A Woman Who Fell Into Default ‘Mom Duties’ With Her Partner & His Kid is Asking Reddit if She Made the Right Move

Being the default parent, or the person who coordinates and takes care of all the nitty gritty details concerning a child’s life, along with domestic duties like picking up the house, often falls on (surprise!) the mom. It’s a dynamic cemented by lifetimes of misogyny, and it’s not something that only affects moms, but women in general, as this Redditor’s all-too-familiar story shows. 

“My BF of 2 1/2 years needed a place to stay for 3 weeks while his house was being renovated. He has full custody of his daughter, 11yo ‘Hannah,’” explains the Redditor. 

“To cut right to the chase, I’ve been to their home several times and it is not dirty by any means. It’s always clean. So why they feel it necessary to never, not once, pick up a damn broom or sponge to clean up messes they’ve made in my home makes absolutely no sense to me. My BF has a habit of dirtying every pan in the house it seems to make a single meal and then just lets them pile up in the sink or on the counter/stove,” she said. 

She also noted that she had spent the first couple of weeks calmly reminding the two to clean up after themselves, as they are obviously capable of doing so in their own home. But this isn’t the only aspect of cleaning house that her boyfriend suddenly “forgot” once he temporarily moved in. 

“He will re-do their laundry 8 times because he leaves it in the washer until it stinks. Hannah’s clothing (socks/pants/shirts) strewn all over my house because she takes them off and tossed them wherever they land (she wears PJ shorts and tank tops underneath absolutely everything so as soon as she comes in the door from school she just takes off her clothes and tosses them). I think I’ve seen my BF clean a single fork since being here.”

Anyone else’s blood boiling right now? This woman is not Hannah’s mom, or her boyfriend’s mom. And yet, something strange seemed to shift as soon as her boyfriend and his daughter moved in: they defaulted to a nuclear family unit where the woman falls into the role of “mom,” AKA doing all the things simply because that is what moms do. 

Related story

A Reddit Mom Coparenting Her Autistic Daughter Clashes With Ex on What Qualifies as 'Coddling'