Lazybones: What do you do if your Husband does not get off the Couch?

Signs of a lazy man

“I got married only 2 years ago, but I am seriously considering a divorce. We met at university and he was a normal guy. Now I look at my husband and I don’t understand how I couldn’t have noticed how lazy he was.

He works on a free schedule. If he wants, he goes to work, but if he does not he sleeps until lunch. Naturally, because of such sloppiness, his income leaves much to be desired. He does not want to look for a permanent job and says that the current work suits him. He doesn’t help me around the house. Every day the same thing happens. If he is not at work, he sits at the computer all day, while there are a lot of dirty dishes and scattered things around the house. I hear one answer to all my claims  – “if it does not suit you, do it yourself.” I am not strong enough. I understand that I’m turning into a free housekeeper for my husband. I don’t want to live with him if he is going to be so lazy!”

– Veronica, 25

The constant laziness of a loved one always affects the whole family. A man may suddenly decide to give up overcoming life’s difficulties and create a  reluctance to make any effort to do something. From the psychological point of view, pathological laziness is characterized as a bad habit that prevents a person from self-development. [1]

The loafer will not lift a finger to improve his financial situation, to compete for the best position at work, to develop relations with a partner or to make general leisure interesting. Naturally, it is difficult to live and raise children with such an idle person.

A lazy man:

  • considers that housework is a purely female duty, so he is not involved in everyday chores at all;
  • often does not have a permanent job and does not aspire to getting one;
  • always postpones for later even important matters;
  • passively rests;
  • doesn’t want to earn more because he thinks he’s already doing a lot;
  • blames everyone around him for his failures and failed career, but he never blames himself;
  • has no serious hobbies;

can only make grandiose plans and give away “valuable” advice to everyone around, but he does nothing to achieve his own goals. [2]

Causes of laziness in men

No one is born as a lazybones. You become like this due to external or internal factors. A man can find a lot of excuses for his reluctance to do something. But in fact he lacks initiative and cannot be relied upon.

Psychologists highlight several reasons why a man may be lazy:

  1. Learned behavior pattern

People adopt the model of a “normal” family from their parents. If the man grew up in a family where his mother took on all the care of the house, he would most likely expect the same from his wife. In fact, in the personality of his favored one, a man wants to see his mother, who will solve all his problems. The husband becomes lazy and selfish because he does not know and does not understand that the family should have the other “laws.”

  1. Lack of motivation and goals in life

Psychologists agree that laziness often becomes a consequence of low motivation to achieve a goal. It is not so important what kind of goal it is — to help his wife in household matters or to move up the career ladder. A lazy man is grateful for small favors and sees no point in making even the slightest effort to change his life for the better. [3]

  1. Lack of interest in activities

If a man is engaged in an unstimulating activity, there is a risk that laziness will sooner or later win. The work he doesn’t love is a lot of stress and gives rise to a complete lack of motivation to do anything else. He develops an understanding that there is no need to waste any energy on an activity that causes disgust. [3]

  1. Self-doubt and fear

Laziness often becomes a reliable protective armor that covers self-doubt and fear of any new endeavors. Why look for a well-paid job if it is possible to fail in the new business? Arguing in this way, the man is lazy and does not attempt to change anything. It is easier for him to lie on the sofa because it is safer — he feels very comfortable with no risk of failure.

Lazy husband: In what cases is the wife to blame?

“My husband and I have been married for 15 years. We have a 12-year-old son. Every minute I keep this up makes it worse. I feel like a housekeeper, not a wife and mother.

I have two men in the house, but none of them will lift a finger to do anything around the house. They live with board and lodging — they don’t eat if I don’t set the table, they can live in their dirty clothes if I don’t have time to wash and iron them. It is difficult to find more lazy men than my husband and son. I can’t say they’re busy working outside the house. My husband works for slave wages, without even half trying. Whereas my son studies very poorly and spends all his free time playing video games.

I understand that I have spoiled them to the extreme. Calm conversations do not help. The two of them show absolutely no initiative and gratitude. Do I have to accept that my husband and son are lazy or should I do something?”

– Irina, 40

It is no wonder that male laziness upsets women so much. However, in some cases, women exacerbate the situation, cultivating an attitude in their husband of a complete lack of initiative and unwillingness to make the slightest effort to achieve a goal. It is difficult to make the lazybones work when not the most “healthy” relationships reign within the family.

What models of female behavior in marriage affect the fact that the husband becomes chronically lazy and parasitic?

Self-sacrifice and obsessive care

Many women set themselves the goal of providing their husband with the best possible “living environment” thinking that it is wonderful to be caring and painstaking. However, sometimes this crosses the boundaries of what is permissible — a woman takes  everything upon her fragile shoulders. She earns while her lazy husband “seeks his purpose in life” or just spends time in front of the TV. It is often the woman who teaches her husband to live with food and lodging provided. The man understands that his better half copes with everything competently. Why then help her? He gets used to doing nothing.

Marriage is  teamwork and all responsibilities must be shared between husband and wife in equal proportions.

Unfounded accusations of “doing nothing”

The husband comes home from work in a frazzled state, and right at the gate his angry wife pounces on him with reproaches “you do nothing around the house.” The man receives accusations of laziness and a loud scandal instead of a delicious dinner and warm hugs. It completely knocks down his good intentions to help. This pattern of behavior is sometimes apparent in women on maternity leave.

Indeed, maternity leave is not the easiest period in a woman’s life. However, it is important to look at the situation objectively. If the husband works for days on end, so that his family does not want for anything, he also gets tired. The fact that he does not wash the floors when he comes home in the evening is not laziness or selfishness. And baseless accusations will not motivate him to help more with the household tasks.

Constant criticism of inability

“You earn too little,” “you’ve achieved nothing in life,” “you’re not a husband, you’re a whiner and lazybones” — such criticisms will humiliate a man. At the very least, it’s unwise to constantly harass a husband and accuse him of the inability to earn money. He takes such criticism desperately. Sooner or later, he will begin to be idle. Why should I try when my wife always finds something to complain about?

If a husband goes out of his way to succeed in a career, a woman should understand that constant criticism is not the best support to him, and it will certainly undermine his self-belief.

To calm down or "treat": what do you do if the husband is lazy?

A woman who has set herself the goal to “re-educate” her lazy husband will have to put in a lot of effort and be very patient. First of all, it is necessary to find the reason why her idle husband does not work and does not help around the house. Is it a marriage model of his mother-father’s relationship, or a defensive reaction to your constant criticism? By and large, the fight against male laziness is like seeking a cure for a disease. There is no point in getting rid of symptoms until the cause of the disease is known.

You can continue to criticize your husband, blackmail him with divorce or beg him to correct himself, and he may change his behavior. However, it is unknown how long his endurance and willpower will last. It is not easy to make a lazy man work if he is not used to doing it. A peaceful dialogue would be a more productive solution to the problem. Talk to your husband about why he is not looking for a new job and what prevents him from achieving his goals. Ask him how he sees the distribution of family responsibilities. If your husband is open to dialogue and shows a sincere desire to change, try to support him in subsequent actions. Discuss in which direction to go further and convince the man that he can always count on your support. His desire, coupled with your patience, will help to overcome any obstacles.

When laziness is a learned behavior pattern, you can correct the situation by embarking upon the 7Spsy behavior modification course. This is a patented technique based on the theories of I.P. Pavlov, B.F. Skinner, A.A. Ukhtomsky, and others.  

The course will help you understand the problem and how unproductive and destructive laziness is. You will be able to change the pathological behavior pattern which creates laziness and prevents you from being proactive and more workable. Replacing negative attitudes with positive ones gives a huge boost to personal development and victory over one’s laziness.

The 7Spsy Behavior Modification Technique training is designed for up to six weeks. The training takes place remotely in strict confidentiality mode. A man receives recommendations from a psychologist by phone, e-mail, and online chats. He need not tell his colleagues and friends that he is participating in the training. This is important because it is often difficult for men to admit to their weaknesses and vices.

Information from this website cannot be used for self-therapy and self-diagnostics. 

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