SAHD needs SAHM advice HELP!!!! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 13 Old 11-04-2015, 01:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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SAHD needs SAHM advice HELP!!!!

Sorry for intruding the Mommy circle but I need Help!

I have been a sahd for almost 3 years with an almost 3 year old girl and a 6mo boy.

I love being a sahd and need advice how to become better at it. My wife is at her whits end with me because of my failures at being a sahd. She is to the point stress wise that she tells me that she is happy to leave for work and dreads coming home to a filthy home an unruly little girl and a husband who fails miserably at his job....and on purpose too.

Any advice on how to stream line sahd life would help turn my situation around. I feel lost because Im working from 9am - 9pm or later taking care of the house and kiddos. Every time something is cleaned, by the next day its dirty again.....like her bathroom...clean then after 1 shower it is decorated with watery hair wadded up in the drain, on the floor and in the sink....the mirror is steam wiped and the sinks goes from a nice shine to a complete dull crud...same with the floors (we have a dog and toddler). The whole house is never completely clean.

The only thing I manage to keep up is the kitchen area...this is where I am for most of the time in a given day. (cooking from scratch mostly organic meals for my wife and I and 3completely organic meal for my daughter, cleaning dishes, breast pump equipment, bottles and baby related stuff that needs washed and steam sterilized....)

My daughter is almost 3 and does not speak clear enough for my wife or others to completely understand her words. She does not listen to directions or have patience and tends to get frustrated and scream a lot until one of us can calm her to make her use her words to express her need for help. For all this I am told I am a Failure as a Father.

My failures at home extend beyond my daughter. As stated earlier, I can not get the house completely clean. Here are my responsibilities at home. Cook, clean, repairs, garbage, the dog, yard, pool, laundry, baths, diapers, bedtime for oldest, helping wife get sleep by taking baby after early morning feedings, and clean up after my wife and kids. I am sure there is more.....i have no hobbies or daily alone time (rather catch up on work) besides bed.


Im starting on freezer meals to save time down the road. (breakfast burritos and meat and bean burritos for her lunches


Any suggestions?
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#2 of 13 Old 11-04-2015, 01:31 PM
 
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Families where one parent works and one does EVERYTHING for the house may have been the standard when the work day was 12 hours of hard labor for poor families or when there were servants at home for rich families, but it's nonsense nowadays.

If the working parent can't understand the child, they need more time with the child.

Something all SAHPs should do is track their time doing task around the house and time doing active child care. Anything other than sitting down and being able to concentrate on something fun.

The working parent should track their time too. Working lunch counts as working, 15 minutes gossiping with a co-worker doesn't. Commuting counts, but if they can listen to a book on tape, or are taking the bus and can read, it counts 1/2 (based on my own time with an hour commute each way)

Then balance those.
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#3 of 13 Old 11-04-2015, 07:10 PM
 
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The whole hosue isn't going to be clean at one time. Not when you have little kids.

It sounds as though your wife may be leaving little disasters in her wake for you to pick up? That is not your job, she's capable of picking up after herself. She shouldn't be leaving hair all over the bathroom. I'm a SAHM and when my husband shaves, he gives the sink a quick wipe to pick up his mess and leaves it roughly how he found it... that's being considerate for the effort I've put into getting the bathroom clean in the first place. I do laundry for everyone in the house... but until it's in the hamper, it's not my problem. It's not respectful of my time to expect me to go around room to room and pick up stray socks and shirts from every surface. Do you think she'd behave the way she does now if she lived with room-mates? Why are you not worthy of the same respect as any other adult she might have live with? As the kids grow up, they should be learning this as well.

One thing you could ask her is what's her top 2 or 3 most important jobs she'd like to see done. My husband likes to get into a clean, made bed, he likes the kitchen table to be clear and he appreciates if I make supper. On the other hand, the only time he's noticed a clean floor is if he walks in while I'm washing it... there's lots of jobs that I'm sure he doesn't even know I do. So I make sure to do the jobs that are important to him and slack a little on the ones he doesn't care about.
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#4 of 13 Old 11-04-2015, 08:28 PM
 
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I think it is really unfair of your wife to hold you accountable for your daughter's behavior. If your daughter is unruly it is just as much her shortcoming as it is yours. I agree with someone else that maybe she should spend more time with her daughter.

I also agree with another poster that maybe she should help with the little things. She can clean her own hair out. Does she have her own chores that she does?

I have a 16 year old and a 4.5 month old, so I am probably not the best person to give advice. My 16 year old picks up after himself (or at least I force him to) while obviously I pick up after the baby. I am a part time SAHM (I work on the weekends).

Basically during the week I do pretty much everything, because my husband puts in so many hours when he is at work and when he comes home. I also spend most of my time in the kitchen making home cooked meals (hubby is a very fickle eater).

During those times I find the best thing to do is sit the baby in her her chair, and let her watch me cook and clean. This is actually our routine for all of our chores, no matter what room I am in. We keep a pretty tidy home, but it does get trashed on the weekends when husband is on SAH duty.

But I don't think your issue is keeping the home clean. I think your main issues are 1) your wife's verbal abuse of calling you a "failure" as a father and 2) her inability to effectively communicate with you 3) her not assisting 4) your time management.

You're not going to accomplish anything with 3 and 4 as long as 1 and 2 remain unresolved.
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#5 of 13 Old 11-05-2015, 05:04 AM
 
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Any suggestions? Yes.

Top one: Absolutely stop buying into the notion that you're failing.

You have two small children. You have a long list of chores and responsibilities. You have very high standards. You are a human being, not a perpetual motion machine.

Your first job as a parent is to ensure that the kids have what they need. Do you feel like that's the case? Are they healthy, reasonably happy? Able to access resources appropriate to their ages and needs? Your home is a safe place for them? Well, congratulations Dad.

Three year-olds are unruly. It's in the toddler union rules. Her communication skills will eventually improve, and she'll find new ways to make you crazy. Hang in, and tell your wife that this is normal behavior for the age.

I might, in your shoes, be inclined to do less cooking. I love to cook, and three meals from scratch each day would kill me. I offer fruit, yogurt and cereal for breakfast, and leftovers or sandwiches for lunch. I make big vats of dinners, and package leftovers for preheating. If a day gets too far out of control, I can usually pull leftovers from the lunch lineup for dinner. Yes, this gets repetitive. I refuse to sweat about that. TheIimportant thing is no one's hungry.

You need some time for yourself. Does your daughter go to preschool? Is there a gym with childcare you could join? Can you agitate for the occasional evening or weekend day off?

There is nothing wrong with your parenting.
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#6 of 13 Old 11-05-2015, 08:12 AM
 
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You don't sound like a failure to me, unless you count us all as failures. Lol
I clean all through out the day and we still go to bed with a mess. Mainly because I have a 2 yr old and a dh who can't keep things clean. It's annoying, but someday they will be older and will hopefully help.

Are your children getting enough attention to feel loved, cared for, and kept out of harms way?

Is your house messy, or unsanitary?
If it's just messy that's the best you can do.

They say a sah parents job never ends. It's 24/7. That's because there is always something to do.

things that have helped me:

?a planner. On Sunday's I write down everything I need to do during the week on each day. Things that need to be cleaned, errands, appts, activities, whatever. These don't always get done, but it's good to have goals.

?flylady.com. She will get you organized and give you small tasks for each day. She has helped me tons. Sometimes when you don't have a boss you lose direction. She kind of becomes your boss.

?nap time. I used to spend hours trying to get my dd to nap. It wasn't worth it. I would lose hours of work time for 1/2 hr of nap. Do anything you can for nap, I would try to get them to nap together too. My dd is 2.5. Everyday she lays on the couch with a blanket and a movie, she's asleep by the time the previews are done. Not the best thing for her, but she needs sleep. If your oldest doesn't nap, tell her she needs to spend quiet time in her room. Reading books, puzzles, whatever. You need quiet time for your sanity.
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#7 of 13 Old 11-06-2015, 07:07 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ty for the advice and words of encouragement.

My wife is a great communicator, she tells me Exactly what needs to be done and how to do it correctly. Then she will change the how 2 to 3 times and I end up doing something wrong or forgetting specifics. She gets super pissed when things are not the way she wants them, latest one is the soap in the bottle wasnt at the right ratio even though I asked while filling it.....insane screaming and name calling....We do not buy Soap from the store for hand/body, we make our own solution from Dr Bronners or shredded bar soap as well as home made diaper wipes and my wife make face creams and stuff too.

She is very smart, Mensa smart. She thinks in black and white with very little or no grey area in life. Her responsibilities include: going to work and all that provides, bills, insurance, setting up appointments, researching safe toys...cleaners....foods...soaps...on and on, breastfeeding when home, I am sure I am missing some things.

She does no cleaning besides herself, changes 5 or less diapers a week, 3 baths total between both kids....ever, can/will not cook anything for herself (sometimes snacks too)..i usually wait on her hand and foot...and she does some of her clothes if mad at me and I usually end up hang them up (everything gets hang dried except for a few shorts and tank tops. I think she has some psychological issues that need to be addressed, anger and verbal/psych abuse as well. She cusses like a trucker and likes to call me various colorful names in front of the kids (my daughter calls me a dumb dumb now) And I love her with all my heart. (which I may not show all the time)

We have a safe home that is mostly kept up with some clutter here and there that builds up somehow. Two completely safe rooms for the kiddos with padded floors over tiles, outlets covered etc etc...and gates through out the house like a kid gitmo.

My daughter is very happy and well adjusted to our life. I understand 90% of her speech and cant keep up with all the new words she learns. As of late I have been practicing Phonics with her on words I know but others cant under stand to try to clean up her speech a little. Its hit or miss with successful results. She is very smart little girl that fallows directions fairly well and is generally well behaved until mommy comes home. It is not every day that she is unruly when mom is around but as with most things we only seem to remember the negative times. (could be that mommy yells sometimes at me and she thinks its yelling screaming if i dont get my way time)

I schedule my day out
Starting with taking the 5mo at 630 to 730 and making my self breakfast and eat while burping him/checking out news then get some of the never ending laundry story started
Get the 3yo up and at it with some bf and clothed (finally wants to wear clothes again)
Drawing time / play time with classical music while i fold laundry or clean kitchen
snacks
feed 5mo 2-3 times a day
try to get 1 major area of the house cleaned each day
lunch/ cartoon
pick up clutter and toys
nap time
things i can clean quietly
dinner prep
cook
wife gets home
eat
cleanup dishes/kitchen
wash breast feeding equipment
baths
bed
get up a few time at night to help change diapers and get baby back to sleep after feeding
New day

Its not easy, its not hard, it is time consuming. I understand its a thankless job but sometimes I feel worthless because shit doesn't get done to my wife or my liking.

I feel like I am doing a good job but that is not the feeling i get from my wife who wants me to do more and more efficiently. I agree that i can be more efficient at some things, I sometimes stop mid activity (like folding laundry)to help my wife or daughter out and can lose track and start something new until i get back to it. Thanks ADHD



Sorry, it seems more like I am venting than anything else.

Flylady looks awesome, I will check it out when I get more free time

Thank you for your time!
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#8 of 13 Old 11-06-2015, 10:39 AM
 
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Okay. Dude. There is so much wrong here.

Your toddler daughter has absorbed that it's okay to call you a dumb dumb. Because she learned it from her mom.

Your partner is micromanaging to the point that you can't refill the bathroom soap.

And I'm not sure your 5mo is eating enough?

The thing you suggest as a thing you do "badly" is standard-issue parenting thing. Plenty of families live out of laundry baskets.

I'd suggest counseling. For you, alone. I'd suggest you consider some reading on abuse. (Gender swap it in your head, okay?)

After a 6 or so months of individual counseling, consider whether you think it would be best to try couples counseling or talk to a divorce lawyer. This is a personal and private decision that only you can make for yourself.

Yes, it really is this bad. The way your wife is behaving is bad for everyone in your family, and it will cause serious emotional damage to the kids if it carries on.
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#9 of 13 Old 11-06-2015, 11:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Sorry should have been more specific, I feed the 5mo 2-3 times during the day depending on his breast feeding time with mom. Moms last feeding is at 6 or 7 am then she returns home to breast feed around 430pm till next morning.
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#10 of 13 Old 11-06-2015, 01:01 PM
 
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Were things better before your son arrived? It's possible she's suffering from post-partum depression. Though if she's not willing to look into why she's so angry and critical, it doesn't really matter the cause.

One phrase I've found helpful is "That was a mean/rude thing to say." Mostly gets used with my teenagers, when I want to acknowlege that I've heard them, but am not willing to justify my reasons or change my position. My big kids were calling my 3 year old a pervert, because she resists when they kick her out of their rooms to get changed. So guess what she yells at me when she's mad? She has no idea what it means, either does your girl, I'm sure. But she does understand it's a mean word, and apologizes after she calms down.
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#11 of 13 Old 11-06-2015, 03:44 PM
 
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I have two main points.

Your wife's behavior is unacceptable and abusive. (I've been in abusive relationships, I know what I'm talking about) It is never ok for her to yell at you or call you names, especially not in front of the kids. It is absolutely her responsibility to clean up after herself and make her own food aside from family meals. Parenting is a joint venture, any issues your daughter may be having are your wife's problem as much as yours. Honestly though she sounds like a pretty normal 3 year old.

It is ok to not do everything by hand all the time. Really. I get why you would want to, I try to the same most of the time. The first six months after having a baby is not one of those times. Try making some changes for the sake of convenience, doing so is not failing - it's good time management and important self care.

I strongly echo the previous recommendation of therapy for yourself, and possibly for you both as a couple.

Most importantly YOU ARE NOT A FAILURE. You sound like a caring attentive father who is not getting the help and support he needs. No one can do everything by themselves. If you are doing anything wrong, it's that you are trying to do too much in order to live up to your wife's impossible expectations. And they really are impossible.
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#12 of 13 Old 11-09-2015, 07:24 AM
 
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As I said in my first post, your wife is very verbally abusive, and is NOT an effective communicator. Her telling you specifically what she wants does not make her good at communication. It's also mind boggling that she goes out of her way to ensure the physical safety of your children, but does nothing for their mental health.

Berating you in front of the children is detrimental to their upbringing, and is abusive.

Have you tried telling her that this name calling is making you feel inferior?

Honestly, this type of abuse from a husband to a wife is completely socially unacceptable, and women would be encouraged to leave such a situation. Either counseling is needed or a reevaluation of your marriage status, because this is not good for either yours or your children's mental health.
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#13 of 13 Old 11-11-2015, 07:50 AM
 
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I am a SAHM to three kids who are older and in school all day. And I don't get nearly as much done as you do in a day. And if my husband came home from work and belittled me about doing things incorrectly or calling me names for not getting the house spotless, I would be furious. Just because you are home all day does not give anyone permission to micromanage what you do or how you do it. You're the one home. You get to decide. And I, personally, certainly don't pick up after my husband or make his food- except dinner. Or on the weekend if I make a salad, I make enough for both of us. He is a capable individual who can and does- on top of working- do about half the laundry, washes the dinner dishes, wipes down the bathroom if I haven't had a chance. We're a housework team. I am a strong believer that SAHM/D does not make one a maid. For me, my job is to raise the kids- be there to see them off to school, see them home, be there when they have problems or need homework help or be a cheerleader for their activities. I drive them to events and make sure their schedules are doable. I volunteer doing things many working parents can't because I stay at home. In my spare time I like to train my dog, teach myself to sew, make sure the house is decorated for holidays, bake things for after school snacks. Right now I'm about to start training to become a wildlife rehabber. After all that, I wipe down bathrooms, vacuum floors, clean windows, etc. I am not a maid. And neither are you. Sorry, your post just hit a nerve with me. I know you love your wife and you say you don't mind doing all the things you do, but it sounds like you and your wife need to be on the same page about each other's expectations. I agree that counseling for you might be helpful and I honestly think your wife needs to communicate more effectively with you.

As for your daughter, she sounds like many 3 yr olds. Finally, if my husband had a huge problem with the way I did things, we would discuss it and likely he would take over the task of his own accord. We have done this with dinner dishes. If he is tired and says he'll leave them for a morning, then I will do the task that night if I don't want it to wait. After all, I am the one who doesn't want to wait til morning. So why should I berate him for not doing it? If I feel the same way he does, I'll let them sit, too.

Anyway, I hope you find a solution. Don't beat yourself up. You are not a failure AT ALL. You sound like you are trying to do it all and your wife is telling you it's still not enough.
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