Communication is the bedrock upon which thriving relationships are built. It fosters trust, respect, and intimacy between partners, enabling them to navigate conflicts, make informed decisions, and provide unwavering support during challenging times.
The lack of communication is likely causing tensions between this couple. Looking for a solution online, the husband asked the forum, “Am I wrong for telling my wife that she no longer has an excuse to not work?”
Here’s the whole story:
The original poster (OP) and his wife had their first child two years ago, a beautiful little girl. OP and his wife agreed that her being a SAHM was worth it and that OP could sustain the household on his income.
OP NOTICED HIS WIFE WAS GETTING OVERWHELMED
“I started to notice about a year in that she was getting overwhelmed and asked what I could do to help. She claimed to be fine, but I started to price around childcare options,” says OP.
OP then spoke with friends, family, and colleagues, looking for suggestions, recommendations, and resources. That is when his boss told him that his job had childcare benefits.
OP ENROLLED HIS DAUGHTER IN DAYCARE
OP started the paperwork, got the approval, and got put on a waitlist.
“I brought it up with my wife; we toured the place with our daughter. She loved it. About four months later, a spot opened up, and our daughter is now in daycare,” says OP.
The daycare runs in the same office building where OP works, which is super convenient. “I drop her off when I head to work and pick her up when I leave. Perfect,” says OP.
The issue here is that OP feels his wife is not doing anything.
The two split the household chores. “That is how it was in my family growing up, and I find cleaning and cooking relaxing. So I am fine with it,” says OP.
However, OP is upset that his wife hasn’t been very active throughout the day since their daughter started daycare.
“I understand that adjustments take time. That said, the original agreement was for her to be a SAHM. With our daughter in daycare, staying home to be a mom is not happening,” says OP.
So, OP raised the million-dollar question – “When are you returning to work?”
WIFE OF OP DISPLEASED WITH QUESTIONING
“This may have been a miscalculation on my part, but I figured I was in this deep. Let’s see through to the end,” says OP.
OP’s wife gave him a glare of death and tried to change the subject.
But OP was persistent. “I kindly interjected, not trying to push but practically speaking. I told her that she has no excuse for not working,” says OP.
This was OP’s tactical error as his wife blew up.
A HEATED ARGUMENT CONTINUED
“Thankfully, our daughter was at my parent’s house during this time, so she did hear or see the yelling. We went back and forth using the classic lines from both sides of the camp,” explains OP.
OP’s wife used the “good husband provides the option for their wife to stay home” argument. OP said, “If you want to be home, watch our daughter or do the housework. You being home doesn’t mean you have a free pass to do nothing.”
OP’s wife then clapped back with your coworkers’ wives to stay home and do nothing.
“I agreed, but they have cheated on their wives. Do you want me to start doing that? I am sure you piece together for the rest,” says OP.
OP CLARIFIES NON-THREATENING CHEATING COMMENT
“The comment about cheating was not a threat. My wife was using the fact that my coworkers’ wives get to be home even though their kids are also in daycare. I pointed out that the husbands are cheating on them,” explains OP.
OP also informed his wife that his coworkers’ situation is skewed. They have found staying together more beneficial. “We live in a state where spousal support has caps, and it does not matter how many years you were married before. Husbands stick around because the status quo is easier,” explains OP.
OP mentioned cheating to explain to his wife that his coworker’s life is not the blissful life she thinks it is.
“Am I wrong for telling my wife she no longer has an excuse not to work,” asks OP.
People on the forum gave their two cents on the matter.
CAN NOT HAVE CAKE AND EAT IT
“You are not wrong.
She wants you to take on the 1950s role as the sole provider of the family but finds the role of 1950s housewife insulting. She can’t have her cake and eat it, too. She either does 80%+ of the household chores or gets a job.”
SHE IS RESPONSIBLE FOR EVERYDAY TASKS
“Whoever stays at home is responsible for the house’s everyday tasks. Then there are “special tasks” that should be done by the person who is not home all day.
I live with my mom; she is retired. She cooks and does laundry, etc., during the week. I run all the errands and cook during the weekends. She has her own money, I have my own money, we have an agreement.
If you are bodily able and healthy, you cannot expect to sit all day waiting for someone else to provide for you.”
SHE IS TRYING TO PRETEND THE VICTIM HERE
“You are not wrong.
SAHP means doing all household chores—every single one of them. If you don’t bring money to the situation, you must bring something else.
Now that your daughter is in daycare, your wife is no longer bringing anything to the situation. She’s acting the victim to manipulate you.”
YOUR WIFE IS BEING LAZY
“You are not wrong. One person providing everything will lead to resentment. Your wife is being lazy.”
SHE SHOULD GET A PART-TIME JOB
“Being home all day and doing nothing is not good for your mental health. She may suffer from depression, but she still needs to address it. She needs to do something, and maybe she’ll never return to full-time work, but a part-time job would clear her mental sanity.”
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