The Family & Parenting ForumsFamily dynamics can be exactly that - dynamic! Post here about family related issues such as parenting, blended families, step-families, new relationships with children involved, family of origin issues, in-laws or sibling issues.
My wife works nights and I work days. I have a 15 year old step son and an 11 year old step son. I also have a 3 year old son. Both of my step children have chores I assigned to them. However when I come home my wife has continually done the chores for them. She them makes excuses for them as to why they shouldn't have to do it. I mean their chores are to simply do the dishes for the day and to do laundry, fold it, take it to the person that it belongs to's room.
IMO that is perfectly within their capabilities. Anyway I keep coming home and my wife asks me to do said dishes/ laundry. I ask her why one of the kids hasn't done it? then she lays into me trying to put everything off on the kids.
Well while my wife is getting angry my step kids are doing nothing but watching TV and playing computer.
How is giving a 15 yr old and a 11 year old responsibilities that are well within their capabilities me shirking my duties. My wife never asks for help from the kids until she gets to a point where she is angry. Even though I am at work all day and the kids have been home for the summer.
Then I get everything dumped on me. It isn't like I do nothing I am the guy the fixes junk, mows the lawn and stuff like that. My step children do nothing. It urkes me to hell because while I was a rebellious teen I was still expected to help. My parents made me do things around the house.
When we came up with the responsibilities my wife was sitting right there next to me okaying everything.
I am really stressed out about this. My wife and I both work and I feel like the kids should be doing a lot more around the house everyday. Vaccuming, cleaning, laundry, and all of that. Not because I don't want to do it. But because my wife and I both work and the kids do NOTHING.
You and your wife need to be a team when it comes to parenting. That means being on the same page when it comes to kids responsibilities. It may mean involving an impartial third party aka counselor who can try to help mediate and guide. Just a thought...
Do you act, i all things as the male parent? Are you, for all effect, their father figure?
Yes I am the only one in their lives that doesn't cater to them. The story is a long one.
My wife D her ex about 5 years ago. My wife never moved out of her parents home. So she and her ex lived at her parents house for 11 years. SO my mother in law basically became a second mother and their aunt (my sister in law) never left the nest either. So it have been a battle since mother in law babies the hell out of them.
She hands them money without requiring any work. They do nothing but play video games, computer, and TV.
The kids are never home with me when my wife is at work. Most because the kids go behind my wife and I's back to get my Mother in Law to come over. My wife will not set boundaries on her mother. So the kids are only home when she is off work. Which leaves me to deal with the entire famly's worth of cleaning chores, and so on.
I am dealing with a lot here. I think if I left it up to my wife my step children (who I have been their "father" for over 5 years now) are held to two standards. Her standard which is she runs around and wears her self out and then dumps everything on me when I get home. When I am home I make my wife sit down and the kids do their part.
Everytime I think we make progress my wife just back slides over and over again. it is getting to a point where I feel like I am just a man in the house and what I say is only important while I am around.
My thoughts... You're fighting a losing battle. Your authority is constantly being undermined by the other authority figures. And since you're not their "dad"...
I would consider posting the assigned task list, and making sure your stuff gets done. If your wife whines about the other stuff not getting done, point her to the list. Rinse and repeat week after week, as required. When she gets tired of doing it herself, she can get on the kids' cases. At that point, you can start assisting with the implementation.
Yes I am the only one in their lives that doesn't cater to them.
I asked because since you're the "acting dad" you have every cause to try and make something of the lazy little freeloaders. Post a list of chores. WRITTEN down. Some sort of checklist of things to do and assignments. Then go through it and demand that it is completely done by the right people.
You won't get any popularity award but you'll make things move along. If stuff doesn't change stop doing things for others completely. Let them pile their own crap. This behavior has gone on because things get done without them lifting a finger.
And the mother in law issue must be taken care off. Grannies always spoil the kids. You must be inflexible in that. Even at the risk of confrontation. In your house you're king. Period.
I wouldn't let my child (13) do anyone's laundry but her own.
She does do dishes, take out the trashcans, feed the dog, walk the dog, vacuum the living room and empty the dishwasher when needed.
Maybe your wife WANTS to do the laundry, etc. Have you asked?
Yes my wife wants to do the laundry, vaccum, clean every room in the house, and have everything spick and span. However my wife is not a housewife we both have full time jobs on both sides of the clock I work 5 days a week and she works night shift at hospital. So during the week when we both work neither of us get much done.
IMO I think that if the parents are home everyday then yes they should be doing chores and the kids help. However there isn't enough time in a day to do that currently. We don't have a lot of quality time together and when I come home she has been cleaning all day. While the step have usually done nothing but play video games.
badbane: Sometimes moms have "mom guilt" for not spending enough time w/ the kids or "not letting them be kids." I have had this before, it is also recurring! BEWARE! I regret that I did to much, however, they will eventually learn (when they are adults)!!