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i've known her for years. always happy, lively, full of confidence and (as mom used to say) "piss & vinegar"! LOL

i feel lost as to what to say/do... i dont wanna see her like she is anymore. what would you say if you knew her...

her situation:
married 10+ yrs, one teen step-child, has a good job, she's taking night classes cuz she's thinking about another career.
her dh still wants her to do the (my words) "woman thing"... meaning, she comes home from work, cooks, cleans, runs errands, does laundry... the usual.
he's gotta good job too. so he's not slacking. lol but from my outside point of view, it's like he wants her to be this "old woman" (not by age, but rather by generation). they're a young couple... mid 30s/early 40s.
but i've seen the fire leave my friends eyes. it's like she comes home with no desire to be there b/c she has to (her words) "do it all every day without help."

they both have recently started to help out b/c she has stopped doing stuff around the house, but i'm wondering how long will that last before the next argument she calls me about b/c she's not doing "what's expected" (my words).

i know she's talked to her dh about how she feels... but it's like a dead end - from my point of view. he listens, but just goes right back to what he did before.

it's becoming a constant complaint i'm hearing from her.
she gets no help, there are daily arguments about simple things like "what's for dinner" b/c she's too tired to cook and wants help, but no one is willing to help.

and my personal opinion... this has been going on for a matter of years now. i think she's at her brink.

what should i say to her?!
 

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i've known her for years. always happy, lively, full of confidence and (as mom used to say) "piss & vinegar"! LOL

i feel lost as to what to say/do... i dont wanna see her like she is anymore. what would you say if you knew her...

her situation:
married 10+ yrs, one teen step-child, has a good job, she's taking night classes cuz she's thinking about another career.
her dh still wants her to do the (my words) "woman thing"... meaning, she comes home from work, cooks, cleans, runs errands, does laundry... the usual.
he's gotta good job too. so he's not slacking. lol but from my outside point of view, it's like he wants her to be this "old woman" (not by age, but rather by generation). they're a young couple... mid 30s/early 40s.
but i've seen the fire leave my friends eyes. it's like she comes home with no desire to be there b/c she has to (her words) "do it all every day without help."

they both have recently started to help out b/c she has stopped doing stuff around the house, but i'm wondering how long will that last before the next argument she calls me about b/c she's not doing "what's expected" (my words).

i know she's talked to her dh about how she feels... but it's like a dead end - from my point of view. he listens, but just goes right back to what he did before.

it's becoming a constant complaint i'm hearing from her.
she gets no help, there are daily arguments about simple things like "what's for dinner" b/c she's too tired to cook and wants help, but no one is willing to help.

and my personal opinion... this has been going on for a matter of years now. i think she's at her brink.

what should i say to her?!
this happened to me. it was a fruitless, never ending, argument. in the house he grew up in his mom did the housework and it was inconceivable to him that he would dust a table or push a broom. he would accuse me of being a "floor licker".

i got a housekeeper twice a week, who did everything including laundry, bed changing, and windows. she was like alice in the brady bunch - she ran my household, not me. i paid her 200 a week.

it ended the arguments and problems.

edited to add: i would delegate the cooking to the husband and the teen
 
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Yep.....a housekeeper for sure. At least someone to clean.

I have known two other couples like this. Stress was somewhat relieved when a housekeeper (at least) came in. If he grumbles about the $ then he pitches in..........

You can't make any changes for her.....she has to do the changing. She has allowed it to go on too long and the change might not be easy!
 

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housework is a full time job, especially depending on the number of people living there. so i have mixed fillings as to an answer
 
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The next time she calls to complain/vent/etc. . . simply say to her

"what are you going to do to change the situation?" Put it back in her ballpark. It's her life, to live, or not -- if she wants things to change. . . she has to do something to make it change. . . sometimes people just want to vent and be the martyr . . . sometimes they really want help. . . sometimes they want out of a bad situation.
 

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Very sad to live that way, but I agree with some of the other posters it does have to be her decision. She has to decide how she wants to live her life.
 

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oh you guys are not gonna like this answer...im not the maid im not gettin a house keeper,, life is to short to be unhappy....im not doing all the house work..

he has do decide if its worth fighting over..i know i wouldnt and would let him know how disrespectful he was being and i would put up with it for a minute

i would also tell him the door swings both ways
 

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The next time she calls to complain/vent/etc. . . simply say to her

"what are you going to do to change the situation?" Put it back in her ballpark. It's her life, to live, or not -- if she wants things to change. . . she has to do something to make it change. . . sometimes people just want to vent and be the martyr . . . sometimes they really want help. . . sometimes they want out of a bad situation.
YEP! Or my answer, and I have said it before, (and used it on myself)....is: "Is this what you think you deserve?" If not.....then "what are you going to do about it?"
 

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Since she has lost her zest for life and has been sharing with you her woes I'm thinking she is truly seeking advice. She really has little options other then hiring outside help, or reducing her workload. If hiring help is out of the question then I'd give her ideas on how to reduce her workload that did not provoke more fights with her husband.

1) Teen child is old enough to care for their own room and laundry. She should stop cleaning said child's room and make it clear that if they want clean clothes there's the washer.

2) Stoufers dinners (I have friend who pops them out of their containers and cooks them in her own casserole dishes, her husband has never caught on LOL!) bag salad, desserts and breads from the bakery, and pre-made food from the grocery would be what's for dinner. I'd also buy meal deals from KFC, Boston market and places that sell pasta and meatballs in a bucket. I'd put it in serving dishes and put the trash in the outside trash can if her husband would be one to balk at such food. If she can't get help cooking from her family at least she can get help from the Colonel.

3) I'm all for going green, but sometimes sanity trumps green- paper plates & cups!!!!

4) A REALLY GOOD air purifier will reduce the amount of dust in the home and reduce dusting.

5) a delivery service. Go on Alice.com and order all cleaning supplies, HBA, and other needs. Food can also be on an delivery service, check local food stores.

6) reduce clutter and get Zen, easy and quick to clean house that way.


Life does not always turn out the way we want it to sometimes. Clearly her husband is NOT going to do his share so she's going to either make choices to reduce her workload or continue fighting a losing battle with her husband.
 
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or she could choose not to fight.. just walk away and say im not fightin..and refuse to enage..
 

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Marital counseling through a local church, although the husband doesn't sound like someone that would be open to that course of action.
 

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thinking about this post again. this is killing her.

what happened if she went on strike?

move into a bedroom of her own, keep her room clean, cook only for herself, go to work, come home, do her own thing?


non commital responses to the complaints
"that's nice"
"Gee, look at that"
"hmmm"
"yup, it's messy"
"golly"

"what's for dinner?"
"I don't know. what are you having for dinner?"

"if you want to talk about this, i will meet you in my therapist's offcie. you make the appointment and telll me what time to show up."

"good night, love you"


i can hear my therpist in my mind with this situation. it's what she would have me do. my therpaist would have me do this for a minumum of 90 days, to make sure the message got through and that they don't manipulate you back where they want you. family change is hard. then at 90 days, in therapist office family session, division of labor and expectations would be discussed.

i speak from experience. there were many time in my marriage to the sex addict where i spent 3 - 6 months in my beautiful room of my own. "In house separation" requires the supervision of a professional and weekly visits to stay strong.
 
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thinking about this post again. this is killing her.

what happened if she went on strike?

move into a bedroom of her own, keep her room clean, cook only for herself, go to work, come home, do her own thing?


non commital responses to the complaints
"that's nice"
"Gee, look at that"
"hmmm"
"yup, it's messy"
"golly"

"what's for dinner?"
"I don't know. what are you having for dinner?"

"if you want to talk about this, i will meet you in my therapist's offcie. you make the appointment and telll me what time to show up."

"good night, love you"



i can hear my therpist in my mind with this situation. it's what she would have me do. my therpaist would have me do this for a minumum of 90 days, to make sure the message got through and that they don't manipulate you back where they want you. family change is hard. then at 90 days, in therapist office family session, division of labor and expectations would be discussed.

i speak from experience. there were many time in my marriage to the sex addict where i spent 3 - 6 months in my beautiful room of my own. "In house separation" requires the supervision of a professional and weekly visits to stay strong.
I REALLY agree with these responses...and they CAN/WILL get the point across...Now, what each does when the point has been taken...is entirely up to them...hopefully something very positive
will be the outcome.
 
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Discussion Starter #15
wow i know it's been forever since i posted this & am just now getting back to it (sorry!)... but i am amazed at the responses & love that you all are so honest. :)

ladykemma... you gave some excellent examples I can pass along... thanks!!

i've been listening to my friend & her plight for a long time now... and i've mentioned things like a maid - but that's not a financial cost they can afford. not to mention her dh wouldn't go for it.

counseling? LOL i doubt that'd go over well at all!
he doesnt seem to think anything's wrong - from what i can see.

but you all have been very helpful to me and my friend.

i appreciate it :)
 

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It sounds like the time that her classes are taking has interupted the usual family dynamic. Did they discuss at all the impact that her taking the classes was going to have on the household or was this a unilateral decision on her part?

Does the husband take care of traditional male tasks such as exterior maintence, car repair and interior maintenance (i.e. plumbing, replacement of fluorescent ballasts, etc.)? Some of these tasks don't need to be done rgularly, but they eat vast quantities of time when they do need to be done and often need to be done right now. Sometimes waiting for the weekend is not an option. I remember changing brake pads at 9 pm one night after working overtime and needing to go in early the next day (0500 wakeup) because that's what had to get done. Our society values these sorts of skilled labor tasks more highly than unskilled cleaning tasks - I don't think it is unreasonable for him to start with that valuation. If as a family, they want to change that valuation, then it must be discussed accordingly.

Does the husband bring home a significantly larger income and then pay a greater portion of the bills? If so, maybe he feels that his larger financial contribution to the household effectively buys him out from some of the chores.

Would little things like investing in a sponge on a stick and asking the husband and kids to clean dishes right as they use them be helpful? It's a lot different going from not cleaning dishes to cleaning the plate you ate of off then to the whole pile. Then on the usual dishwasher's end, there's a big difference between needing to do the whole pile vs. a plate and a couple pots.
 
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Hi there, just wanted to say that some of the suggestions on here reminded me of a great parenting class I took, and they also have a book for couples using the same principles: http://www.loveandlogic.com/ecom/p-126-marriage-love-and-logic.aspx

A little note on the laundry and teen comment: my teen has to have her clothes in the laundry room by 10 a.m. on Sunday every week.

But here's the trick: technically she doesn't HAVE to, its totally her choice...but that's the only way it'll get done. *wicked grin* weeks went by at first, no laundry, I switched to small loads and only did my own. It was torture for me at first but sure enough the clothes starting appearing and now we have the "mad dash" with a armful of clothes if she hears the washer and slept in. I love it!
 
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A little note on the laundry and teen comment: my teen has to have her clothes in the laundry room by 10 a.m. on Sunday every week.

But here's the trick: technically she doesn't HAVE to, its totally her choice...but that's the only way it'll get done. *wicked grin* weeks went by at first, no laundry, I switched to small loads and only did my own. It was torture for me at first but sure enough the clothes starting appearing and now we have the "mad dash" with a armful of clothes if she hears the washer and slept in. I love it!
My mother had me start doing my own laundry around 13 years old. I still won't let my wife do my laundry.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
mek42 - to answer some of your questions...
recently my gf quit her job to go to school full time. the schooling was a family decision & everyone was on board. she told me that her dh told her "everything would get figured out as they go along." so, no, i guess who does what/when/where etc wasn't talked about initially.
so him bringing home the "bacon" probly makes him feel like he doesnt need to do anything.

i think it's getting worse. she's starting to stop talking to me & a couple of our other mutual friends... like a recluse.
her dh is starting to get paranoid about her leaving. i dunno that she ever would, but she complains he's gotten super close & cuddly & stuff.

i dunno. part of me thinks to tell her to leave & start over... but the "tough it out" part of me says, just that.

thx for your input. :)
 

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mek42 - to answer some of your questions...
recently my gf quit her job to go to school full time. the schooling was a family decision & everyone was on board. she told me that her dh told her "everything would get figured out as they go along." so, no, i guess who does what/when/where etc wasn't talked about initially.
so him bringing home the "bacon" probly makes him feel like he doesnt need to do anything.

i think it's getting worse. she's starting to stop talking to me & a couple of our other mutual friends... like a recluse.
her dh is starting to get paranoid about her leaving. i dunno that she ever would, but she complains he's gotten super close & cuddly & stuff.

i dunno. part of me thinks to tell her to leave & start over... but the "tough it out" part of me says, just that.

thx for your input. :)
wow a weird form of the abuse cycle? let's neglect and abuse and then get real cuddly to keep from leaving. now would be the time to press for family counseling.

i feel really sad about this. all we in internet land can do is pray for her.
 
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