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How much responsibility over the home do you have?

post #1 of 44
Thread Starter 

I am just curious.

 

Do you cook and clean?

Do you make all appointments and attend them?

Do you pay bills......

Anything else you do that your DP never does since you stay at home?

 

etc, etc.......

 

I am asking because being a Stay at Home parent has been a bit of a "learn as I go" deal.

Neither DH or myself  aren't able to find balance, and often times I feel overworked.

 

post #2 of 44

I do most of the cleaning and basically all of the cooking because I 'm the better cook. Dh will cook or clean anytime if I ask him, so yeah, it seems that's all mine. I don't share a bathroom with him tho so that's his. He also does the garage, shoveling, and cleans the laundry room. He does his own laundry and often does the baby laundry. He grocery shops often, and pays most of the bills. I do a fair amount of the repairs, but dh makes appts for say, the plumber. We split the yard work.

 

Really, if dd is safe and sound, happy... dh would do whatever was needed. We just go day by day.

post #3 of 44

As a SAHM, in our house I am responsible for:

 

-Most of the cleaning (except DH does the pots & pans and folds laundry)

 

-Washing and putting away of laundry

 

-All of the homeschooling, paperwork, testing, notifications, & lesson planning

 

-Makes and attends all IEP meetings, doctors appointments, therapist appointments, dentist appointments, and eye doctor appointments.

 

-All meetings with various service providers and coordinating IEP quarterly reports.

 

-Almost all of the cooking.

 

-Most of the grocery shopping.

 

-All of the clothing and most of the household misc shopping.

 

-Most of the cosmetic home improvements (seasonal decorating, color scheme changes, children's room decorating)

 

-The sorting through things to donate or toss, changing over children's closets for seasons and outgrown clothes.

 

-All of the holiday/birthday/vacation/gift/party/hosting planning

 

-And obviously, most of the childcare and pet care since DH isn't home to do it. LOL!

 

DH works 50+ hours a week, does light grocery shopping (small trips if we run out of stuff and he can grab it on the way home), washes pots & pans, folds laundry, pays bills, and deals with insurance stuff.

post #4 of 44

I handle 99% of the household stuff. 

 

My husband takes out the garbage when he is here. He doesn't go around the house and empty the kitchen/bathrooms garbage..he leaves that part to me.  

 

I will occasionally catch him pulling weeds while on the phone, but we have a lawn service and we pay them extra every now and then to do weeds, so he doesn't really have to do this.

 

He will feed the dogs and let them out but if I am home he usually doesn't.

 

He will usually kill a spider or roach if needed.

 

He works from home most days, so on rare occasions he will handle a vet appointment for me, or randomly offer to pick up my son at school.

 

He will do a load of his own laundry once in a while, but never checks the water temperature/level or soap amount. I sometimes have to re-wash it, or at least rinse again.

 

I asked him to pick up two or three things at the store once and he came home with all the wrong stuff. I even wrote it down. He got Lactaid instead of milk! I think he did it on purpose so that I would never ask again.

 

My Mom was right. She said, the more you do, the less they do. They get comfortable. I offered to grill for my husband one time and there was no turning back. At least that was one thing he did for our meals! 

 

I don't mind it most days because he is our only source of income and his job is very demanding. I feel like it is my job to hold everything together...but I will admit it is really frustrating some days. I often feel like they don't realize how much I do. I feel like my kids are too dependent on me sometimes too. 

 

The bad thing is that if I go out for any length of time alone, I come home to a disaster because he has gotten so used to not having any responsibility around the house. He doesn't suddenly turn into Mr. Mom. The kids will be all hopped up on McDonalds and junk because he won't cook and he lets the kids raid the cabinets, and there will be dishes in the sink...maybe a dog accident to clean or an arts and crafts project all over the kitchen, etc.

 

I do get a little break with cooking and cleaning. I only cook about 4 days a week. We order take-out a lot. It is not easy to cook for this family! I have two very picky eaters...and I don't enjoy cooking to begin with...imagine having to cook two different types of veggies, etc. every night!

 

I also have a cleaning lady who comes once a month to scrub my floors and bathrooms, vacuum, etc. and I just spot clean in between (when we lived in an apartment or even a smaller home, I could keep up, but not with our current home which is a large 5/4). 

post #5 of 44


I forgot to add that I am thinking of going back to work part-time after almost 10 years at home. If it works out and I keep working....we will be having a discussion about our household responsibilities. He will need to pitch in a little more. I know his job will be way more demanding, and he has hobbies, and he travels for work sometimes, so it will be challenging. He may need to cut back on his hobbies to keep the balance at home. Not a conversation I am looking forward to!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmarroq View Post

I handle 99% of the household stuff. 

 

My husband takes out the garbage when he is here. He doesn't go around the house and empty the kitchen/bathrooms garbage..he leaves that part to me.  

 

I will occasionally catch him pulling weeds while on the phone, but we have a lawn service and we pay them extra every now and then to do weeds, so he doesn't really have to do this.

 

He will feed the dogs and let them out but if I am home he usually doesn't.

 

He will usually kill a spider or roach if needed.

 

He works from home most days, so on rare occasions he will handle a vet appointment for me, or randomly offer to pick up my son at school.

 

He will do a load of his own laundry once in a while, but never checks the water temperature/level or soap amount. I sometimes have to re-wash it, or at least rinse again.

 

I asked him to pick up two or three things at the store once and he came home with all the wrong stuff. I even wrote it down. He got Lactaid instead of milk! I think he did it on purpose so that I would never ask again.

 

My Mom was right. She said, the more you do, the less they do. They get comfortable. I offered to grill for my husband one time and there was no turning back. At least that was one thing he did for our meals! 

 

I don't mind it most days because he is our only source of income and his job is very demanding. I feel like it is my job to hold everything together...but I will admit it is really frustrating some days. I often feel like they don't realize how much I do. I feel like my kids are too dependent on me sometimes too. 

 

The bad thing is that if I go out for any length of time alone, I come home to a disaster because he has gotten so used to not having any responsibility around the house. He doesn't suddenly turn into Mr. Mom. The kids will be all hopped up on McDonalds and junk because he won't cook and he lets the kids raid the cabinets, and there will be dishes in the sink...maybe a dog accident to clean or an arts and crafts project all over the kitchen, etc.

 

I do get a little break with cooking and cleaning. I only cook about 4 days a week. We order take-out a lot. It is not easy to cook for this family! I have two very picky eaters...and I don't enjoy cooking to begin with...imagine having to cook two different types of veggies, etc. every night!

 

I also have a cleaning lady who comes once a month to scrub my floors and bathrooms, vacuum, etc. and I just spot clean in between (when we lived in an apartment or even a smaller home, I could keep up, but not with our current home which is a large 5/4). 



 

post #6 of 44

I do the housework and cook but DH will grill.  I do all the dishes, diapers, laundry (I don't think DH knows how to run our washing machine apparently).  DD loves to scrub the bathroom and fridge- so I have her do that at least!  Our house is a constant state of disaster- and my DH knows better than to say one word about it.  It is not dirty (I vacuum usually 2x/day and sweep the floor constantly and am always doing dishes) but toys and stuff everywhere.  He also leaves his clothes and dishes everywhere..... that one bugs me and the fact that he won't take off his boots- so he tracks everywhere.  

 

I pay the bills and have to fleece him for the checkbook so I can balance it...

 

I make and attend all the appointments- but he has started watching the other kids while I am doing that since 4 kids in the dentist office is bad on so many levels :)  

 

I do the lawn and garden- well I did until I decided I wasn't going to waste my time anymore and then he helped me with fencing so we could graze most of it.  

 

I don't want to come across as a complainer- because my DH works hard and provides our only income.  He does basically work from home most of the time though and he does have a flexible schedule- so it is really nice to have him watch the kids when I have to run out....

 

Balance is something that I don't really have any advice on unfortunately.  But I don't think it would go over well here for me to lay out a list of house chores for my DH...

post #7 of 44
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your responses. Looks like what I am doing is the "norm".

Last night DH did clean the kitchen after dinner, so that was a nice break.

 

Sometimes I just get tired of making all the calls, dealing with all bills, and appointments, and then cooking/cleaning ya know what I mean?

 

 

post #8 of 44

I feel like you do - some days I just hate the thought of getting out of bed because I know there is so much to do.  What gets to me is that I clean the whole house - and homeschool our oldest DD while trying to occupy our 3 yr old and 4 month old and it looks pretty good by the end of the day but somehow between supper time and bedtime it all gets torn apart and looks like I have not done a single thing all day long!  I hate that sometimes my work is not respected - like no one cares that I just scrubbed the floors so they just walk right through with their boots/shoes on.  

I never used to deal with appointments, bills, making all the calls etc but somehow in the past couple of months that has been starting to get piled onto me too.  Except bills - I am not good with that and DH knows so he doesn't ask me to do that. 

 

I also agree with a pp who said the more you do for them the less they do, my dad is a prime example of this.  I swear if something happened to my mom he would be in trouble!  He just doesn't know hoe to do anything - or else he does and just pretends he doesn't.  I NEVER remember him doing laundry or even cooking a meal - he can re-heat something in the microwave but that's about it.  Oh and he can make coffee other than that it's all my mom - she even takes out the garbage and does all the recycling etc!

post #9 of 44

DH and I are a truly good match. Not everything is split evenly, but we have found quite a bit of balance.

 

For starters, each of us has "areas" of the house that we are responsible for. He does dishes, cars, garbage, dinner, breakfast for DD, the majority of the yard work, all repairs in the house, and anything remotely "handyman" like. I do laundry, homeschool (just pre-school right now), general pick-up throughout the house, kid's rooms, lunches, bills, appointments, and pets. These are just things that we each "know" we're responsible for. If one of us is overwhelmed, having a bad day, sick, or just plain "not feelin it" then the other one will step in occasionally. Like DH just gets fed up with the dishes sometimes, so if I see them stacking up I'll unload the dishwasher, and get started putting some new ones in there, but he gets finicky about how they go in the dishwasher, so I let him finish up. Or, DH will see that I've washed and dried a TON of clothes, but knows I hate folding so he will fold up a ton of them and put a bunch on hangers. He knows where everything goes in the drawers, but I have a "system" for the closet, so I still hang up the clothes after he gets them on hangers.

 

Then we have our "spruce up" times. Usually about twice a week we have someone coming over, and so this prompts us to get the house in order. Together we go through the main areas of the house (living/dining room, kitchen, hallway, and bathroom) and we get it clean. Usually I pick up while he cleans up. So, I take all the random items and put them back where they go, pick up any trash that has accumulated, get dishes to the sink, empty trash cans, and those kinds of things. Usually DH does floors with vacuuming, swiffering, and occasionally full out mopping, and he scrubs surfaces in all the rooms. Occasionally, he'll "straighten things up" as well. Like literally stack a bunch of things straight up and down, so they don't look like a pile of mess.

 

Finally, there's the list. This was one area where we went back and forth on in the beginning. I didn't want to make a chore list of things for him to do. I felt like I was "mommy-ing" him. I felt like he should be able to see there was something that needed to be done, or I could tell him that there was something that needed to get done, and I should be able to have the reasonable expectation that it would get taken care of. Well, neither of those things work. He will literally walk past the same thing over and over again, and NOT know it needs to be handled. Also, if I tell him that something needs to be handled, he will forget. Then I get mad, and he feels guilty, then we have to talk about it, so it doesn't get done, and then he forgets again. So, finally he said to please just make him a list so we don't have to go through that whole cycle over and over. When he gets free time, he can just look at the list, and pick something off of it to do. So, on the fridge he now has a "Honey-Do List." This is all matter of random things that I am either unable or unwilling to do. I usually fill up an entire page with these things. The only criteria for them is that I truly don't care when they get done, just that they get done. About every two or three months DH gets most of the things crossed off the list, and I have new priorities, so I transfer the old items onto a new list and add a bunch more things to the bottom. There are some things that have been on there more than a year, but again these are not urgent things that have a deadline.

post #10 of 44

I do everything. EVERY - THING. I even take out the garbage. 

post #11 of 44

I do most of the domestic stuff but dh is the go-to guys for the kids and their homework.  He will do things if I ask.  

post #12 of 44
Thread Starter 

Mama In the Desert!!! Come over to my house and tutor us!!!

 

alphaghettti hug.gif

post #13 of 44

I do a lot of it. DH does his own laundry and diapers if he notices the bin is nearly full. He will unload or load the dishwasher if things look like they're getting out of hand. I'm happy with the amount of help he gives around the house. He does the outside stuff, except garbage, which I'm trying to get him to do, but putting he recycling on the porch doesn't seem to be enough of a hint. I wouldn't care about having to do it, except it's a little tougher to get everything out to the lane with the baby.

 

I have been making him more informed of what's going on financially... he gives me a portion of each of his cheques toward bills, and tends to just not think about it beyond that. A few months ago, ex skipped child support and DH didn't seem to clue in that I actually needed more money from him because of that. We reworked the budget so I'll have more wiggle room if that happens again. So yeah, I pay the bills and do the budget, but he knows what's going on now. Money makes him uncomfortable, so it's a stressful thing to bring up, but he's always relieved when I tell him things like "The gas company is going to reconcile for the equal payment plan this month, but I've been banking a credit with them, so we'll only owe and extra $12.00 on the next bill."

post #14 of 44

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dovemama View Post

Mama In the Desert!!! Come over to my house and tutor us!!!

 

alphaghettti hug.gif



LOL! It did take a bit of work in the beginning. There were a few arguments where one or the other of us was complaining that we did all the work. But, a lot of it is the fact that DH just honestly feels just as responsible for the household as I do. This is a big thing. If he feels responsible for it, then he's going to be more likely to do something about it.The big conversations we had tended to revolve around things like "I HATE doing X, will you do it?" or "You're SO particular about Y, I don't even want to touch it any more." So, we compromised, and we worked together until we found solutions.

 

Here's one example of how we worked through a chore: DH literally said after a few months of living in my house that my kitchen was arranged wrong, so we switched the contents of every single cabinet around. (Cups apparently go to the left of the sink.) He's also very particular about how the dishes go into the dishwasher, and will stand next to me and take everything out of the dishwasher, and put it back in the "right" way. Now, I hate doing the dishes. They are literally the bane of my existence. So, I asked DH to do them. He hemmed and hawed, and says he doesn't particularly like doing them, (no matter how particular he is about how they are washed, and where they go after they are washed...) but he will. So, this is now his domain. The thing is, that I technically NEVER have to do the dishes ever again. Woo! However, the flip side is that it's HIS problem, so if they stack up in the sink for a week before getting washed... well, I have 3 choices, I let it go, I say something, or I help out. Since, he knows it's his domain, he WILL get it taken care of... on his own time, so I usually just let it go. Saying something will only result in an argument or a problem. So, I figure if I have enough of an issue with the way it's being done, then I help out. Usually for me this means that I empty out the clean dishwasher and then I rinse everything that's dirty off, and stack it on one side (not in both, oh no!) of the sink, so it makes it easier for him to do the next load. If I do this part, which is easier now, because I don't feel I HAVE to, then he usually gets the entire counter cleared of dishes within 24 hours.

 

Here's another example: DH can't help but get dirty at work. Part of it is job related, but a lot of it is him related. So, he goes through 3 sets of clothes on a normal day: work clothes, nice clothes, and pajamas for lounging after dinner. DD and I usually wear 1 or maaaybe 2 sets of clothes in a day. So, when DH came on the scene it meant a LOT more laundry to deal with. Well, I thought that perhaps he would do his own laundry. And we played the passive aggressive thing where I'd just do my and DD's laundry, and he just wouldn't have any clothes, and would frantically (and angrily) be doing "express load" laundry in the morning to be able to have something for work. Or, I'd go on laundry strike and wait for the whole thing to explode. Then of course I'd get mad at him for "doing the laundry wrong." Especially, putting things in the closet "wrong." (His stuff goes left of middle, mine go right. Each of our stuff is arranged not only by type of clothes, but in roygbiv order so I can find things that match.) One day I got fed up with the mountain of clothes in our room, and just did them all. I spent two whole days doing nothing but laundry. By the end of it DH was so happy just to have something of his own to wear the next day, he couldn't help but shower me with compliments, and beg for me to just keep doing the laundry. I have zero problem doing the actual laundry.. it's the folding that bothers me. But, I'm the picky one about where things go in this regard, and he was pretty well fed up with it all, so I finally agreed. So, woo! He technically never has to do laundry again. But the flip side is, that it's now my responsibility, so if he's mad that both laundry baskets are filled, and there's nothing in the washer or drier, he has three options: let it go because he knows it will get done on MY time, say something, or help out. Most of the time he lets it go. Usually he remembers that saying something sparks an argument, so every once and awhile he helps out. If he sees I've gotten distracted throughout the day, he'll switch a load, or start a load of laundry. A lot of the time, he'll see that there's a big pile of clean clothes, so he'll throw a bunch of stuff on hangers, and put them on my side of the bed to put away CORRECTLY in the closet. If he starts or switches a load then that triggers me to get it all done. If he throws a bunch of stuff on hangers, then that makes it to where I put them away before bed that night.

 

The BIG things here are that we:

1) Compromised to do things that we don't really like to do

2) We actually continuously take responsibility for those areas

3) We have (mostly) let go of expectations for areas that are not our own

4) If we have a problem with an area that isn't our own, we pitch in and help rather than start an argument

post #15 of 44
I guess because I work (from home) 20 hours a week we've been forced to have a more even split of chores, even though I'm considered a "stay-at-home mom"... We read Equally Shared Parenting last year (well, I read it, DH only skimmed it, but we discussed it quite a bit) and that's kind of our current leaning... we each aim to contribute 50%, though it's not precisely divided up by any means.... He does more of the physical stuff and I do more of the mental stuff, partly due to my illness but partly because those just happen to be our strengths.

So he:
-Runs the dishwasher & empties it every morning
-Takes out the trash
-Does the laundry
-Does major home repairs
-Does most of the yard work
-Feeds the cat/changes litter

I:
-Clean up as we go along during the day (i.e. make sure to put dirty dishes in the dishwasher, clean up DS's messes)
-Pay the bills & make the financial decisions
-Plan our social life, parties, etc. and any activities for DS (including some very basic beginning homeschooling)
-Coordinate our schedule, though DH will call for appointments if I ask him to & tell him which days are free, and will often attend appointments with me
-Do all the organizing, decluttering, etc., sell/donate unneeded items, make the lists of what needs to be done
-Do any shopping for clothes, gifts, supplements and other non-food necessities, plus all the research that often goes into it
-Basically plan & research our lives to death!

Together we:
-Do the grocery shopping
-Do the major cleaning, though DH does more of it
-Split the cooking

I WAH 5 mornings a week, 4 hours a day, and DH will play with & entertain DS for about 3 of those hours so I'm only watching DS for an hour or so while I'm working, & sometimes I can keep him asleep for that hour or two. DH works 4 days a week for 10 hours a day (gets home at midnight). He contributes 60% of the income but we have our health insurance, retirement fund, etc. through me. I am happy about our relatively equal split but there are lots of challenges too! I'd imagine I'd take over a lot more of the household stuff if I weren't working at all.
post #16 of 44

I:

- do 99.9% of the parenting, even when he is at home

- do all the schooling (we homeschool)

- do most, if not all, of the housework

- do all of the baking (we make 99% of what we eat from scratch, a lot of time is spent baking)

- do 75% of the grocery shopping

- make/attend all medical appointments for the children

- pay probably 25% of the bills

- do the "fancy" gardening (plant flowers/vegetables, weed, prune, harvest any ripe veggies etc)

- plan 90% of the family outings/vacations

- clean the inside of vehicles

- do all of the laundry, fold/put away 90% of the laundry, do all pressing needed

- do about 50% of the prep work for his uniforms for work

- feed the cat, make/take him to vet appointments

- any extra activities the girls do I take them and stay with them

 

DH:

- does night time parenting 3-4 nights a week now that Im pregnant and just exhusted by the end of the day

- buys any of the homeschool supplies I need (hes better at finding deals than I am)

- will do the dishes and wipe down the sinks if needed, will vacuum if I ask

- makes 1-2 meals a week

- night times bathes for the children and takes care of teeth brushing at night. Might get them dressed on weekends if I ask and we are running late

- does quick store runs

- does the dental appointments with the children

- does the lawn mowing and any heavy yard work (cleaning gutters, sweeping the driveway, cutting back branches etc)

- washes the outside of the van

- washes an occasional load of laundry

- he usually takes care of making sure his cammies are serviceable/has rank on them.. sometimes he forgets

- changes the litter on the cat box

- hes doing swim lessons with the girls this summer since our middle is scared of the water and won't go in without him.

 

Is it even? No clue really. He has a lot more time at work to goof off then I have at home. It seems like he can be "off" during the weekend and I still have to do everything that I do during the week and still fit in time for the family. Sometimes i really do wish I had more time to relax during the weekends/at night.

post #17 of 44

My husband mostly works from home, so we're here together most of the time.  How much I do depends on how busy he is, with work.  

 

Sometimes, he takes care of all the meals (which is nice, because he's never satisfied with cereal or oatmeal, so breakfast will be restaurant-quality 7 days/week), drives the kids to school and activities and supervises homework.  Other times, I do all or most of those things.  Sometimes, he does some of the laundry and dishes.  Other times, it's mostly me.

 

Some household responsibilities stay pretty consistently divided:

* He pays most of the bills.

* I do the bulk of the shopping and go to the grocery at least once a week.  (If you don't have teenage boys, you'll never believe how much they eat!  The grocery is a huge undertaking, including the planning that goes on beforehand, so we don't waste money.)  DH goes to the grocery less frequently, but buys most of the meat and all of our Trader Joe's standards (wine, coffee, etc.)  I do all the non-grocery shopping.

* He does most things outside the house (or arranges someone to take care of them, like the lawn).  As far as the garden (which is big), he makes sure we have proper soil, but I do the planting, tending and harvesting.

* He fixes most things around the house.  I do all the painting/moving furniture/hanging things/organizing.

* I'm usually the only one who cleans things other than dishes or laundry.

* He services the vehicles.  I clean them.

 

I think it's very easy for other family members (working husband or older kids) to be oblivious to how much work an at-home mom does - and only notice things that don't get done, then wonder why Mom didn't get around to that undone task, since she "doesn't work"?  This is frustrating for the mom, but to some extent unavoidable.  Call me sexist, but I think it's true that women tend to be better at noticing all the little details around them and men tend to be better at tuning out everything aside from what they're working on.  This tends to make mothers better-suited to be the primary caretakers of young children (who need someone to be constantly aware of what they're doing/needing/putting in their mouths, at the same time that the caretaker cleans, feeds and teaches them.  It also tends to mean that a wife may have a good sense of how heavy her husband's workload is, at the office; while he may have little idea how heavy her workload is, at home.  

post #18 of 44

Umm, well, I do everything.  DH is home all day as well (he doesn't work) but is downstairs in the basement in front of his computer, so we don't really see him.  I do the childcare, the housework, the shopping, organizing of home repairs, the budget, the errands, the cooking, buying cars/houses, the gardening, the paperwork, the... everything.  Today I assembled furniture.  Tomorrow I'm painting rooms.  Our neighbors came over this weekend and as they saw DH in the house (he was passing through the hallway) they were shocked because they thought I was a single mom.  Go figure...

post #19 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by tiqa View Post

Umm, well, I do everything.  DH is home all day as well (he doesn't work) but is downstairs in the basement in front of his computer, so we don't really see him.  I do the childcare, the housework, the shopping, organizing of home repairs, the budget, the errands, the cooking, buying cars/houses, the gardening, the paperwork, the... everything.  Today I assembled furniture.  Tomorrow I'm painting rooms.  Our neighbors came over this weekend and as they saw DH in the house (he was passing through the hallway) they were shocked because they thought I was a single mom.  Go figure...


Yeah, that doesn't sound sustainable.  Do you think he's depressed?  Is he looking for work?

 

post #20 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by tiqa View Post

Umm, well, I do everything.  DH is home all day as well (he doesn't work) but is downstairs in the basement in front of his computer, so we don't really see him.  I do the childcare, the housework, the shopping, organizing of home repairs, the budget, the errands, the cooking, buying cars/houses, the gardening, the paperwork, the... everything.  Today I assembled furniture.  Tomorrow I'm painting rooms.  Our neighbors came over this weekend and as they saw DH in the house (he was passing through the hallway) they were shocked because they thought I was a single mom.  Go figure...

greensad.gif That doesn't sound good at all... for either of you.
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