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Discussion Starter #1
For months now, I've been reading and participating here, picking up tips on how to improve my marriage. But I find myself at an impasse. The sensation is this: I feel like I am the only adult in my marriage.

Unless I absolutely hound him - and I mean, pause the TV or turn off the computer and nudge him up into doing it - chores don't get done. I'll smile and ask on my way out the door, "Hey, if you could clean half the dishes, I'll clean the other half when I get home, okay?" And he'll agree - and it just won't get done until I come home and do it. I have (I wish this was a joke) let dishes sit in the sink for two weeks, hoping he'd break down and do it ... no joy.

This occurs with every chore and every bill we have. No amount of verbal asking, texts, or notes work. Dividing the chores didn't either. I'm left to do every household chore but the catbox, and nearly every bill that isn't set to auto-pay. It's making me feel like his mother instead of his wife.

I know he wasn't raised like this. His dad is very thoughtful and helpful in partnership with his mom. I don't know where this irresponsibility is coming from.

The part that's most hurtful is that I've explained that Acts of Service is my love language. I've stated - calmly and repeatedly - that when he doesn't do the chores he says he'll do, it sends a message to me that I'm not loved or important to him. I've been trying so hard to increase the frequency and passion of messages in his love languages, and I'm not getting reciprocity. I'm getting indifference and broken promises. And it stings.

So, readers of TAM, what's your advice? How can I help him take responsibility around our home and in our marriage?
 

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I very much dislike the phrase "Acts of service is my love language." If my wife said that I would literally laugh. I'm gone 14 hours a day between work and commute. She doesn't work. Therefore,she keeps the house clean. end of story
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No I get what it means...but to feel you aren't loved if someone doesn't do something for you is kind of out there.
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Discussion Starter #8
How is it out there? His failure to lend a hand leaves all the weight of the running of the household to me. It's stressful. And since he promises to do these things and doesn't keep his word, it's breaking trust. If you stress a person and break their trust, it sends a signal that you don't value them.
 

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I take it you have a normal sex life?

Tell him that you only feel like making love to an adult member of a marriage and not to a spoilt child.
If you have to do everything else yourself tell him you will take care of the sex yourself.

But when he does do something, praise him and point out how much that helped you.

He is not married to his mum, he is married to you and needs to act like it.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
That's just it, Wysh: there is no sex right now. I'm too frustrated and saddened to initiate, and his infrequent attempts to initiate weird me out because it's like being hit on by a teenager. He feels like a kid to me right now, and I don't want to have sex with a kid. I want to have sex with a man.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Satya, I'm hopeful there's a solution. At first I wondered if his depression was the cause of his lack of participation, but even on medication he hasn't helped out. It really is like he's desirous of me being his mommy, which is something that never came up while we were dating. He never came off as spoiled, lazy, or a mama's boy. This is out of left field.
 

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I hadn't realised he was depressed. Even though he is on medication I suppose it is possible that the depression could be part of the problem.
Has he always been like this?

The no sex thing must be intolerable. If he isn't really missing it have you thought about testosterone levels?
I have read somewhere that low test can affect your general get up and go as well as sex drive.
 

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How is it out there? His failure to lend a hand leaves all the weight of the running of the household to me. It's stressful. And since he promises to do these things and doesn't keep his word, it's breaking trust. If you stress a person and break their trust, it sends a signal that you don't value them.
Has he always been like this?

My guess is, he is just plain lazy.
Or, its learned behavior.
Or, he has entitlement issues. As in for some reason he feels he is in entitled to do nothing while you do it all. If thats the case, you need to get to the root of why he feels this way.

Bottom line, all of the above, will come down to what YOU will and will not live with.

Also stop doing some things. If you do his laundry, STOP. If you make him dinner, STOP. Etc, could it be an eye opener, maybe or maybe not. BUT, you need to stop doing so much for him, start taking care for YOU. If he asks where is his dinner or why his shirts aren't clean, tell him why.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The depression didn't appear to begin until he lost his job. He spent 4 months watching TV and playing on the computer 18 hours a day. He's since gotten a great job that he enjoys, but doesn't seem to have recovered elsewhere. So you may be on to something here.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I'll add that he's had the new job for almost 2 years. He's had his medication balanced for nearly the same length of time (at least, that's what he's told me).

We're fine at family gatherings. We're great with friends. He doesn't change plans to lay around at home or anything. This lack seems to only be going on at home. That's why I'm floundering. It feels personal.
 

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It feels personal.
Thats one of the reasons I mentioned maybe he feels entitled. Sometimes people will act they are owed something when they feel wronged or hurt by someone. I'm not saying thats your case, but has anything you can think of ever happened between the two of you that maybe he felt was your fault or have you ever hurt him in some way, and now he this is kinda like a payback? His attitude is, "You do it all, because I'm not going to."
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Not that I can think of. I've never had an affair, EA or PA. I don't flirt with other people. I haven't caused us financial harm. If it's my appearance, that would be strange, since I look exactly the same as when he married me. I'm racking my brain, and damned if I can't unearth a reason for him to feel entitled.
 

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Stop doing his crap. Just state that you aren't a maid so, you'll take care of your stuff but he's on his own for clean clothes, food, etc, etc.

Maybe he'll get it. Or maybe you have to be drastic and actually give a real consequence...whichever you think that should be.
 

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Not that I can think of. I've never had an affair, EA or PA. I don't flirt with other people. I haven't caused us financial harm. If it's my appearance, that would be strange, since I look exactly the same as when he married me. I'm racking my brain, and damned if I can't unearth a reason for him to feel entitled.
And it may not be that at all, but it reminds me of some people who act that way.

Its probably time or past time for some consequences and accountability, IF he isn't willing to help or or do his share, you will need to put those consequences for his actions or lack there of into place. If then still nothing, you will need to determine if this is how you want to spend your life.
 

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Stop doing his crap. Just state that you aren't a maid so, you'll take care of your stuff but he's on his own for clean clothes, food, etc, etc.

Maybe he'll get it. Or maybe you have to be drastic and actually give a real consequence...whichever you think that should be.
:iagree:

I mentioned that on the first page too. If he is hungry tell him he knows where the frig is. If his clothes are dirty tell him he knows how to turn on the washer. :D
 
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