Talked to husband last night. Ideas? Thoughts? Am I expecting too much?

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Shari, Apr 6, 2011.

  1. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Last night, I had to work. Things have been crazy at work the past 3 weeks, and I've had to work a lot of extra evenings and weekends to get a project done on time. We got that project done, and I thought I now had 2 weeks to author a document for my next project. I found out yesterday that the person who publishes the documents is leaving Thursday and won't be back for 2 weeks. My document has to be published before she gets back, and I don't have access to the tool to publish it, so I had to either have it done today so she can publish it before she leaves, or figure out the tool and how to publish it to the entire company. So, I marathon wrote last night.
    After work last night, husband went to "the farm" to set out deer bait and a game camera. Then he came home and fished til 830. Then he watched tv til midnight, started a load of his clothes in the washer, and went to bed. Monday night was wrestling from 6:30 on. I already posted about Sunday.
    I got to bed about 12:45. He was still up and wanted *something* from me. I said no. This is not how I normally operate, but not until he seriously discusses with me the problems we have. He said he's trying. I said "tell me what has changed; give me examples from the past week". After a long delay he said he did the dishes (that was last Wed), cooked supper (Sat night, he cooked the steaks on the grill - I made all the side dishes and dessert and did the dishes - he was in bed by 11:00, I got to bed by 1:00), put iodine on the rain rot pony (don't know when), did laundry (I stopped working last night long enough to do 3 things - one was wash Wee's clothes and left the dumped hamper on the bathroom floor. At midnight, he took his clothes out of the pile and put them in the washer. I also fixed Wee a sandwich at 8:30, and I cooked myself a grilled cheese (I also loaded the dishwasher while waiting on the grilled cheese to cook - when I got to the plate husband had put on the counter from his own supper, which was the last dish, he said "I'll get that" - but i digress)), took the trash out (he changed the bag in the trash can and left the full bag laying on the floor beside the can - but he did change the bag last Fri), caulked the cable box on the camper, finished the roof (that was more than a week ago), and plowed the garden.
    (FWIW, the camper and the pony should have never needed to be done if they'd been cared for properly to begin with - the garden? I'm not putting in a garden this year. Already told him that, I can't/won't do that.)
    Then he asked what I thought and I asked him if he were in my shoes, knowing what my concerns are, would he be happy with it? After a really long delay, he said no. I said "what do you want from me, to work like a dog and give it up on command too?" He said no. Then I said "well thats what I do, and you agree, and I've talked til I'm blue and nothing's changed. Do you really expect me to keep this up? Because I can't anymore and I'm done trying and I've said that". He said no. Then I said "well what's going to change?" He said he's trying.
    I told him when I was in danger of losing my job, I busted my ass and I kept a tally of what I did to say "see? this is everything I do! I add value to your business!" I told him his tally is not exactly butt-busting. He, again, said he's trying. Then I asked him, when he had had his appendix out, and when he had surgery to remove a lymph node, did I pick up his share of the load for the duration? Did he ever have to lift a finger or worry about "his" chores getting done? He said no, not at all. I said "did I have your back?" He said yes.
    I said "when I had sinus surgery, mono, or even this accident, did you have mine?" After some delay, he sad he did do some things but no, not really. Then I told him I feel very disrespected and used and that is something I have told him before. He muttered he didn't know why I felt that way, I shouldn't. So I asked him to explain to me why I shouldn't feel that way (this is all very calm. Emotion, but no yelling) he said he always try to respect me and he does stuff for me, all that stuff he just told me, but it's not enough.
    I said "really, you respect me?" He said an earnest yes. I said "sitting in a chair watching tv while your spouse kicks a laundry basket across the floor with her good foot while using crutches with a broken leg she can't even put on the floor and screwed together wrist that can't lift a crutch in order to get some laundry done so her son doesn't have to go places smelling like **** is about as disrespectful as it gets in my opinion."
    After some time, he quietly agreed.
    Then another 5-7min passed and he got huffy and rolled over to look me in the face and said, very sternly, "but what about this? Sometimes I asked to help you and you said "no, I got it". When you got that rolling stool". I said "yes, there were things I could do for myself then and I'm not looking for charity. But really, I didn't get that stool until almost 6 weeks after, when I was trying to figure out how to get more things done because they weren't getting done, and in the scheme of things, how often did that really happen? Really?"
    He never answered. I waited about half an hour and said I guess the conversation is over again, good night. He just said "night".
  2. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    I wish I had more answers for you...

    I've been thinking about you a lot lately - especially in terms of the "THE farm" vs "our place" discussion....and I think that you do not have a "bad" man - I think you have a man with a questionable belief system.

    Let me explain: Some folks seriously believe that all they need to do in life is get "X" - and then everything will be fine. Once they have "X" - they will no longer need to work, or worry about money, or stress about the future, or plan ahead...they can just coast for the rest of their life. And because they have no inkling that there is more to success than just having "X"....they don't see the need to work hard or put in much effort in the meantime.

    For some folks, it's a business idea. Once I open my own restaurant.... or Once I invent that..... or Once I write that novel.... They don't view anything as a long-term process requiring commitment and hard work. They just assume instant success.

    I have a relative who so fervently believed that "The Rapture" was just around the corner - he did barely anything at all. He saw no need to pursue a career, work hard, or even pay his traffic tickets! We talked until we were blue in the face....but he could not see any reason to put effort into anything that was just temporary. Today? He is in poor health, dead broke, and just moved back in with his parents.

    My relative reminds me of your H. They are not bad men. They just don't seem to "get" it. I feel like your H is just need to put any effort in to anything becuase once he has "THE FARM" - then he will be "set" for life. Despite the reality, he seems to view that farm as his Golden Ticket. It's probably the reason he thinks your family is "rich". Your family has a farm - a Golden Ticket of their own. Therefore, your family is rich because that's what the farm has come to represent to him. THE FARM = EASY STREET.

    And since he is on the path to Easy's very hard to convince him that he needs to put in any effort anywhere else.

    And he wonders: if he doesn't have to work at anything - why are you always making the marriage about who does chores? Why can't love be enough?

    Maybe, the two of you need to sit down and really analyze your long-term goals. Where do you want to be in 10 or 20 years ? What do you envision doing to get there?

    THAT might be a very eye-opening discussion.
  3. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I've tried that Daisy. Five or six years ago, he'd sit around and doodle sketches about things he'd like to have on a house he wants to build someday, or a barn, or ways to build a corral to make pulling up and sorting the cows easier...junk like that. Now? Nothing. I ask him what he wants or where he wants to be in 10 years, and honestly, he has no idea. He can't even fabricate an answer. I've even tried asking, you know, so we get the's he going to pay the taxes? He's always out there repairing the tractors, how's he going to buy those parts? How's he going to pay for the gas to make hay for all that's required out there PLUS what we already have to do for our own animals? He has no idea. And again, doesn't seem to care.

    When the roof was leaking and Wee's ceiling was about to cave is, I asked him where are we going to live if you let this place fall in? He didn't know. NOR did he seem to care.

    I just don't get it. He knows. He agrees with me (I think this would be less frustrating if he at least argued that he DOES his share). Yet he makes absolutely no effort to improve the situation. And slightly over a week ago, I told him I'm done. Either he steps up, or I'll start making cuts and changes that he's not gonna like (ie the garden, and I told him the camper, the horses, the cows, and the trucks would potentially be on that list, as well). The house has to be maintained. We have to have a car to get to work, food on our tables, and clothes on our backs. Everything else is luxury, and I would start cutting those items out to reduce my work load to a manageable amount.

    He cut a hole in the wall of the camper and SAW NO NEED TO SEAL IT UP! How do you even WORK with someone like that?

    I'm so incredibly close to done, and it just makes me sad. Cause also in the last week? He's turned the pony out (the pony has no hair) without his blanket in freezing temps so I've had to go blanket the pony. His "forgetfullness" dang near ruined another vehicle. His need to control what my adult son did with the horse trailer blinded him to the care of his precious livestock. And I don't know how many times while camping he'd be sitting by the fire and say "why don't you go get"....and actually expect ME to get up and go to the camper and fetch him something. I don't know about most men, and again, i'm not seeking charity, but 19 weeks ago, I cut my foot off. I am doing 10-12 hours of PT a week. I live on narcotics and Advil. I wear support hose, a single pair of tennis shoes with braces in one, and compression gloves on my wrist. I have been walking for a whopping sum of 6 weeks, and he can't even help himself? He expects me to wait on him??? And be ok with it???

    I'm not.
  4. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    What DF said was pretty much what I was thinking. However... Wanting *something* after you doing all that work? Honestly, he's lucky you didn't slap him silly. Or worse.

    husband is something like this, too. Something, because he will work hard toward a goal. Once he gets to the goal? He doesn't know what to do now. He's not stupid. He just doesn't always think things through, think past the immediate.

    We're working on this. But at no time has it EVER been like this. When I really, really need him? When I had a migraine, when the IVF didn't work, when we put Weasel to sleep, when my Grandma died... He has BEEN THERE. He has stepped up. And your husband should, too.
  5. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I get that, Step, and that was the point I was trying to make to him when I gave the example from work. When you're butt is on the line, you step it up. I imagine we all do. Then, when the crisis is over, ya slip a little bit. I think that's pretty normal.

    I would *think*, he'd be catering to my every whim, and then, in 6 months, we'd be back to the 90/10 routine again, and I'd say something and we'd cycle again. I'm not expecting miracles here (at least I don't think I am).

    The little he has done has been so obviously a token attempt that I think it makes me angrier. Like picking up 3 things that aren't his when I've just spent hours putting the living room back together from the accident. He wants the bed moved in our bedroom, but that's as far as that project ever gets - him saying it. He hasn't stepped it up at all. Nor does he seem to see any need to, and I honestly believe its not because he thinks I'm bluffing or wants me to boot him.
  6. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    That's exactly it - he doesn't "see any need". Honestly, it does not bother him at all.

    Refresh my stressed-out memory - why the hole in the camper???
  7. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    My husband is a gem. He would not have let me do anything. He would have waited on me hand and foot. He would have rearranged his life to take care of me.

    (Now for my part - I would not have let him do all of that....BUT love is supposed to be a two-way street.)

    So that's one other man to compare to...

    Personally, I think the way your husbad has treated you stinks!
  8. Star*

    Star* call 911

    So a chore chart with everyones names and stars is ABSOLUTELY out of the question?

    Drats - that was MY great idea.

    Sending hugs
  9. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    The hole in the camper...I took Wee and 3 friends camping for a night for Wee's birthday. It rained that night, so I attempted to hook up the cable at the campground to the camper. The cable inlet had never been properly installed on the camper. There was no hole in the wall to pass it thru. I don't think tvs belong in campers, so this is the first time we've ever tried to use it.

    In the process of figuring this out, tho, I tore an interior rubber gasket on what was supposed to be the inlet for the cable. Not an exterior one. And interior one. For looks, and to keep bugs, etc, out, it would need to be fixed. I also thought, while at it, we'll make this functional if we ever need it again. So I bought a new camper cable box assembly, but the place didn't have the gasket to put behind it to install it.

    husband stayed home from work one day to "fix the roof". He didn't get out of bed until 10am. Then he watched tv til 1. Then he put the cable box in the camper, sans gasket. Which involved cutting a hole in the side of the camper. Then, around 4pm, he started on the leaking roof, and obviously, didn't get close to being done. The cable box went without a gasket for 2+ weeks, during which we had at least 5 rainstorms. And anyone will tell you, the biggest threat to a camper? Is water damage.

    Df, I would never allow someone do all that, either. Even when I was entirely down, I tried to do what I could myself, because I had to have help for so many other things. But I asked, heck, sometimes I begged, for him to do laundry. My mom had to drive down here (150 miles each way) to take me to the doctor to get recasted, cause he didn't want to take off work if I wasn't going to talk to the actual surgeon or do anything "cool" (like xrays) while I was there. the list is just huge.
  10. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Tried that too, Star. It worked for a bit when I first put it up. If he'd think I was mad, he'd find some little piddly job on the chore chart and do it. lol (And it was a list on the fridge called "general **** that must be done" - lol)

    It was on the fridge when I crashed. I threw it away about January - just ****** me off so bad to look at it. Thank God I spent the day before I crashed putting plastic on the wall a/c, fixing a window glass, and removing the window a/c, cause Lord knows it wouldn't have gotten done otherwise, and it would have been a long, cold winter with all that extra air moving thru my already drafty house... husband was mad that I "wasted" that nice day on that stuff before I'd go do something else with him.
  11. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    You have often said that he wasn't always this way. Men DO go through a period like menopause where their hormone levels can decrease. When was the last time your husband went in for a full checkup, including bloodwork to check testosterone levels and to discuss the possibility of going onto an antidepressant if the doctor sees a need. If this is a big change from the behavior you married (and it sounds like it), even if it crept up a bit at a time, he very well might need a testosterone supplement and/or an antidepressant.

    My husband is a gem in many ways. he does all he can because he "gets it" about how all this health **** has snowballed and the pain is nuts (even with medications it is still way high). I do know that he gets overwhelmed, so I make lists if there is something we need to achieve (he shares them with the kids, lol- they pick which they want to do, it is cute, in my opinion to hear them discuss them). A few years ago? I couldn't even get an answer to a request about something half the time. So I dragged him to the doctor as a place to start. We were both surprised by the testosterone thing because we didn't know it changed that way in men. They made a BIG difference and when we added an A/D it was amazing - he was back to taking long walks, geocaching with the kids, doing things around the house, etc... I also know that I feel sort of how your husband feels when my thyroid medications are way low, so that should be checked, along with the A1C for diabetes and the PSA that most men need and don't ask for.

    I am throwing this out as a potential. NOT as a reason for you to stop insisting on him truly stepping up to be a partner or else your load being reduced to a manageable leve. It is the kind of thing where I mmight make the appointment for my husband and go if he asked, but if he didn't and he had been the way your husband ahs been for so long, well, that would be the end of my involvement in the issues. After all, it is HIS health.

    I do know that most men and women I have spoken with didn't ahve a clue about testosterone levels in guys changing as they aged. Testosterone levels do not always have to be supplemented forever. husband got more active, ate better, and lost some weight and then he didn't need it any more. It was a big surprise because he thought he would be on it for life. Oh, and men's hormones don't come in little pills - they get premeasured packets of gel or a pump that dispenses a set amt of gel - these come iwth LOTS of warnings that females should not handle them which made it interesting when he dumped the packets on the floor instead of in the garbage. Then I had a legitimate reason to insist he empty the trash, lol!

    I am glad you let him know how you feel. I don't know if he will, can or wants to change. I DO know that you deserve SO MUCH MORE than this relationship is giving you now. I am relieved that my other post didn't upset you. You have been working so hard to be supermom, Warrior Mom, a great wife, and still be yourself and it kind of pi$$e$ me off to see and hear of so little real effort to change on his part. ESPECIALLY after your accident!!!

    Whatevery you choose to do, I'm here for ya!
  12. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    This one might require an introspection.

    I think you missed the boat on his comment here:
    I think he meant you turned away his offer for help. YOU said no thank you, I do not need your help. You did.

    I think there are 2 things going on here (with love, of course!):

    1.) I think you are controlling and your way is the best way in your opinion.
    2.) I think you work harder than the average person.

    So, on #1 - I get that. My husband is that way. When he tries to correct something I am doing to his way, or comments that it should be done a certain way - my first reaction in my head is 'then do it yourself'. So, this is something you could work on. His way may not be the best and it sounds like it sometimes causes extra work in the end. Frustrating for sure. But, he needs to just do it - even the fixing of it - until he gets it right. I know, from some things you have said - this might not be possible. But, I still think you have a vision on your mind of how to get it done and I believe your way is good, because you do get so much done. You are a planner & a thinker and you are GOOD at it.

    On #2, I seriously would not be able to accomplish all you do in a day and I know my husband would not either. In fact, I know very few people in my life that could. So, perhaps he is doing things on the level that (from my experience) most people do in a day - but it is not up to your standards, which could be too high. Does that make sense?

    I really do not wish to offend. I do not think these are bad traits on your part. Just hard to manage through with another person.
  13. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Thanks, Susie.

    Wend, I appreciate your input!!!! I KNOW that there must be traits that I have that contribute to this problem. There has to be. I'm not sure that I'm really controlling, per say, but I will jump in and take charge, and sometimes that's to my own detriment. I'm perfectly happy to let someone else do it, tho. In fact, I'm happier if someone else does. But its worth exploring, thank you.

    With the roof, since I had no way of being involved in its repair, I very consciously made no attempt to direct how he did it. I had an idea, but knew I couldn't do it. All I wanted was attempts to be made to stop the leaking before the roof caved in. I asked husband to look at it, figure out what he needed/wanted to work on it. I had to nag for 2 weeks to get that done. Then I purchased/orded the supplies he wanted. Again, another 2 weeks of "letting him handle it", meanwhile, I'm in the attic, assessing the damage to the rafters, screwing up supports to good wood, so I can screw supports on Wee's ceiling into them from below to hopefully prevent it from coming down... Even if I am controlling, is that...normal? Acceptable? The roof has been leaking since Nov. I kept my mouth shut about it til March til the ceiling was about to come down. I'd have been happy to have given him my idea for fixing it, but he never asked, and I wanted to let him handle it.

    The help I turned away that he was talking about... I wrote about him taking Wee to the restaurant smelling like pee because husband wouldn't wash his clothes (he had not done any laundry, and Wee was out of clothes and wearing things out of the hamper - he happened to get a pair of pants he'd slept in and peed in, but had dried, and husband took him out like that. They got sent out of a restaurant.) When I continued to ask for help with laundry, etc, and didn't get it, I had to figure out a way to do these things myself. So about 6 weeks after the accident, I came up with the idea to get a rolling mechanic's stool to ride around the house. I could get around and have my free hand (can't use crutches with NO hands) and be able to scoot or carry things. easy child 1 got the stool and modified it with really big crazy wheels. It worked great. When i would turn down husband? When I'd roll myself into the kitchen to get a drink. Or fix my supper...I was now quite capable of getting that drink or plate back to my chair. He never asked to carry laundry or anything like that that I turned down. Then I would be a crazy woman (not that I'm not...pretty sure I am!)

    On your second point, I know I'm hyper. I am probably the ADHD poster child. lol And I really don't expect him to keep up with me or match me or even go 50/50. That's ok. In our "good" days, it was probably 75/25. And i'm ok with that. I DO expect him to keep the place from collapsing if I'm out of commission. As it is, Wend, he spends 4-8 hours in the recliner watching tv a day. That's just during the week after work. While I don't expect him to shut off the tv and never sit in the chair, if he has 6 hours a night to sit on his butt in the recliner and the only "chore" he does is fill the water tank and put his plate in the dishwasher, I just think that's a problem. My brother put in a new dryer right before my accident. The old one? You walk around it to get in my door. 5 months its sat there. husband "traded out" our second fridge for one with an ice dispenser in February. The old one? Sitting 5 feet from the dryer, blocking the sidewalk. The microwave that died in December is on top of the dryer. He has a pile of outdoor clothes he brought in from his car from hunting season on the porch that we all walk around every day and have for 2 months. If you have time for 6 hours of tv, you could at least address one or two of these things a night and really make some progress. But please let me know if my expectations are still off, because I know I'm a "do-er". But I also think if we are going to have all this stuff (camper, trailers, horses, etc), we either need a lot of money for upkeep, or we need a little more "do-er" going on. Its just not feasible for one person to keep all that up...and those are things he wanted just as much as I fact, the camper and the buggy were all on him. He didn't like the old camper I had when we got married, so "we" upgraded (I was perfectly happy with my old one - I'm also a "get by-er" - but I sure do like the new one! Thus I try really hard to take care of it, cause I can't afford to replace it)

    I am certain I do things to contribute to this. If I wasn't, I'd already been outta here.
  14. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Susie, the testosterone thing....that's interesting, and I knew that, but it never really registered in my mind. Its certainly worth pursuing, because his dad has had to testosterone supplements for years. So assuming its genetic, like a lot of other things, that sure could be a contributing factor. I think I will mention it. Thanks.

    And Wend, I'd love nothing more, in the case of Wee or husband, for someone to come up to me, smack me upside the head, and say "ya dumb biddy, here's what you're doing wrong"...and be able to just change myself and have it all go away. So far, that hasn't worked out so well...
  15. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    No, I do not necessarily think you need to change yourself.

    I do like the way your conversation with husband went. That is impressive. In my opinion if you can talk like that without anyone raising voices - hats off! Will you be able to do it again? I hope so.

    I think it is important that you describe the roof, the dryer, refrig & microwave the way you have done here. It sounds ridiculous. I do not understand why he can not see it.
    So, he thinks he is trying, but these things are not done. What does he think trying is?

    I really hope you two can discuss these things again more in depth. I think there is a lot of 'seeing each other's points' that needs to happen. I don't know what his are...but I bet they are there! LOL!
  16. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Husband 2.0 (Miss KT's father, aka Useless Boy) sounds eerily similar to your h. Miss KT was about 6 months old, I'd been transferred then promoted, was commuting about three hours a day round trip, working 6 days/60 hours a week, and still doing most of the stuff around the house. UB worked a regular 40 hour week and commuted maybe 10 minutes a day. Everything was on me, everything was my responsibility, everything was my fault.

    With Hubby, now that he's gone back to work, he tries to pick up the slack as much as he can. But when the chips are down? He's there. In the ER with me Friday night. Fixing the fence when it fell down. Repairing the washer/dishwasher/front door screen. Replacing the leaking shower head. Figuring out why my stupid car overheats when I drive more than two blocks.

    It's a respect thing, and Shari, you aren't getting the respect you deserve. You're an awesome woman, strong and capable, and I know how hard it is to ask for help. It's even worse when you don't get the help you ask for. Many, many hugs.
  17. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Thats one of the things I have always liked about husband...he isn't a screamer. Never has been. Have learned that's partially due to his absolutely non-confrontational being. lol Sometimes I want to scream at him, and sometimes I'd like for him to scream back! lol

    I used to be a screamer. I learned early in marriage to DEX how ineffective that was. Heard of the 10 rules of fighting fair? I very consciously try to follow them. Didn't matter with him, tho. lol

    I have taken photos of some of the stuff that I think is extreme. I'm trying to figure out how to get one in photobucket now. I realize my complaints are the same as every other wife in the USA has...I just think the situation is a little more extreme than most. How many wives are maintaining vehicles while the husbands blow them up?
  18. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Not sure this link will work...

    this is taken after he fixed himself breakfast on a saturday. Taken on Tuesday. This is not even extreme for him. If I'm gone or not cooking and cleaning up, 4 skillets on the stove is common. There were veggies and meat in the drains in the sink from this same time.
  19. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    I'd be ticked off, too. And I would have lots to say about it.

    He fixed himself breakfast? With four skillets? Did he feed anyone else?

    With food in the drain, I'm guessing you don't have a garbage disposal. Neither do I. Took some training when Hubby moved in.
  20. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Did the link work?

    I think there's only 2 skillets in that picture. No, Saturday breakfast is generally made for himself. He might cook a few extra strips of bacon for Wee but no real planning to feed anyone else. He had an omelet, bacon, and cinammon rolls that day. I ate 2 leftover cinnamon rolls. Pancakes in there somewhere, too. And not sure if you can see it, but an empty beer can is there, also.

    No garbage disposal. The drain clogged so bad a few years ago I couldn't get it opened up. I opened the drain pipes under the sink and kept a bucket there to catch the water for about 5 months, carrying it out when it got full. Then I ended up re-running new drain lines. Again....why am IIIII doing this? And why is HE still leaving veggies and meat in the drains???? I call that disrespect. Apparently, he doesn't.