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AIBU?

All women I know are in my situation

1000 replies

growli · 25/06/2023 13:17

Pretty useless DH. They're left to look after the kids. Called nags if they complain.

It mostly falls on them. The marriages are pretty rubbish.

I've posted here so many times about my issues with my H and my lifestyle with small kids.

I always get told I need to divorce. I get told that there are other men out there who aren't as useless with their children.

In real life, every woman I know, faces something similar. Mainly responsible for everything to do with kids and house, works full time most of the time too.

Husband works hard, but doesn't contribute to looking after the kids or household. Complains of not enough sex.

The women I know are highly educated and in successful careers. We all feel stitched up. We were told if we study hard and are in successful careers, we wouldn't end up being slaves to our husbands and children.

What happened to the men our parents raised ? For them to expect women to still be like their mothers ? Doing everything for kids and family.

Mothers and mothers in law in general ( even though they raised us to be successful career women with choices ) don't have a whole lot of sympathy as it seems a raise to the bottom and ' how much harder ' it was for them.

I realise I'm generalising

OP posts:
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Tandora · 25/06/2023 13:55

ProfessorXtra · 25/06/2023 13:36

hmmm I think a lot of men are like this. I think the conversation about why isn’t a comfortable one and people don’t like having it.

I don’t think it’s as simple as ‘useless men’.

So don’t be so cryptic . Tell us your theory then?

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Sissynova · 25/06/2023 13:56

@Tandora Even women who seemingly enjoy a 50/50 share (where are these unicorns except on mumsnet?) have to do 100% of the “project management” and therefore also the mental load. That’s not 50/50 in reality.

No they really don’t have to.
Men are perfectly capable of picking something up for dinner without being asked, tidying the home because they can see it needs it, booking drs appointments for kids etc.

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BeachBlondey · 25/06/2023 13:56

I think the main problem, is that men usually don't care if stuff gets done, so there's no motivation.

They don't care if the loo's haven't been cleaned recently.

They don't care if the kitchen floor is dirty.

They don't care if the house is messy when visitors are coming.

And that's assuming, that they even notice those things, in the first place!

That said, if I ask my DH to do a job, he is straight on it, and he will do it thoroughly.

I would say to all women getting married - start as you mean to go on. Because once you set the standard for everything, it's very hard to get men to change. My 1st marriage, I bought all of the presents for his side of the family. It was a huge undertaking, as there were hoards of them. My 2nd marriage, I made a mental note not to even start this - that's a whole time consuming task that isn't on my plate anymore.

I don't like the fact that at my DH's work, they call their days off "rest days", as I'm pretty sure that's what he thinks he ought to be doing for those days! 😂

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NameChangerPlease · 25/06/2023 13:57

NC for this one!

I 100% agree with you. We have 3 DC and I'm only just realising how just little he does. He washes the bottles and makes out he is a hero.

He constantly gets praised for doing shit all. He doesn't respect me as a mother let alone a person and this is all in a few months. I do suspect probably cheating and that's why we're going our separate ways. Even if he hasn't cheated he still disrespects me as the mother of his children. You can not like me that's fine but you will respect me.

He is clever with his words he won't call me lazy but use other words to basically say that. I'm not sure how I can be lazy with 3 DC's all under 4 but okay 🤷🏻‍♀️.

Doesn't provide financially as he's always 'skint' not sure how and it's none of my business apparently! He's just become very vile and I am not playing the game. He can be skint and vile on his own.

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Tandora · 25/06/2023 13:57

Sissynova · 25/06/2023 13:54

This is just not my norm at all. Most of the men I know look after their children and enjoy it just as mothers largely do. Some took several months split leave, some went down to 4 day weeks to do childcare rather than full time nursery.
They all split drop offs and pick ups with their partner, they all attend ‘dad mornings’ at school or nursery.
The only people I know in the sort of relationship you describe have chosen to work limited hours and therefore it makes sense that more childcare and housework falls to them. It will never truly feel equal in that type of relationship imo even though you are both contributing.
I just refused to have an adult relationship let alone children with a man who thinks children are woman’s work.

Doesn’t the very fact there are ‘dad mornings’ tell you something?

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Tandora · 25/06/2023 13:58

Sissynova · 25/06/2023 13:56

@Tandora Even women who seemingly enjoy a 50/50 share (where are these unicorns except on mumsnet?) have to do 100% of the “project management” and therefore also the mental load. That’s not 50/50 in reality.

No they really don’t have to.
Men are perfectly capable of picking something up for dinner without being asked, tidying the home because they can see it needs it, booking drs appointments for kids etc.

I never said they weren’t capable!

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Straightsidedcircle · 25/06/2023 13:58

This reply has been deleted

This has been deleted by MNHQ for breaking our Talk Guidelines.

Letittow · 25/06/2023 13:59

MrsElsa · 25/06/2023 13:48

YANBU. The expectation is that women "shouldn't put up with it" which is a nice cop out squarely putting all the load and responsibility straight back onto women's shoulders! Men doing whatever they fancy and somehow it's womens fault for not pulling them up on it, as if men aren't capable adult human beings who can spot bad behaviour, inefficient systems, inequality etc.

My DH will do things he's asked to. Sometimes he's a nasty twat about it and sometimes he just does it. But still his expectation is that I have to ask. The mental load of what needs to be done and when is all on me. It's fucking awful. Not what I signed up for. Looking into the future fills me with dread sometimes and I regret having DC - I had them I now realise because I was full of good feelings towards the future, I had hope, it would be fun to have a family etc. But 10 more years of this is like being held prisoner. So little of my energy, creativity, brain space used for me. Everything going on 1 adult and 2 kids.

Totally unfair

Mens behaviour isn't the fault of women, but it's their choice to settle down with and start families with them knowing what they're like. Your DH sounds pathetic, only doing things if you ask and then sometimes being really nasty about it- that's not normal you know no matter how much he might tell you it is. I think you nailed it though, you had 'hope' instead of looking at the reality of his behaviour which is a shame but can't be changed now.

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FlamingoYellow · 25/06/2023 13:59

I have female friends from all different backgrounds and with all different type of partners and, of those who have male partners, they all have a massive imbalance with who does the most housework, childcare and carrying the mental load. It is so ingrained that I don't think they even realise how unfair it is.

It is completely unfair to put this all on the women - they will likely have been socialised to accept it and its often only when you have children together that it be becomes obvious. Then you've got the choice between a lifetime of nagging, or putting your kids through a split up family and potentially a much poorer childhood. I've been the mum living in the damp 1 bed flat with 2 kids, stressing over bills and it's not a lifestyle I would want for any child.

My DP is the only man I know who genuinely does 50/50 housework and childcare (without needing to be told), plans hobbies and seeing friends around family time, makes sure I have equal time to myself and carries half the mental load. I realise that there is nothing I could have done or not done in my previous relationship to make my ex behave like him.

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DustyLee123 · 25/06/2023 14:00

I absolutely agree with you. The only reason I am still married is because I refuse to lose my house, and I’m not sure he’d let me buy him out. I think he’d force the sale to be mean.
We sleep in separate rooms, no bodily contact whatsoever, 99% of the time we are in different rooms.

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notsofamous · 25/06/2023 14:00

Sissynova · 25/06/2023 13:54

This is just not my norm at all. Most of the men I know look after their children and enjoy it just as mothers largely do. Some took several months split leave, some went down to 4 day weeks to do childcare rather than full time nursery.
They all split drop offs and pick ups with their partner, they all attend ‘dad mornings’ at school or nursery.
The only people I know in the sort of relationship you describe have chosen to work limited hours and therefore it makes sense that more childcare and housework falls to them. It will never truly feel equal in that type of relationship imo even though you are both contributing.
I just refused to have an adult relationship let alone children with a man who thinks children are woman’s work.

They have ’dad mornings’? Oh, the irony. 😂

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Scirocco · 25/06/2023 14:00

I definitely don't carry all the mental load, again it's shared equitably. There are some things I do more of and some things DH does more of, taking into consideration our individual strengths and weaknesses.

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Tandora · 25/06/2023 14:00

Letittow · 25/06/2023 13:59

Mens behaviour isn't the fault of women, but it's their choice to settle down with and start families with them knowing what they're like. Your DH sounds pathetic, only doing things if you ask and then sometimes being really nasty about it- that's not normal you know no matter how much he might tell you it is. I think you nailed it though, you had 'hope' instead of looking at the reality of his behaviour which is a shame but can't be changed now.

that's not normal you know no matter how much he might tell you it is

thing is it is normal, if by Normal you mean common/ typical/ average.

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mumof2many1943 · 25/06/2023 14:01

I consider myself very lucky (married in the late 60’s yes I am old) when we had 3 DC’s I went back to work full time doing nights and my DH certainly pulled his weight……if it needed doing he did it and vice versa. It was a very equal marriage. Sadly he died last year and life is much busier.

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Peppapigboresme · 25/06/2023 14:01

This reply has been withdrawn

The OP has privacy concerns about this thread, so we've agreed to take it down.

MotherOfRatios · 25/06/2023 14:01

I'm in my mid 20s and single but I think it's worth asking men when dating questions about feminism raising kids housework etc.

the reality of me finding someone I want is slim and I've accepted
I probably will be single and childless but I would rather have that than be with a man he doesn't pick up his share of raising kids.

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Farmageddon · 25/06/2023 14:02

Two things, OP:

For women, marriage and children are still (depressingly) seen as the ultimate goal in life. Women are deemed not got enough, or looked down upon if they don't have these. Thankfully this is is changing slightly, but the Disney style romance is still marketed heavily to women. Therefore they try to hold it all together and make it work, even when it's clear he's a dud.

Also, and more crucially I believe, most men are ambivalent about having children (of course there are some exceptions) and sort of see anything domestic and child related as their wife's 'hobby'. The women more often than not are pushing for children, so when things get difficult, a lot of men just think 'well you can deal with that, you wanted them'. Which is unfair and selfish, but then again so are most men...

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Kazzyhoward · 25/06/2023 14:02

Men only get away with it because we let them. My OH does his fair share, we split chores/life admin etc., he does his bit, I do mine. We'd never have got married, bought a house together, nor had a child if he didn't!

Right from the earliest days of dating, I didn't put up with any crap. It's the reason I dumped by first boyfriend, he always expected me to drive, expected me to buy drinks "because he was unemployed", didn't care how untidy his bedroom was, etc.

When we got married and moved into our first home, I was absolutely clear as to what I expected him to do in terms of DIY, cleaning, laundry, household chores, etc.

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NameChangerPlease · 25/06/2023 14:03

MotherOfRatios · 25/06/2023 14:01

I'm in my mid 20s and single but I think it's worth asking men when dating questions about feminism raising kids housework etc.

the reality of me finding someone I want is slim and I've accepted
I probably will be single and childless but I would rather have that than be with a man he doesn't pick up his share of raising kids.

You can ask away. Some people tell you what you want to hear.

Some people change after having kids and some people are just pure and utter dicks.

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Groutyonehereagain · 25/06/2023 14:03

Us women need to raise sons who step up. I’ve worked with women who say they have to do everything for their sons, as their sons are useless. Go figure.

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MotherOfRatios · 25/06/2023 14:04

NameChangerPlease · 25/06/2023 14:03

You can ask away. Some people tell you what you want to hear.

Some people change after having kids and some people are just pure and utter dicks.

obviously, I also watch their behaviour with women and how they talk about women. But so far every single man that I speak to says exactly what I don't want to hear it and it doesn't continue.

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DustyLee123 · 25/06/2023 14:04

When me and DH started living together/got married he did lots of DIY as we bought a doer upper. Fast forward 30 years, he’s retired, I’m PT, and there is no way he does 50%. If I question this I’m told I’m nagging. You really can’t win.

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Lcb123 · 25/06/2023 14:05

I don’t know anyone who is in that situation. All my friends and family have a fair split of work, household and childcare.

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Sheruns · 25/06/2023 14:05

I left my ex for this reason. It was made by worse by the fact he was in the forces and was away for a long time at a time. I worked full time with two under two and literally everything fell to me even when he was home.

I made myself ill and my mental health was a disaster. Over time, without even realising, I feel out of love with him and grew to resent him. I was as surprised as he was when I told him it was over. I figured doing it all myself was better than constantly being let down.

He promised me the world and how much he was going to change. I still left. I had lost all respect for him.

We're amicably divorced now. He does more for the children than he ever did when we were together. He has a new partner and I believe he does his share with her.

My partner has never been married before. He does his share and more.

These men exist. You only get one life. Don't waste it being undervalued and taken for granted.

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SerafinasGoose · 25/06/2023 14:05

Not the case for me, either. We are both professionals, work full-time and have one child.

We have a cleaner. I'd never want a nanny, but as we both pull our weight we don't need one. Household labour and childcare are divided fairly equally. DH is better than me in the mornings so he takes on the morning tasks. I'm better in the evenings, helping with homework etc. The only thing I have to complain about is DH chucking clean laundry in the baskets without folding it, always leaving clothes inside out when taking them off, and the numerous missing socks (which are always DH's socks, because he slings them into drawers without their pair!)

I'm sure there are things I do/don't do that piss him off as well. But we are an equal team. If one of us is having a stressful period or has a deadline to meet, the other picks up the slack in the meantime. Neither of us ever has to 'nag' (hate that misogynistic term) the other.

If this form of equality seems a MN only phenomenon, then I've met it offline too. Most of the professional women in my workplace are in a similar situation to mine. Children need to be taken care of - able-bodied adult men and women do not.

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