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To be annoyed by this?

(82 Posts)
huhpuh Sat 11-Jul-15 19:25:27

First AIBU, please be gentle...

DH and I have two children, 2 years old and 4 months. We used to live in London and have now moved into the country, about 4 hours away. DH is retired and I'm on a career break to be a SAHM.

Before we moved and had children, DH did a voluntary role once a month for 3 days. It's worthy but also a bit macho. He really enjoys it. He carried on doing the role once we'd moved away and had DD1. It meant him being away for 3 days in a row every four weeks. He had to stop last November when my pregnancy SPD got really bad and I couldn't manage DD1 on my own and he hasn't restarted as DD2 is only 4 months, colicky, refluxy and a bad sleeper. And did I mention we also have a two year old?!

Anyway, he keeps mentioning about restarting this role. In principle, I am ok with this at some point, but having the two children for 3 whole days at this point seems a big ask. He went away for 3 days a week or so ago and by the time he got back, I was on my knees. I am finding having two children about four times harder than having one! I'm talking tired, tearful and overwhelmed.

Now, he's just told me that this charity want him back in September. That really doesn't sound like their style so I checked his emails - they're all on my iPad. He's volunteered September, without so much as a discussion with me. Not to drip feed, he also has a hobby that takes him away for a day a week and various courses associated with that hobby. He also bangs on about how he doesn't do this hobby as much as he wants.

I'm angry that he hasn't had the manners to discuss the re-start with me. but then I really shouldn't have looked at his emails. It just feels to me like his life hasn't altered one bit having kids and I'm stuck at home cleaning up the sick and shit while he gets to have a life. I am very tired though and accept that perspective may be lacking.


Reignbeau Sat 11-Jul-15 19:27:46

YANBU. He is equally responsible for the kids and he should be putting them and you as a priority while they are so young.

WinterOfOurDiscountTents15 Sat 11-Jul-15 19:29:39

He's retired and you are a sahm, so you have two adults full time to care for two small children? And its a problem that one adult wants three days in a whole month to volunteer for a charity?
Of course yabu. If you dont take any time for yourself, why not? You seem in a fortunate position with far more ability to do so than most sah parents.

Nolim Sat 11-Jul-15 19:33:28

Yanbu. Not at all.
Dou you have any hobbies? If not find one, or join a charity. Let him deal with a baby and a toddler for a few hours every week.

hedgehogsdontbite Sat 11-Jul-15 19:34:33

I agree with Winter. YABU

formerbabe Sat 11-Jul-15 19:38:51

I don't want to be harsh at all because I know what a big adjustment two children is! Like you, I found it exhausting!

However, I think yabu. It is not a great deal of time for him to be away. The majority of sahms are on their own through the day and have no choice in that because their husband is working.

AnyoneForTennis Sat 11-Jul-15 19:39:44


Plenty of people manage 2 kids this way

How do you mean you were 'down on your knees' when he got back?

msgrinch Sat 11-Jul-15 19:40:16

What winter said.

PotteringAlong Sat 11-Jul-15 19:41:07

YABVU - if he was at work you'd be by yourself a lot more than 3 days a month! 3 days a month!

AuntyMag10 Sat 11-Jul-15 19:46:19

Yabvu and agree with winter. If you are making a huge deal about this it's no wonder he couldn't speak to you about it. You will have to learn to cope with your kids. If your dh wasn't retired you would cope so you need to find a way to do this.

huhpuh Sat 11-Jul-15 19:46:49

Anyone, I meant "down on my knees" as in utterly knackered. The days were fine, it was the double bath and bedtimes coupled with the baby waking at night and then the toddler being up at sparrows fart. Day times were fine.

But interesting to see that it's a fairly even split about BU and NBU. As I said, I don't have a problem with him going back to the role, it's the insistence that is has to be September when it could just as easily be January and the fact he's lied by saying he's been told to go back when in fact he's volunteered September.

RavioliOnToast Sat 11-Jul-15 19:48:14

I think yabu, your dh is retired and wants to volunteer for charity. you are a sahm, if your husband was at work there wouldn't be much difference in his amount of time at home, the only significant difference being bed time

saturnvista Sat 11-Jul-15 19:51:47

The lying would be a huge deal for me.

I do think he's being selfish by insisting on this when it will come at great cost to you and a few months wait will make no great difference. However, if he's willing to hire a maternity nurse for one or two or the nights/days, that would be different. It would also be different if he was willing to cover while you go and crash with a friend for 3 days.

I don't really give a shit about what all these clever women with six children do single-handedly, the point is that you are finding it hard to cope, and he could help.

huhpuh Sat 11-Jul-15 19:53:16

I know I have easier than most but we agreed to have children once he'd retired so he would be around to help. I now feel like he's reneging on this a bit. If he'd still been working , there would be no DD2.

TeenageMutantNinjaTurtle Sat 11-Jul-15 19:54:28

The lying is the crux of it. Its not exactly a team effort is it??

DoreenLethal Sat 11-Jul-15 19:54:40

Why do people have kids then spend half their life nowhere near them?

Can you pop away for 3 days and see how he handles it? He might be able to give you a few tips if he thinks it is so easy wink

Hubnut Sat 11-Jul-15 19:54:59

Yanbu - you need his support. However I would give it time before reacting, the baby will be 6 months in September and MAY(!) be less overwhelming than now, plus you'll have "got into your groove" routine-wise.

wheresthelight Sat 11-Jul-15 19:55:00

Sorry but I think yabu.

But dp works nights and I have had 3 kids on my own entirely for 3 out of 6 since did was 3 weeks old.

PotteringAlong Sat 11-Jul-15 19:55:44

You have it a lot easier than most! 3 days out of 30 double bedtimes are too much? Really?

Penfold007 Sat 11-Jul-15 19:56:13

YABU he is a hands on dad who wants three days a month to himself. You could also have three other days. Spare a thought for families where parents have to work.

PotteringAlong Sat 11-Jul-15 19:56:36

doreen it's not exactly half his life hmm

SingingSamosa Sat 11-Jul-15 19:57:49

I don't think you are BU. If you are really struggling for those 3 days (and nights I presume) because of lack of sleep and a crying, colicky baby then it is only right that your husband does his share of the dealing with it. 3 days is a very long time to be on your own with a constantly bawling baby and a 2 year old that doesn't sleep well. I think there's plenty of time for your husband to go back to doing his hobbies and volunteering in a few months when the new 4 member family is much more settled.
Yes, he is retired and you have the luxury of him being there to help most days but just because your husband doesn't work and you are therefore 'luckier' than most SAHM because there are two of you, doesn't mean you should HAVE to cope on your own for those 3 days when you are struggling.

What exactly is the work he does for the charity? Does he do it because of the macho aspect/activity involved of it or because he is genuinely passionate about the actual charity and its work?

I think he's being a little selfish actually. Do you have any outside interests/hobbies/charity work that you'd like to do? That you can take yourself off to do for three days at a time and let him see just how hard it is to care for 2 young and demanding children for that long?

NerrSnerr Sat 11-Jul-15 19:58:14

I think YABU. I think volunteering will set a good example to the children. Are you really unable to cope 3 nights out of 30?

AuntyMag10 Sat 11-Jul-15 19:58:28

He is reneging because he wants 3 days a month for a hobbyconfused you sound very controlling. Do you expect him to spend every single minute by your side?

DementedSwan Sat 11-Jul-15 19:58:38

Ummm two adults looking after two small children full time?

Yabu! They are both of an age where you can pop them in a buggy and go for a walk. They are easy at that age! I had 16 months between mine and the first year was a doddle we won't mention the sleepless nights

It's a couple of days!

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