How To Cope When You’re Living With A Man Child

If you’re in, or have ever been in, a heterosexual relationship as a woman, you’ve likely encountered the Man Child at some point.

You find yourself coming home from work to find Man Child has set up shop on the couch, leaving the kitchen full of unwashed dishes. You’re picking up wet towels that have been left on the bathroom floor all day. If you left the laundry pile untouched, clothes wouldn’t get washed for the next six months. Yes, we’ve all unfortunately come across an unhelpful man or two in our lives. This seems to be quite common across the board, as women do more housework than men in 93% of British households – even when both parties are working full-time.

Common, yes. But should we be putting up with it? Hell no. “When a partner doesn’t help around the house, the other partner can feel exhausted, used, or even unloved (e.g., if that partner’s love language is Acts of Service, they may end up feeling unloved and unappreciated). That can create room for resentment and disagreements,” says relationships expert, Callisto Adams.


That towel was the one she found on the floor yesterday after he took a shower #cringey#manchild#toxicrelationship#ick#foryou

♬ original sound - Jack Ryan

Why do men act like this?

“There’s no particular one-fits-all root cause of the ‘Man Child’ phenomenon,” says Adams. “In fact, there is a myriad of factors — social, familial, economic, and cultural — that contribute to a child growing up to become a child-like adult.

“A neglecting parent, a chaotic household, an insensitive parent, an overly controlling parent, an ‘obsessed with my little king’ mom, and a lot of other conditions can affect one’s personality when growing up. Such circumstances become a mould that shapes that child’s adulthood traits and behaviours.”

How can we ask our partners to help out more?

Addressing things head-on is the best tactic, says Callisto: “One of the first things to do to have your man-child partner stop expecting you to pick up the emotional and unpaid labour in the home is to speak up.

“Considering that this man has low awareness and emotional intelligence, you have to approach him very calmly and you should avoid accusatory tones.

“These men fire up the moment they sense a finger pointed at them. This is why you have to be careful when addressing your concerns. After speaking up, it’ll be time to work things through together. As ironic as it may sound, you’ve got to help him on this one.

“Instead of simply dropping him in the middle of nowhere and expecting him to pick his feet up and start doing something, you’ll have to team up with him. Be there for him and guide him as to where and what he can do exactly to become a better partner and to improve.

“For example, you can give him a friendly reminder to do the laundry, or that it’s his turn to clean up the house today. On the other hand, when it comes to the emotional aspect you can suggest going to couples’ or individual therapy, integrating tactics that can help you be more mindful around each other, etc.”

And if all that sounds like too much hard graft and you’re not really feeling it anymore, then you can always take a leaf out of Britney’s book and DUMP HIM. Good luck!