to think Dh needs to make more of an effort with dc's?

(23 Posts)
ItsAllAboutTheCakes Sun 21-Feb-16 20:56:42

Dh works hard, has a job that means he has to work shifts including nights. This has meant me being at home with dc's while they are young has been the best option for us (they are 7 and 2).
Since having dd I have done every night feed, school thing, most bedtimes and baths etc because of his work commitments and that's fine, except when he is here he still doesn't do much.
I do 80% of the housework if not more. Dh will throw a wash on now and again and think he's done loads, claims he does dishes all the time but hardly ever does.
When I've had a crappy night he will sometimes get up with ds but I never settle because when he does have him he either falls asleep (this isn't a one off thing, to the point where I no longer want to leave him alone with them for fear they will hurt themselves when he nods off or is ignoring them and has plonked ds in front of the tv)
When we go on family days out his face is in his phone (not a work thing), he has no patience or interest in them really. I know he loves them but just doesn't seem to get family life.
He completely ignores me and is emotionally detached, if I try to suggest he makes more effort with the kids he just says he does and that's the end of the conversation.
I always try to make sure he gets enough sleep when on nights by taking the kids out of the house so he gets some peace. I understand he must be tired from work but so am I looking after 2 dc's alone.
AIBU to expect something more from him?

ItsAllAboutTheCakes Sun 21-Feb-16 21:24:19

Should also mention he goes the gym 3 times s week also and I have no free time. It's a rarity if I get a bath alone!

AStreetcarNamedBob Sun 21-Feb-16 21:32:17

YANBU but if you've got to this stage, and stupidly had 2 children with such a useless man I wouldn't hold out high hopes for changing him sadly.

He could do with a rocket up his arse tho for sure.

SauvignonPlonker Sun 21-Feb-16 21:33:57

That's a recipe for resentment! He really isn't pulling his weight in terms of family life, is he? It sounds like his life has just gone on the way it was before you had DC. Am not surprised you feel frustrated.

Wolfiefan Sun 21-Feb-16 21:34:11

He has no patience or interest in them?
This is not a man who loves his family. Sorry.

ItsAllAboutTheCakes Sun 21-Feb-16 21:44:10

To be honest Dh has supported us financially but I feel a massive lacking in responsibility as a parent. Dd was concieved quite early on in our relationship and we decided to make a go of it. We got married a few years later and then had ds. Our relationship isn't perfect but he's not a horrible person, he just doesn't seem to enjoy being a family like I do. The dc's love him, he has moments where he makes a little more effort but it's short lived.
He's the same with me, no effort. He doesn't seem interested in me either, I've asked him before if he would be happier if he left but he insisted he was fine and that's 'just the way he is'.

Wolfiefan Sun 21-Feb-16 21:45:37

Supporting you financially isn't being a parent.
Laughing with, bathing, reading stories to, feeding and clearing up after, cuddling etc etc. that's what makes a parent.

ItsAllAboutTheCakes Sun 21-Feb-16 21:49:40

Yes wolfiefan that's what I've tried explaining to Dh with no avail. I just feel so frustrated all the time wanting more from him but the alternative being walking away seems irresponsible when I have 2 dc's to think of.

Wolfiefan Sun 21-Feb-16 21:50:33

He clearly doesn't care. He sounds like he's living the single life as much as possible.

ItsAllAboutTheCakes Sun 21-Feb-16 21:54:30

Staying gives dc's some security and I can be there for them full time, they see their dad and have some kind of family life (just with Dh being crap)
If I leave I will have to do everything I do now and sort the finances, dc's would inevitably see less of Dh with his work hours and so would I because I'd have to work full time. Neither option is ideal.

Joolsy Sun 21-Feb-16 21:55:04

My OH is like this at times but at other times he's pretty good. He works really hard and does pretty much all the DIY and gardening, plus some cooking and cleaning. If I want him to get more involved in the DCs I make specific requests eg. ask him to read with them, help them with their homework etc. Your OH might not be getting involved because he doesn't know where to start or how to interact with them.

ItsAllAboutTheCakes Sun 21-Feb-16 21:55:27

I agree, I thought he would get better, more responsible or helpful with age. Sadly I was wrong.

NameAgeLocation Sun 21-Feb-16 21:56:45

I have been like this at times (though I do heaps of housework), rather detached from my partner. It turned out I was mildly depressed. Could something like that be going on.

ItsAllAboutTheCakes Sun 21-Feb-16 21:58:05

Thanks Joolsy. I've asked him to do things with dc's and he sometimes will but it's the lack of effort/ interest that annoys me. If he does bed time, ds ends up upset, crying for me because he's not used to his dad doing it. He was away out of the country last year for quite a few months at a time which I don't think has helped their relationship.

NameAgeLocation Sun 21-Feb-16 21:58:33

I agree with a PP that more suggestions
for things he can do with the kids might help, eg we have set routines that I read a bedtime story downstairs and DP reads one
upstairs, that kind of thing.

NameAgeLocation Sun 21-Feb-16 21:59:58

Sorry cross post. Could you do bedtime together then? We often do. The kids' room is too small for all of us so we bring the pyjamas downstairs and tackle one small person each!

ItsAllAboutTheCakes Sun 21-Feb-16 22:01:09

Dh has said that he was down when he had gained a bit if weight but has been back at the gym and lost it and nothing has changed. His dad is a very similar character and mil does everything for him.

ItsAllAboutTheCakes Sun 21-Feb-16 22:04:00

He's only here 1 week out of the month at bed time, and when he is I usually end up putting dd to bed while Dh is supposed to be putting ds to bed and it just ends up with me having to settle ds after dd because 'he won't settle for him' hmm

Lightbulbon Sun 21-Feb-16 22:08:56

I'm usually quite quick to say ltb but I do t think that'll improve things here.

They'll see him even less if you leave and as you said you too as you wouldn't be able to stay being a sahm.

Some people just aren't into 'family life'. It's not the end of the world.

There are other ways to be a good parent.

It sounds like you were thrown together through circumstance rather than consciously choosing to make a family life together. I think is the crucial point.

Personally I'd stay for now but think about my own long term future as you may find yourself having an empty nest divorce.

expatinscotland Sun 21-Feb-16 22:10:36

'His dad is a very similar character and mil does everything for him.'

And he found you to enable him. Stop doing that.

Wolfiefan Sun 21-Feb-16 22:10:56

Down?
Like depression? That could explain a lack of interest or motivation.
We split certain chores. DH does washing up and I cook. One bathes kids and one does nighttime story.

BlackeyedShepherdsbringsheep Sun 21-Feb-16 22:18:47

if you left him then there would be less of his stuff to do. he might have to pull his finger out and look after them at his.

alternatively you may find you have to do more to support them financially and still more or less have the same amount of stuff to do. and take into consideration whether they would be safe with him providing enough supervision.

it is a judgement call you need to make. I would not be facilitating his easy life though. he pulls his weight or you find you have no time to do stuff for him. if he is getting time out in the evening you take it some other time. (daytime if children get to nursery and sod doing anything for his benefit in that time)

Fatmomma99 Mon 22-Feb-16 00:56:00

Really not trying to be nasty, but:
When our DD was teeny-tiny, and I was doing 80% (because I was on Mat Leave) and he was doing 20 (because he was working), I got too over-involved in his 20% ("no, you don't hold her like THIS, you hold her like THIS, etc). He told me to butt out, that he was her dad and he was fine.

And you know what? He was (and is). It's not my way, but he's dad and he loves her.

You said when he gets up with kids you don't sleep because he doesn't do it your way. So what? Go to sleep, let him do it his way. I honestly, honestly, champion women, but I don't agree with disempowering men and then complaining about them.

Give him the power, accept it won't be as you would do it. Trust him. Let go.

Good luck. x

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