When Men Are Sick...

Updated on December 31, 2011
T.M. asks from Tampa, FL
22 answers

Get ready...vent here. Why is it that when a man is sick, the whole world must automatically stop turning and cater to him? As stated in other posts, my husband got out of the hospital last week. It appears that he picked up some sort of virus/bug there. He was throwing up this morning. I took him to the doctor for something unrelated this morning. When I dropped him off at home before 11 a.m., I went to get the kids since both daycares closed early today. Almost 6 hours later, he is STILL laying in bed upstairs. I understand that he feels bad, but now he is not even sleeping it off....he is up there watching TV. I have been upstairs several times bringing food, drinks, medicine etc....I have also been watching both kids all day. I really need to get groceries, but no way am I taking two hyper kids to Super Wal-Mart.

When I get sick, I always have to tough it out. I have to be deathly ill before I get to go "sleep it off" upstairs. I still have to do most of my normal "Mom" things...albeit more slowly. It seems like such a double standard. Why doesn't Mom ever get a sick day?

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answers from San Francisco on

I hate to say it but this is really a women's issue.
Men are like this because we allow it.
I used to be the same way, I would suffer through and deal because in my mind the kids and the house needed more attention than I felt I needed to give myself.
No more! It took me years to realize it but if I am not feeling well I WILL take a time out, I WILL go to bed early, I WILL let the husband and kids fend for themselves, period. So what if the routine's upset and maybe things don't get done exactly as I would have done it? I'm so over it, lol!
There's no reason you can't go to the store, the kids can watch TV with daddy, and they can "take care" of him while you're gone :)

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

I can relate.
As for the whining, I have found that a cup of decaf tea, honey and a double shot of Jack ends any whining almost immediately! LOL

6 moms found this helpful

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answers from St. Louis on

I'll finish the line:

When men are sick....they need to be locked in a closet.

When men are sick....they need to be muzzled.

When men are sick....they still want sex. WTHeck?

When men are sick....they are candidates for divorce court.

When men are sick....they, somehow, try to reattach the umbilical cord to the only woman present.

When men are sick....they should be stuffed in a barrel, put in a cave, &.....?

I'd like to say that I'm J/K.....but we all know the truth! & you know it's bad when the MIL is dying laughing....because her son is behaving soooo insanely childish!

I'd also like to say "thanks for the memories", but sorry! Yuck. :)

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

"For God's sake woman, he's a man! He's got a Man Cold!"


5 moms found this helpful


answers from Houston on

Well, my husband is an exception then, so was my dad who had leukemia. Both were pretty tough when they are sick, and very caring when the women are ill. I'm the whiny weakling that needs babying. My husband only gets sick maybe once a year.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

Good question. I don't know. Maybe because women are superior.

LOL DVMMOM - Hilarious!!!!!

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

When my guy is sick nowadays, I tend to disappear with my son. I try to banish my husband to bed, get him the stuff he needs, and let him sleep. I do love him, so I like to make sure he's got what he needs, but mostly he needs to be left alone to rest. Our house is small, so Kiddo and I head out for a few hours or so and then I don't have two people needing me for every little thing. Sanity saver!

And I don't cater, either. If you can't eat what we're having for dinner, I'll heat up a can of soup for you or make you some broth and rice. Because *that's* what sick people eat!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

Yep yep yep.

They turn into a baby even with a paper-cut.

Us women/Wives/Moms.... don't get a break or even a chance to recuperate.... without interruptions.

We are "Super Women" right? And the world stops, if we are not available.

The amount of time we are on our feet and running around upstairs and downstairs and in between... it must be the length of a marathon! PER day.

When oh when, do we get a day off if/when sick?
And who takes care of us?

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Omaha on

Yes, men are babies sometimes! I think women just feel guilty for some reason to just lay around (unless on their death bed) when things need to be done. Just take care of him today and the next time you are sick, take the day for yourself and let the chips fall where they may!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Iowa City on

Yeah....a lot of men are whiny when they get sick. I think it is because they like to feel cared for and loved and they are often allowed to get away with it.

I'll publicly give my husband credit right now and say that when I am sick (like sick sick..puke, diarrhea, etc.) he keeps the kids and animals at bay and lets me rest (usually on the bathroom floor.....sigh) if he is home. That might mean the girls get goldfish crackers for breakfast, but so be it. If he has to work, then I plant myself on the couch and hope that the children and pets can entertain themselves.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

Ya wana know something funny, leave the house and he will take care of himself. I find this funny as heck. My husband is a total I can take care of myself kind of guy yet if I am in the house when he is sick, just forget about it, he regresses to the age of six.

I go to work he is sick as a dog in bed, come home he is still sick as a dog in bed but the house is clean and he managed to make dinner, go figure.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Charlotte on

T., mom doesn't get a sick day because mom won't take one. You could call a babysitter and go to bed. Instead of being heroic, have someone on hand for these things.

Same thing applies if he is sick. Call someone to take the kids so that you can get your chores and errands done. And that way he gets better faster, you don't get behind, and everyone is happy.

Men don't do "sick" very well. They never had to learn. I hope that he gets to feeling better and that you get a break.

And the next time you get sick? Get help and go to bed!


3 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I hear ya! Even if I had walking pneumonia, I'm still up moving taking care of the household...while if he gets even a splinter in his finger, he'll be in bed for a week.

Sometimes, I think he uses it as an excuse to get some extra shut-eye. Wimp!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Phoenix on

Whether he is sleeping or not, rest is the best thing when you are sick. This should be a reminder to all of us, when we are sick, go lay down and rest. No reason to be the hero and try and do it all! Let him rest and just keep it in the back of your mind the next time you are sick, you will do the same! PS . . . yes men are babies!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Cumberland on

Believe me when I know how you feel, however, it is sort of good that he has voluntarily sequestered himself upstairs away from everyone instead of taking over the couch-where no one can make a sound in case he's dozing!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

You have to put your foot down and tell him to buck up and be a mom! For every "sick day" my man gets I get too.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

Because they could never, ever handle it.
Okay there might be one or two men out there senstive & equipped enough to handle it but for the most part.......not a chance!
There is a reason women have babies.
God or Mother Nature (whatever you believe it) chose the smarter species (ha ha kind of kidding....) ;) to be able to carry & deliver children.
I have yet to meet a man that isn't the world's biggest baby when he's sick
My own husb included.
My friend's husbands? Same.
My dad? Same
It's like being a superhero. While it's awesome, it's also a curse. Kidding.
I finally just accepted it.
You'll feel much better about it once you are no longer sick.
Don't over do it.
Don't do what can wait to be done when you're feeling better.
Take medicine if you do that.
Have some tea.
Rest/sleep when you can.
Only do what must be done: feed the kids, watch out for their well being.
I wish you a speedy recovery & rest until then.
Sorry hon! :) Best wishes.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

Because thier mommys babied them. I try so hard to get my little guy to "man-up" when he's sick. I don't want to ruin him for his future wife.

the 1st time my husband got sick I let him lay around and moan and groan. The 2nd time he got sick, I gave him some dayquil and the kids and went on about life! He doesn't play that helpless role anymore.



answers from Phoenix on

My husband gave me a head cold last week - i am quite sure the transfer happened when he insisted on kissing me even though I didn't want to kiss him because he was sick. That night he insisted on 5 MINUTES (you know what I'm referring to) even though I was not in any way interested, because HELLO! you are SICK! gross and disgusting on so many levels...

I was two days behind him so when he was feeling his worst, I was just a little sniffly. He took time off work and I "got to take care of him" while he was down and out. He started feeling a little better but still sick enough to be home from work. But feeling well enough to play a little golf with friends - by a little, I mean 3 times in 2 days. On the third day he went out again in the morning and came back around 1pm. I got hit with the sinus pressure that mid morning and felt like I had been run over. At 3pm I asked him (for the 3rd time this week) to look at the dryer because it has started making an "I'm about to break" noise. He gave me his best puppy dog eyes, put his hands around my waist and said that he needed to run here and there before he went and played another course, and that he's siiiiiiiick, can't he do it next week? WTH! I started to tell him that since he seemed well enough to play golf, he was well enough to give the dryer 10 minutes...but he cut me off when he realized how selfish he was being and did go take a look. Mind you it is not fixed yet, because all he did was take a look. He had to go out of town for work the following morning. So I got to spend several hours preparing three days worth of healthy traveling food (as I always do for his trips.) for him while he slept. All with a massive sinus headache.


I kept telling him that when you are sick your body responds with lethargy because you need to rest so your body can focus on repair and not expenditure. That is what I did, or at least tried to not overexert myself. I told him I thought he should not play golf while sick - that he should rest and spend time with us - good for us since we don't get him around all that often because of his work and hobbies. He declined and played as much as possible. I am fully recovered after 4 days. He is going on day 8 and is still sick.


answers from Jacksonville on

Yep. I'm with Yarrmatey. My husband gets upset with me because I DON'T "take a sick day" when I feel ill. Unless I am passing out from some sort of gastroenteritis that has me dehydrated and falling asleep on the bathroom floor, I rarely feel so badly that I cannot do what HAS to be done. I don't get the laundry done (unless someone needs what is in the washer right this minute), and I don't make nice dinners. But I will drive up the street and pick up sub sandwiches. I will take the dog outside and give her her meds. I will make sure my kids get to their martial arts class. etc.
I usually gripe about it and comment about my sinuses or headache or whatever it is that is making me feel bad, and then he will get upset with me. Why? Because if I "feel that bad" then he thinks that I "should go lay down and rest". Nice in theory---but I don't get much rest if I do. He will take over the kids, etc... but that means he is in the bedroom every 15 minutes asking me where this or that is, and if we have any ___, and do I know if __. The only things he won't ask me are the things he should, like "do you want me to wash these white clothes?" (um---no. Because there are stains on some of them, and you never check and won't spray shout on them first, and you'll stick them in the dryer without looking to see if the stains came out).

But, yes, HE can commandeer the bedroom and TV/remote for days when he feels ill. And he gets his feelings hurt if I don't "worry" over him with offers of something to drink or eat on a regular basis.
In all fairness, he tries to do for me what he wants me to do for him. So I really can't complain. But also in all honesty, it doesn't take nearly as much to have him laid up in the bed as it takes for me to make the first peep of complaint. It's a man vs. woman thing. ;)



answers from New York on

sound familiar! i don't remember ever being in bed , unless i was almost dying, and even when i was almost dying, i was still taking care of kids.... men .. anything happens they pretend they are dying



answers from Miami on

I soooo agree! It IS very much a double standard. When my husband is sick he is such a baby and expects to be able to lie on the couch or in bed all day while I go about my usual "mom" duties. Granted, yes, if he wasn't sick I'd be doing the same duties but the point is that I don't have the luxury of taking vacation or sick days from my "job" yet he has a ton and takes them all the time for himself. He takes days off to go fly his radio controlled airplanes and do other things that he enjoys doing - then he comes home and wants to plop down on the couch and take a nap because he got up so early to go fly! Sorry I turned this into my own venting session but, yeah, you're definitely not alone. It has come to the point where I prefer when he's not home because when he's here I just get more stressed out because he barely contributes and just complicates my job! My plan is to, when we can afford it, take a vacation by myself! I should probably say that I do love my husband and we have a good marriage, he just gets on my nerves a whole lot for the same reasons you describe here - you are definitely not alone and I'm glad that I am not as well! =)

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