to think it's ridiculous that BIL can't take his DC to school?
LottieG100 · 08/06/2017 22:48
BIL often has days off during the week. He either stays in bed until DSIS leaves with their older DC (4 and 8) or if their younger one (18months) wakes he might eventually get up with her but will sit drinking coffee and watching her play rather than getting her dressed or feeding her breakfast. DSIS gets up at 6.30. She would like to get up earlier to walk their dog but if the DC woke to find her gone they would be distraught, so she doesn't
She makes packed lunches, feeds the dog, showers, wakes and prompts DC, brushes their teeth and gets their breakfast and then walks them to school with the dog after having usually done some washing too. She did this even when she had severe morning sickness (she's also 7 months pregnant) and when she's had a sickness bug or otherwise been ill. BIL has never once offered to do it and the DC wouldn't want him to. DSIS says he'd get grumpy with the DC and ask her 1000 questions about how to do everything so it's easier just to do it herself.
She agrees it's ridiculous and suffocating for her as she doesn't ever get a break from the DC (she hasn't left the house without them in about six years ) but thinks it's fairly standard behaviour in families with young children. AIBU to think it's unhealthy for BIL to not be capable of doing what should be a routine thing with his DC and that it isn't normal?
BackforGood · 08/06/2017 23:07
YANBU to be shocked that he doesn't ever contribute, but I suppose the standard answer here is that really, how a couple share out or don't share out all the household chores and parenting, really is own to them.
There is a train of thought that says she is allowing him to get away with it. Why not just plonk the baby on his bed and take the other 2 to school, etc.
Witchend · 08/06/2017 23:35
BIL has never once offered to do it and the DC wouldn't want him to. DSIS says he'd get grumpy with the DC and ask her 1000 questions about how to do everything so it's easier just to do it herself
Anything dh tends to do without saying anything I would rarely offer to do, simply because I usually get on with other things while he does it. Ditto the other way round. I usually take dc1&2 to school, he makes the packed lunches (his and dc3). We could do it the other way round, but, as with most people, we've fallen into a routine
It would be different if she was saying that she was asking and he was being grumpy or refusing. Because she just does it, I doubt it's occurred to him she might like him to (if she would).
I know I once exploded at dh for not doing something I always did, and he looked at me puzzled and said "why didn't you just ask?" He was right (on that occasion!) and now he does it more often than me without. There's other times when he's offered to do something and I've said no because I enjoy doing it-and sometimes he's been surprised because he thought it was a chore for me.
emmyrose2000 · 09/06/2017 01:36
but thinks it's fairly standard behaviour in families with young children
Your SIL is woefully ignorant and ill informed. She needs to tell her husband to man up and start parenting, because otherwise she's coming across as a control freak and/or a martyr.
If she wants to walk the dog she should just do it and let him and the kids get on with it. If the kids can't "cope" with only finding their dad there, then this family has way bigger problems than what is described in the OP.
Ceto · 09/06/2017 02:09
It really isn't standard behaviour in families with young children, and the more you can do to convince her that that is not the case, the more of a favour you will do her. Even 20 years ago when my children were babies, this was not the norm: DH took it for granted that he would do his fair share, and it was standard practice amongst all the families we knew - and with all the baby/toddler groups I joined, that was a large number.
ThumbWitchesAbroad · 09/06/2017 02:24
Well, as the saying goes, she's making her bed and having to lie in it. I wouldn't, but I'm not her.
HOwever, I can tell her that it's NOT standard these days, and she's a fool if she allows that sort of bollocks thinking to let him off the hook of playing a fair role in parenting their DC and being her partner.
I just couldn't have any respect for a lazyarsed shit like that, I'm sorry.
caffeinestream · 09/06/2017 09:56
Maybe she should stop enabling him then! She's chosen this life - she knew what he was like after the first child, chose to stay with him and keep having children - surely she knew what she was getting into?
Yes, I agree it's ridiculous, but if she'd stood upto him in the first place, she'd either be a much happier single parent, or she'd have a partner who could actually be trusted with his own children.
PerspicaciaTick · 09/06/2017 10:05
I can't quite get my head around this.
I'm not sure if she is reveling in being an indispensable martyr (does she think that not being able to leave the house to walk the dog means her children love/need her more than mums who can leave the house without them?) or is she being desperately exploited by her lazy DH?
Does she make it hard for him to do stuff by insisting that things are done her way or not at all? Does he need to ask a 1000 questions because he needs to get it 100% right, or because he is deliberately making a hash of it?
What would happen if she just told everyone she was walking the dog in the morning and then...did it? Maybe day 1 would be tough, but surely by day 3 or 4 they would have got the hang of it?
If I were her, I'd be tempted to book myself into a hotel or a visit to a friend and then leave them to it. They won't die. H will step up. The DCs will cope. Shake up the habits they've all fallen into.
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