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Housework balance

(26 Posts)
AIMD Wed 03-Jun-20 17:50:27

I’m finding I am getting increasingly frustrated and down right angry at having to do the vast majority of household chores.

I think some of the blame is on me for having done the majority since the kids were born.

How do I get a better balance.....before I totally lose my shit. I know it sound pathetic but it is actually really getting me down.

There’s a sock left on the floor ....I pick it up.
There’s something akward to wash up....I end up washing it up even if someone up did the main washing up because the akward thing is left on the side to ‘soak’ for days on end.
I’m the only one to clean the toilet!!! ARGH!

I’ve been working on the kids (4 and 6). Started getting them to put plate and cutely away before dessert, tidy toys before being allowed more toys out or TV etc. I have spoken to my husband and he tries but it’s not good enough!

Any suggestions from anyone else who has achieve a better Balance?

OP’s posts: |
2007Millie Wed 03-Jun-20 17:52:57

Communication and clear 'rules'

For children, a sticker chart with 2 small jobs every day (put breakfast bowl in the dishwasher/tidy bed) If at the end of the week they have all stars, then a treat such a chocolate bar of their choice

For husband, be explicitly clear in what you want, but also be understanding that not everyone will do things how you feel is right

He might empty the dishwasher and put the cups in a different place/not clean to your standard but that might just be how he works.

AIMD Wed 03-Jun-20 17:56:28

I’m really not a sticker chart user but I might try that! Are those two things enough.

My kids are 4 and 6 they put their plates away after eating, help tidying their toys and out their clothes in the wash basket. Is that reasonable....should I expect more or wait until they’re older.

The issue is mainly with my husband. He knows I get frustrated and “tries”. I’m not sure he realised that I could actually well imagine this leading to divorce. I know that sounds pathetic but on the same hand I get frustrated at having an unfair share of work to do.

OP’s posts: |
KellyHall Wed 03-Jun-20 17:59:41

How much do you each work?

CatandtheFiddle Wed 03-Jun-20 18:00:05

Try to stop doing anything for your husband. Stop facilitating him. It's hard, I know.

PeaPeaEeByGum Wed 03-Jun-20 18:03:26

My husband does this type of thing because ultimately he believes that it is fine for me to do the jobs he doesn’t fancy. However I have managed to get him to do more (since I returned to work) by making certainly weekly/daily tasks his responsibility. Then he will do them. He can’t cope with ad hoc chores.

2007Millie Wed 03-Jun-20 18:04:15

I think at 4 & 6 I would be expecting very simple tasks
-Lay the table for dinner
-Put plates away
-Bring washing downstairs
-Some basics dusting

But I really wouldn't expect too much. A sticker chart works fantastically and allows children to 'visually' see that they are succeeding for that week. It'll also provide some healthy competition for them both and they will probably want to get more stars/stickers than their sibling

As for your husband, I can imagine it is very difficult. I can only suggest a firm chat where you express how much you're struggling, and agree on jobs that you each do.

AIMD Wed 03-Jun-20 18:04:58

Catandthefuddle I might actually do that. Years ago I stopped washing his clothes and he suddenly realised he did have any. Problem is it’s washing uo, tidying so not specifically stuff for him just stuff that needs to be done for the household.

I work 4 days and he does 5 but have my daughter at home on the additional day I have and usually do a group with her and the weekly shop. At the mo though, because of lockdown, we have both been working at home. I did all the home schooling sent by school, save a few small bit.

OP’s posts: |
AIMD Wed 03-Jun-20 18:06:06

@2007Millie sounds like my kids do a reasonable amount for their age then.

OP’s posts: |
billy1966 Wed 03-Jun-20 18:06:37

You are doing good work with the children so persevere.

What are percentages of work load between you and your husband?

What hours do you both do outside the home?
More info required?

Is he really trying or a lazy git?

AIMD Wed 03-Jun-20 18:11:00

@billy1966 I’d say when I ask he tries....but it’s not good enough. Maybe I’m being unfair as he genuinely just is a naturally messy person. Cleaning up after doing something doesn’t come naturally. Recently I pointed out that when I cook, it I have down time when things are boiling, I’ll pop some of the ingredient away and wash up a bit, whereas he stands and stares at it and leaves a massive mess to clear up after.

I do a day less than him employment wise. I’m sure my work with the kids and house work easily outstrips that extra day though. Things like getting birthday gifts are left to me too, or organising outfits for world book day etc.

OP’s posts: |
hellsbellsmelons Wed 03-Jun-20 18:28:20

How do I get a better balance.....before I totally lose my shit
With my ExH, I lost my shit - big time!
So he listened and hugged me when I cried and we agreed to split it equally and drew up a list and rota.
And he stuck to it - for 11 years!

AIMD Wed 03-Jun-20 18:38:18

I think a rota might be a really good idea. He always asks me to tell him what to do but doing that frustrates me more. It’s like he’s doing me a favour then.

OP’s posts: |
KellyHall Wed 03-Jun-20 19:39:46

It sounds like your working hours are a similar balance to ours (pre lockdown). I did a rota as part of a "shape up or fuck off" ultimatum. Because we had other issues too, I gave him all the chores I don't like. He's stuck to it since last autumn!

Although at the moment he's furloughed and I'm working more than before so I'm now just expecting him to do everything. Our 3 year old dd still wants me first thing in the morning, or if she's upset, etc. and I do quite a lot just with her on my days off because dd and I are enthusiastic about life in the same kind of way and dd knows it. I don't think dh's enjoying doing all of the chores and not working but he's doing it without complaining (mostly wink)

category12 Wed 03-Jun-20 19:59:42

Sit down with him and tell him you're about to lose your shit. He can write the rota and he can start doing his share of toilets and the harder and dirtier jobs.

MikeUniformMike Wed 03-Jun-20 21:08:30

You need to give him tasks that he becomes responsible for. He probably does some things because he sees them as 'blue jobs'

What has happened is that the housework has somehow become your department, so you need to delegate.

I'm not exactly a domestic goddess but I cook in an organised manner and wash up as I go along, so his messiness in the kitchen would do my head in.

As someone who needs to be told things, people need to tell me before not after. There is no point in saying 'You should have done this' when you could instead say 'Could you do this please?'.

I can hear people thinking 'But I shouldn't have to!' but your a team, and a team has a leader, in this case you.

MikeUniformMike Wed 03-Jun-20 21:09:05

you're not your.

ZooKeeper19 Wed 03-Jun-20 21:29:22

when I ask he tries....but it’s not good enough I had to fight myself over this. Remember when you were a kid and your mum asked you to clean something, you did your best and she said it was not good enough? I guess that's what men feel like.

What I did was I asked my husband to do something (anything) and when he did I said Thank You and left it at that. Was it perfect? No. Was itr done? Yes. Everyone felt better. With time he learned to perfect his skills and now he can do more or less anything in a decent way. It takes time and patience. Think of him as DC3 if that helps.

category12 Wed 03-Jun-20 21:35:28

Leaving half a job (soaking things for days) and never picking up the toilet brush is not trying.

LannieDuck Wed 03-Jun-20 23:37:32

Does he have allocated tasks?

My husband does all the shopping, cooking and keeping the kitchen tidy (incl dishwasher). I do all the paperwork and laundry.

You'll probably find a different split works for you, but the principle then is that he doesn't need to ask what has to be done - he knows what his jobs are.

justkeepmovingon Thu 04-Jun-20 00:11:12

Just let him read these.


Honestly it's not about the mess, it's about a lack of respect, and you carrying the mental load.

If he doesn't respond to this you are about 1-2 years away from finding him totally unattractive and just another chore.

There is nothing nicer than a man changing the kids bedding, because it needs doing, washing, drying and putting it All back on without a thought. That's just 100% normal in our house now after I totally and utterly lost my shit.

It's become so normal he admitted to being lazy, selfish, didn't think and didn't care enough to help, also said he though I enjoyed doing all the housework as I made it look easy. He's apologised for years now and just does more than me and actually enjoys it.

My own mum thinks he's some kind of domestic god, little does she know what it took and this god almost broke me.

Hope that all helps you, please don't go for years like me the resentment never leaves.

Nanalisa60 Thu 04-Jun-20 00:28:07

I decided that my husband was just terrible at cleaning (I have very high standards) and I like cleaning, but I hate cooking so he does 80% of the cooking also about 80% o the food shopping also all the gardening and car cleaning (manages to clean a car very well).
If I died tomorrow I don’t think he would know how to put the washing machine on.
You just need to find the best compromise for both of you. For us it was old fashioned outside jobs his!! inside jobs mine, cooking mostly him.

billy1966 Thu 04-Jun-20 17:23:09

OP, he sounds lazy with a healthy dose of learned helplessness.

So fxxking annoying.

Personally, I couldn't spend my life with someone like this.

I would grow to despise them.

I can't stand me the rage.

Give him a rota and see how it goes.

Can you go it alone?

Do the math.

Make a plan.

Get copies of all the family financials etc.

Then if you see zero improvement, tell him you are not happy and perhaps living a part will be better.

Being mother to everyone in the house and your husband is no life IMO.


billy1966 Thu 04-Jun-20 17:27:44

Hopefully he will get how serious this is and step up.

He has to want to.

Ahundredpercentthatbitch Thu 04-Jun-20 17:31:24

Think of him as DC3 if that helps

Helps to seal your vagina up, you mean?

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