32 answers

Lazy Husband Driving Me Crazy

My lazy husband is going to drive me crazy. He works early morning hours normally going to work at 3am but be is done by 11 at the latest. For example yesterday he was home at 9am. then he took a nap until noon(which is fine with me, he didn't go to bed until 10;30 the night before).But he never actually did anything around the house. The only helpful thing he did was help our oldest with his homework (20 mins).
I do inhome daycare so i had 8 kids ages 11 months to 4 years(2 are ours) running around the house, I managed to keep the house somewhat clean, do two loads of laundry, two loads of dishes and detail the kitchen. But it just drives me nuts because our house isn't clean to my standards, but i can't do any more- on top of working 50 a week i am in college full time.

He is a great dad and loves to play with the kids, but his idea of helping them pick up is to sit and make sure they pick up. He tries to help sometimes by making dinner but that is maybe once a week. My husband works a max of 45 hours a week He did work more before but changed jobs and took a pay cut so he could be around more to help support me since i went back to school in August. I literally live on caffeine.
This lazy behavior as been going on forever but i am fed up with it, i complain and then he helps out more for a week or two then slacks off again. Even when he is helpful it is only doing things that i put on a list or specificly ask him to do. I successed counciling but left it up to him to set it up, which he never did, now we are uninsured for 3 weeks b/c he just changed jobs.
Does anyone have suggestion on how to get more constant help around the house, over all he is a great guy but i am really feeling taken advantage of and it is starting effect our marriage.

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Sorry, I find it difficult to call a man who works all week "lazy" simply because he isn't helping with the dishes/laundry/whatever.

You're tired after working all week and feel overwhelmed by the household responsibilities, why do people seem to think it's any different for men?

Maybe it's time to stop worrying about how clean the house is. No one is going to die if it isn't perfect. Or consider hiring a service to come in once/twice a month to help out.

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Well... if he responds to The List, why not continue to provide him with one? Eventually he won't need a daily list anymore because he will know what's needed.

Perhaps you could have a weekly list and a monthly list also.

Just an idea... I know charts work great around my house. :)

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Daycare is hard and putting school on top of is can be even harder! My husband can be like this. I used to get so angry an blow my top on a regular basis to get some help. In the end it just made us all crazy. My husband really isn't observant. He is clueless about the things that need to get done especially the cleaning. Usually what I do now is to sit down with him and tell him all that needs to get done and then ask what half do you want? For example, at supper usually the dishes need done and one or more of the kids need bathed. I agree to take half and give him first dibs on which half he would like to do. It takes practice and communication. Now my husband has gotten into the routine of taking half and he has learned how to do the jobs so we don't have to work so hard at it. What ever you do be very carful not to criticize the jobs he does do or he will stop all together.

With Child care, I would recommend having the kids do the picking up. Around my house, we don't eat until all the toys are cleaned up. At noon and before snack all the toys are put away. Then as they are eating snack I quick can vacuum the room. If there are to many toys to put away then there are just to many toys. Store or get rid of some or you will go crazy. I also have toy sorted into like toys so that they don't dump the whole toy box to get what they want. This teaches the kids classification as they put things away. I also teach the kids at a very young age to keep all shoes and socks at the door and cups stay at the table. We also do quick tidies before parents come. I make it a game where we fly around like a bumble bee and clean as fast as we can. We call it the flight of the bumble bee. I do this with my husband on a more grown up scale. I set the timer for five minutes and he helps clean for five minutes. It is amazing what we get done in five minutes.

One last thing. I did a lot of praying for my husband. When ever I was the most angry, I would quick say a short prayer for him. I think that helped more than anything. When I was done, I wasn't as angry and I could talk to him without blowing.

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I know the feeling!!!! I had the same problem (must be a guy thing). So we now each have specific duties in the house. I do all the cooking and anything that goes on in the kitchen (dishes, cleaning, etc...) He takes care of all the laundry, he does the finances (so he know what we have for money and doesn't over spend), He is also in charge of getting the kids up and ready in the morning. I get bed time for the kids. We sat down together and pick things we didn't mind doing and then we split the other stuff up evenly. When we did it I asked him to help me pick up every day. He answered in this whiny tone that he hated picking up. And what i enjoy it???? But 5 years later he is much better and we have found that team work makes a big job, not so big anymore! Another tip is when we first got started, he was not doing what we had listed and I did not do his share!! I let it pile up and reminded him of it every day :) He got the point that I was not him mommy and was not going to help him out! They are big boys now no matter how much it hurts! Good luck!

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Sorry, I find it difficult to call a man who works all week "lazy" simply because he isn't helping with the dishes/laundry/whatever.

You're tired after working all week and feel overwhelmed by the household responsibilities, why do people seem to think it's any different for men?

Maybe it's time to stop worrying about how clean the house is. No one is going to die if it isn't perfect. Or consider hiring a service to come in once/twice a month to help out.

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Hi C.
Wow- It sounds as though you're past angry and frustrated.
Take all of this kindly- from someone who's been in couselling and felt like you.
You can only work on YOU. And maybe your standards for clean are different from your spouse. ASK him if he thinks it's ok. If he does- then either you have to compromise your expectations or give something up to accomodate your own standards.
Could you have more on your plate than you can handle and now you want him to help with that because you bit off more than you can chew? He gave up a job to help- a lot but apparently not enough? Like me, a working mom, home business on the side, 7 yo twins, also marketting for another 3rd company for fun- could I take on any more- and no wonder I felt overwhelmed. Something had to give, or it would be me or my family/marriage- hope that makes sense.
Or- I had to lower my standards for myself and what I can do in only so much time. Because the only one I can change is ME- and if that isn't good enough, than I have to decide if I want to continue or move on because my needs aren't being met by the man I want to spend eternity with and I don't respect the kind of person he is because he is what he is and that's all I can expect. Make sense??
If you want to chat about it more, feel free to write back and hang in there.

B. J
48yo perfusionist, wellness coach and mom to 7 yo twin girls

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Hi C.,

Every week, I give my husband a list of chores that need to be done, and I indicate if they need to be done on a certain day, or if they just need to be done within a certain timeframe. The list rarely changes, and as women, we think he should just KNOW what to do, but he doesn't. Their minds don't work like ours.

You have to be very specific. Not just merely, "Clean the living room", but rather, "Pick up the toys in the living the room, then vacuum the floor. If you have time, please dust."

It takes me 5 minutes to write the list, there is peace in our home, and I feel like the burden doesn't all fall on my shoulders.

So, my advice to you is to try a chore list. You can do a weekly one, or even a daily one, depending on your needs.

Another trick I use is to have us both do chores at the same time. We call this our "10 minute tidy", where we pick chores and go do them. I'll say, "The trash needs to be taken out, the floor needs mopping, and George [our son] needs a bath. Which would you like to do?".

I really don't give a rip what chores I end up with, so long as I'm getting help. And knowing that everyone is working on chores at the same time makes it easier to do, versus one person working their butt off, and the other plopped in front of the t.v. If you choose to do the "10 minute tidy", you could end with something fun, like dessert or a movie.

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I have been married 11 years. My friend has been married 35 years. It does not end, you just find a way to live with it. My husband will start doing things without being asked (he's in a good streak right now), and then he won't do anything.

Just keep the communication open. Say what you need, and approach it as working together. If he is okay with a honey-do, then do it. Mine hates it, so I don't do it unless I am doing one for myself and he has been in a slump.

Good luck. It will hopefully get better, but I can't promise an end. We didn't marry them to change them, only to find compromise and harmony in our differences.

I don't think your husband is lazy... I do think think your expectations are too high.

Have you ever worked an overnight job before? And a fulltime one at that? Unless you have the metabolism of a bat or some other nocturnal critter, very few people can function well after being up throughout the night. Humans aren't designed to be awake all night only to sleep a few hours during the day. Scientifically speaking, there are tons of studies that show workers who must sleep during daytime hours are more prone to fatal accidents, early death, and endless health issues due to lack of sleep. Studies even show that sunlight streaming through closed blinds can even negatively affect your health if your primary sleep hours are during the day.

I'd guess your husband is just physically exhausted, and probably doing all that he can muster on the wacky schedule he's working. I'm mean think about it, if he were really lazy, would he even take something as undesirable as an overnight job to help support you and your family? I think if he had some choices, he'd probably pick the regular 9-5 during daytime hours, and get some sleep...real sleep in a comfy bed, next to you.

Before you kick your man to the curb, or hurt his feelings unnecessarily, have some compassion on him, and yourself and try to come up with a house cleaning plan that is more simplified and realistic for where you are both at during this time in your lives. Realistically, you're probably never going to acieve the kind of clean house you want, as long as you run a daycare, and your husband works overnights. Accusing him of being lazy is only create tension and anger for both of you, and for no good reason. Save that kind of seething for when you catch the guy cheating on you, or spending all of those hard earned dollars on a nasty habit like gambling or an addiction. Remember, the guy IS supporting you, he DOEs clean and help with the kids...right now. But who knows how long he'll keep it up, if he feels unfairly attacked or unappreciated for what he DOES do to make things work for your family.

Right now, money is tight, and when a couple has to both work to keep things running smoothly, your going to have challenges. ANd when stress kicks in, the first thing people want to do is start to point fingers, feel sorry for themselves, and accuse the other of not pulling their weight to make things work. This is the worst thing we can do to ourselves...and it's dillusional. Remember, this is a team effort, and it will fail if you kick humility out the door.

I know your daycare job is probably taking a toll on you. Kids are no piece of cake. And keeping a house clean with kids hanging around is a challenge in itself. Maybe look into setting up a system that's easy for everyone and maybe lower your expectations a tad bit. Most important, don't mingle business with your personal life. You're asking for trouble. Ask yourself whether the help your looking for is really about keeping the house clean, or getting a sense of control and order because your daycare business is too much. If that's what's really going on here, consider hiring an assistant if the daycare is getting to be too much to handle.
After all, what's more important? A super immaculate, showroom-showcase house, or a happy marriage?

It sounds like you are just spread too thin. What I would suggest, since you said he will do things you write for him on a list, is give him a list of thinks that you want him to do everyday that will make your life easier. I would make it fun, maybe adding your oldest 2 sons to help dad with some of the tasks. Men are like children...they like to have fun while they do things and be rewarded at the end. I would make up a posterboard with a list of chores you need help with everyday (maybe do it while at daycare and have the other kids help). Decorate the posterboard with a theme your husband enjoys, like sports or nascar. Use stickers and lots of bright colors. Make sure you write everyone's name on the posterboard, so he doesn't feel like he is the only one that has chores. Write down all the things that you do also and check them off during the day(maybe use a dry erase board for the list), so he can SEE what you DO everyday, because men do not realize how much work it is to be a full-time mom and you are doing it all (you're supermom)! Your son can help dad vacuum by moving small pieces of furniture, putting the dishes away or helping give the little ones a bath. My almost 2 year old helps me with the vacuuming by picking up his toys and helps me get our little one (10 months) ready for bathtime by gettig her towel ready for me and taking her bottle up to her room for me for bedtime. What I am trying to say is that if he has a list, knows specifically what is expected and sees the kids joining in he might be more willing to stick to it. I think you are amazing that you are doing it all...my husband works full-time, and is taking one college class and is spread too thin and he has me doing it all at home, I can't even imagine what you are going thorugh. It may sound silly at first, but if your husband is willing to help you (which it sounds like he is) this will make it fun for him and the kids. I hope this helps! Please let me know how things go for you and if you need any other suggestions.

If you want constant help around the house, you need to ask for it constantly. My husband does almost anything I ask him to do, but I have to ask him specifically to do it. For example, if I want the trash taken out every week, I have to ask him every week to do it. Men don't seem to understand that lots of things are reccurring events- trash every week, laundry every 2 days, dishwasher at least once a day, etc. They seem to think if they clean the cat box ONCE, they are forever relieved of having to do that chore again in the future. I love my husband dearly, but if I want it done, I either have to do it myself or ask him point-blank to do it. Every single time.

Hi C.,

Some guys just don't get it when we need help...I think in their eyes we are invincible...capable of doing anything and everything. I have been married for 32 years, and I still have to ask my husband to do things for me. You would really think by now that he would just know, but it doesn't happen. I sometimes just make him a whole list of honey-do things that he needs to get done. It upsets him sometimes, but oh well. I try to keep up around the house, but there are just some things and times I need help, or there are just a few things that it takes a guy to do.

If I were you I would talk to your husband about putting up a list, or some kind of schedule that you both can go by. Maybe you could sign up for different chores to do each week, especially with your hectic schedule, and his.

Good luck!


I think you need to understand that most men are very simple creatures. They don't understand that when you say you need help that it means on-going and not just for a few days. Men need specific instructions. If you want him to do something you're going to have to be very specific about what you would like him to do. It may sound annoying that you have to give your husband directions, but the good news is is that he'll do what you ask. You really only have a problem if he refuses to help out at all even if specifically asked to do something.

My hubby can be the same way, I do not work as many hours as you only part time outside of the home. Hubby and I have gotten into "conversations" about it years ago and he still struggles today (3years later) in helping out. I HAVE to tell him what needs to be done or write a 'honey do list' each week for him. He has even told me that he is "lazy" so I need to let him know when I need help. Some guys, not all, do not notice the mess and don't mind living with it. It is frustrating but the only way I have gotten my hubby to keep up the help is lists and reminding him.

It is diffcult so keep the line of communication open and hopefully you can find a system that works best for you two... that might mean writing a to do list each week or reminding him to do things. Hopefully the other moms will be able to give a few more suggestions! Best wishes.

Hi, just a thought, your husband could be depressed or just tired from the odd hours of work. Is he getting excercise? Eating healthy? All of these should be checked out before you think he may be just "lazy" I have been in his shoes myself, talk to him first give him a chance.

Good luck:)

You sound like you are terribly frustrated and I feel exactly where your coming from. I've had the same problem and my fix was to just ask him to help me with whatever it may be that I need at any given time. I got to the point you are at and by this time you are so upset about doing it all that you are probably coming across to your husband as a nagging, griping wife. I would be working my butt off in the house and clearly showing signs of how rundown I was and he still wouldn't chip in and help me and then I'd usually explode at him letting him know I was at my wits end with it all. Of course it would usually end in an unsightly argument and I'd still not get him to do anything much.
Also, with you running an at home daycare he probably thinks that your home all the time and that you'll just take care of it or that it's already taken care of. Men just don't see things as we see them. They tend to overlook a lot of things that need to be done around the house. It's also almost as if since your at home all day they just expect you to do it.
I'm telling you all you have to do is ask before you get to that boiling point. You say a list works, so I would keep using that tool and whenever you may need help with something that's not on that list just ask him, but nicely of course.
Another important point I want to make is that after we had our last little blow up and I came to this solution we went and seen the movie "Fireproof" and this movie made a world of difference in our marriage. It is an awesome movie and I recommend for all married couples to go and see it. I believe it came out Sept 26th, so it may not be showing in a lot of theaters now, but definitely rent it when it comes out. Make sure you watch it together as a couple and alone without kids if possible. You will connect in a whole new light after seeing this movie.
You had a lot of really good advice and I hope mine helps you in some sort of way or another. Good luck and Best wishes to you.

Hi C.,

I don't blame you for feeling jilted, but my experience complaining doesn't work. I would set some time to share with your husband how his behavior makes you feel. Say, "I feel unappreciated and taken advantage of when I'm running an in house daycare and going to school and I still am doing the majority of the housework." Use this session to draw up a new list of responsibilites. Men, from the articles I've read, are very literal. You actually do have to tell them what you want for them to do it, but since you don't want to draft a new list for him every week, the only thing I can recommend is have a list that he follows every week.

It could be a wipe board on the fridge that says Hubby's chores, and then you could list the chores he's responsible for. It could be anything you need assistance with like laundry, taking out the garbage, washing/drying the dishes, vacuuming. It doesn't matter. What does matter is that he sees it in writing since it sounds like he will do stuff if you tell him. Make sure you don't criticize him for how well he does his jobs at first. He will get better with practice and if he doesn't then you can share tips with him.

I don't find anything wrong with him having the children picking up their own stuff though. How do you think boys turn into lazy men in the first place?

Once your man is on board and starts helping you out regularly make sure you let him know how much you appreciate it. Not only with words, but special dinners or things you know that will make him feel rewarded and valued.

Good luck!


Hi C.
Men have a one track mind and can only think about one thing at a time where as we have a multi track mind and can think of many things at one time. So with that being said I would make up a list of chores that need to be done daily and ask him to pick a few to do each day. I am sure he is not trying to frustrate you, but he dosent know what to do so he does nothing but play with the kids and try to figure out why you are so upset with him. You may want to ask him what he thinks of the house. he may think that the house is spotless and needs no more cleaning, when you think it is a pig sty and need a major overhaul. Me and my husband just had this conversation last week when I got mad because he wasn't doing his normal chores. He told me the house was emaculant and he didn't need to do his chores. Not what I thought but it made since to him. sorry this was so long but I hope it was helpful. T.

You probably won't like what I have to say. My husband used to work for UPS and thus went in around 2am. When he got home he would take a nap and then he would still go to bed around 7pm. He was wonderful and loving but I could never understand why he didn't do more. Finally I realized that it is really hard on a person to get up in the middle of the night and get to work. Our bodies were not designed to be up in the middle of the night and when we do that we require more sleep than when we run daylight hours. Second since he is home during our days we expect him to work during our days. That is fine but we have to remember he is coming off of a full day work. So if he came home from work at 6pm what would you expect from him?
Finally you probably only communicate your frustration when you are emotional about it. Set an appointment with him to talk about household duties. When you are talking with him (not to him) make sure he understands what you want but at the same time only pick one or two areas for him to help. Say you would like him to make dinner 5times a week. Then don't expect other things that weren't discussed. Finally when he does get stuff done accept it. Don't complain about the way he did it. My husband would always do the dishes and he would always miss the pots and pans. If I complained I would end up the next night with none of it done. I learned to just quietly come in after he went to bed and finish up. At least the dishes were done and I didn't have to do everything. Give him lots of praise and thanks.

Wow C. I am so amazed at what you are doing!!!! A full time job and school??That is so much and I can see why you live on caffeine. I am concerned for you. It sounds like you are in need for some down time. I know how difficult it can be with young children and going to school and work on top of that sounds like a very difficult schedule. I can see how you would start looking over at your partner wanting him to step up. I first would like to ask was your going back to school a family plan or a personal plan.My husband is now going back to school and it does affect the whole family. When my husband told me he wanted to go to school I about freaked. I knew our schedules were already full and school does add alot to the whole system, not just his. So this motivated me to do something for myself...I got a job sounds crazy but it helped me. Now I am taking care of myself and not so focused on him. I know our dynamics are different but it seems similar in a way. I am learning that the more I take care of myself, the more I am okay with what other people are doing. Your Hubby is working early mornings and probably run down too. I would suggest this: Make a list of your schedules. Lay it out in paper. Color code it. Green for work, pink for children time, yellow for self time, red for school ect. I did this and realized my husband helped out more than I thought.I began to realize he was doing more than I thought. Good luck and I hope you find peace.

I feel your pain because I am in a similar situation. The only thing that I have found that helps is to clean the house if I want it clean and mind my own business. If he sees that I am struggling and stressed to get things done around the house then he seems to chip in. He helps more when I don't say anything. I think that nagging is the worst thing you can do. We are in counseling and this has seemed to help. My husband is depressed and through counseling he has been put on medication and things seem to be a bit better around the house. I work full time and feel like I do the majority of the housework even though he is the stay at home dad. DOn't leave it up to him to set up the counseling. We go to Pathways in Golden Valley and love it. Let me know if you find anything else that works... Good luck!

My husband does well with lists. Give him a list of daily chores that you need done. Men are visual creatures and work better that way. If he doesn't complete the list withhold nookie. Works in my household. Tell him if you have to do your chores and his chores you're just too tired and have no desire to be frisky. But if each carries his own weight you'll be happier and the household will run much better. Happy wife/happy life.

You know, I think you actually hit on the solution right in your question. You said that he does stuff for you when you put it on a list. I think you should probably get in the habit of making "honey-do" lists. Make sure you put xoxox on them too. :) My husband is a little bit like that and I think to some extent, we're all like that. Men tend to fall into this mindset that they don't have to clean because it's the women who traditionally keep house. It shouldn't have to be that way. If he knows what's fair, I think he would be happy to shoulder more of the burden. For example, if you don't mind doing laundry and cooking, have him clean the kitchen and maybe put his own laundry away. Even a little bit helps!

My husband & I went thru this a couple of years ago. I was sooo frustrated and upset that I was ready to give in. We finally ended up in an arguement (not good) that lead to a real conversation (very good) about what I was feeling and specific areas I needed him to help with as well as how he was feeling. Since then, with his help, I've found that I need to be very pro-active when I need his help. He doesn't notice when things are dirty or messy like I do. He truly can live with the house when it is way beyond what my standards are. I now give him a detailed list at the beginning of each week that tells him what I need him to do during that week. This works for chores that are outside of the daily household activities. The daily chores (dishes, laundry, etc.) are things that we have agreed how to seperate. That doesn't mean that I never do dishes or that he refuses to do laundry but typically this is how we divide that work. At first I was hesitant to do this because I felt like he should just notice that the bathroom needed to be cleaned and do it but I always end up frustrated when he doesn't notice and he ends up mad when he can't figure out why I'm stomping around. This new system works for us. Hope it makes sense since I'm rambling a bit!

this is normal. normal normal normal
you need to pick up 2 books - im sure you can get them used on amazon.com or someplace.
"the proper care and feeding of husbands",
and more importantly "created to be his help meet" by debi pearl.
fantastic books, will help you to understand that nagging only drives a wedge between you, and being plesant no matter what actually INCREASES the amount of things your husband will help you with.
unconditional love. we expect it from our men, but we dont expect to have to give it? what?
anyway, i hope you get the books. even check your local library to see if they have the books ....

I agree...if you want something done, you have to ask. My husband has gotten used to me doing everything, but now that I have a 6-year-old, a very active almost-two-year-old, and another baby on the way, that just isn't realistic. I've had to say things like, "I am ONE person picking up after, cooking for, and doing laundry for FOUR people while trying to grow ANOTHER one! My priority is taking care of the children, NOT being a maid!!!" Sometimes he flat-out refuses to do some things, but I'm getting better at speaking my mind and have to remind him he still has to pull his weight at home. Just because he's done at work, it doesn't mean he gets the rest of the day off. If he's getting enough sleep and there is stuff to be done, he should help. And you're going to have to speak up and ASK HIM to do one very specific chore at a time.
Get your kids involved, too. Last week, I told my husband, "I need you and Benjamin to clean the upstairs bathroom tonight." Then I gave him suggestions of what my 6-year-old could do and gave him the cleaning supplies. They did a very thorough job! Very impressive.
Twice in the last week, I gave him the task of making dinner. He did it once the week before, too. We had had a sit-down to make out the menu for the week and there were certain things he wanted that he is very capable of making, so I put him in charge of those meals.
I went of town last Saturday and hubby was alone with the kids for the whole day. He did an amazing job and it was a great learning experience for him.
I recently informed my husband that if I don't start getting more help, this baby will be our last. That was a shock to him and he has become more helpful.

It sounds like you are having too much together time with your husband, like the newly retired man who drives his wife crazy. I am still shocked that you are watching 8 kids, going to school and still can detail your kitchen while watching those 8 kids. I was an assistant director at the local day care center for 7 years and while we did cleaning while we had more then one adult on to watch the kids, it would have been hard to keep a good eye on the kids so close in age while doing detailed cleaning with no other adult. So with that said, it sounds like your husband is helping more then you realize. He is keeping an eye on your charges while you are doing these chores isn't he? He is making sure they are picking up their toys and he is helping when you ask him to do something. I know times have changed since when I was young. Men are expected to do so much more around the house and I think that is good, but with that I do wonder if your expectations of what a clean house is way higher then what your husbands are. If you want perfect then you will have to do it yourself, if you want help, let him decide when it is clean according to his standards or he will resent your telling him it isn't good enough and will stop helping at all. My husband did this when he would load the dishwasher and I would move things around because I have certain ways of loading it to get the most dishes in... organized. After my moving the dishes around once too often, even though I never got after him over how he put them in, he just stopped putting dishes in the dishwasher at all. I could have the dishwasher open and he will put his plate on the counter instead of in the dishwasher!

hi C.~
i understand completely! i just asked this same question not that long ago. look up under my name for the posts.. so many gave GREAT advice for me and see if they will work for you also. when my hubby came home that night and only my oldest was there (the other two were with thier dad and the babies are too young) i "let in" on them. after about a half hour of me stating my side i went in and took a bath to let it sink in for them and me to cool down. then i came out and talked to them again calmly and it sunk it. when all of them were home the next night i talked to all of them and let them know how i felt and that they need to start pulling their weight also. i think with hearing it 3 times in two days helped. he is doing so much better! we even had my parents over for dinner last weekend and DH was cleaning up as i was making the mess of cooking and my dad asked why he was doing it... he said because she is working so hard cooking for all of us its the least i can do. then smiled and winked at me.

i have backed off a little (even thou it drives me nuts!) and have them do it and have been working with them. the next time they do it i praise them for the job then "suggest" we do a little more very kindly and they all do the extra. hopefully soon it will be to my way with out having to ask them to do the "more"

good luck, there is hope for him yet! just stick to your guns and it will get there! if you want you can talk to me.. been there (found we all have at one point or another) and will gladly talk to ya!

i had the same problem when i was married,you know how i solved it??about drove me crazy-but it worked....do the bare mininamal around the house,like he does,let the dishes,laundry,garbage etc pile up-when he comments about it(which he will)just say your tired,you didnt have time,kids were more important,etc.he will start to pitch in.i promise-he takes it for granted your gonna do it-because you cant stand the mess-so it gives him the ok-lazy ticket.i got plenty of help after i did it.good luck

Unfortunately many guys are just like that. My husband is the exact same-without a list he can't seem to see what needs to be done. I work 2 jobs --one being a teacher which takes some time outside of work for grading papers etc. I have the same frustrations. I have decided that my days that I am actually home with my children are too precious to waste trying to clean. I try to do my best but beyond that I have resigned myself that until I can quit my second job my house just may not be up to specs. I had to find sanity somewhere. Once your insurance starts back up counseling may help but unless he truly buys into it he may not change either. Always worth a try though.

Wow...since when is working 45 hours a week lazy? Did you ever stop to consider that maybe you are an over-achiever? Did you say you are in school full time and you do in-home daycare and you have 3 kids and you want your house to look perfect? Just wondering why in the world you would pick right now to go back to school. Why not wait until all of your kids are in school? It sounds like you brought this on yourself and your mad at him for it!

I have been married 8 years and I can't remember a time that complaining got me anywhere. Just thank him when he is helpful because he probably is really trying to make you happy. If he were killed in a car accident tomorrow would you really care that he wasn't a neat freak? You have to take the good with the bad. I hope this doesn't come off as hateful because I don't know you or your situation. I am only going off of what you wrote.

My lazy husband is driving me crazy too. But he stays home with our 20 mo old. He does laundry and take care of her but won't clean out fridge, or other things I ask that should be able to be done while home all day. At least your husband works. I say something else will have to give. You have too much on your plate.

Well... if he responds to The List, why not continue to provide him with one? Eventually he won't need a daily list anymore because he will know what's needed.

Perhaps you could have a weekly list and a monthly list also.

Just an idea... I know charts work great around my house. :)

I'll just tell you from experience that nagging them to do it does not work. What does work is to tell them what you do appreciate about them and leave it at that. When I tell my husband how much I appreciate seeing him reading books to my daughter, not only does he want to do it more, but then he starts sitting with all the kids playing UNO. I tell him how awesome a dad he is, and then he wants to make dinner, he notices when the garbage needs to go out, he sees that I have folded and washed all the clothes and the helps put them all away. I hug him and tell him it was so nice to get away and go play volleyball with my girlfriends, and he feels good knowing he helped giving me a break, and then he lines up a sitter for the next week to give us a date night. Positive reinforcement leads to positive changes. I used to cry and scream and get upset when I got overwhelmed. It just made him angry and he back away even more. Once I changed how I treated him, I was amazed at how wonderful he was to me. Looking back I was not fair to him. Thank goodness that I figured it out though! He is my best friend.

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