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Ask Patty: Living with a Lazy Lover

Ask Patty: Living with a Lazy Lover
Feel like you’re the only one pulling your weight around the house? Our relationship columnist weighs in on how small changes in the way you ask your partner for help can make a world of a difference.
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  “My husband never does anything I ask him to do around the house. He’s always sitting in front of the TV or making excuses why he can’t do this or that. I’m 5’1”, 105 lbs. and actually mow our lawn and take out our garbage ever week. I’m really tired of doing everything!! But when I confront him about it he tells me to get off his back and stop nagging him all the time. How can I get him to start helping me out?” — Kari (Loveland, OH)

 

Patty:

 

This may be a tough pill to swallow but you can’t make your partner do anything he doesn’t want to do and ultimately only have control over your own actions and behaviors. 


Ideally a relationship is a ‘democracy” not a “dictatorship” so it might be time to take a different approach. You mentioned that he perceives you as ‘nagging’ him which sounds like he is taking a defensive stance; with that being said pay attention to how you discuss this issue with him. So much of communication is more than061410VALLEYVIEW.GIF just what we are saying but how we are saying it. Studies show that how you say something (especially tone, and body language) often carry more weight than what is actually being said.


Have you ever heard that saying, you get more bees with honey? Making some small tweaks in the way you speak to your husband may make a big difference. There could be a possibility that he feels resentful toward your requests and perhaps by instead reinforcing the positive things he does around the house, you may have a better chance getting more help in the future. Either way, it is not fair or considerate for him to speak to you this way when, as a mature adult in this relationship, you have a right to share your feelings and receive support around the house.

  

A great book that touches on this topic is The 5 Love Languages by Marriage Counselor, Dr. Gary Chapman. The book maintains that couples often find their ‘love tank on empty’ because they are speaking two different languages when it comes to their needs and desires in their relationship. As long as you two can speak openly and in a non-attacking or demanding way, you have a better chance to make more progress in the future.

 

 

Patty Brisben -

Patty Brisben is the CEO and Founder of Pure Romance. She is Cincy Chic's relationship columnist, and you can send her an e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


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