Reader Question of the Week: My Husband is Inconsiderate

Reader Question of the Week

It’s Monday, which means it’s Reader Question of the Week Day! Today we’ve got a question from a woman who asks, what do you do if you have an inconsiderate husband, but you don’t want to nag? How do you put up appropriate boundaries?

Are there “consequences” that I can give to my husband when he’s been inconsiderate for lack of a better word? I know he’s not a child, and he’s truly a wonderful man. We’ve been happily married for over a decade and sex is great! The only major issue I have is the fact that he has no sense of time at all and this has lead to a few occasions where I’m at home worried sick wondering if he’s had an accident.

This happened again this evening: he left home at 7:15 to have our van checked by this mechanic who works out of his house. He should have been back within an hour. After 2 hours, I think, ok, they’re chatting. I text him. No answer. I call. His phone appears to be off (highly unusual). 3 hours later, I’m starting to worry a bit, but keep reminding myself of his track record. By 11:45 I’m in a full fledged panic, picturing him dead. Finally he comes home and says he’s sorry, his phone was out of range and he just totally hit it off with this guy and had no clue what time it was. Really?!? You didn’t notice 4 hours went by?!? My husband can be so inconsiderate!

That’s a tough one, and I would have been worried, too. So how do you make sure this doesn’t happen again, when he’s the kind of person who Living with an Inconsiderate Husband--How to Problem Solve Togetherdoesn’t think of you sitting at home, worrying? A few thoughts on how to deal with an inconsiderate husband.

Make Sure this is a Personality Issue, Not a Relationship Issue

This likely doesn’t need to be said in this particular instance, because this woman seems very confident in the relationship, and the sex is great. But when a husband is consistently gone for long periods and you can’t get a hold of him, and he doesn’t have a good reason, it’s likely good to make sure that it is simply because he’s forgetful or inconsiderate at times, and not that something else is going on behind your back.

I’m not trying to see adultery when it isn’t there, but many women have been blindsided, and it’s likely good to make sure.

If Your Husband is Inconsiderate, it May Be More that He’s Spontaneous and “In the Moment”

Taking this note at face value, and assuming nothing more nefarious is going on, some people just are more spontaneous and go with the flow than others. Many inconsiderate husbands, for instance, are actually just spontaneous husbands. For them, they throw themselves into the here and now and pay total attention to what’s in front of them. On a Myers Briggs personality chart, since we were talking about that last week, they’d be Ps rather than Js. Combine that with extroversion, because they like being with people, and you have someone you can easily label inconsiderate, because it’s easy for them to get carried away in the moment.

Likely this is a trait you enjoyed when dating. When he was with you he was completely with you. It was as if you captivated him. He’d drop everything and do something crazy with you. It was fun! But once you’re married, what seemed spontaneous and fun can also seem inconsiderate. So just remember that this trait in him also has a beneficial side. It does make him more fun, and it does make you feel more the center of attention when he is home.

Think Strategies to Solve the Problem so You Don’t Feel Like He’s Inconsiderate

So what do you do to stop the problem so you won’t worry? Nagging or yelling at him won’t work, but you can sit down and problem solve together.

Figure out a way to HELP him do what you need him to do, rather than to punish him for not doing it. That way it’s not “You’re being inconsiderate and selfish and you’re the problem”, it’s more “we have a problem because I feel nervous when I don’t know where you are”, and you can then work on that together. It’s just a different dynamic.

So what are some possible solutions? Maybe it means every night YOU plug in his phone to make sure it doesn’t run out of battery. Maybe it means that he sets reminders on his phone to ding every two hours to call you or text you. Brainstorm together! This way you’re helping him remember to contact you and tell him where you’ll be, and you won’t worry because it’s easy to get a hold of him.

Setting Consequences if Inconsiderate Behavior Continues

If being late is hindering you in other ways than just causing worry–ie. he’s never home for dinner, or you’re consistently late for appointments and events, you can certainly implement consequences for that. The family can go ahead and eat at 6:30 whether he’s home or not, unless he’s texted you to tell you when he will be home. You can put his food in the fridge to heat up when he’s home.

Boundaries in MarriageIf he’s not there and you have to leave to go to an appointment, you can leave without him. In Boundaries in Marriage, Cloud and Townsend describe it like this: one of the main ways that God put in motion to teach us things is the adage “you reap what you sow”. The problem in many marriages, though, is that one person is sowing confusion, but the other person is reaping it. So in this case, one person is sowing inconsideration, but it is the wife and kids who are bearing the burden by being late, or by not eating on time, etc. etc. To right the situation you just have to make sure that the one who is sowing the bad seed reaps it by instituting these consequences. It’s not about getting angry or punishing him; it’s just about setting proper boundaries.

So those are some quick thoughts. Recognize that if your husband is inconsiderate, there’s likely another side of that personality trait that you actually enjoy. Make a point to notice that! Try to problem solve together so the particular issue doesn’t rear it’s ugly head again. And if it’s a consistent problem, implement consequences so the right person bears the brunt of the behavior.

I hope that helps! Now let me know: have you ever dealt with an inconsiderate husband–or a husband who seemed inconsiderate? What did you do? How did you solve the problem? Let’s talk in the comments!

The Good Girl's Guide to Great Sex

Marriage isn't supposed to be blah!

Sex is supposed to be stupendous--physically, emotionally, AND spiritually. If it's not, get The Good Girl's Guide to Great Sex--and find out what you've been missing.


  1. A very good friend of mine has a husband that is late to every dinner. This has been going on for 30 years and she is still angry with him every night. He is a socializer. He loves talking to people and just like the man in this post, time gets away from him. She has tried everything to get him to come home on time. I encouraged her to eat without him. When he gets home, give him a big hug and warm up his dinner for him. She’s tried for 30 years to change him and it hasn’t worked. She may as well accept him the way he is and learn to live with it. I know it isn’t easy, but life isn’t easy.
    Lori Alexander recently posted…My Very Boring TestimonyMy Profile

    • Yes, I would agree. Just tell him “dinner will be ready at 6:30 every night”, and then just eat. If he doesn’t make it home, then he has to reheat it. It’s better than fuming while you’re hungry!

    • Really? Reheat his dinner for him. His consequence for his inconsiderate behavior should be a cold dinner. Rewarding poor behavior only encourages it and the guilty person becomes more clueless to what is the right thing to do. And resentment builds by not continually enabling bad behavior.

  2. Thanks Sheila. This post was most helpful. In our home, my husband spends with no notion of how much money is in our account. I’ve had to do some fast shuffling to make sure bills are paid. After 12 years of annoyance, crying, screaming, raging, etc, I finally decided to do something. When I told him my plan, he looked surprised and hurt, so I didn’t do it, only to narrowly miss bouncing a check. A couple of weeks ago set up a separate account for all bill payments, one for my paycheck, and left the existing one for his. Bills are paid half by each of us, then whatever is left from our paychecks… no one impedes the other. I’m still not sure if it was the right thing to do, but your last statement – “implement consequences so the right person bears the brunt of the behavior” – makes me feel a bit more secure.

    • had to come back and post again, as I was behind in my reading of your posts. I just read the one from Jan 6 (My husband won’t stick to a budget), and I just wanted to assure you that we’ve been through that. We did Financial Peace University when the course was offered at our church a few years ago. We were on the same page for a time, but I guess as we made progress, it gave a sense of freedom that derailed the plan… and here were are now.

  3. I read this with my husband and his thoughts were, why did she think he was going to be back in an hour? Did he tell her that or is she making assumptions. Checking out a car takes more than a few minutes. With travel time there, travel time back, what if the fix was something that could happen right then and he couldn’t get to the work for awhile. Brakes aren’t something you don’t get fixed when the opportunity presents itself. His phone was out of range, his car is up on the lift so he can’t go somewhere find reception and call So here is a guy taking his whole evening to get the family car fixed, he can’t communicate and he’s being inconsiderate? Maybe perceptions need to change, but it could just as easily be painted as him being considerate and her not being grateful. Sounds like some communication is in store.

    On last thought. (my husband as gone to work), my husband goes out and fights the world for us everyday. There might be an occassion where we have to eat without him but I won’t threaten him or downplay what he does by saying be here at X or we are eating without you. There a million things everyday that can come up that he has to take care of because he is taking care of and providing for our family and then to turn around and “put consequences on him” for doing that? It’s one thing if he’s stopping off at the bar on the way home. Another if he is taking care of his responsibility as a man to care and provide for our family.

    • Allison, I think the issue is more one of what is the PATTERN in your relationship? Your relationship obviously does not have this issue. But I think that in a marriage if a husband was consistently not coming home when he said he’d be home without any notice or texting, then that is being just plain rude. It’s not a question of “is he working hard for the family?” It’s a question simply of “is he being considerate?”

      This doesn’t sound like it’s an issue with you; it certainly isn’t with me. But it is for many women, and for them I think drawing boundaries and consequences is perfectly legitimate.

      I also think that letting your spouse know where you are and how long you’ll be, within an hour or two, is perfectly reasonable and is just simply a safety issue. When my daughter moved out, I had her and all of her housemates agree that they would always know each other’s schedules and text if something was going to change, and that they would always know where they were each going to be. Again, it’s just a matter of consideration and courtesy. If a guy is gone for most of the day without you knowing where he is, then I would certainly be worried, too.

      It’s just about setting up systems so that you can be considerate to one another, that’s all. Some couples don’t need this, but for some personalities it is very important.

      • To quote the letter, “this has led to a FEW times” hardly consistent over ten years of marriage. All I am doing is quoting what is written down. Also, this time he was taking care of the family’s car and did not have cell coverage. He was not “gone most of the day” He was gone four hours unless I’m reading it wrong. It’s also automobile situation. Let’s be honest, how many of us females know much about cars? But I do know this, my husband knows them and whether he fixes it or takes it to someone it is not taking an hour. Why did this wife not ask, when do you think you’ll be home? How long do you think it will take?

        My point being this situation was created as much in this wife’s mind as in the husband’s actions. I just disagree.

        And to be honest, my husband runs his own business and there are times I don’t know when he’ll be home because he doesn’t know when he will be home. What would happen if husbands got mad everytime we were late from picking up the kids at soccer practice, dinner was late, couldn’t have sex because we were ill with PMS, etc things that were out of our control. Life is messy and not always schedulable. I would hate for my husband to “implement boundaries and consequences” for things I could not help when it has happen a FEW occassions my mind was not focused or life did not go as I planned. What did wives do before cell phones?

        I’m not trying to be harsh Sheila, but this came across severely disrespectful of our husbands.

        • Allison, I didn’t mean to sound disrespectful, but in the last section I wasn’t even talking about this letter writer. I was throwing out a scenario: “If being late is hindering you in other ways than just causing worry–ie. he’s never home for dinner, or you’re consistently late for appointments and events, you can certainly implement consequences for that.”

          I think you may have read something there that I didn’t say.

          As for your husband never knowing when he’s going to be home, I understand it’s chaotic. But I don’t think it’s a big deal to have an agreement that every night at 6 he text and say, “I don’t know when I’ll be home; start without me”, or “I’m really trying to get out of here, and I hope I’ll be out soon, can you hold dinner?”

          I think that’s just courtesy.

          And yes, if we were going to be late coming home from soccer practice, I think courtesy says that you text.

          It’s just about courtesy, that’s all.

          • Sheila,
            I’m not trying to be disrespectful of you and your blog, but I thought we were answering THIS question. It seems to me you were the one implying something that was not there. This lady said this has happened a FEW times in a decade of marriage.

        • I clicked on reply but this is really just my general comment on consideration regarding husbands. His responsibility to his wife would be to call her periodically to let her know it is taking longer than expected to repair the car. Men are like little boys (some men…not all). His mother should have taught him to be considerate so he would grow up to show consideration. When a mother fails in not teaching this….the wife over time starts treating the hisband like a child because he is behaving as one. This kills a marriage over time. Nip it in the bud and stop being his mommy and get his butt into marriage counseling….he needs to man up.
          I might add….I speak from experience.
          Couple of comments/question I would like to add after reading some of these comments….should a hisband get mad if his wife has pms and not wanting sex? Or should he be understanding? When a hisband goes on an errand, car repair etc. not being able to call or receive his wife’s phone call because there was no cell signal….that is a lame excuse. Car repair shops and all brick and mortar facilities have land lines. If the husband was truly wanting to show consideration to his wife he could pick up the land line and call her periodically to give her an update on how long it might take to return home.

          • I’m sorry but what car place stays open until 11:45pm during the week? Checking out the possibility of adultery is more realistic to me, just being honest.

      • I used to have this problem a lot. My work day begins with a purpose for the client and a planned structure as to how we will achieve their goal. We have numerous skilled individuals involved with their puzzle pieces to fit together with others. Things don’t always go a planned and we will run over on time. I used to call close to the end of the day and say “I’ll be home at X o’clock,” so my wife could make plans. We would then have a series of puzzle disasters. I now DO NOT call until I am sitting in the car with nothing but traffic to keep me from arriving at the time I tell her. She still gets a heads-up earlier, but until I know nothing or anyone is going to delay me further, I wait to make the final call. If I leave the house for an errand, I try to remember to call if I start to run long on time. I don’t always do it soon enough (she calls first) but I try. It’s a matter of showing respect for her time and schedule.
        userdand recently posted…Hon, I’m Really Not Up To ThisMy Profile

  4. I was just listening to the section of Henry Townsend’s book Boundaries for Leaders where he talks about separating problems from patterns. Sheila, you brought up the question of PATTERN already, and I have to admit that I’ve not really thought about the difference between the two.

    Townsend says that when we keep trying to solve the same problem the same way over and over and over without results, it may be time to address the core issue of the pattern. In our marriage, I’ve found it helpful to look first at my own reactions and see if there are patterns I can work on. Then, if I decide I also need to talk with my husband and changing his part of an unhealthy pattern, I’ve already been through a rational process (he’s a total INTP and needs logic, logic, and more logic in order to hear me!) that I can communicate to him.
    Cheri Gregory recently posted…My One Word for 2014: oneMy Profile

  5. My husband is fairly regular, but he, too, has had a problem with disappearing.He also loses track of time when he is doing things. It isn’t just when he is out by himself, either. It worried me at first, and then I kind of got used to it. I asked him to tell me where he was going, but it never seemed to sink in. Then one Sunday he dropped us off in front of the church and went to park the car. I teach children’s Sunday School, so I didn’t notice that he didn’t come in to the church. between the services, one of the men asked me where DH was and when I didn’t know (and none of our kids knew either), he became very concerned. I told him that my husband does this sometimes, and he got very upset by that. When my husband came back, our friend let him know in no uncertain terms that this kind of thing was totally unacceptable. The next time he forgot something, he made sure to tell one of the kids (as I was in Sunday School again) where he was going.

    So, sometimes it helps if someone else besides you tells him.

    • It’s wonderful when others step in and stand up for us like that! We should be doing this more in community, I think.

  6. I really like your take on sorting out these kinds of issues as a team, with both parties looking at what works for you and what will help make the situation better. I know with me and my husband, he can be pretty spacey at times, and I’m good at organizing, remembering when things are, etc, so that is important to me. He wants to communicate love and care to me, but his mind just doesn’t work the same way mine does (it works super well at a variety of things, just different ones). So we talk about specific situations, and what I can do to help him do what he wants to do — be that call the doctor, remember our plans, etc. Since we come up with it together, I don’t feel like I’m nagging or being bossy, and he is able to remember things he wants to do and where he needs to be. It’s like being able to outsource things we are less skilled at. And it goes both ways — he’s really excellent at problem solving, and often I don’t even get to the point of realizing that there is a problem that NEEDS solving…

    • Great way to look at it! When you can own the problem together and come up with a solution together it’s so much more helpful than just saying, “you’re driving me crazy.”

  7. This happened to us, but it was me that did it! I went for a late night appointment (with a female, not male) and afterward we just got talking. There were no clocks in the room and we both lost track of time…until the RCMP showed up outside the door! I was only a block from home,but still got a police escort! We laugh about it now, but I still feel bad that I caused such anxiety for my husband! (And while I do tend to talk longer sometimes, this was the first time it has directly impacted him in such a big way!). I try now to cut things short(er!) and he tries not to freak out if I’m a bit later than expected.

  8. My husband and I have been together for 11 years, but married for 6 and he is inconsiderate in a whole different way! I was calling it selfish, but on the whole, he’s not exactly selfish. He’s very particular in his thinking – very here and now rather than long run – and it doesn’t occur to him to think of how that may affect someone else; if it makes sense to him, it’s done. There are little things like, he wanted a seasoning shaker to use for something else (I do most of the cooking, although he also enjoys to cook) and he announced, “I’m going to dump out this parsley so that I can use this shaker.” Well, I use parsley regularly (he obviously doesn’t), so when I said no he was confused as to why not. I actually had to explain that I use it all the time and I don’t want it thrown out. Or if I’m sleeping and he comes to bed later, he’ll turn on the bedroom light and say at normal volume (not a whisper), “Are you awake? Hey, are you awake?” It’s because he has something to tell me, and to him, he doesn’t want to forget so it’s logical to wake me to tell me. On that same line, we just gave birth to our second 2 months ago (we also have a 3 year old) and up until last week I’ve been on maternity leave. He doesn’t get paternity leave. Because he is the one working, and I am at home, he tends to think of it more like vacation. I haven’t slept in our bed in 2 months because our newborn cries when not on me so I’ve been sleeping in a chair downstairs with her on my chest, and when she cries, has a dirty diaper, anything – I take care of it. I’m not complaining, I LOVE being a mom. I still do all of the housework, so on his days off, or when he is home, I will ask him to hold the baby for an hour so that I can do a quick clean. The other day I did just that and I took a shower (it’s amazing how much I miss taking those every day like I did pre newborn). I’m in the middle of finishing the kitchen floor (the last thing on my list) and he wanted to go on his computer so he announced, “I’m just going to set her down here on the chair and go upstairs.” My only time to myself was essentially spent cleaning his mess, and he couldn’t hold on to her for an hour! Again, when I said no, he was confused. I haven’t been able to stop this and my irritation, more often than not, comes out as irritation at anything he does, or nagging, or yelling. I’ve been trying to press into my Bible and reading the Love Dare (again) and praying to try to change my attitude, but I am at a loss on how to make him understand why his behavior isn’t okay. I have sat him down and talked to him about how I feel, and though he apologizes and says he understands, it never sticks.
    Maureen recently posted…Okay….Ready ANY time now!!My Profile

  9. Been there! says:

    My husband is like this. If he says he’ll be home in an hour it turns into two or three. It would drive me crazy! I hate being late and I always took it personally (lack of respect) when he was late. Then he got a diagnosis of ADHD. It helped me to understand that he really honestly has no concept of time (not uncommon in ADD/ADHD).

    The best solution we found? His timer on his cell phone. He uses it at work to keep him on track. He’ll set it for 20 minutes and plug away at one task until the timer beeps. Then he can take a mental break and reset it for a period of time. When he leaves on an errand now he sets it to remind him to send a check in if need be. Now that I know that he really can’t help it it makes me feel more secure. He wasn’t doing it to be disrespectful or spiteful. Hope this helps!

    • So true! And I think that’s the point: often people aren’t deliberately being inconsiderate, they just have a personality that sometimes makes them get carried away with what they’re doing. Finding a solution like the one you did is so helpful and also takes the blame out of the situation.

  10. I think the bottom line is two-fold — communication and respect. And it really needs to flow both ways! When expectations are clearly communicated, things flow more smoothly. i.e. if the husband told the wife -or the wife asked- for an ETA of when he’s be back, things might have been different. When there is a big discrepancy in time, of course we are concerned that something bad may have occurred. This was often the case in my marriage, but my husband was often just tied up with a client’s issues and hadn’t realized the time. (Now he puts his phone on vibrate and I can text him to get an ETA if it’s past what he had originally said and we’ve just agreed that it isn’t nagging, I’m just making sure he’s safe and seeing if there is anything I can do to make his day easier since it’s obviously not going the way he had planned. The vibration doesn’t disrupt a client conversation or issue, but my husband knows that it’s probably me and he tries to take the next available free moment to text me a response.)

    The big wake-up call for my husband, however, was when I was in a serious life-threatening car accident. Never again has he looked at someone being ‘late’ the same way – now it’s always a concern as to whether or not they are okay. He also shows me respect by communicating that he is running late so that I’m not worrying unnecessarily. It really can be a safety issue – and so the respect needs to flow both ways in not causing a spouse unnecessary stress or worry.

  11. I describe my husband as a fish. He’ll chase every shiny object that comes into view. It’s hard to live with a fish! Especially for someone like me – and ENTJ. As, I imagine most fish are, my husband is often “late” returning from work. Usually, it’s because he didn’t leave on time, then he took side streets instead of the freeway, then he stopped to pick up a part to fix someone’s car, then he had to talk to Ben, then … the list goes on and on. It’s like living with Jeffrey from Family Circus. What could have taken 30 minutes, takes at least 3 hours. And there are times I wonder if he’s been hit by a truck and is lying in a pool of chunky husband parts on the side of the road. But alas, no truck. Just shiny, shiny objects.

    Of course, he almost never proactively calls or texts me about his ETA but, to his credit, will eventually respond when I text him asking for his ETA. And yes, I would worry that he’s having an affair, except that this is him all the time, every day, in every situation. He’s well-known for it. It’s very much who he is: slow, disorganized, distracted, inconsiderate, not malicious. So, obviously, I haven’t found a solution to this problem, because I can’t change his core personality traits. But as I’ve gotten to know him better (we’ve been married 10 years), and have done some research, I have become convinced that he has adult ADHD. Now, my mission is to get him to agree to be tested – and possibly medicated. I’m hoping that the diagnosis and medication will help him focus on tasks like coming home to have dinner with the kids…
    Courtney recently posted…Today, I Am Mom.My Profile

  12. Sheila, I think your advice is spot on. The post doesn’t say if the husband is sorry for the worry he’s causing his wife and wants to improve communication, which would be helpful to know. If he’s cooperative, there are lots of ways to address the problem – timer on his phone, etc. If he has a “so what?” attitude, I think your consequences are excellent. He may not be intentionally being rude to her, but he’s got a pattern of being inconsiderate. Setting boundaries (dinner at 6:30, unless you call, for example) isn’t punitive, it’s REALITY.

    My husband has a hard time managing time. It’s all very fluid to him. For quite awhile we were late to church every Sunday. It really bugged me – coming in late is inconsiderate and disruptive, but in his family… no biggie. So we made a deal (well, he wasn’t excited, but he agreed!) if we arrived late, we didn’t go in, we just turned around and went home. That put the responsibility and the result of it all on him. It only took once. Besides missing the spiritual aspect of church, he’s really social and missed out on visiting with his friends. He had to be on board with it to begin with (although, reluctantly) but he didn’t like the consequence, so he changed his behavior.
    Julie recently posted…Yet In Thy Dark Streets Shineth… HeadlightsMy Profile

  13. While I am not suggesting your readers try this, this couple reminds me of a story my Mom told me about my Dad early in their marriage. He was always leaving without telling her where he was going and would not tell her when he was coming back. Sometimes it would be late and she would worry and it really bothered her. He just didn’t seem to get the point. Finally after he was gone again and back late she got smart. She didn’t say anything to him. He asked her if she had been worried about him. Her answer was,” No, I wasn’t worried. I spent the time thinking about how I was going to spend the life insurance money.” Ever since he tells her where he is going and calls her when he is on his way home!
    Brooke recently posted…PlantainMy Profile

    • happywife says:

      I love this and your mom is a wise woman. Rather than nag your dad about what he was doing, she looked at what she had control over in the situation (how to spend the life insurance money 😉 I realize she was saying that in jest, but it really is how we need to live. I can’t change him, but I do have a choice as to how I’m going to let it affect me.

  14. happywife says:

    The reader here says: “The only major issue I have is the fact that he has no sense of time at all and this has lead to a few occasions where I’m at home worried sick wondering if he’s had an accident.”

    First of all I will say that yes, I’d be worried and annoyed by this and I would let my husband know how I feel when he isn’t communicating with me and I would ask him if he could please in the future be more mindful of calling or texting. But we all know that phones die, we lose track of time, things take longer than expected, etc, etc. Why do we always have to assume the worst? If my husband is dead in a ditch somewhere, I’ll get a call from the police. Otherwise, I need to get a grip and not let myself worry myself sick. I know that sounds terrible, but it’s the truth. And aren’t we commanded in the Bible to not worry about anything but instead take everything to God in prayer?

    But this is what I really want to say… If this is her husband’s biggest fault (as she implies), why choose to make an issue of it? It sounds like she has a great man… be thankful for all his great qualities. Why do we as wives always think that we need to fix all of our husband’s quirks? I’ve learned to let go of those things that really don’t matter. Dirty socks on the floor, spending money on things I’d rather him not, being late from work, eating things that aren’t healthy, giving the kids junk food, and so on. I have a good man and I need to accept him, faults and all rather than make him my project to fix. He’ll never be perfect so I choose to enjoy him right now exactly as he is.

    Yes, make your requests to your husband “Please call if you’re going to be late, could you please put your socks IN the hamper, I’d rather the kids not have soda…” But then let it go and enjoy the life you have with him. And honestly, he’s going to be much more willing to listen to your requests if they are few and far between and if most of your words to him are words of praise and admiration.

  15. I am the husband and it is my wife who does not understand the word ‘punctual’. On our wedding day she was 2 minutes late coming down the aisle and that is the closest she has ever been to being on time in over 39 years! It used to drive me nuts. I have often suggested she think about when she needs to start getting ready and then start 15 minutes earlier; this rarely works. It still drives me nuts but I accept that is just how she is. I love her dearly and know she is the woman God intended me to love, marry and look after. I have learned to go with the flow and accept that I either have to rush to get where we need to go or accept it that we shall be late. In fairness I have to say that I drive her nuts by not always calling her if I am going to be late back from grocery shopping or other errands. She is still the most wonderful woman in the world for me and I know she loves me so does it really matter very much? Is it worth getting all steamed up about? Certainly not.

  16. My husband loses track of time consistently as well. He’s very much an in-the-moment type of person, and things always take longer than expected (partly bc of his adult ADD). When we first started dating I would worry, but as I got to know him I realized he just didn’t have a good concept of time, and how long things take. I just started doubling the amount of time he thought it would take and worried a lot less. We did talk about why I worried and how I felt about him always making us late, or me not knowing what was going on but it didn’t sink in until he had to worry about me. I left my phone on the charger while I ran a quick errand, and then I bumped into an old friend, so naturally we had to catch up! I always keep my husband up to date, but this time I couldn’t. He never realized what it felt like to not know where a loved one was, bc I had always let him know. After that day he started letting me know when he arrived and was on his way home (from out of town trips), and when he is going to be extra late.

  17. I think I need to take the real version of the Myer’s Briggs… I lean more toward the INFP side… but everything is pretty darn close for me except that I’m not really an extrovert.

  18. I have been married to my husband for almost 11yrs and been together for 8yrs before we married. He hardly tells me where he is going or how long it will take him. I used to get upset before, but I have learnt to ignore him and focus instead on my kids to get past my anger. There was a time he was out with friends till 2am and his phone was unreachable. I was so worried that, I told him to make sure he has his will ready and to leave enough funds for the upkeep of his kids. (I am from west africa where if d man dies without a will, d family can take everything and leave the wife and kids out in the cold)
    This got him straight for a while but he has gone back to being his old self. Guess I just have to accept him as he is.

  19. Stacey says:

    Hey girls I need a friendly advice about dealing with my inconsiderate husband. When we used to date we spent about once a week having fun around drinks and I admit I enjoyed it. However before getting married we agreed that we won’t do it as much but it turned out I got pregnant and now I’m still nursing so I cant drink and honestly don’t even feel like doing it because there is more serious things to spend time on for married couples rather than doing that, such as focusing on our finances and think about our son’s education. The thing is he still want to party and have drinks even if I don’t so he has started drinking and going out with his friends and thinks it’s okay. I told him many times how much I get hurt when he’s out drinking and Im here, home alone taking care of the baby but he keeps on telling me that I need to be more understanding. I m livid though when he drinks out there and when he comes home late and I’m like why should I try understanding you when you don’t even make the effort understanding me? Moreover if you really love somebody shouldn’t you stop doing what makes them insanely livid instead of doing it over and over again ? I came to a point where I don’t even talk to him for one day or two after a drinking night with his buddies because I feel like Ive expressed my anger too much and it also took a lot of vulnerability to say how it feels but he doesn’t seem to care so whats the point of having the same conversation again and again when he’s not making any effort ?. I honestly don’t know how to handle this situation and I would sincerely appreciate your feedback!!What would you do?

    • I’m upset once again. My husband who had an affair in 2013, 2014 is still being inconsiderate. We have gone to counseling but don’t think we got much out of it. He recently went out of state to help someone move without discussing this with me first.The other night he wanted me to make Greek salads for dinner. He called after 11:00 and said he was on his way home. I asked where he was he said he was out with friends. I was mad and asked why didn’t you call or text to let me know. He said time got away with him. He came home drunk that night. I feel he is so inconsiderate. Our counselor advised me to be more direct and back off calling and and searching for him but he was advised to call and check in when he is late and hasn’t been upholding his agreement.I wonder if he really wants to make this marriage work as he needs to make a better effort putting his wife and kids first before his friends. I’m still having major trust issues as when he had the affair, I caught him in so many lies. We have been really distant and he is sleeping on the couch. I’m contemplating leaving him.

  20. Since when is a cell phone out of range in 2014? Maybe in 2004, unless he’s in the middle of the dessert that excuse just doesn’t fly with me. It sounds like an affair to me.

  21. My husband is often late. Most of the time I have no idea where he is. I have to text people to find out where he is. Say like if he’s scheduled to get off at 8 they let him off early and I will eventually find him at his “cousins” house. Sometimes he disappears for days to a week at a time. I have tried telling him how this affects me and my kids but he just doesn’t care. He assured me that things will change because he loves me and they did for like 4 days and now he’s right back to what he was doing before. It’s like this especially during the holidays. We won’t get to see him for Christmas, Easter, or other important holidays like that. I am so tired of the crap.

    • Miriam–that is really worrisome. Definitely. And that is not normal behaviour, and it isn’t healthy. I’d recommend that you read this post on being a spouse or an enabler. I think it really applies to situations like yours. I’m so sorry!

  22. My husband had an accident in the morning, but I only found out when we are about to sleep. He was even brought up to the emergency and the car is totally wreck. I was mad at him and until now I am. I can’t think of why would he not call me when he had an accident but call his friend to pick him up from the hospital and from work. I am in pain. I don’t know what to do any more. I don’t even know what to think. I feel there is something wrong.

    • Hi Karla, I’m sorry that you’re feeling so alone! It does sound odd, but perhaps your husband was just really embarrassed and didn’t want to have to confess it to you? There may be more going on. Can I suggest just sleeping on it and then tomorrow, when you’re both calmed down and not so emotional, just go for a walk and talk to him. Say something like, “I love you so much and I want to be part of the important things that happen to you so I can cheer you on. If you get in an accident, if you do something wrong, I’m here so that I can give you a pep talk and let you know that I totally believe in you and love you. So please let me in on these things from now on…” Just don’t go assuming things before you know the whole story, because it may not be what you think. Really.

  23. I read the comments here and thought this might apply to someone here. I’ve been married to the same awesome woman since 1982. I recently was diagnosed with ADHD. It explained a lot of the traits I have and I urge anyone here who’s husband has these symptoms to get a book on it like Driven to Distraction and make sure he reads it!

    Do you have these 7 symptoms of ADHD?
    04/04/20152 Comments

    ADHD documentary
    Do you suspect you may have ADHD? The following is a list of common symptoms of ADHD. This list is only some of the traits of ADHD / ADD and can vary greatly:

    1. Distractibility: Is he easily distracted and lose your focus when performing a task or in a conversation?

    2. Disorganized: Does he have a hard time organizing your desk, bills , schedule or anything else?

    3. Restlessness: Does he often have a hard time sitting through a meeting or class? Are you constantly moving your leg or playing with a pencil? His mind racing with thoughts continually?

    4. Procrastination: Is it difficult to begin a task, or does he start multiple tasks but never finish them?

    5. Chronic Tardiness: Is he often late for work, school, or meetings? Does he wait until the last minute to get out the door, only to find he forgot something and now will be late?

    6. Impulsivity: Does he take unnecessary risks with finances or when driving? Does he blurt out inappropriate comments. Does he crave excitement?

    If these traits fit, you should urge him to seek a diagnosis to be sure. Trreatment can turn your life around.

Comment Policy: Please stay positive with your comments. If your comment is rude, it gets deleted. Any comment that espouses an anti-marriage philosophy (eg. porn, adultery, abuse and the like) will be deleted. If it is critical, please make it constructive. If you are replying to another commenter, please be polite and don't assume you know everything about his or her situation. If you are constantly negative or a general troll, you will get banned. The definition of terms is left solely up to us. Sheila Wray Gregoire owns the copyright to all comments and may publish them in whatever form she sees fit. She agrees to keep any publication of comments anonymous, even if you are not anonymous on this board.


  1. […] Today we’ve got a question from a woman who asks, what do you do when your husband is inconsiderate, but you don’t want to nag? How do you put up appropriate boundaries?  […]

Leave a Comment


CommentLuv badge