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#1 of 14 Old 03-17-2005, 07:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I admit it...I'm bitter and I nag mu husband and I'm driving him away. I feel a lot of resentment towards him because he doesn't help out around the house and forgets to do what I ask him to or he doesn't hear me. He'll help out with our newborn, but that's it...I was cooking his meals and cleaning the house 3 days PP with no help from him. So I'm ticked...I'm bitter...and I'm taking it out on him.

What can I do? We can't talk about it because I'm so hurt and upset I just end up screaming at him and letters don't work.

Monica - single mama to DS nono02.gifand DD blowkiss.gif

 

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#2 of 14 Old 03-17-2005, 08:25 PM
 
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Can you afford to get someone in to help you? Letters seem like a good idea to me. If he is ignoring them I don't know. If $$ is tight and you think the threat of spending money might motivate him then perhaps you can come up with a plan involving hiring someone (to clean or mother's helper) and stating in writing your plan and your understanding that if he doesn't comment you are going to take this as tacit agreement to you getting outside help??
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#3 of 14 Old 03-17-2005, 08:29 PM
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I am so sorry you are feeling this way. It is very upsetting to feel like you are the only person doing most of the household work. Is your husband the only one who works outside the home? Unfortunately, there is a wide belief with a lot of men that "bringing home the bacon" means they don't have to lift a finger at home and it is SO completely irritating and upsetting, anger inducing and hurtful.

I am lucky that my husband finally *gets it*. It has taken some time and now he is absolutely wonderful, however, we had to have a year of separation for him to realize what he had with me, so I don't really recommend that, as we had no children at the time and I didn't use it as a *tool*--I was honestly leaving for good. We just happened to reconcille and it is wonderful now thank God, but I say this to illustrate that people can and do change.

It is a shame that letters don't work, as they are useful to explaining your position without yelling or fighting etc. Maybe you can come to a compromise if your husband is willing. Maybe have a conversation along the lines of:

"I realize you financially support the family (I assume this is the case), and I really do appreciate that. I also realize when I get upset I have a tendency to yell, and nag, and push you away and I am sorry for that, as it is obviously getting nowhere. It is important to me though, that you see where I am coming from and understand my position. I feel overwhelmed a lot of the time, and while I don't expect you to take on all of the work, or even most of it, it would help me so much if you could do a, b, or c, at least part of the time. I would be a calmer, more relaxed, happier person and that would extend to being a better wife to you, which I want to be."

I know all you want to say is, "You don't do CRAP around here and it is pissing me off! Why can't you help me DO ANYTHING!!!!"....but obviously, that isn't working, and much of it is in the delivery.

Try to approach it when you are both calm, having a nice, pleasant moment together, and not right in the midst of you being upset or angry. Try to approach it when things are neutral and when no one is on the defensive. Try to avoid accusations and stick more to facts. "I would appreciate some help with the dishes occasionally, as sometimes it is an overwhelming, seemingly endless task. Do you think we could compromise on that somehow?" I am not saying hide the fact that you are upset, but if you have already discussed this with him, cried and yelled, he already knows it upsets you.

It might sound like I am telling you to kiss his @ss, but seriously, I am not. I am just saying that yelling and screaming and nagging and crying haven't seemed to work so far, so maybe a different, calmer, more factual approach would help some. Of course, if he truly wants you to be happy, calmer, and feel relaxed, he should be willing to meet you part way. However, if he is a chauvenistic (sp) jerk, no *angle* will help anyway. I am assuming he is a good guy though, hence the suggestions.

Please take care and I do hope it gets better for you. I know how it feels to feel overworked and underappreciated.
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#4 of 14 Old 03-17-2005, 09:09 PM
 
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Without anger, bitterness, or resentment try to sit down and have a true heart-to-heart with your dh.
Tell him how you feel like the needs of the home are not being divided evenly. Tell him how it makes you feel. Tell him what you want things to be like. Ask him if he can work with you to come up with a cooperative strategy. Tell him you need this.
Sometimes guys can be pretty dense. Perhaps he doesn't see where he is lacking. Perhaps he is "getting back" at you for nagging by slacking... these viscous cycles can go on and on.
Break the pattern now!!
I can suggest a book that has helped us so much: Don't Sweat The Small Stuff With Your Family by Richard Carlson.
Some family counseling would be a good idea in addition.
As hurt as you feel, try and connect w/ your dh so you two can hear eachother and work this all out. Good luck!!
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#5 of 14 Old 03-17-2005, 09:23 PM
 
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To the OP: I would look into personal counseling if you can. As mean as this sounds, this is more your issue than his--you are the one getting all worked up about this. Yes, he should help out *a lot* more, BUT, you should really be able to not take this personally and get so angry about it.

I'm by no means saying that you should pick up after him 24-7, or that you should keep doing all the housework! I was in (and am still sometimes in) the same boat as you, so don't think I'm attacking you.

Would he go to couples counseling? You two might learn some better ways to communicate there.

Best Wishes,
Kelly

Kelly, mama (12yoDS), doula, RN, and writer.
There's no where you can be that isn't where you were meant to be, its easy
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#6 of 14 Old 03-17-2005, 10:15 PM
 
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shyly, how old are your children? I found that things have become easier with my dh, that he does more with the kids, as they get older. I have a ds, almost 11, and dh is great with him. I remember how hard it was with babies. My dh didn't really get babies and young toddlers. Also, as the children get older, you should find you have more time to get to things around the house, and you probably won't feel quite as frazzled.

Still, I think peaceful herbivore has some wonderful ideas, and ITA with her and with the other posters that a heart-to-heart is in order as soon as possible. Being mama is hard work, and you deserve some real help from your dh NOW, not only when the kids are older.

P.S. I love your senior member title!!
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#7 of 14 Old 03-17-2005, 10:15 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peaceful herbivore
I am lucky that my husband finally *gets it*. It has taken some time and now he is absolutely wonderful, however, we had to have a year of separation for him to realize what he had with me, so I don't really recommend that, as we had no children at the time and I didn't use it as a *tool*--I was honestly leaving for good. We just happened to reconcille and it is wonderful now thank God, but I say this to illustrate that people can and do change.

Parts of this post reflects our situation very well... it started slowly & I didn't even really recognize how much picking up/cleaning after him I was doing. After several years (kidless) living together, I realized I was doing alll of the bills AND cleaning AND laundry AND getting groceries AND majority of the pet-care and we had had several arguments & tension over that mundane topic. I was working just as many hours as he was & it hit me like a wall - it was either A) continue & not make a big deal over it. B) keep nagging only to end up in a fight and still having to do things myself. C) leave the relationship and all of it's good parts as well. D) just stop doing his stuff, live with his crap all over the place until he realizes HOW much crap he leaves around & hopefully he will realize it & appreciate how much I do that I shouldn't be doing.

I went with D, while using C as a back-up plan if D didn't catch on. We have two bathrooms, so I moved all of my things into the other one & now use that... he cleans his bath, takes out the trash, washes 1/4 of our laundry, loads & unloads the dishwasher, vacuums half the time, takes care of the dog in the morning & I do it at night. NOTICES when I take the time to wash OUR floors or do some of his laundry. All without me making him a list or nagging him. Seriously, the only thing that got thru to him at all was my not saying and especially NOT DOING anything for him until he realized what was going on on his own.

(jmo) With kids - if two parents or more are available - I see "fair" as one parent raises & feeds & cleans & loves the kids all day to support the family, one parent goes to work to make $ to support the family... and both still take care of themselves, as they should, to maintain respect & peace within the family. I don't connect with the idea of a job-working partner not having his/her own personal responsibilities just b'c they have kids together. He has a mother to his kids and a life partner to *share* the family life/responsibility with, NOT A LIVE-IN MAID for goodness sake!

Anyway, sorry to rant, I'm miffed for you b'c I definitely know where you're coming from!! I also agree with a pp who said that for you to get angry about it is truly pointless though, its doubling the stress that you feel by his disrespect. Its a really individual situation so jmo, but I'd honestly try to stop nagging & feeling bitterness & enjoy your husband, but at the same time, only take care of your own personal & your mothering responsibilities for a while.

(wow, give a girl a soapbox to stand on...!!)

"When the external begins to define the internal, instead of the internal defining the external, one begins living as a mortal rather than as a universal being." ~ unknown
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#8 of 14 Old 03-18-2005, 12:08 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shyly
I admit it...I'm bitter and I nag mu husband and I'm driving him away. I feel a lot of resentment towards him because he doesn't help out around the house and forgets to do what I ask him to or he doesn't hear me.
You know, he's driving YOU away too. I never will understand how a grown person can be so clueless when another person they care about needs help. This is something that you both need to work on; I don't see it as just your problem.

Best of luck......I think counseling might be one road to take.
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#9 of 14 Old 03-18-2005, 12:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for all the advice. I know...I really do need to just sit back, breath, and calmly approach this. I've done it so many times in the past and nothing has ever come of it. If anything I get a temporary reprieve.

We had a huge fight again this morning (we fought before he went to bed too) when I tried to get him to watch the baby so I could get an hour or two of sleep. He threw a hissy so I started screaming at him (again). He told (yelled) me that all his life everyone has made him feel like a dumbass and that I do too. I have to admit that I've said things to make him feel that way. I'm so scared that we aren't going to be able to patch things up. Part of me wants to leave, but I have no where to go and no one to turn to. I'm not scared to be alone, but your perspective changes when you have kids...KWIM?

DH is going to be going to school up at Ft. Lee next mont and will be there for five months. That will give us much needed break and hopefully he'll be receptive to the idea of counseling when he comes back. I'm going to try and get some kind of counseling too because I think I have PPD. I admit almost all of this is me...I'm not a very nice person right now because I'm so overwhelmed and frustrated and I end up lashing out to vent my frustrations.

I just feel so frustrated because I see us falling apart but pride prevents me from apologizing and fear of rejection keeps me from reaching out.

Monica - single mama to DS nono02.gifand DD blowkiss.gif

 

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#10 of 14 Old 03-18-2005, 12:40 PM
 
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Hi there...

When DH and I are fighting, I often find that he has feelings about something that has not ben verbalized. Perhaps approaching him with compassion, and giving him the chance to tell you calmly what is really bothering him, will helpt he true root cause to be spoken and then you can deal with it?

I know it's hard, and especially PP, to try to hear the other's point of view....but it may be worth trying, if it restores some peace in your heart and home.




I hope it all works out...

Marcie

Mother of reading.gif, REPlaySkateboard04HL.gifjammin.gif and babyf.gifborn Oct. 5th after angel.gif  angel.gif angel.gif. Social Media Manager and writer by day, Bloomin' Belly Soap maker by night.

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#11 of 14 Old 03-18-2005, 12:49 PM
 
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Ugh. I'm sorry you are going thru this shyly. It sounds like what I have experienced with my baby's daddy, and what I hear from most of my friends. So you are not alone, and I don't think this is more your issue than his at all. He is not pulling his weight. So you are left having to pick up the slack, and you are angry and hurt about it. If you go to personal counselling, I hope it is not with a view toward "working on your issue with this" so you can stop feeling what you are feeling. His behaviour is not okay. I would prefer to see you go to couple's counselling with a therapist who is feminist identified/or ap identified and has children.

Alternatively (or also) I would write a letter to him and READ it to him. So you can organize your thoughts and you dont go spinning off into pure undirected emotion. I have found this helpful (of course I used it and my babydaddy didn't change a damn bit, but here it is anyway):

When you... (list his behaviour, as specifically as possible)

I feel... (list your emotions)

I want you to... (list what you would like from him)

So that we can... (list how you want things to be between you)
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#12 of 14 Old 03-18-2005, 12:49 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shyly
DH is going to be going to school up at Ft. Lee next mont and will be there for five months. That will give us much needed break and hopefully he'll be receptive to the idea of counseling when he comes back. I'm going to try and get some kind of counseling too because I think I have PPD. I admit almost all of this is me...I'm not a very nice person right now because I'm so overwhelmed and frustrated and I end up lashing out to vent my frustrations.

I just feel so frustrated because I see us falling apart but pride prevents me from apologizing and fear of rejection keeps me from reaching out.
I've been here and recently visited this horrible place again. dd is 19 months and I had these same issues after her birth. Now, being pregnant again- I wasn't getting any additional help from dh and I started really resenting him. I always did the laundry and paid the bills (never trusted dh to do this) even before we had a baby so why would he change after? Plus our whole hh changed from me being the breadwinner to dh being the breadwinner. It's tough having young kids!

My advice (and only because this is what worked for me)- let go of your pride and apologize. It's hard but you need to for your children. YOU have to model the people they will turn out to be and it's HONORABLE to admit that you make mistakes. And let go of your fear and reach out after you apologize- you WILL NOT be rejected- you will have broken down that barrier with your apology and dh will embrace you for that. Lastly- just tell your dh that you need some help. If he doesn't know what to do to help- he can ask you. Furthermore- live in filth if you have to- spend time with your newborn. This was very hard for perfectionist me. If you cannot stand it- go somewhere else. Have your family or dh family spend time with the kids on the weekend while you and dh clean up what is necessary for survival. Gives you and dh some time alone, you both are contributing to the hh and your kids get to play with family! Good luck and get counseling when your dh returns if needed.
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#13 of 14 Old 03-18-2005, 01:06 PM
 
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Doing everything stinks but sometimes it has to be done. Having said that, doing something while someone else is sat on their a** is incredibly frustrating.It depends what you are prepared to put up with regarding tidiness.

I have about a week's worth tolerance of mess then I start to get desperate. We do some cleaning together. He washes up while I empty the washing machine. He clears the table while I sort the children out for bed or vice versa. There are things I am better or quicker at doing (ironing is one), other things he likes doing so we play to our strengths.

Why not apologise? You are making him feel bad and this is making you feel bad. If you put your pride to one side the rejection may not even come into play. Be honest with yourself and with him. If you think it is PPD then tell him so and share your burdens before he goes away.
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#14 of 14 Old 03-19-2005, 11:52 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We did apologize to each other yesterday, but it's still not resolved. I'm leaving at the end of the month to go visit my family in Florida. He'll join me after I've been there a week. That will give me some time away from him and some time with my family who can help me out with the baby. I need the break and I'm going to enjoy it.

Monica - single mama to DS nono02.gifand DD blowkiss.gif

 

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