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To feel like Dh wants a 1950s housewife

(89 Posts)
thehovelinspector Thu 17-Oct-13 23:31:27

Dh works FT in a very well paid job. I work PT in a craply paid job but do the after school care, school run, cooking, shopping, general family organising e.g. Holidays, birthday cards, builders, plumber, school uniform, school admin etc. we have just the one school age dc so I things are fairly easy on that front.

So...tonight dh is moaning because the 'fridge is not well stocked' and last night he didn't have anything for dinner. Except I made a home made dish that he previously has eaten here and elsewhere but he has now decided he does not like this meal.

This is pretty typical. I feel I am expected to conform to this 1950s housewife ideal. It makes total sense for me to do the jobs I do eg cooking but the way he seems disappointed if I'm not making exactly what he loves to eat and haven't stocked the fridge etc. it's the assumption that anything house hold is my job and if I don't do it perfectly his way, I'm not doing my job properly.

Definitely not a sahm v working mum chat. I love working PT and appreciate my job's flexibility but feel like I'm forced into a traditional housewife role and he does nothing of that sort just because he earns loads and i earn a pittance.

Ilovemydogandmydoglovesme Thu 17-Oct-13 23:34:26

Tell him he knows where the supermarket is and while he there he can pick you up a nice bottle of wine, you're knackered!

Custardo Thu 17-Oct-13 23:36:07

i would serously tell dh this
" well you know where the kitchen is..."

or perhaps a curt
"fuck you"

actually the second one is what i would be more likley to say

Donkeyok Thu 17-Oct-13 23:37:17

If you do conform it will become the norm. Don't do it. This reminds me of when dh tells me he's loaded the dishwasher, or put the laundry on FOR ME! Money shouldn't have anything to do with it, but yes money is power therefor control. You are a team so suggest he puts his money into employing a 1950's housewife you can both benefit from. OOh I'd like one of those. bit freaky Stepford wife kind of thing

SolidGoldBrass Thu 17-Oct-13 23:38:09

Remind him that he is not your boss, nor your owner, and that he is responsible for doing his fair share of the domestic work. His fair share is not a matter of him spending the same amount of time on domestic work as you do, it's about him doing enough domestic work to enable bothof you to have the same amount of leisure time. You are not his inferior simply because you earn less money; the money earned is family money.

specialmagiclady Thu 17-Oct-13 23:38:45

God, we'd all love a 50s housewife, wouldn't we? I know I would. Doesn't sound like a partnership to me, not really an equal one anyway.

Maybe you need to hammer out the terms of your partnership, in quite an explicit way.

specialmagiclady Thu 17-Oct-13 23:39:35

OOoh - solidgoldbrass, that's a brilliant way of expressing it.

reelingintheyears Thu 17-Oct-13 23:40:01

Tell him to get stuffed.


reelingintheyears Thu 17-Oct-13 23:41:50

29 years in and we STILL argue about the bloody washing up.


thehovelinspector Thu 17-Oct-13 23:48:29

Des anyone out there have this kind of situation and if so how do you split the jobs?
He has always been good with looking after dc and I do go out some evenings, as much as he does. He probably does me stuff on his own at weekends as I don't do as much to ensure we still have some family time all together.
He cooks maybe once a month, supermarket shops, erm maybe once a year!

He did say he would have to go shopping himself to get the things he likes but with such a tone of voice that it was clear he thinks I am not doing my job. He has questioned my contribution to the family in the past but There is really no point me getting a higher paid better job as he will still expect me ti do all the other stuff as it will alwaysbe secondary to his job. And I like being home after school.

thehovelinspector Thu 17-Oct-13 23:49:06

Sorry about the dreadful typos...bloody ipad.

clam Thu 17-Oct-13 23:57:27

"He has questioned my contribution to the family in the past"

Has he indeed? Then yes, he can fuck right off.

clam Fri 18-Oct-13 00:02:31

Your part-time work/housewife role and caring for the children ENABLES him to go out to work full-time. You facilitate his ability to do this.
Between the two of you, there are three things that need covering: earning money, running the house and caring for any children. Each one of those is important and must be done by one or both of you. He doesn't get to decide that his chosen role is more important than what you do.
He needs a reality check. Tot up how much he would have to pay to buy in the "services" you provide.

BlackeyedSusan Fri 18-Oct-13 00:04:24

ignore the tone of voice, deliberately, and tell him it is a wonderful idea that he goes shopping. same goes for any other thing.

when he next questions your contribution to the household... go off sick and see how much gets done then.

snowpo Fri 18-Oct-13 00:18:27

hovelinspector - we're in similar situation, DH works full time, I work part time. We both work shifts though so he's often around in the day.
I do housework - washing, cleaning, hoovering, washing up, ironing. I also mainly put kids to bed (though he does sometimes as I work late shifts), mow grass, walk dog, school admin, school runs. He does pretty much all the cooking, paperwork, diy stuff, helps with homework.
Shopping is pretty much 50:50, and he will empty dishwasher if he finds it full, sometimes does the ironing and occasionally puts washing machine on (which makes me a bit grrr, colours etc but he means well!)
He earns about twice as much as me FTE.
Maybe you should call his bluff and say you're thinking about a full time job and then add up the costs of extra childcare and tell him he'd have to share all the household jobs.
Its not about the money you earn, its about how much time you have to do your own thing.

thehovelinspector Fri 18-Oct-13 12:22:17

Dh does a bit of e.g. changing lightbulbs and occasional DIY but prefers to pay a handyman.

Reflecting on all this, I don't mind doing what I'm doing but I do mind this attitude that it wasn't good enough that I made something he didn't like that much and that the fridge wasn't stocked - being made to feel like an underling really.

cherryademerrymaid Fri 18-Oct-13 12:24:04

Who about a pat on the head, sympathetic smile and an "Oh do fuck off, dear." And then go out for the evening and leave him to it.

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 18-Oct-13 12:24:51

YANBU. I'd suggest you need to sit him down and thrash out exactly what being in an 'equal relationship' means in practice. Clue... it's not one man being waited on hand and foot by everyone else in the family.

FairPhyllis Fri 18-Oct-13 12:28:40

Invoice him for half of all the work you do towards the household. And point out that you are owed however many years' worth of backdated holiday and sick leave.

JRmumma Fri 18-Oct-13 12:36:29

My husband often moans about the lack of food in the fridge, but by food i mean chocolate. If i let him do the shopping that's all we would have in there!

On a serious note though, you shouldn't let him make you feel like that. Tell him how he has made you feel, he might not realise. I think the problem sometimes with things like this is that men quite often don't realise what running the house and the kids lives entails and so they are unsympathetic to the fact that sometimes there might not be much food in (even though there is actually plenty) because you have been busy doing other things.

A great example for me is the first time you leave a man looking after a child. They think they have been so successful because they are both alive when you return, but the house is a tip, every cup has been used but not washed up and dinner is not on. All things you, the woman has to factor in on a normal day.

specialsubject Fri 18-Oct-13 12:43:03

wow. You have sex with someone who tells you that 'things are not good enough'????

wordfactory Fri 18-Oct-13 12:45:18

Whenever anyone in my house complains about what there is or isn't in the fridge (and this is more likely to be DC, but sometimes DH) I point out that whilst I will attempt to take everyone's preferences into account, I cannot and will not ensure that everyone has their favourites to hand at all times!

I then remind them where Tesco is located!

This usually does the trick wink.

Viviennemary Fri 18-Oct-13 12:47:14

You have to sort out an arrangement that suits you both. This might be different for different people. I think quite a lot of 50's housewives were perfectly happy with their lot but others weren't so it's good the opportunity is there. But when I think of the chaotic juggling with childminders, nannies, cleaners commutes and so on there are times when I wonder.

Manchesterhistorygirl Fri 18-Oct-13 12:47:59

Dh decided he didn't want what was on offer last night, I told him I would in that case donate the food, which he has eaten before, to a food bank and he could therefore sort tea out and left him to it. I am not his skivvy.

joanofarchitrave Fri 18-Oct-13 12:50:14

TBH a 50s housewife would be a lot tougher on him. It would be scrag end joint on Sunday, cold cuts Monday, shepherd's pie Tuesday, pea and ham soup Wednesday, macaroni cheese Thursday, fish pie Friday and chops on Saturday. Repeat. He could like it or lump it and stop interfering.

Doing all domestic jobs as a genuinely shared responsibility is quite different. If he wants to have more input into the food, fair enough, but he needs to understand what that would take. Talk it through. No harm in him doing all the catering at the weekend, for example, if he wants to and will do the shopping as well, but realistically if he wants to have what he fancies when he fancies, you will all need to spend more on the food budget. And probably waste more tbh, unless you think about a chest freezer.

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