Top Pet Peeves about your spouse?

Editor’s Note: The vote was tight (I think at 8 p.m. only one vote separated Pet Peeves from Six Flags), but you guys have chosen to talk about spousal pet peeves today! (Don’t worry JG we’ll hear your make-out stories from Six Flags next week!!) So here is the topic:

I was talking with a friend recently about house cleaning, and he started telling me all the things that irritate him about the way his wife cleans. (He usually cleans because he finds her job to be sub par.) He had a lot of similar complaints to what I think Michael would say about me. (I need to meet his wife. I think we would be fast friends!)

So I thought it would be fun to talk about your Top 5 Pet Peeves about your spouse!

Since I frequently pick on Michael, I thought I would write what I think HIS top pet peeves would be about ME, instead of vice versa.

5. Load the dishwasher incorrectly - I don’t sort the silverware into separate compartments while the silverware is in the washer. I like to sort after when you put the silverware into the drawer, but that makes him nuts. Also I tend to put bowls in inappropriate places where they don’t actually get clean.

4. Use his towel - For 15 years I have stolen his towel. I just grab the first one I see when I get out of the shower. I find it impossible to remember which color I happen to have that day. However, I have finally remedied this particular problem. I bought him three navy towels with his initials monogrammed on them so I would always know which was towel was his. And even Walsh commented the other day ‘Oh I can’t use that towel. It has Dad’s initials on it.” The funny thing is Michael is so colorblind he can’t tell if the towel is blue or green so he has a hard time grabbing the right one now.

3. Too chatty in general - Michael hates having to wait for me especially when I’m chatting with other women about things he doesn’t care about. He gets particularly irritated after church waiting on me to follow them out to the car. He also thinks I talk on the phone too much. He’s never said that, but I’m sure he does.

2. My car is a perpetual mess – When he has to drive my car, like to church, he gets very frustrated by all the jackets, shoes, bags and sometimes old fast food wrappers in the car. I am really trying to do better. Right now my car is pretty cleared out, but it doesn’t always stay that way.

1. I complain all the time – He says that I complain all the time, and it usually goes like this: I start with “I’m _____.” Usually it ends with “tired, sore or cold.” His problem is he doesn’t know what I want him to do about it. He thinks if someone is complaining then it must be so the other person will solve it or intervene in some fashion. I hate to break it to him, but I just think out loud. I pretty much say anything that comes into my head. And generally with those types of comments it’s almost like a mantra, and I’m not usually aware I’m even saying it.

So what are your top pet peeves about your spouse? What do you think they would say about you? (It’s kind of like the Newlywed game: Predict what they would say about you.)

Side Note: A reporter at the AJC needs your help! Jamie Gumbrecht is working on a story about parents who are considering or have let their kids stay home alone. If you are thinking about it doing it this summer or have done it in the past, she would love to talk with you. You can email her at

102 comments Add your comment


May 15th, 2009
12:09 pm

MadMom, and your 26-yr-old son still lives with you….WHY?


May 15th, 2009
12:12 pm

40+ years of marriage and I’m now pretty much retired but my wife still works. Therefore I do most of the household chores as in grocery shopping, cooking, laundry, cleaning, dog to the vet, etc. Here are a few of my pet peeves about my spouse….

1. My wife, for some strange, unknown only to the Lord, cannot take off any kind of shirt or sweatshirt without grabbing the bottom of the shirt and taking it off inside out over her head. I’ve pleaded with her not to do this so I don’t have to turn them correct side out after washing/drying. I beginning to think she believes it would upset the space/time continuum if she would cease this practice.

2. As for driving, the proper time to put on a seat belt is BEFORE (my way) one puts the car in gear to back out of the driveway; not AFTER (her way) when one is already out in traffic. I have expressed to her that my way is far more reasonable and safer.

3. The microphones in mobile phones are quite sensitive. But she seems to think that raising her voice 50 decibels above normal conversational speech is necessary for her to be heard by the person on the other end of the line. When my wife is on the phone I’m sure people across the street, 150 feet away, can hear her even when our doors and windows are shut.

4. It wouldn’t be fair to call my wife a pack rat. She is more akin to being in acquisitions for a major museum. Periodically, unless something has incredible memories I either pitch it or give it away to organizations like Goodwill. MY wife saves everything. In case any reading this think I am exaggerating, she saves ties off of bread loaves, rubber bands from green onion bunches and asparagus, wrapping paper and ribbon from gifts received, ALL cardboard boxes, ALL paper shopping bags. I could go on and on.


May 15th, 2009
12:20 pm

My bad… above should have read…. “My wife, for some strange reason, known only to the Lord…”


May 15th, 2009
12:28 pm

Also on my list is that when I ask him a question, it takes him forever to answer…Actually, this isn’t just my peeve, it’s his entire family’s..And one other major one..When I’m going to the grocery store, I’ll ask him if he wants anything special and he’ll say yeah..That is his answer..

Donna Outlaw

May 15th, 2009
12:32 pm

Wow, I see I really am blessed! After two drunken and abusive jerks, I finally got a truly almost perfect one and we’ve been married 8 years as of May 5th. He still tells me Happy Anniversary on the 5th of every month and actually knows how many months while I’m counting them on my fingers…lol! The only fault I have been able to find is he seems unable to spot good parking places but I’m fine with that. We joke about it. We met only as friends and he was one of those people that you connect with instantly and never seem to run out of things to talk about so there was no nervous pauses and we were “just friends”. I had always had mostly guy friends and he was the first one I ever went on to feel something romantic towards and I believe I fell in love with his heart first. He wouldn’t know how to bitch, lie, cheat, etc if you gave him the instruction manual and I can honestly say that now instead of picking the “bad boys”, I totally appreciate predictability! We don’t consider our marriage as 50-50 because to us, that implies score keeping so we call it 100-100. We just click and none of the petty things that always bothered me with my ex’s bother me with him. He actually lowers the toilet seat AND LID and lets me hold the remote! He does any housework that looks like it needs doing because I have a bad back (it got run over by a tractor when I lived in rural Georgia). He’s such an awesome person and he’s my inspiration to try and be a better person because in my menopausal age, I can be a bit hard to handle if someone (like his crazy ex) does something to hurt my family and he doesn’t even see me as hard to handle! I tell him he’s blind…lol Bottom line is we got to know each other as best friends first so we got to know the “true” self of each other as friends do and any little imperfections only make us more interesting to each other. Oh, and I’m 54 and he’s 41! I’m a Cougar! lol When we met, he was 32 and I was 45 and I always joked to other friends after I turned 40 about having a 15 year rule and he just squeaked in…lol

Deep End

May 15th, 2009
12:33 pm

How about boinking another woman! You complaints are so petty..

Donna Outlaw

May 15th, 2009
12:35 pm

And I am a stay-at-home mom/Nana and so glad we do the 100-100 thing because I don’t think I could handle another relationship where one job was one person’s, another job the other’s. I love to finally be able to totally relax in our house with no pressure to be or do anything.

Donna Outlaw

May 15th, 2009
12:36 pm

And I hate clutter so our house is always neat and he helps me keep it that way! I didn’t want anyone to think we live in a pigpen…lol


May 15th, 2009
12:45 pm

Mey Pet Peeves of my Woman:

1. Always venting and then finding a way to have me be the cause of her venting .. venting is fine, but not when you’re upset about something somebody else did and then take it out on me

2. Not even giving me a chance to do something around the house … i’m a tidy person but what happens when you’re married to somebody who’s OCD,they don’t take a break and clean everything up every single day, not even giving you 30 minutes to do it yourself and then complaining you never do anything

3. Sex – it’s always at her leisure, need i say more … i have a sex drive, and would like to use it before i turn 50 … oh, and when sex does happen, she won’t even give me time for foreplay or to enjoy it … she’s done in 2 minutes

4. Always worried about our son … I know it’s a mother’s burden, but she will not trust anybody to watch him and has separation anxiety … we hardly do anything together anymore b/c of this, and he’s always there when we go out … i love him to death, but it’s got to stop!

I’m sure there is more, but those are my top few … men really are from Mars, and women really are from venus

Drummer Boy

May 15th, 2009
12:48 pm

I have i think 4 main pet peeves about my they are:

1. She is the type of woman that ALWAYS wants to be heard…but she hardly ever listens. And this said behavior of hers occurs for just about any situation major or minor.

2. Sometimes my wife acts as if she can’t function or make a major decision without her mother. I know if it was the other way around I’d be labeled a “Momma’s Boy”. They call each other at all times of the night,in between tv shows, during commercials….I think you get my drift…lol

3. My wife is the BIGGEST PROCRASTINATOR I know….I can’t stand that…and she always wonders why she can’t get anything completed…she never completes what she starts…

4. She would be late for her own funeral…I am a very punctual person…she always has to make her DIVA entrance….I could care less…I just like to be on time..

I think I’ve covered what my pet peeves are about my wife…. lol..I sure her pet peeves about me would be similar to some of the other wives on this blog… but this is too funny to me….lol


May 15th, 2009
12:48 pm

Emjay……that is me to a tee. I work in a job that requires me to live in another city for 60 days……because I only wear suits while there when I come home, all of them may stay in the garmet bags for months before I get around to “unpacking”. I do the same for vacation travel, if they are not clothes that I will need right away….they will stay in the luggage forever. I’m glad that I’m not alone.


May 15th, 2009
12:52 pm

reply to JoeV: I was not “irritated” in the normal sense. I felt if its said 10 times a day, is it really sincere or just a way to end a conversation out of habit. Sometimes less is more….but, as I said previously, I am not irrated by it anymore.


May 15th, 2009
1:06 pm

My husband refuses to THROW ANYTHING AWAY! I think it comes form being a military brat overseas growing up. He reloads the dishwasher (HELLO!!?? but wouldn’t load it the first time) and spends way to much time on the computer.

He would say that I leave clothes in the dryer and wear them as I need them. Put the wooden cutting boards in the dishwasher and always leave the key in the lock for the front door.

After both being divorced for a while, we got into our own “zone” and are still trying to work out the kinks of 2 household together. LOVE him though.


May 15th, 2009
1:17 pm

I posted my pet peeves now things I love about my husband -

1 – he actually enjoys cleaning and organizing things.

2 – he gave me a kitten for our first Christmas and a rescue cat for our fifth anniversary, even though he’s allergic.

3 – he will embrace me, kiss me, call me his pet name and tell me he loves me…in front of those friends.

4 – he brags to his friends that he married up (personally, I think he’s got it backwards…)

5 – He thinks I’m intelligent AND beautiful.

6 – He still reaches out to hold my hand when we go to sleep.

I could go on an on, but suffice it to say that my husband has many, many more endearing qualities than annoying ones and I’m thankful every day that he loves me and I love him.


May 15th, 2009
1:25 pm

Holy crap Drummer Boy, are we married to the same woman?!?!?!?


May 15th, 2009
1:26 pm

gotcha Honeydew


May 15th, 2009
1:41 pm

This has been a fun read today…especially with so many new folks chiming in….y’all have a great weekend!

J…your wife needs to let go of your son. I love my kids but have never had a problem leaving them to go out to dinner or even a weekend away…I am thinking he is your only?

Mara…number 2 is a biggie…I am allergic and would be ill all the time with cats…how does he do it?

I am all for the spouse who is not working outside at a job doing more inside the house. I am home usually 15 weeks per year as I work double time with traveling the rest of the year.
When I start to take back the house chores, it takes me weeks to get him to take them back when I am working 7 days a week and traveling. I cannot do it all. He would certainly prefer to be married to someone who handles ALL housework but is married to someone who can bring in a nice paycheck and cannot seem to do all housework while traveling out of town….gee what is that about? I cook most every night or pay when we eat out, ( he does the dishes and empties the dishwasher) clean the entire house, work in the flower bed outside, shop for all food and necessities, never spend any money that I did not earn, pay my share of the bills and do the laundry….that seems fair but maybe it isn’t?

This has been a fun read today…especially with so many new folks chiming in….y’all have a great weekend!


May 15th, 2009
1:41 pm

He is a great guy. Let me start of with that. BUT….I hate it when he leaves items out of place TEMPORARYLY and never goes back to move them. Our garden hose is still sitting in the driveway for 3 weeks now. It was supposed to be there while he ran inside and got a drink. Whenever I see him leave something out of place and says he’ll move it in a moment, I know that either I’ll have to move it or it becomes a permanent fixture where it lies.


May 15th, 2009
1:46 pm

Can’t wait!!!! The hubby and I are doing yard work this evening! :D The house is already clean, yard is getting done tonight…that means we spend the weekend enjoying eachothers funloving, crazy personalities!

Can’t wait, I am so excited.

This has been a great blog to read up on. Thanks for the honesty!


May 15th, 2009
1:51 pm

Mara…If I were a man, I would swear I was your husband! :-D My family lives out of state and when we visit it takes us no less than 30 minutes to say goodbye (even after he and my son leave me standing there and go get in the car).

I also tell excruciatingly loooong stories with every detail. I will say your brother called about an hour ago. Did you know (his wife) just bought a new car? It’s the same shade of blue as the dress your mom wore to church Sunday…no, not your mom’s dress but your stepdad’s tie. My coworker wears a scarf to work that is that shade of blue and she got it on her trip to Hawaii where she ate shark for the first time and…. Ten minutes into the story, he will interrupt me to ask if his brother left a message and only then does he find out what he wanted. LOL Funny thing is, my son is exactly like when it comes to story telling and he drives me up the wall because of it!


May 15th, 2009
1:52 pm

Motherjane – why do YOU pay when you go out to eat? You’ve mentioned that several times…….

Mad's Mom

May 15th, 2009
1:55 pm

Okay, like Mara, I will mention some of the great qualities of my “favorite husband”.

Thank you for the warm towel when I get out of the shower.

Thank you for filling up my gas tank anytime you switch vehicles with me.

Thank you for accepting all of the quirky things about the 38 year old “old maid” when you married me 14 years ago.

Thank you for teaching me how to share, how to argue while keeping my dignity and how to be really happy.

There is so much more but I hate to brag….


May 15th, 2009
2:13 pm

JJ because my husband took a BIG pay cut a few years back and I had to pick up the slack. Anything that is not necessary, comes out my “drum up some more business to pay for things” account ( which I have been lucky that it is doing well) . This also includes the vacations we take. I sometimes can make it into a working trip and he gets fussy since I do remind them that are with me on a a business trip and included them for pleasure….is this wrong?


May 15th, 2009
2:20 pm

motherjanegoose – Closing the pantry door is the easiest thing in the world, I just don’t understand why my husband can’t do it.

Plus, it’s not the cleanest and most organized pantry in the world and I don’t want to look at the mess. It’s either I clean and organize or it just won’t get done. UGH!


May 15th, 2009
2:22 pm

I’ll give some of his good points also..
He never fusses about any money that I spend.
If I don’t want to cook, no big deal we go out.
He pay for everything when we go anywhere.
He will buy the grandbabies anything they want, even though they
aren’t blood related to him.
If we are out somewhwere and I find soemthing that I want, but I don’t want to pay what they are asking for it, he’ll say to get it anyway.


May 15th, 2009
2:29 pm

Honestly, mjg, it does sound like you harp on about being the primary bread winner. I know many couples where the salaries are not equal (or sometimes one spouse stays home with the kids), and I’ve never heard the spouse with the larger income say he/she is the one paying for vacation/dinner or whatever, and I think the other would find it demeaning if he/she did. I know I would.


May 15th, 2009
2:42 pm

MJG – Don’t you have joint finances? Or do you guys have separate checking accounts? Actually, it’s none of my business…..I just wondered why you pay when you go out.

Becky – You’ve got a winner!!! Hold on to him.

Ladies, I’ve give just about anything to have a spouse. I am so tired of doing it all alone, you have NO idea. Now that the kid is off to college, I hope I can enter the dating world again and find me a GOOD man!!!! But I know there’s A LOT of frogs out there……..even so, I look forward to going out with them too…….


May 15th, 2009
2:59 pm

Yeah, for all of the little things that he does “wrong”, he more than makes up for it with all the right things..

JJ, I’ve known him since I was 17 (30 years now) and we’ve been together for 16 as a couple, so yeah, I’m gonna try to keep him..

I’m out of here, off to the mountains for a motorcycle ride, hope that all have a great weekend..

This name has been changed to protect the guilty

May 15th, 2009
3:02 pm

My wife takes FOREVER to tell a story. She provides way too many mundane details that have ZERO impact on the point!!!

She is slow to clean house. but when she does she does a good job at it

I could go for more frequent “1 on 1 time”

She could be a more careful driver, she has twice blown tires and done body damage by hitting curbs.

Me on the other hand
I doubt she has any pet peeves about me. I’m nearly perfect ;)


May 15th, 2009
3:06 pm

Keep your head up Hun! Strut your stuff in a positive, flattering manner and have a positive self attitude. You’ll find someone!


May 15th, 2009
3:08 pm

Good Qualities for my BF
1. He is always willing to help out around the house be it cleaning or cooking

2. He lets me be me, I don’t have to pretend I am something I am not
3. He tells me how pretty I am when I just wake up in the morning
4. He will go and buy cupcakes for me if I ask him to
5. He is the best snuggler around

As for the money issue, I have to say that I was married before and it ended mainly because of fights over money and I will NEVER have a joint account again….


May 15th, 2009
3:26 pm

Thanks Non-Stop. I’m going out tonight with some friends, so maybe, just maybe, I’ll do a trial run. It’s been SSSOOOOOOOOOO long since I’ve gone out. I hope I remember how to act!!!!

JJ - careful what you wish for...

May 15th, 2009
3:45 pm

…you have already “been there and done that” – how’d that work out for you? You seem to be a rather classy lady, so why mess up a good thing – as you know, there are much worse things than being lonely!

And, I agree with whoever “softly” chastised motherjane, she does seem to make TOO big of a deal about making more money than her husband – even if they do keep separate checking accounts, the money the BOTH make is THEIRS EQUALLY, or at least it should be!!!!!!


May 15th, 2009
3:49 pm

There’s a difference between being alone, and being lonely. I’m not lonely……just tired of being alone and doing everything alone…..I would love a companion, or a “playmate”…….

And it didn’t work out because the first time around, I picked a LOSER!!! My selection process is much more refined now.

Thanks for the classy lady remark. I’d like to think I am classy……you’ve made my weekend!!!


May 15th, 2009
3:49 pm

Theresa – there’s a topic – where are the good single, 45+ year old men?? Next Friday maybe???? :)


May 15th, 2009
3:51 pm


Smile and be proud of your accomplishments! Talk, listen and make eye contact. Show a man that you are stable in your own walk, but don’t mind having a hand to hold while you walk.

Also, NEVER eat salad on a fist date! Too messy and you can get stuff stuck in your teeth. :D


May 15th, 2009
3:52 pm

Thats FIRST date not fist.



May 15th, 2009
4:02 pm

Yeah I’v always wanted a “playmate” too…but my wife won’t let me get one!

Ba dum dump


May 15th, 2009
4:11 pm

T this is hysterical and I can’t imagine M narrowing it down to 5….the “too chatty” can’t possibly be true…he knew that going in to this marriage right? If I was writing C’s list (I have not asked him, but this is what I’d put)

1. I want anything that is on to be turned down: volume of TV, radio, computer, him talking on the phone or to me, E screaming anything gets a shhhhhhhhh. I hate it that I do that too.

2. Telling him how to drive. directions or speed of his driving gets a comment. problem solved when you live in NYC and no car.

3. Things not being as clean as he’d like it. Not that I’m dirty or leave dishes…just that if cleaning is going to be done, Mr. Perfection is going to stay 4 hours in the bathroom cleaning. I don’t have time for that….so when he helps clean I just give him a room to stay in and let him clean like mad…I’ll go tackle everything else in the house.

4. the state of my closet and drawers…messy, messy….he has no idea where the running clothes are, socks go, fancy clothes vs. just sit around the house clothes, etc. I don’t have a lot of clothes, just no real rhyme or reason to where I put them.

5. oh and telling him to wake up in the morning … well, whose fault is that Mr. 10:00 AM on a Saturday? Get up!!!


May 15th, 2009
5:07 pm

@ N& M “Can’t really complain about my husband. He is pretty wonderful. I do find that I have to help him find things he has misplaced. He is doing better about picking up his dirty clothes (which are scattered all over the house). ” Only wash what is in the dirty clothes hamper…I promise the first few times he has no clothes he will get the hint…..Yes, I do this to the children too sort of—I only wash the clothes I know they hate if the hamper and dresser are both empty. My children have been putting their clothes in a hamper for years.

My ex learned the way I described above, and his clothes were cleaned. One time after #1 child was born, he had no socks. I asked if they were in the hamper (the hamper was on top of the dining room table for reason that I no longer remember, but I am sure had to do with me being 2.5 weeks post birthing and doing the house chores and baby chores). He said “no b/c the hamper isn’t where it belongs” I pointed out that he had a better argument if the socks were in the hamper on the table and not done as everything that had been in the hamper was clean, folded and also on the table.


May 15th, 2009
5:41 pm

Re: Money. We don’t ever argue over money – there is no “my” money or “your” money. Whoever has cash pays for lunch or dinner, or the drink from Quik Trip, or whatever. He used to get VERY annoyed when I would forget to note ATM withdrawals, but with everything on line these days, he checks first before paying a bill.

I saw a movie once, where the guy was angry with his wife, and asked, “Why is it that what is mine is OURS, but what is yours is YOURS?” I always remembered that line. I have a separate account at a separate bank, but he’s a co-signer on it, and it’s a “just in case” there are any issues with the joint account.


May 15th, 2009
5:47 pm

FCM- Actually, he will pick all his clothes by the time he goes into work. If the truth be known, I probably leave a bigger mess around the house than he does (not with my clothes, though).

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! I am off to my favorite Japanese restaurant.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

May 15th, 2009
6:19 pm

I would like to welcome my friend Shay to the blog!! Shay, You’re cracking me up!! I can totally see C. I just read to M while he’s waiting for his plane and he said Yup! that’s C. I’m glad to hear from you!!


May 15th, 2009
7:12 pm

Yours sounds like a good plan, DB. Another I’ve heard of is having a family account, and then two smaller accounts belonging to each spouse. I have friends who did that because they would find themselves arguing over little items — she thought his $4 lattes and eating lunch out instead of brown-bagging were ridiculous expenses, and he thought pedicures were dumb, for example. The separate luxury accounts helped them limit the amount of total money budgeted for frivolous things and then split it equally, allowing each to spend from their account without having to negotiate these items or be subjected to criticism. If one partner chose to spend their entire “allowance” on lattes, that was their business and the other had to keep quiet. They also buy birthday gifts, etc for each other from that account, so the gifts come from each giving up other things they might want to buy rather than from the joint account. Joint splurges like dinner out, date night, or vacations come from the joint account. Overall, a good plan for them that keeps most money as family money, while leaving a little aside that each spouse feels is their own with which to do what they please.


May 15th, 2009
8:06 pm

So T when you come back up here to visit or for yet another award given to a Giarrusso family member we’ll have to meet back up at one of your old haunts and you and I will go over OUR lists of pet peeves in front of M and C….okay?


May 15th, 2009
10:06 pm

My husband, in an entire year, earns more than me. There are weeks that I earn more than him as I work 7 days per week. We have different attitudes about spending and saving and thus separate accounts work better for us. We each contribute to the bills by dividing them between us and then we each have retirement accounts and personal money.

We also have our own credit cards as he has misplaced his
( more than once) and I cannot sleep if I know a credit card is missing ( he can LOL) …guess it is OCD. This could be a plus for him as he will never have to worry about me charging anything on his card and getting a surprise bill!

My husband is a great Dad, super neighbor and hard worker ( at his job).
He grew up in a family that did not save a dime, bounced checks and lived hand to mouth…this is where he came from. I grew up in a family that had money but they were really cheap…isn’t that how it usually is…those who really have money do not look like it?

Anyway, I am thrifty and like to stretch every dollar as far as I can.


May 15th, 2009
10:08 pm

OOOPs…he is a hard worker at home too….once we get the switch kicked on, he can really get fired up! Sometimes it is just a slow start.


May 17th, 2009
6:45 pm

I have been thinking about what others have said and probably no one even cares but I did want to share this….due to my line of work, I can pretty much drum up business anywhere. It takes a bit of effort but can be done.
For example, we wanted to go to Alaska and so I checked in to see who would hire me….this is in addition to my regular clients here. We went ( and will go again).

My point is that when we are traveling on a business trip that I hussled up ( because we wanted to visit that part of the country) I would love to be appreciated: “wow, this is so great that we got to come to Colorado and see new sights honey….” that could be Boston or Maine or Florida next weekend for my daughter and myself.

When men travel for business, are their wives happy to be able to spend a week by the pool or at the zoo with their family in San Diego or do they just take it for granted? My mother never had a job outside the home and we never took family vacations like out family does.

I have oodles of hotel points and would hope that my family would appreciate the extra mile I go to include them on my trips when I could easily go alone. I also work extra jobs, when I do not have to, to pay for trips we can take as a family….this is in addition to my regular job.

Perhaps this is expecting too much, for my family to offer some appreciation and realize that I am doing this for everyone….pray tell. Is there anyone who would appreciate being invited to take trips all over the country?


May 18th, 2009
12:53 am

MJG: If this has been your work for a while, it’s perfectly possible that yes, your family is taking it a bit for granted — but isn’t that true of any family, with their parents’ jobs? For example, I pretty much took for granted my Dad’s auto dealership — if the car broke, Daddy would fix it — that was one the perks! I really DID miss it, though, when we moved 600 miles away and it wasn’t available any longer!

It’s one of those things they will appreciate more when they are completely on their own and they realize how far out of your way you went to give them opportunities to travel extensively. Meanwhile, at this point, they may just be thinking that having them along on a trip is your treat to yourself, not necessarily to them? If you don’t feel like they are enjoying the trips — don’t take them! At their age, it’s getting to the point where vacations with parents are generally not “cool”, anyway! :-)

My husband has two major conferences he attends each year around the country — we’ll go with him on one of them, the place that’s the most interesting (i.e., San Diego was great, we passed on Cleveland!) We plan a day or two before or after for family activites and touring, and then when he’s in meetings, the kids and I will do stuff he’s not interested in, such as museums or shopping. We’ve enjoyed the extensive traveling opportunities — but yeah, we sorta take it for granted at this point, we’ve been doing it for so long. It’s just what our family does.


May 18th, 2009
9:10 am

MJG: If your husband doesn’t really enjoy traveling, then why not just leave him at home? I can’t quite wrap my brain around the concept of not enjoying seeing new places, but I do know there are some folks who just don’t see the lure of discovering a new city. Sounds like you’ve got great opportunities for mother-daughter bonding, though!

Another thought: Does your husband have any input into the planning of these “family dog” trips? (our family phrase for tagging along). We have to really balance family vacations, to give the guys plenty off chances for off-the-wall active stuff, while giving the girls the time and peace to enjoy a new museum, shopping or craft fair. I generally appreciate at least one or two lazy days of vacation sleeping late, lolling by the pool, picnicing, etc. My husband, on the other hand, is one of those people who, while on vacation, is up at 6:30 am every morning because he doesn’t want to waste a minute of new opportunities, and is hurt and frustrated when the rest of us are groggy, slow and uncommunicative before 9 am. I love his enthusiasm, but I appreciate and love it more after 9 am! Honestly, if your husband’s just not interested or you have radically different vacation styles, you both might be happier if he has the house to himself for a few days, and you aren’t being continually frustrated by his lack of enthusiasm.

And if you ever need a traveling companion to the Lake Como area in Italy, just let me know!