Would you trade your spouse for a Housekeeper?
While looking through a yard sale recently, I discovered a book by Trisha Ashworth and Amy Nobile, I’d Trade my Husband for a housekeeper: Loving Your Marriage after the Baby Carriage. The title of the book made me giggle at first, but then it made me think.
Cleaning issues typically occur within the first few months of living together. Negotiating, the who does what, how it gets done and when it gets done is a very typical struggle for many couples.
Most couples successfully move past this issue. It isn’t until the birth of a child that many people have to readdress the division of household responsibilities. Ignoring the problem doesn’t usually work. Many new mothers report having feelings of irritation towards their partner after the birth of a child. This irritation, which may or may not borderline on full blown anger, can be attributed to many things, but mostly it seems to stem from feelings that the workload has been unequally distributed. Add to those feelings sleep deprivation and physical discomfort from a troubled childbirth, and even the littlest of annoyances can seem like major problems.
If the emotions you’re feeling seem strong and at your weakness moments you agree with the statement “I’d trade my husband for a housekeeper,” it’s time to reassess what’s really going on.
Are you feeling disconnected? Does it feel like your managing everything single-handed and failing? Does it seem like your spouse doesn’t care that you’re overwhelmed and exhausted?
These are critical feelings that when addressed appropriately can help you turn around a negative mindset and increase cooperative parenting. Instead of complaining about laundry piling up on the floor, try addressing how you’re feeling. Share your feelings of being overwhelmed and ask for your partner’s input.
Written by: Angelique Hillendahl, MA, LPC-Intern, CST-Candidate