to not know what to say?(16 Posts)
Dp and I have 4 dc we've recently moved to a new area and I have zero support in terms of childcare.
I've been massively struggling without close friends and family nearby and have made this very clear to dp.
He has recently taken a temp promotion which was supposed to be for 2 months but keeps getting extended, he's working long hours and is pretty grumpy and lazy when at home.
Last night I called time out on all screens/devices as kids have all been playing up and I wanted a chilled family evening. Cue ds1(9) throwing himself down the stairs, splitting his head open and a late night in A&E for me.
When I returned dp was happily playing fifa, the house was a shit tip and when I went to check on dcs ds2 (4) was in bed with his ipad (it was midnight) I lost my shit, lots of fucks were exchanged and we went to bed fuming.
Coffee was had in silence this morning, no goodbyes.
Still fuming after school run I sent a text saying that I was tired I needed more support that he acted like a teenaged brother rather than a dad etc he replied he was sorry, he hadn't realised about ipad, I was doing a great job blah blah blah I was busy with kids so couldn't reply back then got another message an hour or so later asking if I still loved him. Now it's been three hours and I still can't think of a reply.
Is he being manipulative by asking me this?
Am I tired and stressed and blowing it out of proportion? It's worrying me that it wasn't a straight yes in my head. How pissed off would you have been in my shoes?
I would have been pissed off too in your shoes - it sounds like your both tired and stressed. I think the best thing to do is to talk calmly about it. Maybe set out some specific expectations for your DP and your kids. e.g. no screens after 6pm. DP to help enforce this. DP to help with bedtime.
Tell him love is not the issue, you want to talk about how the two of you share parenting, chores etc.
Well, do you still love him? It sounds like you're both in incredibly stressful situations and struggling to see the wood for the trees. I'd reply with "yes of course, but I need much more help from you at home. Let's talk later to figure stuff out" or similar.
Hmm you all echoing things that he has said in the past, it's stressful for both of us like it is for lots of busy families. I think the main issue is i struggle to know what normal is, I grew up in a very unstable environment and then married a fuckwit the first time around so I just don't trust my own judgement very often. I'm scared of being a doormat again but then I worry that I've become a bit of dragon.
General opinion from friends and family is that he's a bit of a knob but a good hearted knob!
Good-hearted people care for their children and families. A shit tip and a child on an iPad at midnight are not OK. And it's not about love, or 'helping' you. That's basic parenting and he can't or won't do it.
I'd be irritated by the 'do you still love me' thing - I'm a bit of a cynic but I'd see this as a ploy to make you feel guilty for being angry and asking more of him. It's the sort of thing a child would do when they got in trouble for something, in order to get themselves off the hook. So yeah, that would piss me off. I think others' suggestions are good - to basically not engage with it and reiterate that you need more help and support .
I think sometimes men like to switch off hence the fifa etc. Women don't need to do this in the same way but we plan our downtime and do something more adult generally (this is all general i dont mean ALL men or ALL women)
I think his response of a straight apology and then praise and then asking if you love him is kind and i dont think he means it badly i think its just his way of trying to make up over text. Give him another chance to prove you wrong x
Reply along the lines of:
Yes I still love you, I'm still upset about last night, can we talk about it when you get home.
sounds like you are both really stressed and exhausted.
I would reply "that's beside the point". Because it is.
It has fuck all to do with love, really.
Thank you all for your replies.
My gut reaction to some of the comments was defensive which speaks volumes.
When we met he was an immature, selfish single man and I was straight out of a nasty divorce with two very young children he had a steep learning curve and he has grown into a really great dad/stepdad and a supportive partner in most regards. I'm hoping this was a temporary blip back to his old self due to stress.
I've replied after reading your messages that I do love him but that's completely separate from everything I've pointed out and that we need to talk when kids are in bed (sans ipads) I think I just need to make it clear that last night's parenting was not acceptable and being a sahm to 4 is just as tiring as being at work but I don't seem to ever down tools like he does.
It really is so hard to navigate family life when you had no decent role models I'm grateful for your advice.
Maybe discuss minimum requirements! So the floor doesn't have to be mopped every night but the bear minimum is checking on the kids before lights out. A song and a story and clean teeth is the bare minimum in this house for the little ones.
Maybe dishes done. What can everyone live with?
The irony is he does ordinarily do all of that with the middle two who are 4 and 2 - he is the fun one come evening mum is the grumpy bossy one. It used to be that I had the baby and eldest ds would potter around with me as I tidied or we would do homework etc but slowly he's doing less and less since his promotion last night was extreme and I'll treat as a one off lapse in judgement. As the stars would have it he just phoned to say they are offering him the position full time.
Definitely time to renegotiate ts and cs for me I think.
If you are a sahm what do you consider fair to expect your partner to do?
Sorry for poor punctuation I'm cooking dinner and feeding the baby!
Downtime for adults here is after dc in bed. Dishes in Dishwasher kitchen surfaces wiped etc stuff in bin/recycle school bags packed etc..
(athough dishes have been left on many an evening if both knackered)
could you get a cleaner ? I don't now but did when had baby as could just sleep whilst he slept not worrying about cleaning the bathroom etc also maybe free up some time to get out with the younger dc
I do most as a SAHM with dh who does long hours but he cooks at the weekend and shops for any bits we don't have for it also does all sat morning parenting so I can lie in - we alternate sundays
If dh was back he would do bedtime
write out a diary of what happens when and also what chores when then divvy up..... this just sounds like you're both knackered and maybe have got stuck in a groove that isn't working
Same free time. Which meant DH did quite a lot when I was on mat leave. DD was a very high needs baby!
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