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#31 of 46 Old 07-19-2012, 04:34 PM
 
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He may just be overwhelmed by his own tiredness and not realize how things look from your side, if you haven't made it clear.  He should see it, but if not perhaps you can help him see.  I do not always see my dh's side of things fairly without being reminded or having him point it out to me. 

 

I am trying to be sympathetic because I am highly sensory and get very introverted when I am tired.  I run out of oomph and it takes a lot of effort to deal with kids at the end of the day.  Dh is usually the one who keeps the basic functioning of home and family going when I am exhausted.  I have often complained about needing to do so many things at the same time.  Homeschooling, helping our special needs child, housework, WAHM things...  I complain.  It is like having three jobs at the same time...  I would like to hope that your dh is caring and would understand, but he just needs to see the whole equation. 

 

Most jobs are less exhausting than SAHM is.  You have more freedom to choose in time management, and can work on one thing at a time, with greater ability to focus.  It seems like if your dh has any empathy and listened carefully he would see why you need equally to be off the job at 5pm after your day, too.  And then what?  You're both off at 5, what do the kiddos get? 

 

I'm sorry about the screen time.  I think if it's not important to your dh he is just not gonna want to do things the hard way.  You may not be able to influence how much he cares and change his mind.  He may feel that if it is important to you then you should be the entertainer.  I'd avoid that as a battle and stick with dividing things up in the evening.  My dh has always been the book reader, that's his "easy" way to entertain a child and he does all of the bedtime stories too.  After all, I do all of the weekday reading time so that's his share.


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#32 of 46 Old 07-22-2012, 11:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Mommel - I am beginning to think maybe being a single mom might be a better bet.

Littlest birds - I lack empathy for his tiredness. I am waking several times a night with my bedsharing and teething nursling (whom I am planning night wean next week). He cosleeping with ds1 (separate beds, same room) who rarely wakes in the night. So he has the opportunity to get in 8 solid hours of sleep every night. He often stays up too late or falls asleep very early with one or another of the kids and then is up in the middle of night for a while. His job is not physical: mostly a desk job. So I do not understand why he is so tired. And meanwhile he thinks my exhaustion is my own fault: I choose to bedsharing and nurse.

His negative attitude about our children is causing me to think about divorce. I spoke to him again about counseling and he said he knows what a counselor is going to say but apparently just isn't willing to try to do it. He seems to have no clue how miserable I am at times. I regret having children with this man and I loathe that I feel that way.

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#33 of 46 Old 07-22-2012, 12:03 PM
 
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He may just be overwhelmed by his own tiredness and not realize how things look from your side, if you haven't made it clear.  He should see it, but if not perhaps you can help him see.  I do not always see my dh's side of things fairly without being reminded or having him point it out to me. 

 

I am trying to be sympathetic because I am highly sensory and get very introverted when I am tired.  I run out of oomph and it takes a lot of effort to deal with kids at the end of the day.  Dh is usually the one who keeps the basic functioning of home and family going when I am exhausted.  I have often complained about needing to do so many things at the same time.  Homeschooling, helping our special needs child, housework, WAHM things...  I complain.  It is like having three jobs at the same time...  I would like to hope that your dh is caring and would understand, but he just needs to see the whole equation. 

 

Most jobs are less exhausting than SAHM is.  You have more freedom to choose in time management, and can work on one thing at a time, with greater ability to focus.  It seems like if your dh has any empathy and listened carefully he would see why you need equally to be off the job at 5pm after your day, too.  And then what?  You're both off at 5, what do the kiddos get? 

 

I'm sorry about the screen time.  I think if it's not important to your dh he is just not gonna want to do things the hard way.  You may not be able to influence how much he cares and change his mind.  He may feel that if it is important to you then you should be the entertainer.  I'd avoid that as a battle and stick with dividing things up in the evening.  My dh has always been the book reader, that's his "easy" way to entertain a child and he does all of the bedtime stories too.  After all, I do all of the weekday reading time so that's his share.

 

Good post.  I agree with a lot of it.

 

I'm also an introvert and don't have oodles of energy after a day of work.  It's taken a long time but we've more or less figured it out - I was very clear with DH about what my limitations were and vice versa.  Like you, my DH doesn't like screen time, however I'm not bothered by it, so when I'm home it's on and we watch shows together, when he gets home later the tv goes off and he does what he thinks is right - he is much more outgoing than I and has more energy for that.     I agree with the PP that you have to pick your battles when it comes to dividing the kid chores after he comes home from work and figure out what works for each of you.   I also agree with the PP that screen time is not a battle worth fighting - if it's really important to you, then you either need to find an 'easy' way he can keep the kids entertained (reading a book to them is a good idea) or you need to eat it and find some other chore that he can do that will give you a break.  It may be you just have to lower your expectations of what parenting time looks like if you want him to step up - he has the right to parent as he sees fit, just as you do.   PErsonally I don't like playing with kids either - never have.  It's better now DD is older, but I found the whole baby/toddler playing thing unbelievably boring when she was younger  - so I get why your DH feels that way.  Not everyone has that skillset, unfortunately.   Can you both meet in the middle somewhere? 

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#34 of 46 Old 07-22-2012, 04:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Tapioca - I tend to look the other way about it but our youngest is only 18 months and I worry about the link between tv and ADHD.

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#35 of 46 Old 07-22-2012, 07:09 PM
 
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Mommel - I am beginning to think maybe being a single mom might be a better bet.

 

 

I don't have anything to compare it to, because I've been solo from the very start, but I couldn't do it without the help of my friends and family. It's an enormous decision, and I'm lucky that I don't have to deal with co-parenting at all... which can be harder than just staying in a bad situation, depending on how bad it is (mine was violent, but I choose to make lemonade, if ya dig). If it helps, I've read studies that say, out of couples that were having problems, the ones that stayed together were better off for it after just five years... and in my experience (well, the experience of some close friends anyway) it appears to be true... but you both have to want to stay together. I think that's sort of off topic, so sorry for the detour, but I wanted to make sure you didn't think it's all sunshine and roses on the solo side... it's not, despite that I choose to be okay with it.


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#36 of 46 Old 07-23-2012, 10:19 AM
 
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Tapioca - I tend to look the other way about it but our youngest is only 18 months and I worry about the link between tv and ADHD.

yes, 18 months is young. 

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#37 of 46 Old 07-24-2012, 04:17 AM
 
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why divorce? your already doing the child rearing alone but there is his whole pay check. many single moms struggle to make ends meet. you would have to work so kids will be in day care. weight  it out first.


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#38 of 46 Old 07-24-2012, 08:16 AM
 
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You cant find a wonderful partner if you are stuck with a crappy one.  also i dont think feeling like a servant and being disrespected is worth staying in a marriage for financial security.   i know lots of unhappily married women who choose to stay in marriages for that reason but i never could. life is just way too short for that
 


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#39 of 46 Old 07-24-2012, 10:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I am in the place of questioning whether my husband's presence enhances or detracts from both my life and our children's. He believes that his main job as a father and husband is to bring home a paycheck. Yes, it is a big deal but there is more to life than just money. He doesn't play with our children often. He doesn't like to help with the "dirty work" like diaper changing or cleaning up the house. He has the attitude that our energetic 3 y/o has too much energy. He wonders if he is jealous that our kids "get away with stuff" because I don't strictly discipline with physical punishment as his mother did. (Yet his mom counsels him to avoid physical punishment.) He tends to withdraw emotionally from me and our children. He wants to make our sons "emotionally tough" and as a result ds2 would rather be hugged by ds1 than picked up by his daddy when I am not available. He never takes both our children out of the house. He gets sick of the 3 y/o saying "I love you". He has told ds1 that he is being bad because he was being loud in the car. The word "bad" comes up a lot and I worry ds1 will begin to think of himself as bad. And since hubby spends so much time talking about what a handful ds1 is, I wonder if there is something there I am not seeing. He seems to always infer that our kids are abnormal. He also likes to blame me for our children's behavior: ds1 didn't sleep well because I didn't leave him to CIO and was too rough with other kids because I didn't spank him. His views of our children are affecting the way I am preceiving them.

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#40 of 46 Old 07-24-2012, 02:24 PM
 
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I am in the place of questioning whether my husband's presence enhances or detracts from both my life and our children's. He believes that his main job as a father and husband is to bring home a paycheck. Yes, it is a big deal but there is more to life than just money. He doesn't play with our children often. He doesn't like to help with the "dirty work" like diaper changing or cleaning up the house. He has the attitude that our energetic 3 y/o has too much energy. He wonders if he is jealous that our kids "get away with stuff" because I don't strictly discipline with physical punishment as his mother did. (Yet his mom counsels him to avoid physical punishment.) He tends to withdraw emotionally from me and our children. He wants to make our sons "emotionally tough" and as a result ds2 would rather be hugged by ds1 than picked up by his daddy when I am not available. He never takes both our children out of the house. He gets sick of the 3 y/o saying "I love you". He has told ds1 that he is being bad because he was being loud in the car. The word "bad" comes up a lot and I worry ds1 will begin to think of himself as bad. And since hubby spends so much time talking about what a handful ds1 is, I wonder if there is something there I am not seeing. He seems to always infer that our kids are abnormal. He also likes to blame me for our children's behavior: ds1 didn't sleep well because I didn't leave him to CIO and was too rough with other kids because I didn't spank him. His views of our children are affecting the way I am preceiving them.

 

Hi Mama,

 

You make some very good points and none of these things are good for you or your kiddos... however, unless your DH relinquishes his parental rights, you'll still be facing those same issues if you divorce... only you won't necessarily be there to reassure your little ones that they aren't bad, or too loud, or too energetic, too loving, etc... in fact, you might not even know about it, if he has them for a weekend or longer, which could have even worse effects on their little psyches. I think perhaps before you make any life changing decisions, you might want to consider going to individual counseling alone, if your DH won't go with you... and yes, I know you're not the one who needs to change, but a marriage counselor can help you decide if divorce is really the best option for your family, even if he won't participate. 

 

I'm so sorry you are feeling this way. I'm very impressed that you are asking yourself the tough questions despite how disappointed you must feel.

 

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#41 of 46 Old 07-26-2012, 04:59 PM
 
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I am in the place of questioning whether my husband's presence enhances or detracts from both my life and our children's. He believes that his main job as a father and husband is to bring home a paycheck. Yes, it is a big deal but there is more to life than just money. He doesn't play with our children often. He doesn't like to help with the "dirty work" like diaper changing or cleaning up the house. He has the attitude that our energetic 3 y/o has too much energy. He wonders if he is jealous that our kids "get away with stuff" because I don't strictly discipline with physical punishment as his mother did. (Yet his mom counsels him to avoid physical punishment.) He tends to withdraw emotionally from me and our children. He wants to make our sons "emotionally tough" and as a result ds2 would rather be hugged by ds1 than picked up by his daddy when I am not available. He never takes both our children out of the house. He gets sick of the 3 y/o saying "I love you". He has told ds1 that he is being bad because he was being loud in the car. The word "bad" comes up a lot and I worry ds1 will begin to think of himself as bad. And since hubby spends so much time talking about what a handful ds1 is, I wonder if there is something there I am not seeing. He seems to always infer that our kids are abnormal. He also likes to blame me for our children's behavior: ds1 didn't sleep well because I didn't leave him to CIO and was too rough with other kids because I didn't spank him. His views of our children are affecting the way I am preceiving them.

I feel the same way with my partner. The question I have to ask myself is. How can he know our son so much when he spends no time with him. He made a coment yesterday that hes glad hes fianlly not fussy anymore. I asked him what he meant and he refered to our son as out of control fussy for the past three months. I see no change in the baby he is a happy, sweet, curious, loving little guy.  I feel like they say these things to appear involved even though they aren't true.

 

"I am parenting because I say these things and believe parenting like ideas" whether they made them up or not. And also I am everything that is wrong with my son. I even cause his ear infections, or his cough. Its rough mama. Don't let him make you think anything you know not to be true. Its like they are manipulating us so it will be us against the kid/kids. This isn't a war its a family.

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#42 of 46 Old 07-26-2012, 06:52 PM
 
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Can you get him to do more of the chores that he already does willingly and drop the diaper issue? Let him do what he does best and don't push what he hates? Is there any possibility that you can accept that screen time is something they do with their dad and that's just the way it is?
To a certain extent it sounds like you are both criticizing each others parenting. Is the criticism mutual? Do you criticize all of his and he criticizes all of yours or is he the one who criticizes most?

I know this sounds difficult, but I'd start by accepting some aspect of his parenting and then praise him for it. Thank him for the time he spent occupying the older kids, even if it was in front of an action flick. If you separate or divorce, the screen time won't go away.
I just know that with my late husband, accepting some of his parenting and encouraging the time he did spend was a more positive and productive approach. If you still love him, start with the positives and praise. Work on one small issue at a time.
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#43 of 46 Old 07-27-2012, 05:44 AM
 
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I want to add- while this approach did not totally fix things for me, it certainly relieved me of a lot of anger and resentment. I let him take responsibility for his style of parenting and I took responsibility for mine. Yes I picked my battles and held the line on gentle discipline, but I had to let go and be more flexible on other issues.
Another big benefit is that it allows the children to love their dad for who he is and what he can give. Thats very important even if what he can give is not what you personally agree with.
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#44 of 46 Old 07-31-2012, 11:33 PM
 
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Yes, while he is at work (presumably for 8 hours?), you guys divide up the work like this:

 

Husband: at work

Wife: childcare and household management

 

But as soon as he comes home, you have to re-divide the workload!

 

Husband: 50% childcare and household management

Wife: 50% childcare and household management

 

So, yes, he has two jobs: 1 from 9-5, and then he takes 50% of your job from 6 pm-8 am. That is simply how it must work.


This is how my husband and I have agreed upon dividing up childcare when our kid is born. It just makes the most sense. I really hope he can stick with me on it once it's a reality.


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#45 of 46 Old 08-08-2012, 12:16 PM
 
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My DH has a hard time doing anything with the kids besides tv as well, and it's usually up to me to encourage him to do other activities with the kids that don't require a ton of energy. I will often suggest reading the kids books, and playing cars with DS on the floor. I've gotten to where I've accepted that the physical activity is pretty much going to be on me since DH works a physically demanding job and is on his feet for 9+hrs a day. At least I can sit down and park my butt for a bit if I need to :) But if I insist the tv needs to be off, he will usually oblige and will lay on the floor with DS and DD and play(low energy play, but still). My DH also doesn't take the kids out alone anywhere, but he really doesn't need to that often, and I've accepted that if I want time to myself I need to leave the house. DH is good with them at home, he just doesn't see the need or desire to leave the house with them..he'll take DS out alone, but when DS was a baby and toddler he didn't. I know that when both kids are older he will be more than willing to take them out. I've learned that trying to make your partner fit your ideals of what a father should look like is fruitless and at the same time makes them feel like they are never good enough, leading to the parter doing even less because what's the point?? I've also learned that as long as my DH's needs are being met, he's generally much more willing to help me out and do his share of parenting. My point is, don't give up on it..Unless you've talked everything through thoroughly, and unless both of your needs are being met, you may not really be getting a true picture of what your marriage potential is. I agree that you should go to individual counseling to address your issues and even just have someone to vent to and it might help change your marriage. I'm not saying you shouldn't leave your marriage, but be sure to make sure you've done everything you possibly can before leaving. It may be easier not to have to deal with your DH every day, but if you are single raising two kids, it will still be hard, and in some ways harder because when your kids are with their dad you will have little if any control about how he choses to raise them. 

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#46 of 46 Old 08-14-2012, 07:15 PM
 
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My husband has had a rocky road towards parenthood but I think he is in a great place. I finally told him, "Do you really want your kids to remember that you were an impatient asshole? Because that's what you are acting like lately." He gave me a dirty look but started being nicer.

 

But your husband doesn't sound like my husband. I describe my husband as coming home to a second shift and I feel kind of bad about it. In your situation I would be screaming the roof down. It's probably a good thing you are married to him instead of me. You have a lot more patience.

 

I am fond of telling people to suck it up buttercup. You are the grown up now and it sucks.


My advice may not be appropriate for you. That's ok. You are just fine how you are and I am the right kind of me.

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