She wrote to us, ‘We live in the same house and can go days without saying a word to each other, most days he is gone before I’m up and home long after I’m asleep’. Another said, ‘He is always exhausted by the time he gets home, we don’t have date nights, occasionally go out as a family (once a month) to a restaurant but not much else!’ A third one said, ‘I do wonder sometimes why we are together, my husband though self-employed works constantly, even when is at home after a long day at work, sometimes even on weekends.’ Many husbands come home late from work and they could be over ambitious and or they could be loathing getting back home because of a nagging wife.
One of the partners working late causes a lot more arguments than it once did. Breakdown of the joint-family system has made it tougher for the wives waiting at home to manage such long hours and the accompanying responsibility of the household that falls on them because of it. While many do have a routine through the day, they do crave adult company as evening approaches or have someone they can at least share their day’s happenings with.
But the menfolk station themselves on the couch, often with a beer can at hand complaining of a bad day at work. So even when they do come home, they are not there that way. Sometimes they cite an official dinner and come way after the household has plopped into bed. This may start as an occasional thing but gets more frequent. A 7 pm time becomes 7.30 and then gets further pushed to 8.30, even 9 pm. While you do understand the importance of a career and job but this constant wait gets on everyone’s nerves. Frankly speaking, it is a matter of time before this explodes and leads to a huge argument. When work interferes with love havoc is inevitable. So, what can you do to prevent that? How can you make your husband come home sooner without pushing it? Read on to know.
Why Do Husbands Come Home Late Often?
“My husband comes home late every day and I have tried every trick in my box but things are the same,” this is something you must have heard often. There could be many reasons why your husband uses his home as a motel and clocks in only for bed and breakfast. He uses the facilities, freshens up and leaves before you have even had your morning cuppa. Those conversations where you discuss trivial but cute everyday stuff; when you discuss friends and relatives or simply enjoy the new flower that has blossomed in the pot in the verandah are missing and whether he feels distant from you or not, you are sure you do so. We will discuss some probable reasons for which your husband is coming home late.
1. Their career could be one big reason
Maybe your husband is almost due for promotion, he is over ambitious and he is working late because he wants it to come through. Maybe he is taking up extra work to up his skills for a better position. Perhaps his boss, the owner’s relative heaps some of his work on him and he has to pull the slack. It is a crazy rat race out there and most men feel that they are doing the equivalent of two jobs in one and that they have no choice. If they don’t someone will and they will lose their job. Assess whether his career needs that kind of time and energy, speak to him understand his goals and get a sense of timeline from him. How late is too late for your husband to stay out? Have a discussion. If you think that these long hours are justified for the present time discuss what his plans for the future are. Explain to him about the imbalance it is causing and that you are struggling with it even though you do understand. You must support him in this but also explain the fact how you and the family are missing out on him and he, on this precious time with them. When work interferes with love you should take these sensible steps.
2. Friends can also make him stay away from home
If your husband is coming home late you could blame his friends. Most men love their boy time. It could be about watching that cricket match, or having that pint of beer after work or simply a workout session at the gym or a run at the park. One beer turns into three, a simple quick coffee gets extended into dinner, a workout session becomes about catching up with other friends later. How often do friends turn out to be the reason for him turning home late? If it is often, then you must speak to him about it.
Instead of attacking him, you can tell him that you need this timeout with your friends too and that both of you should make it a point to mark it in the calendar. Suggest that you can schedule date nights where you can either call your parents or he can call his and the two of you can have that glass of wine or maybe workout together. This way you can cut the number of days he meets them and offer a family outing. Make sure they are fun for both of you when you do this.
3. Figure if he is addicted
If your husband stays out late, binge drinking or smoking, because at home you will control the number of pegs he will have, then this is a cause of concern. We had an email from a husband who had the habit of having three quick drinks before he headed home every single evening. He asked us for help as he wanted to get out of this habit. Your husband could be suffering from other addictions as well, porn, drugs, etc., and perhaps not being able to garner the courage to discuss his issues with you? Remember it is easier to hide addictive behaviors than admit them, perhaps he is in denial of it all together because he is embarrassed about it? We got this story of a wife who helped her husband out of her addiction by loving him unconditionally.
What if you are helping him in his addiction without knowing by pitching in with the extra money or taking over more household tasks then is it fair? Learn to watch out for the signs and offer to help him without being demeaning or judgmental. Set boundaries, and insist on honesty. You can also use your online private professional help for this by clicking here. You can also look for support groups in your locality and encourage him to join those.
Related reading: 10 ways to get your husband to quit smoking
4. He wants to escape talking to you
There might be some pending issue at home that requires discussion, and he may be trying to avoid it. Maybe you have asked for something and he is not comfortable giving it and cannot tell that so honestly and hence keeps away. Maybe he has done something wrong and is scared that you might give him/her hell. Maybe he wants to avoid intimacy and had decided to avoid you to avoid it. What if he is buying time to put his view across, or he may just not want to talk to you at all. While there is always a very good reason women nag, men tend to avoid it at all costs even if it means coming home when you are asleep or too tired to argue with him. You can brainstorm and figure out what is it about your interpersonal relationship that is keeping him away and work on it. Here is a list of things that generally annoy men about their women. The good news is if you can help resolve that issue he will be back to his normal self in no time. However, this kind of behaviour will die soon as the issue resolves. And if your husband is coming home late he could be changing his routine soon.
5. He does not want to share household chores
How working too much might impact your marriage? This one is a classic, isn’t it? Perhaps he does not want to help you around the house. Maybe he is expected to put the baby to sleep in the night or do the dishes. If he doesn’t feel like doing it, it is convenient to come home late when the dishes are done and the baby is sound asleep. Reason it out, and if it still doesn’t work, put the baby to sleep and you must sleep too; leaving the dirty dishes in the sink. Wicked, yes. If the husband comes back home late this could be one reason. Here are ten ways to deal with a lazy husband and make them move their ass around the house.
You can also get your kids to help you pitch in. They can and should be taking responsibilities too. It makes them feel nice and grown-up. Give it a try. Once the kids start helping, your husband might stop coming home late and would want to spend more time with his family.
Related reading: Signs your husband is having an affair
6. It could be another woman
Extramarital affairs are more common than you think. Just because your husband comes home late is not a sign that he is having an affair. But if he does have another woman in his life, watch out for the signs which have been summed up in the related article right above.
What Can You Do If Your Husband Comes Home Late?
There will be many reasons for him to be out till late– work, office parties, social get togethers, his men friends, etc and it is natural for you to feel resentful if you are stuck at home but it is important to get to the bottom of the issue to resolve it. Check on the tips below.
1. Ask him upfront
The first rule to follow is to ask, and not to conclude. Try and understand what is the reason for your husband’s late entry at home from work. Remember complaining will make an already tired spouse even crankier or may shut him down totally. First, you must tell him that not having him around is making you extremely sad just because you miss his company. You miss his voice, his smell and you miss not having him at the dining table. Also, speak about some sweet memories of the past and use this opportunity to take him to a time when both of you were more relaxed. And then very gently ask him what’s happening at work and otherwise. Why is he devoting so much time at work (if he cites that as a reason)? Or ask him if it is something about the two of you? Is it something you said that hurt him? Have this conversation only when the two of you have time. Make sure the kids are in bed, the kitchen is closed, maybe put on some soft music. It is important to create a calm atmosphere, a glass of wine can help both of you open up and speak more freely.
2. Make his time pleasant at home
Here is one secret, if you are a stay-at-home mom, you will resent your husband simply because he can step out without thinking of a hundred things to plug. And that can build irritation within the marriage. Remember not to let resentment overtake you. Remind yourself what he does outside is also for his family. If anything he may be getting slack from his bosses. Remind yourself you are teammates, not adversaries. Here’s a checklist, do you start cribbing about your in-laws the minute he is home? Or remind him umpteenth time how hard you work the entire day looking after the house and the kids? Stop. Make your home a happy place for him to come home too. Try, ‘Hey I am making myself a cup of tea, shall I make you one?’ Or, (once the kids have been put to bed), I am pouring myself a drink, should I pour you one too? Remember the show Friends where Monica drew Chandler a bath? Working too late impacts a marriage but find out what you can do to help him out.
Related Reading: 20 Easy Yet Effective Ways To Make Your Husband Happy
3. Do not nag him
Check if nagging is killing your marriage, cause it surely can. One lady wrote to us that she grew up with a nagging mother and always despised her for it and without realizing turned into one! She told her husband what he called nagging was essentially her care because she was worried about him and she kept sending him reminders when his husband said ‘Just like your mother did with you?” That hit her like a bolt. Do not nag, simple and straight. He has told you that he’d be home by 7 and it is 8, yes you are fuming inside, but do not scream. Wait till he eats and then have the conversation. Do not jump him the moment he walks across the door, give him time to relax and chill. He will be more receptive then. Stay calm and sane and reason things like a mature adult.
And don’t sweat, women are more likely to nag because they are conditioned to feel more responsible for managing home and family life. So think about it this way, it has been hardwired in us. Ask yourself before you act, are you right or are you angry? This one question will help you check this habit.
4. Give him a few surprises
If your husband is coming home late then a few surprises could make him feel really special. Little acts of affection go a long way. All of us love surprises, maybe women even more than men, yet. Surprise your man by wearing that body-hugging dress you bought a year ago with your hair down, instead of the usual pajamas and tee with a bun. Make his favourite meal once in a while and watch him go all lovey-dovey for you. Pick a movie that you know he will like on Netflix and pop some corns. Make his guess what would the surprise of the week be? You can even invite his friends over for a match and prepare snacks for them. You can have your little party by treating yourself and kids in a restaurant.
How about planning a long shower at 3 pm on a holiday? Take the long cut and don’t be on a routine, especially on a chhutti.
5. Send him love notes
Love notes can work wonders in reviving a relationship, there’s something extra special about a handwritten love note. A miss you text, a come home soon note in the lunch or a simple email telling him you are already waiting for him will bring that smile on his lips. You could even send pictures from the past, Facebook has this way of sending you old memories. You can save it and send it to him. You could even discuss what to discuss in the evening when he gets home, maybe send him a picture of a small flower pot you’ve decorated, just for him. How about a shayri? You might be wondering, “How late is too late for my husband to come home?” There is no fixed timeline, but love notes can be a fixed way of making him feel special.
Remember sometimes imbalance is balance, maybe this is a phase in your life where he will be extra busy because he is over ambitious and wants the best for his family. Life always just doesn’t work in a repetitive clockwork. This particular work issue will work out. Things will sort out and balance will be restored. Be the reason he wishes to rush home. Skip the drama, and have a happy life.