 08:29:59

To show DH is not ALL bad. Yesterday DS1 was given a surprise card and chocolate rose from a friend (who is a girl) - he is 9. DS2 and DD were happy for him and excited, but also dissappointed. I told DH over the phone whilst he was at work.

He came home with 2 roses - 1 pink for DD and 1 red for DS2 plus a heart shaped box of chocs for all 3 DC to share. It made their day.

He isn't all bad. It didn't cross my mind to do anything.

He also bought and wrote (in as childish writing as possible to fool them) 3 cards and popped them through the letter box to each of our children, so they all got a card when they woke on Valentine's morning.

Euphemia Fri 15-Feb-13 08:35:18

Aaw his Valentine message brought a wee tear to my eye. smile

I really hope this is a new start for all of you. thanks

Lueji Fri 15-Feb-13 08:51:15

Of course he isn't all bad.

My ex was also capable of lovely messages at valentines, full on flowers and chocolates. Shame about the day to day, and his temper.

Don't let yourself be fooled and keep up the good work.
Or not... As in not ironing his clothes.

I think he will do more (or enough to keep you happier) for a couple of weeks then down tools again. I do not think that such a change of attitude is at all permanent, old habits and attitudes die hard.

He's still setting a crap example to your children as well.

Did he clear the plates away after dinner last night or did he leave his for you to clear away again?.

frustratedworkingmum Fri 15-Feb-13 09:19:17

oh, i so wanted to be saying, brilliant, he has shown himself to be decent after all. But that message from his card left me cold - it was a dig and not a very veiled one.

He would rather you gave up your job and keep a tidy house?


I have changed my tune from my previous posts yes

mistlethrush Fri 15-Feb-13 09:48:49

Does your DH realise that you don't actually enjoy housework either? Or indeed that looking after the kids 'actively' isn't 'housework'?

DH once commented on the way to work that, when hanging up washing, I left his shirts for him to do (this is when we had done a wash after ds was in bed that needed to be hung to dry in the bathroom when we went to bed). In fairly strong terms I pointed out that I had hung mine, DSs and some of his washing up by that stage - and putting his shirts on hangers was hardly a large contribution. I also suggested the alternative - which was me hanging my tops up and leaving the rest for him. I have not heard a single thing about hanging washing up since - and we both do it on a regular basis.

DH is currently working from home. He does most of the washing - simply because he is around, whereas I am out. He also cooks quite a bit, often does the dishwasher (probably more than me) and does the washing up.

It needs to be a team effort.

Don't give up the day job!

TheDoctrineOfSciAndNatureClub Fri 15-Feb-13 10:11:29

I hope it's a permanent change, Pingu. Keep an eye on it.

theoriginalandbestrookie Fri 15-Feb-13 12:16:31

Mistlethrush similar to your story.

I do the laundry - I prefer to do it myself as DH tends to tumble dry things that shouldn't be tumble dried. ( This is not him doing a job badly to get out of it, it's a fairly random list of things that shouldn't be in there) I sort the dry laundry out and the only thing I don't do is pair his socks. My mum never pairs Dads either so its a generational mini revolution. DH moans about it and occasionally when I do pair them he goes "Oh you do love me after all" then I shout at him for a bit and don't pair them for the next 6 months.

Pingu your DH can have preferences about how things would be so in his ideal world you wouldn't work and the house would always be tidy because you will be keeping it that way. Doesn't mean they have to be reality. I'd like to be a size 10-12 and be in the top rate tax band just like I was before I met DH, ain't going to happen any time soon.

Just get the cleaner and the ironing service. Make one or two simple straightforward tasks your DHs. Demand basic respect i.e. he tidies away his own dishes.

I love the way that he doesn't want to spend money on a cleaner but happily pays for a mowing service. Happy enough to pay to outsource his chores but not yours. Get a quote for the cleaning and if he baulks at the cost then compare it to the lawn services price.

ThreeTomatoes Fri 15-Feb-13 14:38:26

Um, roses, chocolates, lovely but V cards written in childish writing?! I would go nuts if my DP did that to dd. shock Sorry ,I don't agree with that at all. Is it just me? I remember once getting a mystery V card (ok i was in my 20s but still) and agonising over who the hell it was from, only to find out that my ex who i was with at the time had got someone he knew to write one for him just for the fun of it, he eventually confessed when he saw how i was affected, he thought it would be funny.

pingu2209 Fri 15-Feb-13 19:47:56

He walked away from the table and left the dirty plate. I was in the room and as he got up to leave, I coughed loudly and looked at the table/plate. He picked it up and said "I was going to do it, you just didn't give me enough time". He wasn't going to do it as he was walking out of the room!!!! Old habits die hard I guess.

needasilverlining Fri 15-Feb-13 19:55:48

Bloody right - good for you.

Btw I do most of the shitwork here because I work shorter hours, but neither one of us would dream of just sitting down and leaving the other up to their eyes. Dh says when he's at work, he works; when he's at home, he's on duty with house stuff and kids. Your h maybe needs to think of it that way.

Arithmeticulous Fri 15-Feb-13 19:56:02

Does he always sit in the same place at the table? I imagine he'd run out of space quite quickly as his plates pile up in his place...

needasilverlining Fri 15-Feb-13 19:58:02

Oh, and you're going to have to be on constant guard against backsliding - as he says, the 50s suited him just fine! I'm keeping em crossed for you.

SanityClause Fri 15-Feb-13 19:59:29

Perhaps you could let him know that he needs to do his share, without being reminded.

As you said, he is doing these things for the family, not for you.

MidnightMasquerader Fri 15-Feb-13 20:02:26

You're probably going to have your work as cut out for you, simply policing him...

He sounds like hard work. He needs to cop onto himself pretty quickly, if he doesn't want to lose your respect - and that other crucial aspect of any LTR - your genuine like of him...

MidnightMasquerader Fri 15-Feb-13 20:03:14

That is, it's well and good loving someone, but if you don't actually like them, it's a bit of a death knell...

Lueji Fri 15-Feb-13 20:57:40

I wouldn't remind him. Just leave the plate.

One of his jobs could be to set the table. That way he wouldn't eat dinner until it was done.

BTW, my dad is 76. He always lifts up everybody's plates and god forbid anyone loads the dishwasher but him. He also empties it, does every day shopping, takes out the bins to the end of the road, does errands, drives grandchildren around and babysits them (not very often, but between 5 grandchildren, and a couple of hospital doctors, probably almost every day).

They have a cleaner who also irons.

It's not the times, it's the man.

needasilverlining Sun 19-May-13 11:15:57

I hope it's not bad form to ask how things are going, pingu? This thread has really stuck with me, hope you're having a better time?

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