Busy hubby wants time for housework
BY Ask Amy
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
11/13/12 at 4:03 AM
Dear Amy: I am working 60 hours a week, and my wife is taking care of our 3- and 5-year-old boys (and the house). We have a house that needs work, ranging from hanging pictures to a kitchen renovation. I feel like nothing gets done at home during the week.
On the weekends, we always seem to have plans that interfere with stuff getting done around the house when I can be home. Today I insisted on doing work around the house, and I got accused of not spending time with our boys.
Living in clutter, losing bills, never having socks and always feeling there is stuff to do really stresses me out. I feel I ignore it all week and then get irritated about it Saturday morning when we should be enjoying our time together.
I handle all bills, help with laundry, vacuum, load/unload dishwashers, and when I'm home I usually cook dinner, so it's not as if I expect her to be waiting by the door with a Manhattan and my smoking jacket (though it would be nice).
What can I do? - Frustrated
Dear Frustrated: If possible, you might do best hiring someone to do some of the light household maintenance and/or cleaning. Having someone come in on a schedule helps the family get it together on a schedule.
In my household, Sunday afternoons are when I get some alone time to catch up on chores and start my workweek. You and your wife might trade off two-hour blocks when you each get a break from the kids to do whatever you need to do - in or out of the home. Your children can help. Toy sorting and sock-matching would be good jobs for these little guys.
I admire de-cluttering guru Peter Walsh. Read his book, "It's All Too Much: An Easy Plan for Living a Richer Life with Less Stuff" (2007, Free Press).
Dear Amy: You are enabling a bully with your response to "Sober," who is worried about hosting her negative mother-in-law for Thanksgiving.
I was in a similar situation. After 25 years, my mother-in-law almost gave me a nervous breakdown. My husband also avoided mom as a way to cope, dumping the responsibility on me. My advice to Sober: Take care of yourself, for no one else will. Let someone else host Thanksgiving this year. Sober should make other plans with her immediate family.
After three years of separation, the first holiday mom was again allowed to attend, she behaved perfectly! Bullies need consequences and boundaries. My life is heaven now. - Peace in Connecticut
Dear Peace: I agree with you that her sobriety must come first.
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