Dad Upset That His Wife Refuses To Take The Day Off Work When He's Sick — She Tells Him To Hire A Babysitter Instead

What's good for the goose is good for the gander, as the old saying goes.

sick man pouting F01 PHOTO / Shutterstock

Stories of dads and husbands oblivious to how much work their wives do in the household are everywhere, but perhaps even more extraordinary is when the tables turn and the man still just doesn't get it.

Case in point: a couple on Reddit who are embroiled in conflict because the husband was forced to take care of the kids while he was sick… like his wife did for years when she stayed home.

The dad is upset that his wife refuses to take a day off when he's sick.

To hear women online tell it, we are in the midst of an epidemic of men who are a lot more like an additional child than they are a husband or partner. 


There are statistics to back this notion up, too. Studies have shown women typically do double the housework and child-rearing that men do, and unsurprisingly, women report burnout at much higher rates — 68% versus 42% for men.

RELATED: Husband Told His Stay-At-Home Wife She 'Does Nothing All Day' So She Texted Him A Play-By-Play Of Her Day


The couple at the center of this Reddit story illustrates just how deep this divide goes for some couples. "Over the last seven years, I have been the primary caretaker for my husband and my three children (7, 5, 2)," she wrote in her post.

That has continued to be the case now that she's back to work, including sometimes working overnight. "I am still the one who does the most childcare and household tasks."

Recently, her husband's work schedule changed so that he has one weekday off per week, and when he ended up under the weather on his day off, it caused quite a stir in the house.

Her husband was furious when she told him to call a babysitter when he was sick, even though he had never even taken notice when she was ill.

"Whenever I was staying at home with the kids and was sick, my husband would just go about his routine as normal," she writes. "He would leave without checking if I would need help for that day. There would be times when I was so ill I needed to call reinforcements, but I would arrange that."


So when the tables turned on his recent day off, she figured the same rules applied. "I told him that it’s his responsibility to arrange for care since he is the parent at home, as I had done many times when I was home with our children," she wrote.

You can probably guess how well that went over. "He has texted me WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU several times," she said. "I asked him several times if he had ever asked me if I needed help while sick. He keeps asking what is wrong with me."

@yourtango Split custody has a man drowning in his responsibilities, but his ex-wife is having the exact opposite experience with the arrangement #parenting #custody #childcare #reddit ♬ original sound - YourTango

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She stood her ground, and perhaps unsurprisingly, it worked out fine. When she came home later, "I watched in disbelief and AMAZEMENT as I saw my husband rounding the corner with our two youngest on the way to the park," she wrote.

"So there you have it, he was not dying, he was capable, he may have [defecated] his brains out this morning, but somehow he was able to persevere." Funny how that works.

Stories like this are becoming more common, even as more women become breadwinners.

Men are still overwhelmingly the breadwinners in most households, but the share of female breadwinners has tripled over the last 50 years. The number of households where both partners make roughly the same amount of money has significantly increased as well.

But according to a Pew Research study, that income parity has not even come close to replicating itself when it comes to child-rearing and household labor.


In egalitarian marriages, women, on average, do about a third more childcare and more than double the housework than men. Men work more at their jobs, however, but they also have more leisure time each week than women.

@yourtango You've heard of weaponized incompetence, but what if it's just the symptom of a larger problem that's destroying marriages? According to one therapist, it's actually a lack of emotional intelligence that is sending women to divorce lawyers in droves. #marriage #divorce #weaponizedincompetence #emotionalintelligence #wivesoftiktok ♬ original sound - YourTango

So it's perhaps doubly unsurprising, then, that people on Reddit had very little sympathy for this woman's oblivious husband. "Tell him you have three children, not four," one commenter sniped. Others suggested she come home and ask what's for dinner, or "So what did you do all day," just to twist the knife.

Nobody's saying it's easy to take care of kids — or do anything, for that matter — when you're sick. But unless they're giving their all to their wives when they're under the weather, men really shouldn't be surprised when their wives balk when the tables are turned. Maybe it's just the wake-up call they need.


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John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice, and human interest topics.