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To think I am owed a massive apology by DH

94 replies

Kinderbuenos · 08/10/2022 22:16

So backstory is, both DH and I work. Kids are teens. I do all the washing and cooking and usually we have a cleaner but she left a few months ago and am struggling to replace her.

I know there is lots of inequality here in terms of home labour but I’ve mostly made my peace with it ( I work less but earn more) Kids are big into sports so DH does lots of sport runs.

Anyways house is really an absolute mess and I was going to spend today cleaning. Already had a run in with DD 14 who wouldn’t help.

DH comes in with younger DD from a match. I am mopping the hall so tell them to leave muddy boots outside and take sacks of footballs etc through the lane. Then DH goes out to watch a local match and an hour later comes home and I’m still cleaning, I’m pretty cranky now as I’m 4 hours in and no one is helping.

He then says he’s going to golf at which point I say ‘are you serious’

He then gets quite ridiculously angry saying I’m being weird about cleaning, speaking down to him in his own house and being a ‘b’ - he is childish enough to think by saying b he’s not saying bitch.

I did dinner tonight , didn’t leave anything for him and then took the dog for a walk and we are not speaking. No apology so he clearly thinks he’s not wrong. I’m willing to hold out as long as it takes for an apology but AIBU to expect a serious one.

Admittedly I was narky when he came in the 2nd time but it did not warrant that reaction. And the house was genuinely a pig sty - no mrs hinch here

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

608 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
StupidSmallFruit · 08/10/2022 23:25

So let me get this straight.

He thinks he’s entitled to a second lot of leisure time, but that you should apologise to him for being stuck at home cleaning while all this is going on….?

I don’t have that right, surely?

Kinderbuenos · 08/10/2022 23:27

I need to apologise for being cranky and telling him to take his shoes off @StupidSmallFruit

Like fuck I will

OP posts:
HeddaGarbled · 08/10/2022 23:27

In my experience, people who don’t want to do something (housework) but know they really should, often manufacture spurious arguments (I didn’t like your tone of voice) in order to distract you from the real issue. Ignore all the obvious distraction strategies and keep plugging on with your message: everyone in this house (except you) needs to up their contribution.

Kinderbuenos · 08/10/2022 23:29

@HeddaGarbled I think you are exactly right and I will be doing nothing for Dh , even with a non forthcoming apology

OP posts:
Tsort · 08/10/2022 23:35

Kinderbuenos · 08/10/2022 23:29

@HeddaGarbled I think you are exactly right and I will be doing nothing for Dh , even with a non forthcoming apology

That’s not true, though, is it? Unless you properly examine why you are currently doing it all (and claiming to be fine with it), you’ll just slip back into doing it again. While also being the breadwinner and the one that gets yelled at by her twat of a DH when she dares intrude on his playtime.

So, again, why? Why have you accepted this?

Kinderbuenos · 08/10/2022 23:37

To keep a happy home I guess @Tsort . Shouting like this isn’t usual hence my anger

OP posts:
Kite22 · 08/10/2022 23:40

My thinking is, it depends how much more time in the house you have - as you said you work fewer hours
How much time he spends taking the dc to their sporting activities

As that impacts on how much time each person then has to do stuff around the house.

I do also agree with the pp who said just accepting and then resenting what you see as inequity (which clearly it might be, or might not be - we don't know the difference in time available) for months and then getting angry at him on a day he's arranged to do things doesn't cover you in glory. Why not highlight to everyone living in the house that things need to be different whilst you don't have a cleaner, and ask who was going to do what months ago, rather than letting your anger build up like this ?

Tsort · 08/10/2022 23:51

Kinderbuenos · 08/10/2022 23:37

To keep a happy home I guess @Tsort . Shouting like this isn’t usual hence my anger

So, a ‘happy home’ is one where you’re a skivvy breadwinner and shat upon from a great height whilst modelling said behaviour for your daughters, whilst your husband swans about doing as he likes? That’s happiness?

I’m not even talking about the shouting. I’m talking about the way you’ve described your life. How are you not angry about that?!

Discovereads · 08/10/2022 23:58

Kinderbuenos · 08/10/2022 23:06

@Merryoldgoat He isn’t always this way but is when it comes to house work. I’ve obviously indulged this so need to take responsibility for that. However he should at the very least not be a prick when he’s doing nothing

What? How is him doing nothing even an option?
I wouldn’t say you’re responsible, he’s taking advantage of your good nature.
You are simply avoiding conflict because he turns into a prick if you assert yourself.
That’s not your fault. That’s survival instinct.
Take the DDs to some friends houses or grandparents and sit him down just the two of you so that if you need to get a bit angry and shout back, the girls aren’t exposed to that.
But you do need to take a stand.

Discovereads · 09/10/2022 00:01

Kinderbuenos · 08/10/2022 23:29

@HeddaGarbled I think you are exactly right and I will be doing nothing for Dh , even with a non forthcoming apology

Doing nothing…hah he can out do you on doing nothing. The rubbish will be overflowing, the dirty clothes piled high….

This is also passive aggressive and more avoiding conflict. Actually sit down and communicate, have a come to Jesus meeting.

DPotter · 09/10/2022 00:06

I feel for you.

Came home this evening after a heavy, long day at work - DP immediately telling me how "productive" he had been today - hoovering, tidying up and putting away (some of ) the ironing. He obviously was wanting praise. He got the look and asked why the hoover was still sitting in the dining room.

SleeplessInEngland · 09/10/2022 00:09


Elieza · 09/10/2022 00:10

Agree with others that you need to talk while the kids are out and explain your situation.

I always think if the one partner works say 35hrs a week (you may want to incl travel time if it’s horrific and tiring) and the other partner say works 20 hours, then the difference is what she could spend on household chores, admin, taxiing kids to clubs etc. But after that whatever else needs done should be halved. That includes weekends. So if that was you I’d expect you to do 15 hours drudgework a week.

It’s like some partners think boobs and a vagina somehow equal a higher tolerance for drudgework. Why the hell should that be the case.

Merlott · 09/10/2022 00:11

So he's trained you over the years to do the housework because he is nasty to you when you have challenged him on it?

When is your leisure time?

The teen needs consequences for sure, a 5 yo can put washing away!

doodleygirl · 09/10/2022 00:12

I just don’t understand why anyone accepts a partner who doesn’t pull their weight. Your kids don’t because they are allowed not to. Either change the status quo or continue to be a doormat.

I would imagine you would rather bring up your kids to see both parents doing the necessary chores.

Fraaahnces · 09/10/2022 00:22

You just know he’s going to bung a frozen pizza in the oven and claim that it was easy, don’t you? I would ensure that he has to shop too.

Weenurse · 09/10/2022 00:37

When we lost our cleaner, I called a family meeting, something not done very often.
after dinner, TV off, no phones at the table meeting.
I started with we all work and study, we all contribute to the mess, therefore we all need to contribute to the clean up.
We then went around the table and divided up jobs.
What eventuated was a chore chart (DD did the chart as she has the neatest writing).
Summary- DC responsible for their rooms, bathroom and washing.
DH and I responsible for rest of house, bill paying.
Cooking, everyone cooks at least once a week.
Kitchen patrol (KP or cleaning), everyone does at least twice per week.
Food shopping, me, but list to me by Saturday so I can do it Sunday, includes ingredients for the meal you are cooking. ( list on the fridge)
animals, pot plants etc all shared.
Chart lives on the kitchen door and reviewed each term depending on work and sporting commitments.
Expectation is rooms, bathrooms etc. done at least once a week, to a minimum set standard. DC then negotiated themselves as to who did what with their bathroom.
Good luck

Firstworldprobs · 09/10/2022 00:46

The root cause of this situation is poor communication, assumptions, and misaligned expectations.

You’ve decided the house needs attention, you’ve decided that today is the day to sort it out. Did you share these decisions with your DH before today? If not, he has no idea what you’re expecting from him today, and so was perplexed to be on the receiving end of an earful. He’s not a mindreader. You assumed he would notice that you wanted to him to blitz the house with you today, then snapped at him when he didn’t read your mind. That’s why he was angry - not excusing him, just suggesting a possible reason.

None of your expectations are unreasonable whatsoever. But you have to share them out loud with your DH and kids! Tell them what you want!

Don’t assume they feel the same as you about the house (we all have different mess tolerance / blindness).

Sit them down and tell them that whilst you are between cleaners you expect more daily effort from all of them, and that you will agree on chores/tasks that need to be carried out weekly by all of you (which is what you wanted to happen today). Be specific, lay out expectations in advance, instead of hoping they’ll notice and then seething when they don’t.

If you do that and they all still don’t pull their weight, THEN feel free to lose your shit!!

Rapunzel22 · 09/10/2022 01:35

Did you lay it out clearly to all of them that this was happening today ahead of time?

Rapunzel22 · 09/10/2022 01:36

@Firstworldprobs you said it all better than me!

UniversalAunt · 09/10/2022 01:40

Remove one shoe from each pair of golf, football & sports shoes.
Place each ‘hostage’ shoe in a place where only someone who is committed to doing their share of housework will find it, e.g. underneath the hoover, behind the washing powders, in the dirty washing or clean-to-iron pile. Maybe wrapped up hygienically in the freezer alongside the pizza & frozen peas.

Stop doing other people’s work. No more changing of bed linens, hoovering bedrooms, putting dirty laundry through the machine, folding/ironing clean clothes & certainly putting away. No more catering for personal taste buds.

Plaintiff cries of ‘where is my other shoe/clean pants/favourite crisps etc ?’, obviously where they left it last.

Only buy food you like.
Only cook what you like to eat.
One meal on the table once a day, no variation.
Obviously change your bed linen to your standards - he benefits - but make sure that you always change your pillowcases, his maybe not so often if at all.
Dirty linen does not go into a shared basket, each room has its own dirty clothes basket & bin, so if it overflows, it’s down to them.

Do not raise your voice, explain what has been done or point out the obvious - let them work out that Mum is working to rule, her rules.

Should/when you get a cleaner in to help the whole family, & any intensive work in the teens’s rooms is charged pro rata cleaner’s rates from allowance.

It’ll be bloody & painful for a while, but all you are doing is working to rule.

musingsinmidlife · 09/10/2022 01:46

I don’t think it is fair to decide that because you had chose to clean at that moment that everyone has to change their plans or drop what they are doing to clean at that moment. That sounds pretty controlling.

Instead tasks should be divided up and each person has the responsibility to get theirs done or you mutually choose a time each week to all clean together.


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Aquamarine1029 · 09/10/2022 01:52

What a dreadful example for your children. I don't see the point of you being with him at all. The only thing he does his make your life harder.

FlyingCircus93 · 09/10/2022 02:14

musingsinmidlife · 09/10/2022 01:46

I don’t think it is fair to decide that because you had chose to clean at that moment that everyone has to change their plans or drop what they are doing to clean at that moment. That sounds pretty controlling.

Instead tasks should be divided up and each person has the responsibility to get theirs done or you mutually choose a time each week to all clean together.


His attitude isn't acceptable but my OH does this and it drives me NUTS. He just decides we need to do xyz at a time of his choosing and then I'm wrong for not contributing. This doesn't at all take into consideration that I might have made my own plans in my spare time.

I have no issues if he asks can you help me do xyz at the weekend. Sure! When shall we do it? But I really cannot stand when my time doesn't feel like my own because someone else has decided for me...and not even told me!

CactusBlossom · 09/10/2022 02:28

Kinderbuenos · 08/10/2022 22:23

He’s normally good but doesn’t like to have a lot asked of him - so yes selfish. I can live with this and have done for many years.

However, I can’t live with that reaction

Unfortunately you appear to have trained him to expect that you will always pick up the pieces, do the cooking, cleaning etc etc… so it has come as a bit of a shock when he finds he is expected to contribute. I’m assuming his behaviour is the same as when you did have a cleaner — so from his perspective he is acting normally. If you decided today’s the today for a cleaning fest I can understand there being conflicts in schedules if it wasn’t discussed in advance. However, you do need to set boundaries, and discuss responsibilities.

“speaking down to him in his own house” this would annoy me more than anything else he’s said from your post. If it’s his house, he can organise and pay for a cleaner himself. Why should you do it for free? I really don’t like that patronising and sexist attitude. Surely he should be referring to “our house” or “our home” when he speaks to you?

To be honest, I doubt you’ll get an apology, but it’s more important to get tasks divided among the family. What has happened to the money that paid for the cleaner? Could that be used towards something else that might help until you get another cleaner? Perhaps a laundry service or gardening, for example?

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