I woke up with the baby the last two nights.
Well, I changed her dirty diaper this morning.
I take care of paying the bills and making all the doctor appointments.
But I take care of keeping the yard cut and take the trash out all the time.
Does this sound familiar? It happens all too often in our house. Sometimes, when life gets crazy, the “marriage scorecard” comes out. It’s hard not to want your spouse to pay attention to everything you do around the house and for the family, especially if you feel like they aren’t pulling their own weight. This usually happens when I’m overwhelmed at work, the calendar is filling up with doctor appointments, and I can’t seem to keep up with simple household chores. For whatever reason, it’s at that time that I feel the need to point out every little thing I do to keep the family unit flowing smoothly, when in reality, that’s what starts breaking it down in the first place. And how easy is it when moms get together for dinner for it to turn into a husband bashing session?
Is this really healthy for a marriage? Plain and simple, the answer is NO. When Michael and I met with the parish priest during our Pre-Cana classes, he told us not to look at a marriage as 50/50 between each partner, but for each of us to give 100%, or all of ourselves, into the marriage. He explained that if we each focus on giving 100%, then we wouldn’t have the time to look at what the other person wasn’t doing. And what is the point of getting married if we aren’t willing to give 100% of ourselves to the relationship? I think that’s pretty good advice.
Besides, if your husband is anything like mine, the minute I start throwing out a list of things I’ve done and what he hasn’t done, he’s already stopped listening before I even finish my first bullet point. And I’m wasting valuable energy having a one-sided argument that is not going anywhere.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I have expressed my frustration to him about not taking care of Addison’s doctor appointments or folding the laundry. He explained that if he took Addison to the doctor by himself and did not find out all of the information that I wanted to know from the doctor, I would say I should have just gone myself. And why should he fold the towels, when I’m just going to refold them “my way” before putting them up in the bathroom? Yes, he is correct. Good points on both accounts, but don’t tell him I said that.
Truth be told, I really don’t have much to complain about. Michael has taken turns getting up with Addison since she came home from the hospital. And he helps out tremendously around the house. In fact, as I sit typing this, he just finished loading the dishwasher and is now sweeping and mopping the entire house.
So what if some days I do more chores than he does? So what if I wake up more often with Addison when she’s teething? I can say that I have never taken the trash out to the curb, and I have only cut the yard once in the five years we’ve been married. So, in the end, it all balances out.