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to be utterly sick of death of DH's job and working hours. It's an epic post I'm afraid!

(62 Posts)
SlowlyWakingUp Thu 11-Apr-13 22:09:27

DH is a lorry driver and has been for 11 years. He works weekends and until late into the night (gets back between 10pm-midnight) leaving me to deal with all the DCs stuff, dinner homework, bed and to sit on my own in the evening. I can't have hobbies or go out on a regular night in the evening as he works different days and there is no flexibility at all.

Backstory: When we met, married and had our first DC he was in a different industry altogether and worked weekday daytimes so was home by 6pm. Not sure why! but it was down to me to drop off and pick up DC1 from nursery, rush to pick her up, leave work if she was ill, take time off etc. We had a bad experience with a childminder a year before DC1 started school and a situation arose where I decided I could not keep DC1 there and was not going to unsettle her by moving her to someone else again for a short time so one of us would have to stay home with her until she started school.

DH refused point blank to quit his job even though my job was about £10k better paid, more secure, fabulous pension and better long term prospects and basically decided it was my 'problem'. So I had no option but to become a SAHM, ironically I fell pregnant just as my notice period ended with a much wanted DC2 which we had been trying for 2 years for so I lost a years fully paid maternity leave (grrr) and I resigned myself to staying at home indefinitely so we had to downsize massively and move towns to get a smaller mortgage so we could cope on DH's much smaller wage! Sadly DC2 was stillborn and within that same month DH was sacked for misconduct (later received a payout for unfair dismissal because the reason they sacked him was a load of bullshit!) but I had to fight it for him and deal with the industrial tribunal just after suffering the trauma of losing a child because it was out of his depth. Years later, I still feel resentment that he actually lost his job just a few months after he refused point blank to stay at home with DC1 so I could continue working thereby throwing us into a financial catastrophe as neither of us were earning for months!

Shortly afterwards we had moved and I had found another fulltime job, not great pay but good propects, 9-4pm hours Mon-Fri. We could have coped on my wage at that stage. DH was at home with DC1 as he could not get another job until his industrial tribunal was over and he could get a job reference, it was not out of choice. Then I discovered I was very unexpectedly pregnant again with twins. I was terrified of telling my employers as I had only been there for about a month but it was fine and I was due to return after maternity leave. In the meantime DC1 started school. DH had taken another job in his current industry which was supposed to be temporary until I went back to work after having the DTs but he decided to make it permanent as he was offered a higher wage and a permanent job and again refused to stay home with the DCs. He actually used savings we had as getting his HGV licence cost in excess of £2k despite my not agreeing to it as I knew the hours were shit and he would never be at home. The nursery fees for 2 babies and afterschool fees for DC1 far outstripped my wages and with travelling costs I would have brought in a massive minus not to mention the loads of work that would have had to be done in the evenings and having 2 babies who did not sleep. DH's job was as a night time lorry driver so I would have had to be up with the babies in the night on my own and then drop them at nursery, DC1 at school and go to work and that was not going to happen so again I had to quit my job! I also had a terrible phobia of being on my own at night as we had been burgled previously while we were asleep and DT1 had several febrile convulsions which I woke up to in the middle of night but would DH change his job (or even look into changing it) as he knew I could not sleep while he worked so was permanently knackered, would he hell angry. I put up with that for 5 bloody years until he moved to days and it left me with severe anxiety from lack of sleep.

So I then had 5 years out of the workplace until the twins started school struggling all the way on one wage. I could not get a part time job in that time as DH's hours constantly changed so would have needed to pay childcare. It was very difficult to get another job after so long out of the workplace but I did get a good one. The job was a long commute again and I had to rely on the tube and then drive so was massively stressed that I might not get back to pick up the DCs from afterschool club and in fact was late on numerous occasions. The final straw came when one of the DCs was ill and it took me 90 mins to get back. DH could not get there either as he was 3 hours away in his frigging lorry. I quit that job too as I could not cope with the travelling, school events, dealing with DCs on my own in the evening and the stress of rushing like a bloody whirlwind to get back to pick them up. I could not spend a minute after 5pm in the office and it was noticed and comments were made so I felt like shit. We had no family at all nearby and no one else to pick them up if I was going to be delayed.

Seems to be a theme in my life but shortly after that I then fell pregnant with DC4 so have been a SAHM for 3 years now and am desperate to get back into work but yet again DH will not budge on his working hours. My job will have to fit around his. There really is nothing locally but London is out as I won't be able to get back for pick ups. Even if I did work, I would still be on my own on weekends and in the evenings dealing with all the DCs and it is soul destroying. Not to mention DH wanting dinner at 10pm and having the kitchen like a bomb site at that time so clearing up again! I know it's minor but still it drives me nuts when I've already cleared it 3 times during the day! I have looked into self employment but I would need to pay out for childcare while potentially not bringing in any money.

I have encouraged, pointed out job ads, looked into training courses and then progressed to shouting and arguing with DH for the last 11 years to retrain or at least look for another job which would fit in better with me working and family life but I can honestly say he has never so much as picked up the local paper to see what other jobs there are out there. He wants me to work but will not think about how we manage the DCs or who looks after them while I do. He does his job because he doesn't want to be stuck in one place and he enjoys it so won't do anything else no matter how much it affects me and the fact that the DCs are left to me. He is now too old to retrain at 44 hmm so I am stuck with him working weekends and evenings for the next 20 years apparently hmm.

I know I am of course lucky he has a job at all but AIBU to think that he is an utter selfish knobend of the highest order? Or should I just be grateful that he works and be the dutiful SAHM? I KNOW my earnings would have outstripped his by now if I had been able to continue working and I have a real need to work as I feel my brain has wasted away! I am sometimes so fecking bored that I try to think up controversial threads on here just so I can get flamed but I can't even do that!!

Feel better for typing it out!

WidowWadman Thu 11-Apr-13 22:18:30

He's a completely disrespectful sexist knobend. You shouldn't be treated like that.

YoniWhenILaugh Thu 11-Apr-13 22:18:45

Yes. He is extremely selfish.

In what ways does he show that he actually gives a shit about any of you?

Sleepingbunnies Thu 11-Apr-13 22:22:54

He is an arse. Sorry you had found yourself living with someone as emotionally stunted as him sad

twolittlemonkeys Thu 11-Apr-13 22:23:12

YANBU to think that he is selfish. If my DH was like that I imagine I'd choose to be a single parent. sad

KansasCityOctopus Thu 11-Apr-13 22:24:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Levantine Thu 11-Apr-13 22:26:45

You poor thing, he is being a selfish arse.

mum382013 Thu 11-Apr-13 22:26:58

and that's why i'm single. he's selfish to the highest degree.

defineme Thu 11-Apr-13 22:28:41

So you're unhappy because you never see your dh, you are in sole charge of the dc, your options are entirely controlled by your dh's job which only suits him.
What do you get out of your marriage, are there any positives?
I'm so sorry about the loss of your dc2.
Your decision to have dc4 seems at odds with your desire to work, as it extends the sahm section of your life?
I'm not sure what to suggest because if your dh won't ever compromise what chance is there? If I was earning £10,000 a year more than dh and had better prospects, there wouldn't have been any argument.If he had said he couldn't bear beinga sahp I would have pointed out it was for a short time and they were his kids too.
Why do you keep not being listened to? It's not my idea of a partnership and |I would have been saying it's counselling or we split up a long time ago.
Sorry sad

HarrietSchulenberg Thu 11-Apr-13 22:29:03

You have my sympathy. Ex-H did much the same thing (different job though) - did a job he enjoyed even though it meant he worked all hours and never saw any of us. In the end we split up over it as I felt that the job had come between us like a third party, and he'd chosen "her" over us.
In my case I felt that missing out on his family was actually intentional, although he professed otherwise. The bitter irony in our case was that his job is in childcare. Every time he mentions his Ofsted Outstanding I think of what it cost his own children.
Sorry, that's not much help though. Can you sit down with him and talk about this properly? Point out to him that his working hours mean you are unable to work and that he's missing out on his family?

MrsTomHardy Thu 11-Apr-13 22:32:42

Sorry but seems to me you either put up with it or leave the selfish pig....

GladbagsGold Thu 11-Apr-13 22:33:25

He's incredibly selfish. YANBU.

You have shown that you are hardworking, talented, resourceful and adaptable. I don't really understand why you are with him. I suppose it looks different to an outsider but all I can see is that your life would be easier and happier without him?

SoVerySleepy Thu 11-Apr-13 22:34:01

All the way through reading your post all I could think OP is that he, on some level, is jealous of your obvious success and ability to succeed and doesn't want you to out-earn him.

I don't know what the answer is as the obvious one would break up your family - if he is that unwilling to change - but you cannot live the rest of your life like this.

IneedAsockamnesty Thu 11-Apr-13 22:35:00

Sounds like your a single parent so why not actually be one.

fairylightsinthespring Thu 11-Apr-13 22:41:16

I don't understand why you are still with him. With his hours presumably he is a pretty absent father anyway and clearly has no respect for you as a person, as opposed to his domestic help. You would be better off on your own, working and paying childcare and I know I am going to get flamed for this but, DC4??? Really??? I wouldn't let anyone who treated me like this get anywhere near me, let alone get me pregnant with a child that past experience has shown he has no interest in actually rearing. My DM and I had a conversation recently where she basically said that she and my older sis have had / have crap lives because they have no self confidence but that I have enough for all three. That's crap, I am not self confident, I am too selfish to live my life for other people so on more than one occasion I have made some fairly drastic life decisions, shocked the hell out of people and lost friends but put myself in the place I wanted to be. Please, please, OP, be selfish now. Don't just accept this. You keep saying "he refuses", well YOU refuse, YOU say no, or YOU tell him to leave. It's your life, damn well live it. Sorry, I am the wrong side of a bottle of red and I do feel for you but nothing will change unless you change it.

Pollydon Thu 11-Apr-13 22:43:52

YANBU , he is a selfish arse, so are you going to put up or ship out ?

HollyBerryBush Thu 11-Apr-13 22:47:36

I see where you are coming from, but I don't understand why you keep having babies. By my reckoning, your eldest is roughly 17 and your youngest 3.

I sincerely doubt with all that maternity leave, SAHP time, that your career and salary would have continued to top his.

If you had really wanted to continue working after Child 1, you wouldn't have left, you wouldn't have downsized, you would have bought in help; au pair, nanny, anti-social hours child minder.

OhDearNigel Thu 11-Apr-13 22:50:04

Have you considered a relocation for your DH ?

Somewhere other than where you live cos frankly he sounds like he is dragging you down.

formicaqueen Thu 11-Apr-13 22:52:27

Why are you still with him? At least if you were single he would have to agree a regular date to have the kids? He is totally selfish and backwards thinking.

Just tell him you don't accept his selfish behavior and he must find a different more routine driving job by September or he will have to leave.

Pilgit Thu 11-Apr-13 22:57:05

YANBU. With fairylights on the wrong side of a bottle of red wine, so not going to be much help! But he sounds like a selfish arse. He wants you to earn but doesn't want to do anything to support you in doing so. And the wrecking the kitchen at 10pm isn't minor - he made the mess, he should clear it up; that is what reasonable people do. Try London again - there are employers there that recognise this sort of family set up and will not have the presenteeism you've experienced. I'm sorry you had that experience but don't ever undermine your input - mothers with these types of committments are often more efficient as they don't have the time to be in first gear all day - they have to be at the top of their game all day or they don't get their job done and get home in time. Don't ever let anyone devalue your input by measuring it on time on your bum in the office!

mumofweeboys Thu 11-Apr-13 22:59:18

My oh long distance lorry driver, prob easier to deal with as even though he works away when he gets his time off its a few days which works well for us as it quality time.

I understand the resentment a bit as oh had couple of years at home and he refused to retrain - he loves driving that much he cant see himself doing anything else - seems bit like a drug tbh but all of his trucky mates are the same.

Iv had to build my own life when he is not here, Iv recently just given up ft work as I wanted and had dc3 but it was my choice as dh was happy to pay the extra childcare as my wages didnt cover it.

I dont think there are many men who would willingly give up a job to stay at home even if wife earned more - male pride and all.

Could u talk to him about changing haulage firms? If he worked away and wasnt home every night making mess but not giving u quality time. Could it work better for u?

Noideaatall Thu 11-Apr-13 23:00:25

I don't have any (good) advice but you have my sympathy. As a single parent , I managed to keep a full time job by getting an au pair to do drop-off/pick ups and making use of breakfast/after school clubs every day. I made a loss in the first two years (ran up a credit card debt paying for food etc) but took the risk as I was sure my wages would go up. Could you maybe do that? Au pairs don't have to live in (although mine did - I shared a room with DS so I would have a spare as it's cheaper) You sound very capable -you can definitely manage without your DH who seems unlikely to change.
I won't lie though - it was scary to have less money coming in than going out.

mumofweeboys Thu 11-Apr-13 23:04:10

Also since he is working so much, would u consider relocating to be nearer family so u have some more support?

defineme Thu 11-Apr-13 23:06:11

There are many men who have done precisely that mumofweeboys women do not have to put up with sexist shit. There are more and more men at the school gates these days.

BabylonReturns Thu 11-Apr-13 23:06:42

But he's not too old to retrain either, DH retrained as a plumber while being a SAHD to both DDs. He fit his college work around school run and a newborn and I went back to work full time.

It worked for us, and when I was pregnant with dc3, I quit work and DH went self employed.
He's doing really well, and he's so glad he went back to college at 40.

I'm sorry to say but your DH sounds rather selfish, what do you get out of your marriage that's positive?

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