Dishes done, dinner in the crock-pot, toddler’s toys put away, preschooler’s Picasso inspired crayon drawing on the wall magically erased, the cemented Goldfish and water paste removed from couch, baby nursed a million and five times, and the house finally looks the way it did when my husband left this morning!! Yup, I was one of “those” stay-at-home moms, I aspired to be a Supermom and if I fell short I wouldn’t settle for anything less than June Cleaver. So you could imagine how crushed I was after killing myself day in and day out juggling a newborn, 3 year old, & four year old, while maintaining a household only to see a look of disappointment on my husband face when he got home. Naturally after a few weeks of this it weighed heavy on me and I did what any “June” would do and kindly approached my husband, inquiring why he was disappointed, and we had a remarkable adult conversation, NOT! My exhausted foggy mom brain was spinning and somewhere between my mind and mouth kindness, compassion, and even comprehension was lost…what spewed out was ugly, loud, hurtfulness.
After a week of giving each other the silent treatment, (we were young, roughly 6 years into our marriage, or what I like to call the “toddler” years of marriage…when we had our blowout tantrums, followed by silent treatments, dirty looks if we didn’t get our way, and letting our emotions control us as opposed to us having control over our emotions) I finally decided I wanted to dissect this problem and hopefully arrive at a solution. After some soul searching I came up with a list of questions I needed to find answer to….
Why was I allowing my husband’s reactions to affect me so much? I knew all the hard work I had accomplished during the day, why, in my mind, did it all boil down to his validation? Also, why wasn’t he impressed with the way I maintained the household, was I lacking in some way?
Why was I allowing my husband’s reactions to affect me so much?
Stay-at-home mom life can get pretty lonely, mind you, you’re legit NEVER alone there is always a kiddo at foot or literally clinging to some part of your body, but the adult interactions that our brains once received on a daily basis is GONE, and loneliness is very much apparent! And by the time your spouse gets home you’re lucky if you can piece a couple words together let alone an entire sentence. So what’s lacking in this stay-at-home world of wiping butts, noses, making the snacks, and relating more to a milking cow than the once had it-all-together, independent, contributor to the workforce? Attention, adult interaction, and let’s be honest, confirmation, & validation!! In the workforce we receive feedback from our coworkers, boss, clients, and customers. It was in that moment that I realized I was waiting on my husband to validate my day(s) in order for me to be happy. How twisted is that?
I knew all the hard work I had accomplished during the day, why, in my mind, did it all boil down to his validation?
I mean, looking back the answer is kinda obvious, he was legit the only adult I was seeing during the day. I had unfairly put all my happiness in his hands. That was SO unfair to him; another human being can’t be responsible for my happiness. The only person responsible for my happiness is me. And it was in coming to this conclusion that I realized that I needed to take charge of my happiness and get the heck out of the house, interact with other moms, have adult conversations during the day, preferably before naptime when my brain was still fresh, lol! And that’s what I did, I started a Playgroup, and yes, it was mostly for me to interact with other moms, the kids having playmates to play with when we met up was merely a bonus, lol! 😉
Lastly, why wasn’t my husband impressed with the way I maintained the household, was I lacking in some way?
Now this one is gonna legit blow your mind! So, it turns out I wasn’t paying attention to what my husband felt was household priorities. I was strictly focusing on my own household priorities, which were a lot; dishes, making beds, tidying the family room, cleaning up the living room, setting the table (remember June Cleaver was my aspiration…and yes, I’m rolling my eyes too!). Get this, his main household priority, and one other’s couldn’t see at all and obviously one I was blind to for quite some times, laundry, specifically socks and t-shirts, that was it, and guess what June Cleaver was falling short-on on a weekly basis? Yup, socks and t-shirts! There I was busting my butt to keep the household looking immaculate, well, at least average, and I wasn’t focusing on the one thing that was a priority for my husband, and I had just assumed it was ALL the other things. Why? Because, they were all a priorities to me, in my naive extremely unrealistic ideology of what a stay-at-home wife, not mother, was supposed to be….so you see, it turns out the person putting a lot of pressure on me and who was robbing me of happiness was, well, ME!!!
3 Truths You Need to Know in order for your Marriage to thrive, especially with Kids…..
- Your spouse isn’t responsible for your happiness.
- You are not responsible for your spouse’s happiness.
- You each have different household priorities and knowing these can help establish peace within the home.