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SO shouldn't do housework b/c he's the provider??

post #1 of 140
Thread Starter 
Dh was having a conversation with a female coworker today and it came up that he empties the dishwasher every night and does some cleaning up of the apt on the weekends when he's home.

Coworker: Really? (giving a strange look)
DH: Yeah, why?
CW: Well, I'm not going to say anything, I don't want to offend you.
DH: Go ahead, what?
CW: Well, I don't think you should have to do anything since you're the one working.
DH: My wife can't possibly do everything when she's taking care of our 2 kids.
CW: I just think that if you're the one bringing home the money, you shouldn't have to do housework.

WHAT?!?!?! Is she serious?!?!

A little background on her: she has 2 kids, her mom has custody of her daughter and she has full custody of her son, so I'm not sure if both kids live w/ her. She works 28hrs/ wk to be home when her DS is home from school. Her fiance works full time in an IT position. When there's a snow day, she has to stay home.

A little background on us: I have a 3yo DS who is the equivalent of 4 toddlers. I've worked in childcare as my profession before having my own children, so I was used to taking care of multiple children at a time, and my DS WEARS ME OUT. He is the most difficult child I've ever cared for, high needs, requires lots of entertainment, etc. I also have a 16mo DD who can play on her own for a while, but still needs mama. BOTH are still nursing and I'm 7wks pg w/ #3 (these last 2 the coworker doesn't know).

So, SAHMs, does your working SO do any housework when s/he is home? Am I nuts for thinking she's out of line for thinking I should take care of EVERYTHING home related b/c I'm home w/ my kids all day?
post #2 of 140
I'm sort of a SAHM. I go to school, but all of my classes are currently online so I'm always here.

DH does pretty much all of the housework. I clean the bathrooms but that's about it.
post #3 of 140
My dh feels this way he works and brings in the money all the house stuff is my responsability.
post #4 of 140
A lot of people feel that way. I'm fortunate that my DH does not. I think I can thank my SIL for that, he's seen for years how hard being a SAHM is. In our minds, when he's at work (he works 2 weeks away from home), he's doing his job and I'm doing my job. Both of us are on call 24 hours a day at that point. When he's home, I'm on call 24 hours a day and he gets a bit of a break at night because DD only ever wakes up to eat. So he picks up a lot of slack with my other work.
post #5 of 140
Most of the house stuff is my responsibility because my dd is in school all day. Now that I'm pregnant, dh has been helping because I just don't have it in me to do it all anymore. I was a WOHM for a long time and we shared all the household duties. When I'm taking care of a child all day, that's my job, not housework.
post #6 of 140
I'm a SAHM and my DH works in an office. DH takes care of DS while I make dinner. After dinner, DH cleans the kitchen, runs the dishwasher, sweeps the floor, picks up toys in the living room, and runs a load of laundry (this includes diaper laundry on alternate nights). Since he does this every night he has a routine and it really doesn't take him long.
post #7 of 140
In our home, I handle the majority of the work around the home but DH contributes too. Each night he washes the dishes and cleans up the kitchen while I'm putting the kids to bed. He also shares in the basic cleaning up after ourselves on the weekends.

The way I see it is that I can get a lot of the cleaning done during the day so I do it. This leaves us more family time during evenings and weekends and allows us time to relax. When circumstances were different (when I worked PT, when DD was a newborn, etc.) we shifted things around and DH took on more household responsibilities.

Anyhow, to get to my basic opinion on the matter...no, I don't think the SAH parent should be responsible for all of the housework as if being home with the kids is a walk in the park (well, sometimes it literally is a walk in the park of course, but you get my point). I also think that it's best not to make broad generalizations about how childcare, housework, and work outside of the home should be split. I think that each couple is different in how they view division of labor and that all that matters is they both feel appreciated and valued.
post #8 of 140
My mother (SAHM for years) thinks this way. I'm not allowed to be frustrated or complain about the mess in the house/chores I need to do, etc because DH helps me out.
post #9 of 140
My Dh and I both see managing the home as a responsibility we share. He lives here too. Everyone contributes. Our goal is to work together as a team, both to raise our children and to take care of our home. Because I stay home, I do much more with the kids and the house, but he pitches in whenever he is home.
post #10 of 140
Its sad but my husband feels the same way. We have had countless arguments because he feels since I am home all day that I should handle all the housework, cooking and the kids. Yea I said the kids too, he doesnt help much with them either...
post #11 of 140
I plan on taking care of housework, meals and the kids when I take my year leave (starting next month, w0ot!). My SO is home currently, but will be finding work while I'm on leave. I do think it's nice if the SAHP can keep up with some things. I know I hate coming home and doing a mountain of laundry after dealing with the crap I get at work all day. But during March break, when I came home and the place looked like it exploded but SO and dd seemed like they'd had a wonderful day, I really didn't care. If she's well taken care of, I can pick up the slack on cleaning etc.

Personally, I plan on taking care of everything home related when I'm on leave because I like the challenge. The thought of homeschooling dd, taking care of the new baby, keeping the place clean and having dinner on the table for SO when he gets home is way more exciting than WOTH. I get zero job satisfaction from working for other people. Give me a screaming kid and a mountain of laundry to do. That's real work!

Some people don't get the joy I get out of a freshly scrubbed floor, and that's fine too I think each couple needs to work out an arrangement that leaves everyone feeling happy and appreciated.
post #12 of 140
I have a 15 month old and I am pg with #2. I work two nights a week out of my home but I am mostly a SAHM. The way my DH sees it (thank GOD!), is that my full time job is taking care of our child and his full time job is outside of the home. So I do what housework I can while our son is napping or while I can incorporate him in it (which, as we all know, slows everything waaaaaaaaaaay down) and he is the primary caregiver in the evenings and weekends and he does what housework he can during naps and such. Anyone who thinks otherwise has clearly never been home with a child all day- they need your undivided attention while they are awake. Housework comes second.
post #13 of 140
I do most of the house work. And when I say most I mean 95%.
He will do dishes once MAYBE twice a week. And he takes out the trash (putting it in the trunk and driving it to the dumpster)...
He used to do none of the above, and we are working on giving him more responsibility since I am now working about 12 hours a week, and could use an extra hand....

dishes, picking up toys, vaccuming, cleaning the big wall mirror, sweeping/wiping down the floor, picking up dirty laundry all takes me an hour hour in the evening... but with dh's help, it could take 30 minutes !!!!
post #14 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by mommaToThree View Post
I do most of the house work. And when I say most I mean 95%.
He will do dishes once MAYBE twice a week. And he takes out the trash (putting it in the trunk and driving it to the dumpster)...
He used to do none of the above, and we are working on giving him more responsibility since I am now working about 12 hours a week, and could use an extra hand....

dishes, picking up toys, vaccuming, cleaning the big wall mirror, sweeping/wiping down the floor, picking up dirty laundry all takes me an hour hour in the evening... but with dh's help, it could take 30 minutes !!!!
I hear ya there... I keep telling dh.. double teaming could save us half the time... but I'm lucky if he takes the garbage out everyother day.. and maybe will rinse dishes and load the dishwasher everyother week
post #15 of 140
She's nuts.
post #16 of 140
Thread Starter 
As I said in the OP, I have 2 toddlers and am pg w/ #3. BUT I do MOST of the housework. DH has only a few chores, empty dishwasher at night, take out the trash, and some light cleaning on the weekend. I do ALL the laundry (including putting DH's clothes away), most of the cooking, most of the diaper changing, and most of the cleaning. I really didn't think DH did a whole heck of a lot. His coworker just got me curious about what other families do.

I do TRY to take care of all the housework, but the care of the kids is my primary job.
post #17 of 140
I do most of the housework, but it is just easier to do it than fight DH to help! I do refuse to take out the trash or do the lawn maintenance.

I say that each couple has to work out what is best for them. The lady is nuts!
post #18 of 140
That's crazy talk! Here's our deal - my job is to raise my kids. It takes almost every ounce of energy I have to interact, teach, redirect, protect our 3 yo and 4 mo. The housework is a distant second. I don't get a lunch hour, I don't get coffee breaks, I don't get corporate dinners of steak and wine, I don't get an hour in the car every day without someone screaming or demanding or whining or chatting...my career is just as important as his.

The housework, while I try to keep up with most of it myself, is never going to be a one-person job. Since our kiddos are too small to pick up and clean, there are two capable adults that live in this house and make messes and need to clean up after themselves. He uses the toilet, no? He showers in his shower, no? He wears and dirties clothes, no? He walks on the carpet which contributes to it needing to be vacuumed, no? Why the hell shouldn't he be a grown-up who cleans up his own messes?

I don't get that at all - if we use the same logic, then our children should never have to pick up a thing, or clean or have chores or responsibilities. After all, they're not SAHMs! Why should kids have to clean anything ever? If it's all mom's job because she's home all day, then why should anyone else ever pick anything up?

That attitude burns me up, if you can't tell.
post #19 of 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by twinmomplusone View Post
Its sad but my husband feels the same way. We have had countless arguments because he feels since I am home all day that I should handle all the housework, cooking and the kids. Yea I said the kids too, he doesnt help much with them either...

He just wants to live as if he were single, doesn't he? But with a maid.
post #20 of 140
Wow, no way. As the SAHP, I do manage most of the household stuff, but DH is certainly expected to do a reasonable share, just as my 3-year-old DD is. They live in the house, they're responsible for appropriate shares of the housework! For example, my DD is expected to get her dirty laundry in the hamper - why on earth would I expect less of my DH?

I was not put on this earth to fetch and carry for anyone; I'll do it lovingly as a kindness to the people I care about, but not because it's expected of me!
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