Am I the Bad Guy Here?

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-05-2010
Am I the Bad Guy Here?
Thu, 07-26-2012 - 12:11pm

I guess I should start by explaining my situation. I have been married for 3 years, we have a 6 month old baby, I work full time outside of the home (I take my baby to work with me so I also have him all day), I am a full time student (online classes), and I coach little league cheerleading.

I have always been super organized and had chore lists and to-do lists and weekly menu's all planned out and each day I would take care of everything that needed to be done. I rarely asked my husband to help and pretty much did everything by myself, I really didn't mind this before when I had a ton of energy and only a 1 bedroom apartment to clean.

I have been coaching for four years and I'll admit, I probably should have taken this season off since I was running really low on energy to begin with (I'm still exclusively breast feeding, so I'm up every 2-3 hours at night and all day long feeding my son, plus in October we moved from the 1 bedroom apartment to a 4 bedroom house so the amount of time it takes to clean is quadrupled, and I'm just tired a lot of the time). 

My husband also works full time; he goes into the office at 6 and gets home at 2:30, since he gets up so early he goes to bed by 8:30 each night. I don't get home until 5:30, and about a month ago we talked because up until that time I was still doing 90% of the cooking and cleaning and I was getting zero time to myself and was feeling burned out. We talked and he said that he doesn't mind cooking dinner because he's home 3 hours before me and has that time to himself to relax. So, he took over cooking dinner, most nights I would clean up the kitchen before bed and I still do a lot of the cleaning, straightening and spot cleaning during the week and deep cleaning on the weekends. I really thought that this routine was working well for both of us until last night.

I was asked to help out at the little league volleyball practice by one of the coaches so I was out of the house on a night when I am normally home. (I also take my son to all of my practices in case he gets hungry) When I got home, I jumped in the shower and then gave my son a bath, then had to feed him. My DH offerred to warm up some leftovers for me, and I asked if he would mind making a pot of tea since I couldn't get up and he got irritated so I told him to forget it, but he did it anyways. 

While I was nursing, he said "can you empty the dishwasher because I did it last night and the night before that and the night before that and you haven't even done it once this week" (may I remind you that this happened on Wednesday). I turned to look at him with a surprised look on my face because I didn't understand why he was so mad at me. So I asked him and he said  "I would like to sit down and relax too but I can't because I'm in here making YOUR tea and all I want is for you to empty the dishwasher!" (By this point he had been home from work for about 5 hours sitting on the couch playing video games, so I was really shocked that he would get so upset by me asking him for help since I didn't get home until 7). 

Long story short, we got into a huge fight with him saying that he feels like he does everything around the house. "I know it's not true, but that's how I feel". 

I'm so upset. I feel like I NEED his help around the house and he lives there too so he should help. But then he gets so mad at me after a few days of it and it makes me feel like I'm a worthless, and lazy and like I'm not taking care of my family if I'm not doing all of it all the time. 

Every time we have the discussion when I tell him that I'm burned out and need some help, he says he doesn't mind helping and jumps in and helps out for a couple of weeks and then he gets pissed off at me and we go right back to where we started with me taking care of everything until I burn out again.

I am so sick of this cycle! I know that I took on too much by volunteering to coach again, but that's where my heart is (I'm going to school to teach K-6, so working with kids is really important to me). Am I the bad guy here for accepting his help and allowing him to take on some of the chores or is he just overreacting? I don't want to say that his feelings don't count, he was saying the same things to me last night about feeling burned out that I have said to him when he wasn't helping at all, so I know how that feels. But at the same time, I feel like there's only so much I can do and I'm stretched thin already. I don't know what to do. =/

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-04-2012
Re: Am I the Bad Guy Here?
Mon, 07-30-2012 - 4:11pm

This has been really interesting to read, because I'm close to giving birth to our first child, and I also will be working full time and tend to get overscheudled if I don't watch myself. So thanks for posting, and thanks to everyone who replied, there are a lot of helpful suggestions here on how to arrange your life and juggle lots of responsibilities.

I just wanted to add that if your family can afford it, you could consider hiring someone to clean your house each week, or twice a month. Depending on where you live some of them are pretty reasonable, and as long as you can afford it, that can be a way to pretty much create spare time for yourself out of thin air. 

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iVillage Member
Registered: 09-25-2010
Mon, 07-30-2012 - 5:17pm
Welcome to the group,
thanks for stopping by & sharing your tips.
Congrats on the upcoming arrival of your new bundle of joy :smileyhappy: