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I don't drive, don't work and feel like a Prisoner.

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My husband and I are both stay at home parents. I word it that way because saying that we are both unemployed conjures up visions of kicking back and hangin out all day, but with four children and only one of them school age we are exhausted, always cleaning/cooking/parenting you know the drill. My hubby is also trying to start his own tutoring business, unfortunately so far getting only 3-4 clients a month, I am also a part time student, desperate to finish a degree and become job ready. he can drive and I can not, aside from being terrified of driving, my main reason for not learning is expense. We cannot afford a sitter/driving instructor and I am unwilling to learn with four children in the car for obvious reasons. I am quite comfortable getting a bus, however it means I am gone longer on an errand (shopping etc) than my husband would be if he were to just drive there. Plus petrol is in our budget and buss passes are not. So my husband uses time and money as an excuse to make it so only he goes out. Ever. I only get to leave the house if it's with everyone. The bottom line is he guilts me whenever I leave him alone with the kids, by pointing out he would be faster as I would be leaving him to look after them for longer than if he were to leave them with me. Let me point out we love our kids we are just so tired and overworked and desperate for a break that we've taken to taking that out on each other. We have an agreement that we can go out when they are asleep at night and take breaks (separately) but he drives off to a sporting activities at night and it's too late for me to go anywhere at night as busses stop running. So I just never go out. And I resent him heaps for doing something as simple as getting bread, because he gets to go outside all on his own. I've tried talking to him but he gets so annoyed that I would take two hours and he would take 30 mins.
Not sure what to do, sick of arguing. :(

I don't drive, don't work and feel like a Prisoner.

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Then your hunter-provider to your child-bearer-rearer needs to try HARDER to provide adequately, doesn't he? Or decide trying in that industry is futile and switch jobs/careers?

Re driving: what difference does being able to afford it make if you're terrified anyway? Is this why you're tolerating the lack of adequate hunting-providing on his part?

I suspect your husband is deliberately making you lose out, as a way of coercing you into wanting to face your fear and learn to drive so that you can go out too/cut costs. Truthfully, you getting to go out on an errand isn't about 'faster', is it. It's about you getting the bog-standard freedom of being able to get out of the house.

How can he afford to go out anyway if what he brings in isn't enough to run his household on? And how come you're letting him STOP you from taking a bus trip to buy bread or whatnot? What is he - your dad?

Assuming you're Brits: have you thought about discussing this contention in front of a counsellor?

I don't drive, don't work and feel like a Prisoner.

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Hi, thanks for your response. not Brits, Aussies. My husband has been made redundant from his industry five times in the last six years, we have come to accept that his industry is no longer secure so thats why he's trying to run his own business now. It's been three months, he was approved for govt assistance to try it out, he gets assessed at the six month mark and If they feel it still has potential then they'll give him another six months. After that he is on his own with the business or goes back on job seeker (welfare) again. We have both done a fairly even amount of time as the stay at home parent here, I work in the same industry and have been made redundant twice. That is why I am studying a new industry and he is starting a new business. He plays a community sport once a week and practices weekly which is free (both after kids are asleep so he sees this as no inconvenience), other than that he just does errands and sees clients.

Finance isn't really the main problem as I fully suspect that if my husband where working then I guess I would be doing even more of the parent thing on my own and I wouldn't even have access to a car, I can see me now trying to do the shopping on a bus with four kids. I would probably resent him even more for getting to go to work. I know that when I finish my degree which coincides with the rest of my children starting school things will be brighter, but at the moment we are both struggling to face each day, and I guess purely because I appear stronger my husband always bails before me, and refuses to do it on his own, if even for a couple of hours. we have just become co dependant in the struggles of parenting, exept I don't throw a tantrum every time he has a client or does shopping etc. You are right though, I'm just going to have to walk out despite his protests, it just leaves our marriage even more strained when he's all pissed off. Counsellors cost even more than busses and driving lessons.

I don't drive, don't work and feel like a Prisoner.

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Aus? Cripes, does that mean you're stuck out in the middle of nowhere, with buses passing only twice per day? Or are you in a city?

When you say, can see me NOW trying to do the shopping by bus with 4 kids - are you saying that when he worked set hours for an employer and/or but was by the sounds of it moreover between jobs, you and he used to do the shopping together with him playing chauffeur whereas now, suddenly, with his working all the hours from home he's more interested in getting away from the house and family in order to be on his own, meaning, all of a sudden you're chauffeur-less? Plus, because he's given you too many opportunities in the past during his redundancy periods to feel like your own motherly and housekeeper-ly load was half what it actually is, now that he's uncharacteristically working longer hours because it's his own start-up, you've newly begun to feel the strain of the fuller workload? If those are the case then, tough titty to him for having persistently 'communicated' to you that he saw that workload as belonging to you both. And well it should be with four - FOUR! - kids. Does HE have more than one job, does he? ...unless before you entered this marriage you and he agreed to conduct it on very defined His 'n Her lines and his past involvement was seen by him as an on-off temporary favour?

Also, if it's the case that only one of you can go out at any one time and that person is always HIM, involving solitary pursuits that don't include you and the kids, then, yup, he's being an inconsiderate, self-centred beep. Can we add 'thoughtless' as in clueless to let him somewhat off the hook or have you flagged this up to him too many times for him not to know how you (or anyone would) feel in that same situation?

And what do you mean, 'EXCEPT I don't throw a tantrum'. Does he throw one every time you try to assert your equal human need to go out? Is that how he 'stops' you? Well, the answer to that one, considering he doesn't have a reasonable leg to stand on yet assuming he *is* deep-down reasonable, is - LET HIM. In fact, why not thoughtfully give him a couple of teddies to throw against the walls before you exit the front door. :-p

It *doesn't* leave your marriage more strained because, think about it: if he's *not* pissed off, that means *you are*. So this is about who gets to be pissed off at having to stay home to look after the kids. Well, as being pissed off happens to be part of your individual marital set-up thus workload then it SHOULD be shared, certainly as much as is practicable. They don't call it Marital Partners for nothing. Teams SHARE. They share the good times AND the bad times.

Saying that, if going out takes you, say, 4 hours but him only 2, you are going to have to go out slightly less so that the time you each play Prisoner Cell Block R (- "aargh!") is more or less equal.

I think the solution here is for him to make finding the funds to enable you driving lessons (sans kids) a priority (e.g. spend less on [wait for it] PETROL!) because, if he doesn't, he'll be showing himself up as trying to take unfair advantage of your 'handicap', meaning he LIKES the fact your outings are held to ransom by the bus and bus fares. I mean, until such time as you learn to drive and no longer need to use the bus, what's next? - He doesn't need to use tampons so that means YOU can't buy any?!

Silly man.

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