The Manual and Workload (LP)


Hey there.

I could use some help around the concept of The Manual.

I have a four-year-old son with my husband.

I have a LOT of expectations of my husband, which I’ve been hard at work doing Models on to try to drop those expectations and allow him to be exactly who he is and love him unconditionally.

BUT… and this is the big BUT… we share a child. And that child requires things, like dinner, bath, teeth brushing, and bedtimes at an hour that will allow him to get up rested for school.

Both me and my husband work. And the evenings are busy with all of the tasks of a household (unpacking bags, opening mail, preparing dinner, etc.) and my husband does not participate in said tasks. He comes home, sits down to the dinner I’ve made, and eats leisurely while talking about his day and then playing with our son.

I have asked him to stop eating to give our son a bath (everyone else has finished eating long ago, but he is leisurely about eating and talking) to which he will very ineffectively just bark at our kid to get in the bath but he isn’t taking the necessary action to actually get him in the bath (turning the bath on, helping him get in, etc.) and my kid knows that so my kid will resist and then he will bark more loudly and the whole thing is totally ineffective and causing stress in the house because they are now arguing so I will just go do it. I start the bath and get him in while packing his lunch for school the next day, clearing the table (except for my husband’s plate), putting leftovers in containers, etc.

So, this example is just one of many that illustrates how my husband does not take action when it comes to a shared responsibility that we have.

We have talked about it, but he doesn’t see it in the moment. So it doesn’t change.

And I’ve thought to myself that I “just need to do it all and not expect anything from him” and when I’ve done that I literally can’t get it all done in time and my son goes to bed very late and then doesn’t sleep enough.

My thought is that I can’t get everything done in the evening and get my child into bed at a reasonable hour without help.

I have even hired help three days each week from 5-7 to help with this, but that has actually added to what I need to now manage (leaving her instructions, managing an employee, etc.)

My questions is, how do I drop the Manual when it comes to sharing a workload with someone else?

It feels similar to the scenario of working with someone professionally who is on your team and responsible for a project yet isn’t pulling their weight so you have to do double work to get it done– and in the end you just don’t have the capacity to do double work and get it all done so you report it to your boss…? but we don’t have a boss at home…

Any help with my thinking would be super appreciated.

Thank you!!!