I’m a grateful woman, most of the time. There are times when I can take people for granted, I’m human. I forget to say thank you or don’t show my appreciation enough. Then, there are those times when I’m really not grateful, not appreciative — not because I’m evil; I just didn’t want the help.
This letter is for husbands everywhere who help a little too much. Please feel free to copy and send to a too-helpful husband you may know.
Love of my life. You are an awfully good husband. You’re attentive, caring and nurturing. A wonderful father. Most importantly, you love to help. You enjoy it. You say it makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. I would hate to be the one to take all those warm and fuzzy feelings away from you but, please, stop helping.
I hit the jackpot when I met you, I really did. You realize that being a stay-at-home parent is not an easy job. It’s tiring, and sometimes it will suck the life right out of you. So even though you’ve had a hard day at the office, you’ll come home and finish cleaning up the house.
I used to ignore it when you’d cook and forget to wash the pans, just putting them back in the cabinets. Contrary to popular belief, a good rinse doesn’t really clean silverware all that well. There has to be soap and a sponge involved. I appreciate the fact that you realize that I’ve been on my feet all day and that I might not want to stand at the sink and wash dishes but please, don’t help. Repetitive motion is good for me. It will help prevent osteoporosis, and you wouldn’t want me to get that, now would you?
When I do the grocery shopping, please help me bring in the bags and feel free to leave when you’re done. I really don’t need the help putting things away. There’s a method to my madness. It helps me tell you exactly where the crackers are when you’ve looked everywhere and can’t find them. Also, just as an aside, don’t forget the gallon of milk in the trunk. The smell of spoiled milk, spilled in a car trunk, lingers just a little bit.
On laundry day, I am most grateful that you will get up, round up the laundry and drag it all the way down to the basement for me. You’re awesome for doing that! Once in the basement, feel free to leave it there. There’s no need for you to overload the washer, forget to put in the detergent and have the clothes come up smelling worse than when they went in. You know I hate doing laundry — I would rather eat a teenaged boy’s toe jam then do it. I know you’re just trying to spare me the ordeal but please, don’t help.
There are so many other ways that you could help me, husband. You could walk the dog, make sure the trash is empty every morning, keep the faucets from dripping and the filters changed. You could take the children out for ice cream or backpacking through Europe as long as I get to stay at home. You could even help me by not helping at all.
Your Loving and Grateful Wife
— Michelle Matthews-DeLorge
Michelle Matthews-DeLorge graduated from George Washington University with a B.A. in criminology. Her love of forensics has managed to seep into quite a few of her flash fiction pieces. A self-professed movie and TV snob, she also has an encyclopedic knowledge of all things musical. Before kids, she was a paralegal and an aspiring novelist. Today, she’s a stay-at-home mom and an aspiring novelist. When she’s not chasing twin toddlers, a kindergartener or catching up on the latest tween drama, she’s blogging at “Scattered Wrecks.” Her writing has been featured multiple times on BlogHer and Mamapedia. She lives in Northern Virginia with her husband and blended family of five.