Am I out of line for saying to my husband....

Ebony - posted on 08/05/2010 ( 39 moms have responded )

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I really need to know, and I need your honest opinion/facts if you have any. Sometimes I feel as though my husband is "lazy." Often times I will verbally say to him that "you are acting lazy." Am I wrong for saying this?? Because I honestly hadn't felt like it was anything wrong with saying that because he's really acting this way. My husband works overnight 2 days a week 13 hour shifts. He has 4 days off within a week, Tue, Wed, Thur, Fri. Its ok for him to get rest when he needs it but for you to just sleep until the afternoon when we have 5 children here, I believe is absolutely lazy (this maybe on a weds, when he slept all day the day before). I know this is the man I married and I cannot change who he is, its just that there is sooo much more that could be done opposed to sleeping all day.

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Carla - posted on 08/08/2010

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All women struggle with this, Ebony. We are born with multi-tasking skills, and I think God did that so we could cook, hold a fussy baby, referee fights, and answer the phone! Men are not so blessed, neither can they 'see' the furniture needs to be dusted, the kids don't have any clean clothes, and you can't see the couch for the laundry, neatly folded, waiting to be put away. This is a set-up for a fight. And, probably like most women, you let things build up until your temper blows, and you go off.

Men DO NOT respond well to 'you are lazy', or 'you are acting lazy'. That will immediately bring a hailstorm of what he has done, and nothing is accomplished. I tell my daughter to say this: 'honey, could you take out the trash for me? Thanks, I appreciate it!' I know, I know, they should be able to see and smell the trash piling up, but they don't. Do you want to gag asking sweetly, then thanking him? Yes, at first ;) But he will respond to this much better, and, ultimately, you get what you want done, and there's no argument. Win-win situation.

I had the 'I need help!' conversation with my husband at least once a month for the first 20 years of our marriage. He would be real good for a week, then slide back into oblivion. It's very frustrating. However, some day the light bulb will come on, and he'll figure it out.

Working nights is tough! My ex worked graveyard shift, and trying to have a normal weekend (being up days, sleeping nights) then going to work Sunday with just a nap before work made for a very long night, then he'd want to sleep all day Mon. I think Pamela was talking about this difficulty. As long as you're used to having him sleep during the day when he is working, let him keep that schedule. Plan things for the afternoons/evenings.

Pray, pray, pray, honey. Marriage isn't easy, we have to be very creative in the ways we approach our darlings, so their male ego isn't damaged. He is home with you guys instead of running with the boys, so be grateful for that. If you two have Bible studies (if you don't, you might want to start one), direct it into Galatians/Ephesians where Paul talks about how we honor our spouses. Don't preach, just read it and explore what the proper way of loving each other entails.

Hold on, sweetie, God's not done with either of you yet! God bless!

Anne - posted on 08/05/2010

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My mom had a saying "You get more flies with honey than you do with Vinegar, and they will stay around longer."

I know with my husband if I "nag" him I may as well talk to the wall because as great a guy as he is he tunes me out. Is there one job that you would really like him to help with. Maybe if you sat down and talked with him and let him know that you understand that the nights he works the 13 hours he does need his rest, but you would really appreciate his help on the days that he has not worked the night before, he may be more inclined to help. If you think about this from how you would feel if he told you that you were acting lazy you would most likely not feel like helping either. Also when he does help as long as the work gets done Please do not complain if he does not do things exactly the way you do the job.
I had my right shoulder resurfaced last July and the 2 years before the surgery folding laundry,especially towels and sheets hurt so much I just could not do that job. So because our daughters are adults and have not lived with us for just under 4 years my husband did that job. Every time he folded towels they were done differently. BUT I did not say anything. I did however have a fit early in our marriage when he did this and so for years he would not fold laundry except for his own

I hope some of this has helped. The thing I should have said first is to be Praying for him daily.

Sitka - posted on 08/10/2010

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I think the honey-do and wifey-do list is a good idea. My husband is never lazy, but he gets so busy, he forgets about the things that may be important to me.... and vice versa. I like your posts Polly J!

Becky - posted on 08/09/2010

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I worked 3rd shift for years....it takes it's toll on your body and medically speaking it is better for your health if you try to stick to a schedule of sorts even on your days off.......try to compromise....such as he can stay up late and sleep in however he needs to have a list of chores that he can do to help you out that are quiet so the rest of the family can sleep....such as folding all the laundry or doing the dishes or dusting....and when they baby is born he can take the nightly diaper changes and feedings etc so you can sleep.....it will help him feel useful and boost his confidence as well as help you around the house....most people that work 3rd shirt even a few days a week after awhile start to get this boost of energy in the evenings kinda like a second wind...so let him handle getting the kids bathed and helping with homework and stuff after he wakes up....and you can relax a little....just make it very clear that with this new arrangement comes responsiblities and if you are going to accomidate him and his sleeping schedule he needs to make up for it by helping out more when he is awake....but above all else make it sound like it is his idea and all for him....tell him that you finally realized how hard things are on him and that he is trying as hard as he can but he is to exhausted to help out much so you wanna try something new to see if he feels better and has more enegry and even though it will be inconvient to you your willing to try it.....and say if you can help me out in return with this arrangement i see no reason why we can't keep it going indefinately.....if it doesn't work out then we will have to go back to square one....hopefully it works out for you...and tell him you are only making the list so he can check it off and you know where you need to start in the morning where he left off...Good Luck.

Carla - posted on 08/08/2010

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Ebony, I feel that any hurtful words are out of line. Our husbands are for loving not hurting. I have been married for 15 years and I think we all learn this lesson way to late. I work 12 hour shifts. Night shifts are MURDER! Everyone feels like you are "rested", when actually you feel horrible! Your spouse works like the equivalent of what regular people work in a week over 2-3 days! 5 children are not a joke or fun for anyone, however it is unrealistic to think that he is rested or feels rested after working a 13 hour night shift. Do all a favor, stay up like one of his shifts and see how you fare. I had friends and family call and stop by as I used to try to get rest. They also made plans for me because all I was doing was being lazy or "sleeping again". For your husband sleeping all day is just like you sleeping all night. Remain mindful of his feelings and prayerful as you are in charge of prayer for your husband and family. Lots of tender love and care is needed here for this situation, good luck. Carla

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Michelle - posted on 12/08/2010

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I don't think that you are out of line for telling your husband how you feel but you also need to tell him what you would like from him as well. If he does not know that you want something then he will not know to help you.

Lakisha - posted on 08/12/2010

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Just commnicate what you need. give him rest and compliment him for the things he is doing. remember you can turn away wrath with kindness. You can also get a lopt of things done that way. Them give him a choose and make it seems like it was his idea. jUST COMMUNICTE AND A HUMBLE VOICE. bUT BEFORE ALL THIS Pray and asked God how to approach your husband. What was sad was wrong, and how you said it was wrong, but the meaning behind what you were saying was not wrong, asking him to help you with your family is never changing him. DONT FOR GET TO MAKE THE BASES OF YOUR MARRIAGE gOD, pRAY TOGATHER, AND rEAD THE bIBLE TOGATHER, BECAUSE sATAN HATES MARRIAGE AND WILL USE ANYTHING HE CAN TO CAUSE THE CHOAS IN ONE.

Tabitha - posted on 08/12/2010

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instead of telling him he is lazy maybe just try to tell him how you fell and allow him to make a change about it and if no effort you really have to allow God to work in your relationship to give him and you understanding i say pray first and talk to him. God will see you through one way or the other. maybe trying to encourage him to do something with you might be helpful so he doesn't feel as though he is doing a chore himself. wash dishes together or cook together or whatever you can do together.

Janet - posted on 08/12/2010

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Well I used to work nights.Your body gets into a schedual and it ishard to break.My husbad has been laid off for almost a year and he still wakes up at 4:30am because his body is use to it.And I was just telling my niece the samething.Men care what you think about them.You could of asked if he would give you a hand with the kids.

Jessica - posted on 08/10/2010

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I do think this is wrong although I know I can be guilty of it sometimes too. I put on my Christian music and try to ignore my feelings. I pray for thankfulness. I get it! My anger melts and then I just love him. He gets up off his butt because I serve him and he feels the need to get up! He sees me as sweet and loving so he wants to be there as a help for me. Good luck and I hope I was helpful. God Bless you!!

S - posted on 08/10/2010

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Yes, I do believe it's wrong to say that. You may think that but by letting the words leave your mouth you are giving it power and reinforcing the behavior. Give it to God and start speaking better.

Meanwhile communicate with him and let him know how you're feeling, see if you can't take a day and let him experience what it's like to do everything for himself.
Unfortunately I know about this from experience and putting him down indirectly is not the way to go.

Lisa - posted on 08/10/2010

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don't call names, and don't put him down. just sic the kids on him! My husband thinks he can sleep in all day on the weekends when we have places to go, I just tell our daughter to go snuggle daddy and she does and he's gotten used to being woken up so now he actually wakes up on his own around 8am. lol
but actually talking to him as a person would be the best way to get help. If that doesn't work, then do the sneaky way. Wash his stuff that's laying on the floor without checking pockets and be all sweet when he complains, say "oh I'm sorry, it was on the floor I thought it was dirty, and you know I don't check pocket of dirty things" etc. just draw a line and don't do any extra things for him, but be sweet about it. "oh I didn't make you breakfast because it was at 8am and you were sleeping" "oh I didn't make you lunch because you were playing on the computer and when I said it was lunch time you didn't come sit at the table"
I admit I did this to my husband, it worked. but it is mean, and talking to him works better.

Crystal - posted on 08/09/2010

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The question is does he make any efforts to help you when he is awake? Also, does he sleep all day every day? Honestly I don't call sleeping til 12 sleeping all day. Does he have to go to work extremely early? I know personally that after having to wake up ealy in the morning I don't want to wake up or even think of waking up early on the days that I don't have to.

Richie - posted on 08/09/2010

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focus on the person and not the behaviour... i think there's a better way to say it rather than yelling at him that he's lazy. How about saying, "Honey, can you please do the dishes or laundry for me?" or "Honey, are you free today? Please lend me a hand."
We should tell our husbands that we are tired of doing things everyday just by ourselves rather that telling them that they are too lazy to just sleep over 20 hours.
I hope this can help..God bless!

Cheryl - posted on 08/09/2010

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My husband had a similar schedule and did the same thing..I tried being nice at first and it didn't work..so I just gave up..But now that we have moved he has suddenly started helping out around the house on his own. WHat worked for my husband when he wasn't helping was I made him a chore list like I would child..and he actually did it and it helped..Sounds childish, maybe even foolish, but it did work. Good luck!

Carol - posted on 08/09/2010

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no you are not wrong my hubby works two 15 hours shifts a week and has all week end off i work two jobs now that it summer i dont have to leave me son to school so i come in to work by 8.15 finsih at five and start my other job at. 5.30 until 11 but i still make dinner lunch etc and only get my normal sleep which usally is about 4/5 hours men think because they are working all night its different becuase they work through the night i have that argument all the time so your are right he is off more that you i have six children albeit five are all grown up and have moved out but my youngest 14 still needs mum being a mum is a full time job

Trisha - posted on 08/08/2010

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I don't know as if you should really tell him that he is lazy. What about giving him a list of things that need to be done and let him know how much it would help you out. Then if he doesn't get it done maybe you need to have a little talk with him and let him know that you can't handle doing EVERYTHING yourself. I know how you feel though! It's hard

Christina - posted on 08/08/2010

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Oh my! During my first year of marriage, I was pregnant and I said such awful things to my husband. I don't even know how we stayed married. I think I was frustrated being pregnant after so many years, taking care of a teenager, being married, and just the stress of life. Sometimes we lash out at the ones that are closest to us instead of speaking words of love.

Awhile back, I read a book called, 'The 5 love languages." In essence, there are 5 ways that each of us feels loved: some through words, some through gifts, some through physical affection, some through acts of kindness, and some through spending time with the ones we love.

Just because one person has 1 primarily love language doesn't mean that the others should be neglected. Meaning, all of us need all of the love languages to make us feel loved. So, when someone that WE love calls us names, doesn't spend time with us, doesn't kiss us or hug us, doesn't do the little small things for us (like bring us coffee), or give us a card for our birthday, it might really cause us pain.

So, although your husband may not tell you he is hurt by your actions, name calling is always painful. It doesn't further your relationship and it doesn't spur someone into action. What does is allowing someone to see your need, then act upon it - on their own or asking nicely.

My husband didn't start responding to my needs UNTIL I started responding to his. Sometimes it goes back to the old adage - do onto to others as you would have them do onto you. Meaning, if you want someone to treat you a certain way, to help you, to take care of your needs, start the ball rolling in the right direction. Model Christian love and it will come back to you ten-fold. That is what I did - corrected myself first, then my husband came into the fold.

Joanna - posted on 08/08/2010

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Hi, Maybe you could ask him to help, rather than point out that he is being lazy. I mean guys wont see what we see no matter how hard we try to 'Educate' them...lol. But if you say "hey honey can you come help me do these dishes, because i have a heap of other things i need to get done as well & /Or I'd really Appreciate it?" instead of " you are so lazy, you never help, i need you to do something instead of laying around all day"~ Thats Fireing up th kettle to make it worse*~ I dont know if it will work but just try it and see. God bless...the other idea is pray for him, not out loud and dont tell him, but thank GOd for your husband and ask God to help him help you.~~~I Completely agre with this statement!~ I'vebeen there & sometimes *Still there~lol~~

Sheryl - posted on 08/08/2010

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i would talk to him and say i know after coming off your shift your tried but when it comes wensday after noon can you step up and help. not just casue i want you to but also for the kids. if they are missing on time with him and want to spend time with him let him know.and say i know you work hard and we are greatfull for that but we also need family time too. best of luck.

Melissa - posted on 08/08/2010

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I wouldn't say its wrong to say that, but I would speak to him kind of like I do children in my childcare center.. (I know it sounds funny, but it works with my husband!) "Hunny, I understand that you worked Monday night and so you are probably enjoying the day off, but I really could use a hand cleaning the bathroom... or I think that it would be great if you took the oldest two kids to the park and had some fun with them" I know that it sounds a little baby-ish, but believe it or not guys like to hear that you understand what they are feeling! Best of Luck!

Jill - posted on 08/08/2010

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i have a feeling calling your husband lazy will cause a war..... Praying for help is so much easier than fighting a war... God is so faithful to change your husbands behavior ....but first you must soften your heart towards your husband... God won;t change his behavior till you change yours.....This post is not directed at anyone in particular so please don't take it the wrong way

Ruth - posted on 08/07/2010

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I think that calling your husband lazy is wrong and not a loving thing for a wife to do/say. Why don't you guys make plans for things you could be doing that would use the time more wisely. That would be a great time to do things as a family or as a couple. Pick a good relationship book and read to him while he is relaxing, discuss what you have read together. Look up activities you can do with the kids. This way you two are not at odds with each other and getting nowhere. I agree with what everyone else is saying as well!

Jessica - posted on 08/07/2010

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i know how this is, no i dont feel your in the wrong due to the fact you need time with him and he needs time with his family.af ter a while this can and ultimatly will become a major problem (speaking from experiance.) you need to sit down with him and reconnect that you need him just as when you first got married....ask for a few hours with in the first few days ,getting him up a few hours early one day....geez. that shouldnt be so much to ask.....

Leanne - posted on 08/07/2010

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Well, if he's being "lazy," point it out to him, but not in a way that will start a war in your household! Point out to him that you're not wonder woman or a miracle worker, and cannot do it all by yourself.

I have a similar situation. My husband is a truck driver and is only home for a couple of days a week. But when he has the energy to help his friends w/ things, then he has the energy to help me out., instead of barking out orders of what he wants me to do. He has the cave man way of thinking, as if he feels that making the money to pay the bills & buy groceries is all he has to do to do his share around the house, and the rest is left up to me & our son to do everything else around the house. He'll sit on his rear end and watch television while we do everything else. And then he has the nerve to say that I'm lazy!

Pamela - posted on 08/07/2010

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I believe there are several aspects to this. First, your husband works overnight. Granted it is only two days a night, but our bodies do not adapt well to staying up all night. In order to compensate for staying up all night your husband should stick to a regular schedule of staying up all night during the days he is off. (My husband use to work the grave yard shift so I know how hard it is on him). I also understand about feeling overwhelmed and feeling like it is all up to you. I would suggest having your husband take your role for a day. Let him have a first hand account of everything that you do. (I also did this one with my husband). Next, instead of being telling him he is lazy I would suggest a task list. Not a honey do list because those are the big tasks. The task list is more like Honey I really need to you take out the garbage, do the dishes and bring the laundry to the laundry room so I can do the laundry. If you could please put in the first load. It also sounds like there are some obsticles in your marriage. Perhaps a couple counsuler would work for that as it would allow you both an outlet to communicate with a third party to make let equal points made.

Hopefully, some of what I said works for you. I know I have experienced it with my husband. Now he helps me take out the garbage, does the dishes and even helps with most of the laundry.

Heather - posted on 08/07/2010

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I think you know the answer to your question...

I would love to recommend a 30 day challenge to you through Revive our Hearts. It's a husband encouragement challenge. If you go through this challenge and put your all into it and you don't see a change in your husband, I want you to write me an e-mail telling me so! Here's the link, it's the second one down. It's free, you will just get an e-mail in your inbox each day with instructions. :)

http://www.reviveourhearts.com/challenge...

Amy - posted on 08/07/2010

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I'd recommend using those 4 days to go somewhere with a friend or family member. Just you and the vacation buddy of your choosing.

I think men can't really comprehend what we do in the home until they experience it. I think once he sees how much work there is to do when you aren't there, he'll likely start helping you all on your own. Win-win.

I can't tell you how good it was for our marriage when my husband became unemeployed and I was the one working. I think talking about it is ... not as effective as having them actually experience it. Besides, I would bet a few days of girl time would be fantastic for your spirit.

Tami - posted on 08/07/2010

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I always give my husband one thing I want done before I get home and I give each of my kids one thing. Then he is in charge of making sure they get that one thing done. It works for me.

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Rather than tell him he's being lazy...tell him how it affects you when you don't have his help and how much his help means to you! Maybe if he realizes what a difference he can make, he will make more of an effort?

Jill - posted on 08/07/2010

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i have read once that if you don't ask for help from your husband he thinks that you are perfectly able to do it on your own.... ask him for help..but ask in a kind and loving way .... men seek respect...

Lorraine Alicia - posted on 08/07/2010

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I had alot of problems getting my husband to help me in the first few yrs of our marriage. I could not understand why he would not help me and i felt like i was running myself to water and after baby # 2 i had enough.



After baby # 2 i had to spend sometime by my inlaws and realized his dad do the exact same thing. Then i relized that is how he was brought up and it was almost impossible to get him to change because he saw nothing wrong in me doing all the work. The problem was his mom was a house wife i am not i have to go to work five days a week.



I seeked God guidance and i prayed everyday about the situation, it did not change over night but it did eventually. Now i have no problems with him helping me, on his off day he will clean and mop the entire house and wash all the dirty clothes, and he has also took full responsiblity for cleaning the bathrooms.

Ebony - posted on 08/06/2010

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Hello Ladies
I feel at this point that I have tried all that I could...I've prayed, we've talked..I've suggested, we've compromised...the list goes on! I thank you all for your comments and suggestions. Just as Polly stated that old habits die hard so I shouldn't expect things to happen overnight. I know that it's ultimately in God's hands and that all things work together for the good! I guess it's just me and how I want things to be done when I want it and how I want it. Sometimes I overlook that my husband and I are two totally different people. I sometimes feel as though he should pick up where I left off and vice versa. I have been married for 16 mos now, and I am constantly seeking guidance from those with experience in this area. I am expecting our 6th child and its alot of things I'm not able to do, so I feel as though my hubby should know already what to do in certain situations.

Please pray for me and my family!!!
My husband and I are having conflict about our children and the strife is cause us not to move further. I feel as though we have alot more problems than the common household, I don't know if or when we will overcome them. It so hard for us to come to an agreement about anything...It hurts because it seems as though everything always has to be the opposite of what I say it is. I could go on but, I rather not...just pray for us! And I thank you all in advance.

Jill - posted on 08/06/2010

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whenever i feel this way i ask God to soften my heart toward my husband and then ask God for help from my husband.... He is faithful to help....after a while my husband slips into his old pattern and i just pray again

Polly - posted on 08/06/2010

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One of the most hurtful things I've ever said to my husband was when I called him lazy. It happened once and never again. It really hurt his feelings, and I totally regret saying it.

The problem with name calling is that it attacks who the person is, their character, rather than separating the behavior from the person. It is much more hurtful to say "You are lazy" than it is to say "I am really hurt that you sleep all day and don't help with the kids." The first is labeling him as a whole. The second is pinpointing specific behavior.

I'm sure your husband is a good man. I'm also sure he has flaws. But the way you address them makes all the difference.

My DH and I talked about how I can help remind him to do things around the house without nagging. We came up with a "honey-do" and a "wifey-do" list on a dry erase board. That way, I can just write down what I need done in a place where he can see it often. Then the BOARD is "reminding" him, rather than me. Its clear, no confusion, he knows what he needs to do. Sometimes I think men don't do things around the house because they feel like they don't know where to start or what they should be doing. lol And we assume they should know.

That's what worked for us. For you guys something else might work. Maybe sit down with him and ask him what you can do to help motivate him with your needs. Does he even know what he should be doing? Does he feel nagged? What does he think are his responsibilities? Questions like that can help you understand your husband better and help you both work something out together. Old habits die hard though, so be realistic on what to expect.

Just my two cents. Hope thing get better for you!

Rachael - posted on 08/05/2010

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I bet you he knows that he is being lazy but you saying "lazy" is making him put up a wall where his is determined to stand his ground because you hurt his pride.
The day that you feel he should be well rested and out of bed, make breakfast and wake him up with a "breakfast is on the table" and then maybe when he is up and fed you all go and do something together.
It may or may not work; but my husband gets out of bed for pancakes or waffles or grits and eggs. and they are all easy to make and inexpensive.

Prudence - posted on 08/05/2010

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Hi, Maybe you could ask him to help rather than point out that he is being lazy. I mean guys wont see what we see no matter how hard we try to 'Educate' them...lol. But if you say "hey honey can you come help me do these dishes, because i have a heap of other things i need to get done aswell?" instead of " you are so lazy, you never help, i need you to do something instead of laying around all day" I dont know if it will work but just try it and see. God bless...the other idea is pray for him, not out loud and dont tell him, but thank GOd for your husband and ask God to help him help you.

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