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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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BadNomad · 28/06/2023 01:28

mandlerparr · 28/06/2023 00:35

If you think living in abject poverty with empty belly and threadbare clothes is easier than seeing your mom do all the work while your father is a useless ass is a better situation, maybe you better have another think on it.
Poverty is violent, it is dangerous. If I have to choose between moldy public housing and having to clean a home by myself, you are damn straight I am choosing cleaning. Criminal activity is much higher in poorer areas.
"mah, not all single moms are poor" No, but a lot are, aren't they. You think society is any less mentally and emotionally abusive to single mothers than these lazy men are? Newsflash, it is not.
and believe me, there is a big difference between barely seeing your dad 30 minutes a day, but knowing he lives there and never seeing him because now that he doesn't live with you, he doesn't come around at all or only comes every few months.
so, do these women make a choice. Yes, the best they can make. If you have a better choice that isn't just platitudes and toxic positivity, then go for it. Share. Because there is no housing for these women to move into.

And yes, If your spouse only models shitty behavior for your children, that is 100% his fault. No one else's. Believe me, my children have done the poverty thing vs the lazy father thing and they are much happier with a home, cleanliness, lack of bugs, lack of crime, being able to have a car, have food we bought, etc. They also experience way less bullying and get better grades.
So, do I make a choice to be treated like shit so that my children can have a better life? I do.
Would I love to have better options? I would.
I don't even know what you are so angry about. I mean, you have only made good choices and your life is only good, right? Or are you just mad that someone is complaining about their shitty life. because you can always just unfollow. Why is it so upsetting to you? Please don't just repeat that you don't want to hear about it. I have given you a valid solution to that problem.
It is your choice to take it or not.

I don't know why you're assuming I'm angry or upset. I'm not at all. I'm just giving my opinion like everyone else here. Clearly, it's struck a nerve with you though.

Your solution to getting your children out of poverty was to move them in with a man who treats their mother like shit? Interesting choice. Oh I've "done the poverty thing" as a child and also witnessed my mother's shitty choices in men play out too. And I swear on my life the poverty days were still better than the atmosphere of living with her dickhead of choice. I'd rather be bullied by twats at school than see my downtrodden mother hating her life at home. How do you think your children would feel if they knew you were living like that for them? I doubt many children are happy to find out their mother let herself be treated like shit because of them. I know I wasn't particularly pleased my existence "made" my mother put herself through that. NO child wants that for their mother.

I did make different choices in life. Obviously, I would rather have been taught from a young age how I deserved to be treated, but thankfully it only took a couple of shitty relationships to wake up and realise I didn't want to be my mother. Kinda sad though right? She did everything "for her kids" yet she's not someone I would ever want to be.

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Sissynova · 28/06/2023 06:16

BadNomad · 27/06/2023 21:39

Right, so they've chosen to stay because it is the better option. That is a judgment they have made for themselves and their children. And if that choice ends up negatively affecting their children, it has nothing to do with them, apparently. It's only the useless man's fault.

The funny thing is though, the law doesn't give a pass to women who consistently fail to protect their children from physical harm from partners. But the emotional/psychological harm from being raised in the family setups mentioned on this thread? Who cares about that. We'll just pretend that the children won't be affected. They'll figure out for themselves one day how to be decent partners and what to expect from decent partners. Or not.

Exactly. They all blame MILs for the adult husband’s behaviours but even though the DH is so utterly useless they claim their children will not be the same and it’s definitely not their fault as a mother.

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SamanthaCaine · 28/06/2023 06:24

Deary me. This thread has descended into a pittiful excuse fest. How sad.

I wonder what women like @Apricotflanday and @mandlerparr would advise their daughters to do, if they ever get married to the type of man baby we're talking about.

"Oh stay with him dear as your life will be better as a doormat".

How empowering 🙄

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Pythacalling702 · 28/06/2023 07:37

Yeah it’s a great shame how some women fail to have sympathy and understanding for others, to respect their decision-making processes when they make compromises for the good of their family as a whole, make judgements about their individual situations without really knowing the details, when they have no clue about what circumstances a particular individual may be facing, and proceed to put them down and berate them, instead of focusing on the failings of men. Hey ho. Each to their own… .

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Apricotflanday · 28/06/2023 07:46

SamanthaCaine · 28/06/2023 06:24

Deary me. This thread has descended into a pittiful excuse fest. How sad.

I wonder what women like @Apricotflanday and @mandlerparr would advise their daughters to do, if they ever get married to the type of man baby we're talking about.

"Oh stay with him dear as your life will be better as a doormat".

How empowering 🙄

This is what I mean. The nastiness, spite and lack of empathy for people who are struggling and the personal comments about people whose lives are completely unknown.

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Apricotflanday · 28/06/2023 07:50

I think a lot of it is because mumsnet tends to be used by the wealthier sections of society and they have no idea how difficult it is to survive as a single parent. Also, there seems to be no conception of human emotions, so they can't see that it could cause very high emotional and mental distress to someone to leave their partner (which would affect how they could function and would affect their children's wellbeing).

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Apricotflanday · 28/06/2023 07:55

BadNomad · 28/06/2023 01:28

I don't know why you're assuming I'm angry or upset. I'm not at all. I'm just giving my opinion like everyone else here. Clearly, it's struck a nerve with you though.

Your solution to getting your children out of poverty was to move them in with a man who treats their mother like shit? Interesting choice. Oh I've "done the poverty thing" as a child and also witnessed my mother's shitty choices in men play out too. And I swear on my life the poverty days were still better than the atmosphere of living with her dickhead of choice. I'd rather be bullied by twats at school than see my downtrodden mother hating her life at home. How do you think your children would feel if they knew you were living like that for them? I doubt many children are happy to find out their mother let herself be treated like shit because of them. I know I wasn't particularly pleased my existence "made" my mother put herself through that. NO child wants that for their mother.

I did make different choices in life. Obviously, I would rather have been taught from a young age how I deserved to be treated, but thankfully it only took a couple of shitty relationships to wake up and realise I didn't want to be my mother. Kinda sad though right? She did everything "for her kids" yet she's not someone I would ever want to be.

I think you've answered Mandleparr's question here. You are probably projecting your childhood experiences and anger at or hurt for your mother onto strangers on the internet, whose feelings and situations might or might not be similar, but who all have individual lives with factors you don't know about.

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SamanthaCaine · 28/06/2023 07:57

Sure, because obviously you know my background and upbringing 🙄

The irony. Complain that some of us are making assumptions but then do the exact same thing.

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Apricotflanday · 28/06/2023 08:03

SamanthaCaine · 28/06/2023 07:57

Sure, because obviously you know my background and upbringing 🙄

The irony. Complain that some of us are making assumptions but then do the exact same thing.

I wasn't talking about you personally. I have no idea why you're being so unpleasant to people. I was just guessing why some posters might think it's easy and sensible to leave an otherwise amicable marriage and secure home in order to try life as a single parent.

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SamanthaCaine · 28/06/2023 08:05

You're missing one vital point. Noone is berrating these women who choose to stay with useless husbands. Just saying we wouldn't put up with it. How many more times 🙄

I'm just poking at you for your wet fish attitudes. I've not read one solution from any of you. Not one viable way round the situation except for yielding to the status quo.

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SamanthaCaine · 28/06/2023 08:06

You're also missing the OP FFS.

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.

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BadNomad · 28/06/2023 08:20

Apricotflanday · 28/06/2023 07:55

I think you've answered Mandleparr's question here. You are probably projecting your childhood experiences and anger at or hurt for your mother onto strangers on the internet, whose feelings and situations might or might not be similar, but who all have individual lives with factors you don't know about.

It's not anger. It's not projection. It's awareness. I am aware of the impact of being raised by a martyr mother and shit men. My mother did what she thought was for the best. But good intentions don't mitigate the damage. And good intentions don't absolve you of your role in it.

Neither of you can seem to accept that other people might make different choices in those same situations. Why is it important to believe that everyone would do the same thing? It actually isn't a judgment on you what other people do with their lives. I don't understand why you're trying to dismiss other people's opinions on this. People saying "I wouldn't have done that" and "it doesn't have to be like that" is not wrong. If you feel you have no other choice then that's how you feel. It doesn't mean other people must feel the same way.

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SerafinasGoose · 28/06/2023 09:11

Apricotflanday · 27/06/2023 20:57

I think you're hypothesising about individuals' differing situations. No doubt some women do organise their partners' appointments, which yes I agree is odd and seems like it must be a choice, but others are just struggling to hold things together without much support and whether that's a choice might depend on your philosophical position on whether being faced with far worse seeming alternatives (especially in a cost of living crisis sith barely any social safety net) constitutes a choice.

I don't know why you're telling me to take responsibility when you know little about my life, either.

I know the sum total of absolutely nothing about your life.

I'm responding directly to the points made in your posts.

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SerafinasGoose · 28/06/2023 09:19

SamanthaCaine · 28/06/2023 08:05

You're missing one vital point. Noone is berrating these women who choose to stay with useless husbands. Just saying we wouldn't put up with it. How many more times 🙄

I'm just poking at you for your wet fish attitudes. I've not read one solution from any of you. Not one viable way round the situation except for yielding to the status quo.

The solution is, that other women on the internet are expected to provide those solutions; to 'support' other women's choices [to be martyrs] even if they view those choices as weak, passive and self-sacrificing.

It's a curious double whammy of learned helplessness. On the part of the male - who can apparently hold down a senior executive position but can't operate a washing machine - and on the part of the woman who likely unconsciously assumes her place is to 'look after' the male, picks up all the slack and 'wife-work', and then complains of being helpless under the burden.

With this situation in particular - not the varying others we've seen on this thread - I have zero sympathy or patience. It isn't the job of other women, who are strangers on the www and have nothing in common with these people other than shared XX chromosomes, to support or humour this nonsense.

Learned helplessness. The clue is in the 'learned'.

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SamanthaCaine · 28/06/2023 09:51

Good post @SerafinasGoose and I agree.

My daughter calls it weaponised incompetence. It's a bloody good job my OH is a true partner as he'd get a beating otherwise (metaphorically).

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gannett · 28/06/2023 10:02

SerafinasGoose · 28/06/2023 09:19

The solution is, that other women on the internet are expected to provide those solutions; to 'support' other women's choices [to be martyrs] even if they view those choices as weak, passive and self-sacrificing.

It's a curious double whammy of learned helplessness. On the part of the male - who can apparently hold down a senior executive position but can't operate a washing machine - and on the part of the woman who likely unconsciously assumes her place is to 'look after' the male, picks up all the slack and 'wife-work', and then complains of being helpless under the burden.

With this situation in particular - not the varying others we've seen on this thread - I have zero sympathy or patience. It isn't the job of other women, who are strangers on the www and have nothing in common with these people other than shared XX chromosomes, to support or humour this nonsense.

Learned helplessness. The clue is in the 'learned'.

I agree. I also wonder what form of "support" for women in these unfortunate positions is acceptable? I don't consider a moaning session amongst women who hate their husbands to be real support if there's no outcome that changes the status quo. When I moan it's because I want a solution. My support comes in the form of repeating the message that women are more in control of their lives, relationships and destinies than they think - or at least, they're the person with the most power to change those things because no one else will do it for them.

Many friends have complained to me about their relationships over the years and my response has always been a practical solution.

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SamanthaCaine · 28/06/2023 10:17

I came to the realisation years ago that some people just want to moan and not actually do anything about it. You hear it a lot at work. Colleagues that moan about their jobs but never look for new ones. There are numerous other scenarios.

I did a course a long time ago by Penny Ferguson, called Personal Leadership. She's an amazing woman who empowered herself to leave an abusive relationship and go on to be a successful businesswoman. Anyway her big message was the word 'choice' and how so many of us (including herself) had the phrase "I have no choice" in our vocabulary. The moment you remove choice, you remove any solution and there is ALWAYS a choice. The outcome may be undesirable, unattractive or difficult but there is always a choice. We should do whatever we can to eliminate this phrase from our minds because it's incredibly destructive. She's bloody right.

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Emotionalstorm · 28/06/2023 10:22

SamanthaCaine · 28/06/2023 10:17

I came to the realisation years ago that some people just want to moan and not actually do anything about it. You hear it a lot at work. Colleagues that moan about their jobs but never look for new ones. There are numerous other scenarios.

I did a course a long time ago by Penny Ferguson, called Personal Leadership. She's an amazing woman who empowered herself to leave an abusive relationship and go on to be a successful businesswoman. Anyway her big message was the word 'choice' and how so many of us (including herself) had the phrase "I have no choice" in our vocabulary. The moment you remove choice, you remove any solution and there is ALWAYS a choice. The outcome may be undesirable, unattractive or difficult but there is always a choice. We should do whatever we can to eliminate this phrase from our minds because it's incredibly destructive. She's bloody right.

They also want a pat on the back and to be told they are strong and their decisions leading to their situation wasn't wrong.

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Yea2023 · 28/06/2023 10:24

I gave what I feel is a practical solution and was misconstrued, told I was lucky/fortunate and smug.

I explained my household as an example of how things can work as was told ‘yea but I bet you do the mental load, set tasks up’ (nope).

No skin off my nose but my take away is are these women looking for solutions?

personally I think on balance, staying rather than poverty is probably better. But I also feel many red flags are ignored before the ‘settling down’ leading to this situation.

Some ppl need to be realistic about the previous warning signs and drill the red flags into their DC, instead of moaning while providing an example that will replicate the issue.

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JapaneseTony · 28/06/2023 11:09

I think sometimes women who post threads like this are just looking to let off steam about minor irritations in an otherwise happy marriage and that's fine- I wouldn't normally post on a thread like that as I don't share the experience and it would indeed be smug to pop up saying, "well, my husband isn't like that at all".

I think what's different on this thread is that OP expressed it explicitly in terms of ALL men being like this and, as others have said, this just normalises and so perpetuates the inequality. It's not the law of the universe that men are useless, lazy and misogynistic- some are, some aren't- and if you're married to one who is you don't have to accept it. Of course, choosing not to accept it might mean choosing not to be with that man- you pays your money and you takes your choice.

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Husband1984 · 28/06/2023 13:48

Thanks for the message. Yes she does have depression and always has issues with her family. I try to support her for long periods but after a while I get annoyed that she can’t focus on home/family life. I know depression is not as easy as that but I’m struggling to continue supporting her when I feel like I’m not being supported myself.

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Scirocco · 28/06/2023 14:04

Husband1984 · 28/06/2023 13:48

Thanks for the message. Yes she does have depression and always has issues with her family. I try to support her for long periods but after a while I get annoyed that she can’t focus on home/family life. I know depression is not as easy as that but I’m struggling to continue supporting her when I feel like I’m not being supported myself.

If she's severely depressed, it may be that she can't do more than this at the moment until her health improves. In that case, she needs to get proper specialist care and treatment. Is there a way you could help her to do this?

There are resources available for carers and spouses of people with long term health issues and/or mental health issues. Depending on where you are and your area's policies, you might qualify for something like a carers assessment too.

I don't know your financial situation and please don't feel like you have to share that here or anything. If it's affordable, could you reduce some of the strain on you by paying for help - a cleaner, a babysitter, laundry sent to a launderette, etc? It's not a long term solution for most people, but if it's an option then it might help stabilise things for you so you can cope.

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Husband1984 · 28/06/2023 14:04

Husband1984 · 27/06/2023 16:58

What if it’s the other way around? I work full time and my wife 14 hours a week. I contribute 6x what she does financially, I do all the housework (clean bathrooms, hoover, tidy, all laundry, mow the lawn, put the bins out etc and my wife only does the food shopping) and I do more of the childcare with most school runs, bath and bed times (my wife goes out once or twice a week) playing with our son at home, taking him to sports practices etc. My wife will take our son to school birthday parties though.

I have tried to ask her politely to help me out when she has days when she’s not at work, but it isn’t received very well.

Any advice on what might work to get you to do a little bit more without causing an issue?

p.s. yes I am a typical male complaining about sex though! 😂

And to answer questions about what she does with her time, usually sees her sister (who doesn’t work because she is a carer for her autistic 5 & 7 year old boys) or her nan, sleeps or spends a lot of time on her phone (hypercritical coming from me on my phone now, although her usage is huge!)

So the depression certainly has something to do with it. She is on antidepressants and I’ve always tried to support her in a very manly way of doing the physical things to take those stresses away. I just feel it’s now taken for granted and the depression isn’t getting any better (I’ve suggested going back to the doctor and changing tablets but she is worried about the low before they start to work) so what else can I do to a) support her and b) try to get her to support me?

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Scirocco · 28/06/2023 16:49

She needs to go to the doctor, get new antidepressants and if need be get referred to secondary care specialist mental health services (eg a psychiatrist).

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OMG12 · 28/06/2023 16:59

Husband1984 · 28/06/2023 14:04

And to answer questions about what she does with her time, usually sees her sister (who doesn’t work because she is a carer for her autistic 5 & 7 year old boys) or her nan, sleeps or spends a lot of time on her phone (hypercritical coming from me on my phone now, although her usage is huge!)

So the depression certainly has something to do with it. She is on antidepressants and I’ve always tried to support her in a very manly way of doing the physical things to take those stresses away. I just feel it’s now taken for granted and the depression isn’t getting any better (I’ve suggested going back to the doctor and changing tablets but she is worried about the low before they start to work) so what else can I do to a) support her and b) try to get her to support me?

Did you see the recent panorama programme on anti depressants? They certainly don’t work for everyone- she should speak to her doctor about maybe coming off them and looking at alternatives/ many “alternative” therapies are good for mental health conditions / breath work, yoga etc. recent studies suggest lucid dreaming might help certain mental health conditions

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