Working Moms

Advice please on dealing with DH

I am getting ready to go back into the same line of work I left 2 years ago, which is being a correctional officer. My husband works in the same field so he knows that I'll be gone monfri for 4 weeks for training because I've been gone too long to get out of basically starting from scratch. The training center is about 2 hours away so coming home every day really isn't feasible.

The problem is that he just assumes he will drop the kids off at his moms for the whole week while I'm gone. I mean I can see asking her If she could and would keep them while he's at work, but I'm a little irritated that his plan is to be child free from mon until fri because I won't be there.

I need to talk to him to see why exactly he feels as though he can't care for the children without me around, but there is no way I'm ok with his plan. I get he's never really been alone with the kids for extended amounts of time but he really needs to get over it IMO. Not to be morbid, but what if I die tomorrow? Will he just put them up for adoption?

Don't get me wrong, he's a good man and he's amazing with the girls. I just think he feels like he doesn't know how to do it alone maybe. How do I open up a conversation about this without immediately putting him on the defensive.
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Re: Advice please on dealing with DH

  • Maybe ask him why he's dropping them off with his mom. "Hey babe, why is your mom going to be watching the kids all week?" -- then if he says something about feeling overwhelmed, you can address that. If he says he wants to play video games all night, you can address that instead.

    I would center your discussion on the girls and about how disruptive it will be to their schedules and routines to be gone from home for a week.

    Could his mom possibly stay at your house for the first couple of days to help him acclimate?

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  • image XcrisscrossX:
    Maybe ask him why he's dropping them off with his mom. "Hey babe, why is your mom going to be watching the kids all week?" then if he says something about feeling overwhelmed, you can address that. If he says he wants to play video games all night, you can address that instead. I would center your discussion on the girls and about how disruptive it will be to their schedules and routines to be gone from home for a week. Could his mom possibly stay at your house for the first couple of days to help him acclimate?


    It's doubtful. She lives about 2 hours away and isn't keen on going anywhere without her husband. My mom lives 5 minutes away from us and claims she'll help but TBH she's not really reliable. I get why he wants to use his mom and part of me wouldn't have an issue if he planned to stay with his mom as well especially since it cuts his work commute in half.

    He'll be gone for the majority of the next 3 days so I'll address it next week since he is taking vacation time.
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  • image XcrisscrossX:

    Maybe ask him why he's dropping them off with his mom. "Hey babe, why is your mom going to be watching the kids all week?" -- then if he says something about feeling overwhelmed, you can address that. If he says he wants to play video games all night, you can address that instead.

    I would center your discussion on the girls and about how disruptive it will be to their schedules and routines to be gone from home for a week.

    Could his mom possibly stay at your house for the first couple of days to help him acclimate?

    Along w/ all this, and to the last point - suggest she come and stay w/ him to help him "acclimate", but then try to direct him to using this time to really get comfortable.

    He IS their dad.  W/o pounding him over the head, you need to kind of point this out and that it's HIS responsbility to watch them.  Yes, fine, he isn't used to being along for long periods of time - but hey, this is a great time to learn! 

    I have a friend who, when she started working a lot of nights for her job, her DH wasn't happy and he even felt it would really negatively affect their marriage.  A part of his fear was taking care of the kids.

    But guess what?  It ended up being a really, really GOOD thing.  He basically "became more comfortable".  And he kind of found his voice.  Up until then, she was the main disciplinarian, the decision maker, etc.  Once he was the go to parent a few nights a week, he started having opinions, he started understanding his kids better, etc, and she and he became much more of a TEAM. 

    You both really need to use this time to push your DH out of his comfort zone.  Let his mom help at first if it will help, but by the end of those 4 weeks?  He needs to be doing it on his own.  If you can do it alone, there is no reason he can't.

    And that's the approach I'd try- be a cheerleader, so to speak.  Take the upbeat approach - he's the dad, he CAN do it.  You'll help him, but you need for him to try too.  You need fo ryour KIDS, too, to know that you are both 100% there for them. 

    "Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy."
    ~Benjamin Franklin

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  • image CiescaLove:
    since it cuts his work commute in half.
    O.k.- so wait - where does he work that going to his mom 2 hours away cuts his commute in 1/2.

    And what exactly IS your plan for the kids while he's at work?  If he has a long commute and he has to take and pick up the kids from whereever they'll be - I can actually better understand his concern of having to do it all alone.  Not that he can't actually take care of them - but the logistics of daycare AND having to commute to/from work.

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  • image EastCoastBride:

    image CiescaLove:
    since it cuts his work commute in half.

    O.k.- so wait - where does he work that going to his mom 2 hours away cuts his commute in 1/2.

    And what exactly IS your plan for the kids while he's at work?  If he has a long commute and he has to take and pick up the kids from whereever they'll be - I can actually better understand his concern of having to do it all alone.  Not that he can't actually take care of them - but the logistics of daycare AND having to commute to/from work.



    Right now it's an hour commute. Where she lives it only takes him 30 minutes. I guess she lives closer to an hour and a half away. Still, it's not around the corner. He goes 30 minutes past his work to get to her house from where we live. The job is in between.

    The plan is use our babysitter who we have been using when I have had to go to school. We only need someone to help Monday, Tuesday and Friday. He has Wednesday and Thursday off and I would have the weekends off while I train again.

    ETA: our sitter is in our town and on his way to and from work, so no extra commute time would be used above and beyond walking from the car to her front door and back again.
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  • I really wouldn't be okay with that either. During the day is one thing, but my feeling is that if he's home, then he should be with LO. My DH annoys me with stuff like this sometimes too. If DH had this opportunity, he would totally leave DD with a grandparent just so that he could play video games all day if I had no say in it. I don't think it's that they're afraid to take care of the kids alone, they just see it as an opportunity to be lazy and have no problems taking it, whereas if I'm home, then I want to be with my LO.

    Honestly, if it were my DH, I would just tell him that he doesn't get to go on vacation from fatherhood just because you aren't home. I'd also tell him to think about LO, and how it might be hard for LO to be absent a parent for a week just because you're DH doesn't feel like parenting.

  • Realistically, if your MIL is the only person who can keep them while he is at work, then I don't see why what he is doing is any different to what you are doing?

    I don't see either one of you driving the 2 hours a day to see them daily. It doesn't seem feasible. IMO

     


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  • What is your plan for childcare when you go back to work?  Is it feasible to start that a little earlier?  I agree that picking them up from his moms house and coming home every night isn't realistic, maybe since her house is closer to his work they could all stay there?  He can still work, and take care of the kids at night, but he's not "alone".
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  • image mbenit4:
    Realistically, if your MIL is the only person who can keep them while he is at work, then I don't see why what he is doing is any different to what you are doing?I don't see either one of you driving the 2 hours a day to see them daily. It doesn't seem feasible. IMOnbsp;


    How is it more reasonable for him to leave his children at his mothers house for 5 days while I'm at work even though he only works 3 of those days?

    Why is it not feasible for me to come home everyday? Because we only have 1 car. Until we get a second income another vehicle isn't feasible and I won't get paid until I finish training because of how payroll works. I have no desire to stay dorm style with 68 other women sleeping in the same room. I'd much rather be home with my babies. And as I said before, we have an available sitter. In our town. And we only need her THREE days. So I see it as completely unrealistic for him to drop the kids off Sunday night and not pick them up until Friday afternoon. There's no reason for our kids to be without both of their parents for the better part of a month.

    Plus my oldest is in school so his plan doesn't really work because I won't start until next month so it interferes with school.
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  • image MammaBear81:
    What is your plan for childcare when you go back to work?nbsp; Is it feasible to start that a little earlier?nbsp; I agree that picking them up from his moms house and coming home every night isn't realistic, maybe since her house is closer to his work they could all stay there?nbsp; He can still work, and take care of the kids at night, but he's not "alone".


    Yea I mentioned before I don't mind if he stays at his moms if it comes down to that, but it interferes with school for my oldest. We have a sitter we plan to use, which is the route I would like him to take.
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  • image CiescaLove:
    image mbenit4:
    Realistically, if your MIL is the only person who can keep them while he is at work, then I don't see why what he is doing is any different to what you are doing?I don't see either one of you driving the 2 hours a day to see them daily. It doesn't seem feasible. IMOnbsp;
    How is it more reasonable for him to leave his children at his mothers house for 5 days while I'm at work even though he only works 3 of those days? Why is it not feasible for me to come home everyday? Because we only have 1 car. Until we get a second income another vehicle isn't feasible and I won't get paid until I finish training because of how payroll works. I have no desire to stay dorm style with 68 other women sleeping in the same room. I'd much rather be home with my babies. And as I said before, we have an available sitter. In our town. And we only need her THREE days. So I see it as completely unrealistic for him to drop the kids off Sunday night and not pick them up until Friday afternoon. There's no reason for our kids to be without both of their parents for the better part of a month. Plus my oldest is in school so his plan doesn't really work because I won't start until next month so it interferes with school.

    Wait, so you are, are you are not going to be home every night? I'm confused. 

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  • IMO, he needs to suck it up. I travel for my job and am gone at least 6 nights per month on airplanes and in hotels. My husband takes car of my son while I'm gonewhich he should because, well, he is his child too. Sorry, I don't know your husband so don't know how to tell you to handle this, but I agree with you. Best of luck.  

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  • Just to clarify- you have a sitter that you normally use who could watch your LO for the 3 days a week that your H is at work but he wants to take your LO to his mothers house & drop her off there for the full 5 days, 4 weeks in a row?

    This would not fly at my house. I could see maybe one of the weeks or part of each week for a break if it is overwhelming to him, or even having the sitter do longer days to help out or come on one of his days off...but 4 weeks at your MILs seems excessive & not too fair to MIL either.   It sounds like you have 2 LOs from your post but only one in your siggie so not sure how old they are...so I can see it being a bit overwhelming for him to juggle but seems like there could be a happy medium.

  • Honestly, I think it sounds fine for him to drop your children off at his mother's for 3 days a week and take them home for the other 4 days of the week.  It just doesn't seem like a huge deal to me.  Why does he want to leave them there on his days off?

    Of course my H can easily care for DD (we both travel for work at times), but if it makes it easier for all involved and the kids get to hang with grandma then it's just not really a problem for me. 

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  • I completely agree with you that this would not be okay with me either - but take it with a grain of salt; I'm not really one of those parents that likes to vacay without her 1 year old yet. I suspect I'll feel differently when my LO is older but right now I just don't really want to spend extended time away from him and don't want him to spend extended time away from us.

    If it's during the summer and no school and your kid is at least 6 or so, then it might be a fun vacation for your kids to be w/ G'ma for a week. But I see that your youngest is a little over 1 year.

    And you mentioned school for the older one, so no on that front as well. I just think a parent needs to be involved with getting the kids ready for school and talking to them about how their day went afterwards if that is at all possible. Plus, it's just my feeling, but 1 week away from both parents for a 1 year old is too much. 

    I agree with 1 of the previous posters that I would ask YH why he wants to drop the kids off and then engage in a discussion with him. You can work up a compromise during that conversation - ie him staying with his mom or something.

    Honestly, he is capable of handling this himself, it sounds like he is just used to deferring to you on the child care aspect and that may be what is driving him. He either isn't comfortable or simply has never really thought of that as his realm, even though it totally is. 

     



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  • image CiescaLove:
    Plus my oldest is in school so his plan doesn't really work because I won't start until next month so it interferes with school.

    I would start the conversation by saying that you need to figure out a schedule for the kids when you are at training.  If he tells you that he is just going to drop them at his mom's, then point out that LO needs to go to school so that plan won't work.

    Does he think that your oldest can just miss school for that entire time?  It sounds like you are talking about the first couple of weeks of the school year, right?  Pulling your kid out of school at that time is unfair because s/he will return to school and already be behind both socially and academically.  Also, are their limits on how much school a child can miss?  

    I think I would be okay with the kids going to Grandma's for a week (as long as it didn't interfere with school), but 4 weeks is too much.

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  • This would not fly for me.  He doesn't get to go back to his bachelor days just because you are away training.  I would try to compromise.  Let him drop off the girls with his mom for the days he is working, and maybe for one more day so he can relax.  But then he needs to step up the other three days.

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  • image CiescaLove:
    image EastCoastBride:

    image CiescaLove:

     The plan is use our babysitter who we have been using when I have had to go to school. We only need someone to help Monday, Tuesday and Friday. He has Wednesday and Thursday off and I would have the weekends off while I train again. ETA: our sitter is in our town and on his way to and from work, so no extra commute time would be used above and beyond walking from the car to her front door and back again.

    So he has to watch his kids for two full days out of five, and his plan is to take them to his mom's instead? Damn, that's a bit mind-boggling. 

    I would just do what PP suggested, but honestly, this is a serious thing. Can you leave for a length of time (take a Saturday off and go somewhere by yourself) and have him "practice" to get him more comfortable being with his kids? Even if it means you typing up a "manual" of sorts for him to refer to if he doesn't know where things are, etc. hth

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