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Should I have made a bigger deal of OH's efforts with DD?

(56 Posts)
FannyCabbage Fri 04-Nov-16 21:12:39

OH is now breadwinner as I have gone freelance after maternity leave. I used to earn a decent wedge but now it's much less until I pick up new clients.

I work from home and fit it around 14 month old and 10 year old. I do all housework, cooking, cleaning, washing, and look after the bloody big dog that he refuses to walk. I generally bring home a little less than I would working full time, after childcare, but I know this will pick up home over time.

OH has only ever had DD2 on his own once when I did a guest lecture 40 minutes away. DD2 was just a year old and there were no issues. However, trying to get him to pull his weight with anything is real hard work.

Tonight I have a deadline and asked him for an hour of his time to look after the baby whilst the biggest went out with his sister. He sat on his phone whilst she chalked up the walls and sofa. I sat at kitchen table trying to work whilst DD2 got fed up of him ignoring her and cried for my attention.

He then said he was done and going upstairs (to the box room, where his computer is, where he spends most of his time gaming).
I said, quite sarcastically, thanks.
He said: I've done my bit.
I said: it's called being a dad, it's not a favour!
He said: fuck off, fannycabbage. Same answer as when you ask me again.
Door slams.

He's a lazy sod, I know, but before he left I actually thought he was making an effort and how I should be glad. And then I sniped at him and now he'll ignore me until tomorrow or I'll have to apologise.

I sound like a pushover, I'm not, but I'm so fed up of rowing over the same stuff, sometimes it's easier just to do it rather than ignite a horrible atmosphere. We've had so many rows over his laziness/time spent on the bloody computer rather than with the family. He says he needs his own space and that he's not a modern man.

Have I been unfair to him making an effort? Should I have made a bigger deal of him helping tonight? Would that encourage him to help more? I feel so crap again. Argh!

neonrainbow Fri 04-Nov-16 21:15:05

Why the fuck are you wasting your life with this lazy dickhead?

Imknackeredzzz Fri 04-Nov-16 21:15:22

Oh god he sounds awful, sorry but I just couldn't deal with a 'man' child like that. Not an overreaction at all in my opinion. Personally I would get rid

CalleighDoodle Fri 04-Nov-16 21:16:19

He is a twat. And a shit father.

cestlavielife Fri 04-Nov-16 21:17:48

You can only change your behaviour.
Start leaving him in charge of her. go out to get your work done.

But he sounds awful and pontless.

Paulat2112 Fri 04-Nov-16 21:20:30

You and you're children deserve better than that.

ChampagneTastes Fri 04-Nov-16 21:21:12

If I am working Dh takes ds out for the day or plays with him downstairs and forbids him to come up. He's not a superhero, he's just doing what a father/husband is supposed to do.

MyDarlingWhatIfYouFly Fri 04-Nov-16 21:22:20

Lazy, pathetic man-child. Crap husband and father.

Those are the nicest things I'm thinking about him.

mouldycheesefan Fri 04-Nov-16 21:22:33

No Idea why you had kids with him, of all the men in the world you picked him?
Time for him to move out.

FannyCabbage Fri 04-Nov-16 21:26:28

He used to be amazing but he's gradually getting worse. I think sometimes I don't realise quite how lazy he is.
He loves both girls but he has no tolerance for their chatter or noise and quite frequently makes excuses to avoid spending time with them/us.

Kidnapped Fri 04-Nov-16 21:26:41

The title of this thread suggests that you think that his awful behaviour (and it is really awful behaviour) is your problem to fix.

It is not.

You seem to think that you should be grateful that he has looked after his own daughter alone once in 14 months. Think about that. Would you consider yourself a crap mother if you had only looked after your daughter alone once in her life? I'm betting that you would.

He wants his own space? I'd be giving him his own space all right.

RebelRogue Fri 04-Nov-16 21:27:54

What exactly was the effort involved in ignoring your dd while she chalcked up the walls and sofa,and then ignoring her even more until she came and cried to you. What exactly are you supposed to be grateful for or make a big deal out of? Him breathing in the same room as her? Fuck cat does more than that. It can actually keep dd quiet!!!

FannyCabbage Fri 04-Nov-16 21:29:14

Writing this down makes it a bit more real and a lot more awful.
I don't know what the norm for joint parenting is - my clearly crap taste in men saw DD1's dad bugger off when I was 19 and pregnant. When I met my OH, he was amazing and it felt like he was worth the wait.
I sound like a bloody doormat.

Blerg Fri 04-Nov-16 21:35:20

Wow, that's really intensely unfair.

And you say he loves them but doesn't like their chatter or noise? That's what kids do. Is there a tense atmosphere with him around?

I rarely comment on threads like this but I really think you all deserve better.

By point of contrast and not to brag at all my DH is main breadwinner. I work pt. He has our 9 month old and 3 year old one day a week so can work. He also encourages me to go out alone at the weekends for two hours or so to do a hobby. I do consider myself lucky but only because some partners seem to do so little.

I really hope you can get some balance but agree you can only change your own behaviour.

goddessofsmallthings Fri 04-Nov-16 21:35:21

He says he needs his own space and he's not a modern man

Tell him that, as you and the dc need considerably more than a throwback from a bygone age, he needs to find his a space of his own elsewhere NOW so that you can install an au pair in the box room.

FGS get rid of this idle pisstaker as he'll get worse the longer you leave it.

Ohdearducks Fri 04-Nov-16 21:36:13

He's somehow managed to convince you that you're the problem, truth is he's a cocklodger. Bin him off OP I know that's easier said than done but you and you're children deserve better.

Ohdearducks Fri 04-Nov-16 21:36:26


justwanttoweeinpeace Fri 04-Nov-16 21:39:15

Next time go work in a cafe.

He can whinge all he likes, you won't be there to hear it.

Chinks123 Fri 04-Nov-16 21:41:15

The norm for joint parenting is that you're not doing each other favours or 'babysitting' your own child. He sounds lazy and like he just can't be arsed. Dp has DD while I work 3 days a week, he's not doing me any favours, she's his daughter. You sound really nice op, and if he wants space I'd give him lots of it hmm

FannyCabbage Fri 04-Nov-16 21:43:30

Not a tense atmosphere so much. If we have family plans, he will do his best to get out of them by being a dick so we row, or by promising to do it another time as his knee hurts (injury from deployment a few years ago).

He won't socialise with my family, which can get awkward.

Just remembered, for my 30th I had a few days of doing bits here and there with him, with friends, with family. My parents planned a BBQ and he refused to go as the World Cup was on. What a twat.

He's not all bad. I'm obviously pissed off and his redeeming features are a little hazy but he does have some.

Kidnapped Fri 04-Nov-16 21:46:16

You don't sound like a doormat, OP.

Just ground down with it all. Which is totally understandable.

Both parents should want to spend time with their children. In your OP you heralded the fact that he looked after her for one day out of 14 months. That means that he has done 1 day and you have done the other 419 days of her life (approximately). That is hugely unbalanced. And completely unfair on you, particularly since you both work.

Practicalities. Are you married? Do you own a home together?

FannyCabbage Fri 04-Nov-16 21:48:03

Thanks for all your comments. I just needed to rant a little. I don't have anyone irl to talk to because it's just gossip to them, something people can sympathise with and then glory in the gory details behind my back.
My mum likes to point out my failings by putting up with him, forgetting she was in a DV relationship for 15 years before she met my stepdad.

GazingAtStars Fri 04-Nov-16 21:50:22

He's not a good partner and he's not a good father. What is he good for?

FannyCabbage Fri 04-Nov-16 21:55:04

No, we rent. He's crap with money - a huge issue. He has credit cards that he puts things he wants on. I'm more of the mindset that if you want something, you save for it. I budget and spend accordingly - throw back to my single parent days when we were so poor I was having to eat leftover food that friends had put by the bin.
Thankfully I got through that stage and put myself through uni and have worked my way up in my career.
Practically and financially I'm reliant on him until the freelancing picks up. I took my previous employer to court for discrimination and issues from when I was pregnant. The settlement I got paid off a few debts and then was to tide me over whilst I got set up.
Going back to work full time for someone else is something I would really like to avoid - not because I'm lazy, but because this way it means I get the best of both worlds.
If I left, I'd have nothing - I couldn't afford to stay in the house we're in.

Kidnapped Fri 04-Nov-16 22:19:15


Well, it is good that you don't own a house together. Are you married? It is just that people could advise on the debts that he has run up. If you are not married then you have no liability unless they are joint loans/joint credit cards.

It sounds to me like you are planning an exit route. That's fine. Explore all options. Going back to work for a company could work if you could get affordable childcare (maybe your mum would help?). You know that you could never rely on your OH for childcare. However, if you did split, then of course he should be paying maintenance. I'm guessing that he is one of those blokes who will disappear/become unemployed/self-employed if it were ever suggested that he should support his child financially.

You know what you are dealing with. That's something.

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