Don’t you be ridiculous. I was talking about his nuclear family, his wife and the children he made with her, and to whom his primary obligation is owed. I think that was pretty clear.
They come before all others, even other peripheral family members. A man leaves his father and mother and cleaves to his wife, remember… not all the nebulous relations someone can throw in the mix.
It’s nice to see you’re not just rude to me; reading your various posts shows a pretty consistent theme.
There’s a lot of anger displayed. I pray you find peace.
we have ten kids.
we have a kid with down syndrome
if i came home from a rare (i’ve been on two in 28 years) retreat to find i had more work than when i left (because before i left, i’d have made sure laundry was done, groceries were bought, house was OK clean, kids were all accounted for and even bathed… and then some) i’d be mad.
i had to work to leave. i had to work to come home.
yep. i’d be mad.
perhaps my mad would be misplaced (perhaps not), but i’d be mad.
i don’t need my husband to leap tall buldings in a single bound. i need him to not collapse when i’m away. he doesn’t. guess why. because he knows his limintations, just like i know mine.
OP, your good intentions were misguided. maybe your wife’s anger was misdirected but your good intentions were misguided.
Wow… hostility and criticism for a faithful husband who goes above and beyond to give to the people he loves, but fails to maintain a perfectly ordered house (on at least one weekend).
When I read your story, I thought you’d done an impressive job at maintaining the right priorities. What is more important? The crumbs on the floor, or the people you had to care for that weekend?
Housework and child care is never ending, and there is no one to blame when things get hectic temporarily. That’s just life. The alternative is no children and no home.
Did you fail to keep things perfectly managed? Maybe… but that’s pretty forgiveable. Your wife’s frustration is pretty forgiveable, too. We can all relate to feeling overwhelmed and frustrated when we can’t be home and then come home to what feels like chaos. I bet your wife will take your lead soon and forgive everything when she gets back into her routine because she remembers what’s really important here- which is you.
I agree somewhat with this post. Partly this is a love language issue. OP’s wife values certain things but the OP put much of his energy into other things that he felt his wife should value. This resulted in hurt feelings and disappointment.
Dh and I had a similar problem. When I started work DH thought he would help out and do some of my jobs. Unfortunately for him I had scheduled how I would do those jobs and a certain order so what he did ( and he did not do them the way I would do them which is also an issue. For instance he did laundry and mixed up the loads and shrunk a bunch of my daughters clothes.) was not all that helpful. Plus we had been discussing some very important jobs that he needed to do that were very important to me. He did not do them. Didn’t occur to him to do those jobs. Even though we had been discussing how stressed out I have been that he hadn’t accomplished them.
I didn’t get mad when I came home but I burst into tears and told him not to help me but to do his own jobs that I appreciated the effort but that wasn’t what I needed.
There’s always enough blame to go around in these situations.
When I take a vacation from work there is twice as much to do when I return. Takes me days to recover from the things that my managers couldn’t solve or let slip or were things that “only Paul can handle”.
That’s just the way it is. If you are the mom, the primary care giver in the house, and you have incredibly high standards, what do you really think will happen when you are gone?
I see here a tension between husbands being active participants in the life of the family and making decisions, or just “filling in” for the wife doing things the way she would.
Chosen biting off more than he could chew? Mothers/wives do that all the time…
My turn to say ‘WOW’
Bravo Chosen, you did good!
When we were first married my wife was very “my way or the highway” and fortunately she grew up out of that. Every fall she goes on a (Methodist) Church womens retreat that deals with female spiritual issues and chocolate. Every year when she comes back the house is messy. Not terrible, no fire department outside no cops or the National Guard. Just messy. 3 kids, 2 of whom are developmentally delayed/retarded (And OP is right, retarded does NOT mean stupid) and the house is somewhat messy.
If my wife acted as infantile as Chosen’s we would have had problems. Instead we all help clean up and my wife is relaxed due to her retreat and:
NOT HAVING UNREALISTIC EXPECTATIONS FOR THE RETURN HOME!
Kids are kids. They are going to make messes and drive you crazy! It’s their job!
Let’s all take a deep breath here.
Regarding the use of the word “retarded”…Please see: r-word.org/
It’s an offensive word and there is a campaign to end its use as it applies to people with Ds.
I’m interested in whether Chosen’s wife has gone off before like this? Was it chaos when she returned? Has Chosen gone off and left his wife in charge and come home to chaos? Could there be some resentment that she is expected to do this every day for 27 years and she asks for about 36 hours away and comes back to the perception that her husband can’t hack it, or left a mess for her?
When you walk into a house that is chaotic, you don’t assume it all happened in the last 20 minutes and things were peachy perfect the rest of the time. Did she KNOW while she was gone what had happened? Or did she come in at dinnertime, dad was gone, no sign of any future dinner on the stove, and she had a house where everything was out of order and wondered what in the world went on while she dared leave for a day?
Her response isn’t the problem. It’s a symptom of a bigger issue. A woman with infants, teenagers, a special needs child and a home to run usually doesn’t take a whole lot of time to do anything for herself. Unless she is rare, she probably now feels that even doing that just invited MORE work on her return. The idea she was being punished… might not be that YOU were punishing her, but that the universe was punishing her for daring to do something for herself. That attitude is very easy to fall into when you don’t do much for yourself, you’re constantly taking care of everyone else, and the one time you do go off you come back to chaos.
Satan loves that. He stepped in and ruined it for her. Took away all her peace from the retreat. He was laying in wait. Used the kids and the husband to do that also. Good kids. Very good husband. They were putty in his hands. Create chaos and destroy peace. Yep. Satan’s a pro. No one even saw it coming or saw his fingerprints all over that one.
Now she’s annoyed, husband feels resentful and unappreciated. People here are sniping. Satan gets lots of side benefits for that. Imagine… using the needs of a troubled girl, a disabled kid, some tiny toddlers and lazy teenagers… what a perfect storm of confusion to set up chaos and disarray and dismay. No one is really to blame, but everyone ends up standing around pointing angry fingers. What a delight for ol Beelzebub. Satan: The ACCUSER.
Seriously… I bet if your wife had spent 36 hours at Walmart, she’d have come home to perfection. No fun in destroying her spiritual peace there. Satan waited till she went off with the nuns.
Chosen, your wife NEEDED that retreat. Anything that gives her peace gives YOU peace. Trust me on this.
What you failed in was damage control. A lack of imagination.
Let’s redo your entry into the house to see your overworked wife angrily cleaning. Here’s what you do! Take away the broom. Hug her, say you’re glad to see her. Grab a bottle of wine, pour her a glass. Shove her in the direction of the bathtub with orders to go take a bubblebath. (as head of the house, you can give that order and as a submissive wife, she is bound by moral codes to follow it.)
While she is doing that, you press the teenagers into service, clean up the mess, put on violin music on the stereo, order pizza, toss a salad and put the gourmet food back in the fridge for tomorrow’s dinner when it can cook all it wants. Serve the pizza on china by candlelight and ask her about the retreat. That way you’ve shown you’re in charge and have and can do damage control and are on top of the situation and you haven’t just been a fellow traveller all weekend waiting with the teenagers for her to come home and cook dinner. I’ll bet that’s how it looked to her initially.
Later you’ll have your chance to tell her about the weekend you endured. And I don’t know how often you actually do her job all day alone, but you should offer to do it more. “Honey, you really work hard. I need more practice to do this stuff alone. But next time when you go off, let’s just make it a time when there aren’t so many visitors.”
I bet she needs MORE time to herself, not less. I know very few men who have any idea the fatigue and constant vigilance taking care of small children entails. Throw in a DS child and teenagers, it’s a wonder she’s sane.
You did good, Chosen. You sound like a very good man with a big conscience. Contemplate the sheer magnitude of her daily workload though. When you go off, do you worry that the house will fall apart in your absence?
I’ve been the wife coming back in from being gone a mere 5 hours. Curtains torn down, toys all over, undiapered baby, sink filled with dirty dishes, chaos in every room. To the point you’d have to WORK to make it that messy. Sometimes rage is the only response when you, as a wife, know that it never gets that bad when you’re gone. You come back and it looks like people made an effort to deliberately tear the place apart.
The bigger problem here is the mutual resentment you both feel toward each other and the lack of appreciation. Do you make those gourmet meals just for her on other occasions? Do you make dinner for the kids early and then do candlelight with her alone later just the two of you?
Her conversion and seeking a path and a dignity where her bonecrushing work load has meaning isn’t something I’d take lightly if I was you.
Being a wife and mom can be a pretty thankless task. If she can find purpose to her life in religion, that can work to your benefit. Satan really messed this one up for you all. Don’t give him the last victory.
*I truly truly don’t mean to laugh, Liberano…but I couldn’t help it when I read…“I was gone for 5 hours, and came home to curtains being torn down…” hahaha I can imagine this scene in my head…I would have been like…what on earth went on here? :rotfl:
I’m sorry, maybe I have a really weird sense of humor. *
WG, I’m sure even she can laugh about it now. But when you’re in the middle of it…:ouch:
In ChosenAndCalled’s defense, though, I am sure he bears no resemblance to Liberanosamalo’s husband. I’ve read quite a few of her posts… and yikes.
I was going to let this comment go because I didn’t want to get off topic, but one of my children was just playing piano in the background while I read CAF. He played a really pretty song, soft and slow. As I commented to him on how peaceful the music sounded, he pointed out to me the word “ritardando”, which is a musical term.
I understand that some people are offended by the word “retarded”, (most likely because some other people use the word in an insulting way,) but I wish this word could be used without offending people. It reminds me of the musical term “ritard” which composers use to tell musician to play slowly. Going slowly can be dramatic and beautiful. Rather than removing the word “retarded” from our vocabulary, I wish people would think of it along with the musical function and realize that “slow” can be quite lovely.
Why, Cthulbrayan, didn’t you know the Bible says Thou Shall Not put the emotional needs of abandoned former teenage prostitutes and heroin addicts above Thou’s obligation to Thou’s wife to maintain an Immaculate Home at all times?
You need to do some more reading here and get with the program.
I would be proud of my man if he took on all of this. His self-effacement is so clear!
I think mine might’ve put supper on, forget mass, forget the troubled teen for sure and he would let the children play when he watched the news!:eek:
Obviously I do. I need to stop worrying about the whole Charity thing.
Would you kindly show me where this flowchart or diagram appears in Scripture or official Catholic teaching?
“Love your neighbor - but, please see diagram 4A for relationship responsiblility…” :rolleyes:
How about a family retreat next time? A family camp? That is pretty much the only way my friend who has a large family can do it.
To the OP, I think you sound like a wonderful and caring husband and father and uncle. God Bless you. I enjoyed reading about your weekend.
I don’t think the OP failed at all. Sounds like he did a remarkable job. If anyone did anything the spirit of martyrdom, it was OP’s wife. She gets a spiritual weekend of rest and contemplation, and comes home to a few crumbs and some moved furniture and starts playing the martyr. Meanwhile, the OP, who takes care of two kids with DS, other kids besides, and charitably helps his troubled niece, gets a dirty look and a hurtful remark.
I’m sorry, but I’m still with the OP. I think he did an admirable job and deserved much better than he got.
hmm. people usually wince when you hit them hard enough. tender or not.
OP, I’m sorry you’re going through this. I encourage you not to hold it in, but look for a time when you can talk it out with your wife… easier said than done, I know. you both have valid points, and it won’t do your marriage any good to get up on your high horse, even though you really do have a valid point. kwim? I say this as someone who struggles a lot with holding my sacrifices for our family to highly.
This is why I really don’t like those “fly high” retreats. A forced emotional high is no way to try to tackle real life.
On another note, your post and the replies has fortified me to hopefully have a good welcome for my DH when he returns from his retreat (NOT a "fly high"one ;)) on friday!