Post # 1
My husband and I got into an arugment as to what exactly a wife is and what a husband is.
We recently got married and I thought things wouldn’t change. He has wife expectations like : contributing to the mortgage and cleaning.He gets on my balls about it not daily but regularly where it becomes an issue.
I don’t really know what I need from a husband besides love, companionship and support. I don’t want anything financial from him. So I was very confused as to why his definition was different than mine.
Can you help me out: What makes you a wife? How are you a wife? How is your husband a husband?
I don’t feel any different than I was as a girlfriend or fiance. Is there something I am not getting? Thanks ahead for advice.
Post # 3
@bobsgirl2007: I am not a wife yet, but I don’t see anything changing. We will have the same last name, be legally bound to each other and be commited to each other for life. 🙂
The only things I think that will change are our last names…we have lived together for almost half a decade and I doubt anything except I hope we have some warm fuzzy feeling for a little while at least.
I think your husband is expecting you two to fall into traditional gender roles…I don’t think you’re missing anything aside from that.
Post # 4
Everyone has different expectations regarding roles and married life. That is why it is important to discuss these things openly before marriage. Some people like traditional roles, while others do not. I’m not sure it really matters to you what other people think it means to be a wife. This is something that needs to be worked out between you and your husband!
Post # 5
@bobsgirl2007: This is a little confusing. You want no financial help or support from your husband at all? And no help in keeping your mutual home clean? And you don’t want him to expect financial or cleaning help from you?
Bills have to be paid and that’s a fact of life; in most cases these days it takes two incomes to make ends meet. It seems only fair that each person living in a household should pull their own weight, and that includes financial as well as sharing in the chores of daily life – like cleaning, cooking, pet care, child care, lawn care, etc.
Marriage is (or should be) a partnership comprised of equal partners. Yes, love and companionship is great. But it takes more than just love and companionship to make a relationship work.
Post # 6
This sounds like a discussion that you should have had before getting married to clarify what your expectations are for finances, work, lifestyle, kids, etc.
For most couples, having an expectation that you share finances/expenses and household responsibilities is pretty normal and not an outrageous idea.
I can’t tell you what form your marriage should take and what kind of wife/husband you and your partner should be, but it should be something that you agree on. I suggest that you sit down and have a big talk with your husband to clarify roles and responsibilities.
Post # 7
his expecations don’t sound out of line. he wants you to help out financially (contributing to mortgage) and help with cleaning? sounds like he wants you to be working equally as much as him in this. like he wants a partnership. which… is what a marriage is.
Post # 8
We never had a discussion about roles changing from girlfriend to wife. Whoops.
We will have to sit down and talk this out some more. Thanks for the advice
Post # 9
I think both partners should contribute equally. But I don’t think that means splitting everything 50/50. My husband earns more than I do currently, and has two jobs. I do more of the cleaning and chores in the house. We don’t have kids and are both out of school so we both do expect each other to provide some financial income. He cooks because he likes to cook. I organize and plan things and run more errands.
Post # 10
- Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA
@Jennlee: +1. Exactly. You have to be a team and look out for each other rather than just living as though you’re two separate individuals who happen to live in the same house. However, that doesn’t mean falling into traditional gender roles, unless that’s what comes naturally.
For us, we both make about the same money and share all expenses, although I made far more for the last year while he was in school (and paid ALL our bills). He does almost all the cooking, because he likes it. I do a little more cleaning, because I notice the dirtiness more. I do more of the errands / scheduling / planning, because he’s a bit of a flake on those things. He does more yardwork and renovation stuff, because he likes it.
Most importantly, we fit into our own niche of contribution to the partnership by each doing what we like and do best, and sharing the stuff that neither of us likes.
Post # 11
Its just what he needs in a relationship vs what you need. He’s more practical… keep the house clean and bills paid… where as you are more emotional… love, support, etc. Thats entirely normal for men and women. Its not that you each don’t want both… but its not on the top of your list.
Theres really nothing to clarify, it has nothing to do with being a wife or being a girlfriend except for the commitment part.
My husband is the same way… clean the house, do the laundry, etc… Its not a demand its just his “love language”
Post # 12
@bobsgirl2007: Being a spouse in my book is:
90% showing up
2% ignoring things that are just going to start a fight
Whatever Mr. 99 needs me to be, that’s what I am…
He needs a cheerleader? I bust out my pom poms.
He needs a contractor? I dig out the tape measure.
Got an accounting situation? Here I come with an adding machine and my check book.
Have a caper to pull? Lemme get my stripey sweater and a burglar bag.
Being a spouse is so much more than just paying bills and scrubbing toilets…although thats gotta happen, through the years I’ve literally accomplished feats of superhuman ability…just because than man needed me to, and I guess at the end of the day, that’s the remarkable thing about it, he inspires me to be an exceptional person, simply because of the love we share.
Post # 13
Nothing changed for us between gf/bf, engagement & marriage…and I don’t think they really should in the regard that you’re talking about. Those kinds of things should be well established before marriage.
I don’t think he’s asking too much for you to contribute to the mortgage (you live there too…) or clean up. I understand there are different couples who have more “traditional” views on roles(like the wife staying home, the man paying the bills), and that’s fine, if both people are on the same page.
In our relationship, the kinds of things that I do (cooking, cleaning, working, child-raising) are the same regardless of me being his wife or not. We just kind of naturally came about deciding who does the majority of the cooking, cleaning, etc. It’s a balance. He works very hard and brings in more $$$, and while I also work, I make less, so I compensate by helping around the house more.
When I was on mat-leave and not working, I did MUCH more house work, grocery shopping, etc, but when I went back to work, we re-adjusted, and he started helping at home more.
Post # 14
Like other people have said, I think this is different for every couple. My DH and I took pre-marital classes before getting married and they asked us to talk about this, as well as do an exercise where you ask the other person why they want to get married and then the asker has to try and poke holes through that answer until you really get to the bottom of it. For us we realized that getting married was about being a family and a unit. a team instead of two people. So that also ties into what others have said about gender roles and marital expectations. The house needs to be cleaned and the bills need to be paid. As long as those are done between the two of us then we’re fine with it because we decided that we are a team.
Right now I do all of the cooking, cleaning and grocery shopping. But DH does all of the bill-paying. Once I start earning more income and working more then I imagine he will take on some of “my jobs” and I will start contributing more financially.
You just need to have an honest conversation about your roles and expectations.
Post # 15
- Wedding: August 2015 - Backyard Forest
@Jennlee: @lolot: +1
I agree – it’s about balance. I would ask your husband @bobsgirl2007: about how he feels. Are these things he felt prior and feels safe bringing up now? Maybe he feels there is a lack of balance. It can definitely be figured out – just find out where he’s coming from.
My SO and I have it really balanced. I don’t look at income at all – once we’re engaged I think we’ll merge money or budgets. I make significantly more money than him, but I only care that we’re both working hard. I’d argue he works harder than me (since he does physical work all day). We split rent and I pay for mostly everything else (he does pay for groceries about a 1/3 of the time). We tend to split on gas. He tends to pay when we eat out. This stuff doesn’t really matter to me, because I see us as working together, and right now that works for us since we are living with separate bank accounts.
I cook (he sous chefs and BBQ’s when I need help), we both clean, he’s more of the dishes and will help with a good deep clean. I tidy and get rid of clutter. We both suck at putting our laundry away. He drives (this is huge for me). He takes out the garbage. I grocery shop and take care of the bills. We do our own laundry (and never put it away!).
It works super well for us. I never think… I wish he would do ___ more. I know it works for him because he’s always talking about it to me and our friends.
We used to have very unbalanced lives with our exs, so we appreciate being a team.
Post # 16
@bobsgirl2007: Im not a wife yet either, but I can tell you without doubt that I, as his partner, will not morph into someone ‘new’ once we say our vows! I mean, I will change. He will change. Our ‘roles’ may change, such as becoming a mother and father, but our partnership need not change…
We have formed who we are today based upon a mutual respect for our individuality, and playing off our strengths and weaknesses. We have formed a partnership based upon contributing equally to the relationship, via finances, household responsibilites, emotional needs, and support. I think because we developed that kind of love, we are getting married, and forming a future together.
If you were x way before marriage, then I am not sure why he expects you to be y way now. As another PP stated, I too am confused at the fact that he NOW expects you to contribute to bills/cleaning, which would be my expectation all along. But if that was YOUR partnerhip before marriage – or how it worked, then automatically assuming it will change is not fair. If he is trying to communicate it to you now, albeit perhaps not saying the right things, then I think as his wife you should LISTEN, and compromise from there!