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A disagreement about how much support/help a new mom needs. Are SAHM's who became such right out of college really disconnected from what "real life" is like?

I have a newbie, a 3 week old baby girl.

My hubby told me I am disconnected from reality and don't know what real life is like because I became a stay at home mom right out of college and.. I want him to leave for work and come home an hour earlier to get more time with the kids, mostly our 4 year old son but I'd like him to hold the baby some too.. He has power over his schedule and could do this.

Right now he works til 6 and gets home at 6:45, we eat dinner at 7 and by the time it's cleaned up it is bath time, short TV or computer time, book time, and bed for our son at 8:15. Hubby does not do bath time but he sometimes reads to him.. If I let our son stay up later to play with his daddy he gets overtired and isn't very pleasant... He gets upset frequently about going to bed before getting to play something with his daddy. I just keep telling him "on the weekend, sweety.." Our baby girl is very fussy and cluster nursing from about 7 pm til 9 pm so he doesn't help with her, so this time is particularly tough for me right now..

I want my hubby home earlier, even just temporarily, to spend a little time with our son like our son obviously really desires and maybe hold the baby a little but the "you don't understand real life.. have never had to REALLY work a day in your life, wow nursing at the computer is sssoooo hard (that is not what I do.. I have her in a wrap or on my shoulder and prepare dinner and do dishes and give our son a bath and put him in jammies, supervise teeth brushing, and deal with miss fussy pants etc. :( ) *he eye rolls* I don't want to come home and do your *he airquotes* "job" for you. Buck up and toughen up. This isn't going to get any easier. Everyone works. My mom did all of what you do with 3 kids and part-time work and never complained."

I feel like he's being really passive aggressive and I tried to tell him that I can feel myself getting depressed like this, maybe his mom did complain I mean it's not like she'd have complained to her kids, and this is especially hard since my eyesight has gotten so bad I can't drive in snow, rain, or after dark anymore so I can't get out of the house right now unless someone drives me.. I just need more help from him. He said he would "try" but people decide to be happy or unhappy and if I am unhappy I am choosing to be. He would not get up today..

I'm not sure what I should do.. ? I keep telling myself he can't be right, but maybe he is??


Asked by Anonymous at 12:35 PM on Jan. 31, 2013 in Relationships

This question is closed.
Answers (31)
  • Y'all need to sit down and talk, really talk, about work loads and expectations. He needs to know what you do daily, and how stressful it is, and you need to know what he goes through and how stressful it is for BOTH of you. The compromise I'd be willing to make is have him adjust his schedule for, say 3 months or so so you get the extra help you need, then have him go back to the way they are now.

    I'd also make a play list that includes Jamey Johnson's "The Dollar" and Rodney Atkins' "Watching You". Both songs talk about little boys and their relationships with their fathers. Maybe also add Harry Chapin's "Cat's in the Cradle".

    Answer by Rosehawk at 1:09 PM on Jan. 31, 2013

  • My Husband's gone a month at a time with his job... I must be really out of touch with reality.... I'm a SAHM of 3 boys, take care of our boys, house, yard, cars, bills, dogs, the list goes on and on...

    Be thankful he has a job to go to. Be thankful you're able to be home full time, at least one of you can....

    Instead of looking at the negatives, look at the positives, and maybe things won't seem so bad....


    Answer by MrsLeftlane at 1:00 PM on Jan. 31, 2013

  • I think you both are lacking full understanding of what your daily lives entail. He could get his point across without being such a douche but, that said, he sort of does have a point.

    If you want to keep your job nowadays you cannot just regularly leave work an hour earlier. It's unrealistic to expect that he can do that. And your job, the one you have chosen, was to stay home with your children. Yes, it's hard work and yes, he should be much more appreciative. I suspect that he sees that his mother worked her entire life and, however inaccurately, he's comparing you to her.

    Answer by Mrs_Prissy at 12:40 PM on Jan. 31, 2013

  • I think Wendy has some really good points. While I KNOW that what you are doing is very hard, I think working parents have unique stresses too that may be hard for them to explain. You know how we often hear "Well if he just spends a day in my shoes, then he'd be nicer to me. He's never done this so he has NO clue!" And often us SAHMs are right to think that. But I think the same might also be said sometimes for the dad's situation. What you are asking for is not unreasonable... but it may be hard for him to give. And maybe he's having a rough time adjusting to being a new parent too. If his bitchy attitude is uncharacteristic, he may just be not dealing with his emotions well. But if he's always been a dick, well.. then yeah, he's a dick and it's not fair.

    Answer by Sebbiemama at 12:56 PM on Jan. 31, 2013

  • well he is disconnected to your reality

    does he put in real effort on weekends?

    Answer by fiatpax at 1:00 PM on Jan. 31, 2013

  • I don't think he's going about it the right way, but I can see his point that you might be out of touch, not with "real life" or the "real world", but with working as a parent, since you (as you admit) haven't worked since becoming a parent. While you may think he has control over his schedule, unless he runs his own business (and even if he does run his own business, really), he has to answer to someone else. Whether it's a boss, co-owner, customers, or someone else, it's unlikely that he can just decide to change his hours and not have it affect others, possibly negatively. And since his is the only income, he's probably quite stressed over not wanting to risk losing that.

    But you're not wrong to want him to spend time with the kids, either. If there's no time during the week and you can't change the schedule, then make him do things with them on the weekends - and make it happen. Get yourself out of the equation and -

    Answer by wendythewriter at 12:42 PM on Jan. 31, 2013

  • let him spend time with them while you go out with a friend or something. Or make plans for the family that every Saturday you do whatever. Daily quality time truly isn't always an option, so you have to think outside the box.

    Answer by wendythewriter at 12:43 PM on Jan. 31, 2013

  • He may have control over his schedule but that does not mean he can shorten his hours and make the same amount of money.
    He gets home at 6. He can hold the baby and talk to the 4 year old a bit. You finish getting the dinner on the table.

    You eat as a family and he takes the kids while you clean up. You bathe the baby while he plays with the 4 year old. He rocks the baby while the 4 year old is in the bath or he give the bath.

    He is making it so you can stay home with the kids. He knows his job and how to keep it better than you do. He also needs to have relaxation/ unwind time.

    Yes he needs time with the kids but many fathers with SAHW have to take snatches of time and hopefully bigger ones on the weekends. Frankly this is the way it has always been and fathers are more involved than the used to be.

    If both parents are working outside the home then it is that way for both.

    Yes you are being unreasonable

    Answer by Dardenella at 12:50 PM on Jan. 31, 2013

  • Aside from the leaving work thing, your husband is speaking to you very unkindly. You're under a lot of stress right now with a new baby in the house. Whether you can ask him to leave work earlier or not is something only the two of you really know, but you *definitely* can ask him not to speak to you in a disrespectful way. Ask him to help you look for solutions, such as taping his favorite shows so he can go to bed earlier, but tell him it's not okay to throw critical remarks at you. It's pointless and hurtful. Saying you're out of touch because you became a sahm after college doesn't accomplish anything or get you any closer to resolving your problem. I think it would be completely fair to lay down those ground rules for any further discussions. Hang in there, Mom, it does get easier!

    Answer by Ballad at 12:51 PM on Jan. 31, 2013

  • I think you both need to do a little reading between the lines. There is a deeper issue he has that you have not uncovered yet and he is so riled up, he can't hear anything you have to say. You need a mediator. I recommend a little therapy to help you work through this issue and so that both of you can be heard and understood.

    Answer by theMOMmission at 12:52 PM on Jan. 31, 2013