Mom Says Family Can Live in "Filth" Until Husband and Kids Pitch in With Household Chores

One mom on Reddit gave her family an ultimatum: Step up to help with keeping the house clean or live in the mess you've created. It didn't go over well.

As if parenting isn't hard enough, one stay-at-home mom took to Reddit's "Am I The A**hole" (AITA) subreddit to reflect on her situation and get some input.

"AITA for letting my kids live in 'filth'?" u/Good_Ad6014 wondered. "I am currently a stay-at-home mom to 4 kids. A 10, 8, 2 and 1 year old. As you can imagine, the house gets messy if I don't keep on it constantly."

During the early days of the pandemic, she explained, things had become untenable. With a husband working remotely, two kids distance learning, and the babies being babies, keeping the house in order had become unmanageable—especially since she was responsible for, well, everything.

"This normally isn't a problem for me, I have to clean a bit more and help my older ones with school but all in all, not too much has changed," she continued. "My family on the other hand, seem to think being home all day every day is grounds to be lazy 24/7. I do not put up with this but somehow, my floor is a catch all. When I talk to everyone, or discuss chore charts, everyone agrees with me, then goes right back to normal. The older kids have completely lost their allowance due to this."

A woman filling a dishwasher after a party
Getty Images

As a parent, it's not hard to relate—and, unfortunately, this scenario is all too common: The mental load of managing child care, work, and household chores typically falls to one parent. This time, though, that parent decided to put their foot down.

"A little under a week ago, I told everyone it's their responsibility to clean," Mom wrote. "I would still wipe down stuff, wash the dishes, do laundry and mop/vacuum, but it was up to everyone else to put dishes in the sink, [and] clothes in the hamper, and make sure surfaces/floor are picked up enough for me to do my part." Sounds simple enough, but the family—yes, including Dad—did none of what they were asked.

Even with an uncooperative family, this mom stood her ground, and over time, her husband and kids started to come around. "My family is slowly getting the hint and are coming up with a plan to tackle the mess," she said, adding that things started to change when they couldn't find plates in the kitchen and started tripping over items on the floor. Then her mother-in-law stopped by.

"My MIL thought it was a good idea to make a surprise visit and saw the state of my house," the poster wrote. "She was disgusted and proceeded to b*tch me out for not doing my job. I told her I'm doing my job plus HERS by teaching my husband/her son and my kids how to pick up after themselves. She threw a fit and threatened to call CPS for letting my family live in filth. I told her to get out of my house. My husband has apologized but I'm starting to feel bad. AITA?"

Whoa, that escalated quickly. Redditors jumped to the mom's defense, confirming the obvious: She's a stay-at-home mom, "not a slave." At the very least, her husband and older kids should pitch in to keep their shared home tidy.

"ZERO responsibility assigned to the other adult in the house," one user pointed out. "Guessing MIL has a few gender biases bouncing around in her head."

It's true—why should absolutely everything fall on Mom's shoulders? Sure, this family might split child care responsibilities since she stays home, but when they actually ignore her plea to do the bare minimum and make her job a little simpler? Unacceptable.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles