Bedrest is Harder on Husbands - Herbietown

Bedrest is Harder on Husbands

This happened:

Wife: I noticed you’ve been drinking more lately. You go straight for the fridge right when you get home, and sometimes you have 2 drinks on a weeknight.

Me: Yeah, no shit!

Bedrest is harder on husbands than you think. There, I said it.

My wife is 7 months pregnant and has been on bedrest for the last 4 months. That means that she must remain in an inverted position at all times. When she stands up, or even sits up, it puts too much pressure on her cervix. My wife’s cervix is special. It’s dynamic. Unfortunately there’s nothing hot about a dynamic cervix. It just means that it changes size, and if it gets too small the baby could come early…too early.

So there she sits, day after day, reclining on the couch in “her spot,” as our 4-year-old calls it. She does nothing but read books, watch TV, and relay commands to me and her mother and her children.

She’s not in any pain, other than the normal discomforts of growing a baby inside you (but really, how hard can that be? hee hee hee). She just can’t move, and it is frustrating psychologically to not be able to move.

I get that. I really do. Our brains are connected to our bodies and we are meant to be roaming the savannah constantly in search of food and shelter. When we can’t move, we get depressed. Every reader of this blog knows that I understand depression. So I understand it’s hard to just sit there in the same position day after day, week after week, month after month.


Remember that all that sympathy is directed at someone who basically gets to chill for months on end. It’s like when you were a little kid and you stayed home sick from school, and you watched Hunter and MacGyver all day and your mom brought you soup and crackers and waited on you hand and foot. Except you’re not sick. And you don’t feel sick.

You feel a little dynamic in your cervix region, but other than that you’re as normal as any other person.

Sounds pretty good to me!

Meanwhile, while she’s chillin’, her mother and I have to cook the food, do the laundry, mind the children, clean the house, mow the lawn, buy the groceries, and pay the bills. And what do we get for it? What is our reward for all this hard work?

Did I mention that we can’t have sex? I promised not to write about sexual matters, but I think it’s kosher just to mention that one little detail.

My point is, bedrest is hard, but not in the ways people expect. People assume the woman is in pain and that it must be difficult to stand by, helpless, as she struggles. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Bedrest is not about physical pain. Bedrest is about emotional pain.

Before bedrest came along, my wife generally took care of the house and the kids, especially during the week when I’m out before dawn and barely home to tuck them in. There are thousands of little tasks she has mastered over the last few years, and the only way she can convey this wisdom to me is to give orders. And my job is to take them.

For her, it’s a constant psychological torment of mental insanity.

For me, it’s about taking orders. Bending over and taking orders. Much less honorably than this guy, I might add:


It’s about doing what she wants, when she wants it. I know she’s right, because all those invisible little tasks and tricks and things she did to run the place when she was well – without those, things fall into chaos.

For example, make the kids go to the bathroom before they leave the house. That’s a rule. Skip it once (GOD, she’s so OVERBEARING) and you find yourself locked in a Starbucks bathroom dealing with a crying 3-year-old boy who’s soaked from the waist down, with no change of clothes.

In short, I have to do what she says. She hates giving orders and I hate receiving them. It’s a nightmare.

Oh, another thing bedrest is all about? Hosting your mother-in-law in your house for months. And god bless the woman because she is a saint. I’ve learned more about raising children from her than I thought possible. She’s an incredible organizer and cleaner and project manager, too. I couldn’t be more thankful that she’s here to help us through this.

Still, she’s living in my house. I ain’t the king of my castle no more.

I love my wife and she is a champion for the way she’s been handling this. I love her more and more each day as I watch her adapt and cope and work through her issues.

I’m just saying that husbands deserve a little more credit.

And mothers-in-law deserve the most.

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Comments 14

  1. [email protected] wrote:

    Good to know that you are so understanding, Chris.  Remember there’s payback at some point.

    Posted 06 Jun 2012 at
  2. Wunda wrote:

    If the cervix gets too LARGE, not small. Idiot

    Posted 06 Jun 2012 at
  3. Christopher Herbert wrote:

    Ummm….pretty sure you’re wrong, dude.  Small cervix = baby falls out.  I don’t even know what a cervix is and I know that.

    Posted 06 Jun 2012 at
  4. Blacksausage wrote:

    Isn’t there something you can put up there to hold the baby in?  I am thinking of something like the thing you use to plug the garbage disposal. (but appropriately sized, but all sterile and clean in a medical way)

    Posted 06 Jun 2012 at
  5. Christopher Herbert wrote:

    Did you see the snoring video?

    Posted 06 Jun 2012 at
  6. Christopher Herbert wrote:


    Posted 06 Jun 2012 at
  7. Tricia Rathgeber wrote:

    Thinning cervix is a serious matter and I give you and my husband huge thank yous and praise for standing by your pregnant wives. I am 24 weeks along with baby number 4…oh and did I mention my husband is disabled? He does above and beyond what I need while “chained” to this bed. And having just one day, Fathers Day, to honor and thank him is not enough.

    Posted 06 Jun 2012 at
  8. Sherah1 wrote:

    I think I would be remiss to point out that mamas is the primary parent most if the time. Daddy is backup parent most of the time. 80/20 rule applies. Instead of focusing on the frustration on taking orders put your ego aside, big man. Instead, think about what a gift it is to your boys to have you be the primary parent. Think about the example you are giving them as a man who willingly and lovingly takes orders from his wife to be sure their needs and the needs f the home are taken care of. This is a moment in time: a blip in your life

    Posted 07 Jun 2012 at
  9. Christopher Herbert wrote:

    Doing my best, Sherah! But one thing is for sure – I’ll never get by without blowing off some steam with a little humor!

    Thanks for reading

    Posted 07 Jun 2012 at
  10. Bedrest Butler wrote:

    So great to hear from a male perspective. I can completely relate and I am sure my husband can as well. Check out our site. We created the site to support women on bedrest. We would love to collaborate with more dads. Email us at [email protected] if you are interested.

    Posted 07 Jun 2012 at
  11. Info wrote:

    I love you still have your sense of humor! I was the mother-in-law and I know how hard it is on all fronts. My daughter was in the hospital for 63 days, so she wasn’t there to direct which made it even harder. Plus she was in pain, due to drugs they gave her, so it’s not always a piece of cake pain wise.
    Good news is her twins are 2 1/2 now and just sheer joy, so it is worth it in the end!
    The Twins’ Nana

    Posted 08 Jun 2012 at
  12. servant husband wrote:

    Ok for one yes the mother is the primary parent. But its not like us dads are doing nothing. I wotk 2 jobs, do all the things that she normally does, take care of my step child and new puppy that she wanted and I get barked at when im tired or frusterated. 60 hour of paid work, with 30 of guilt trip work. I upped my adderal dosage, already having them from brain issues, just to get through the day. Never tell a hard working husbamd who gives up all his free will for his family that he needs 2 put his ego aside. He’s already put his balls, social life and everything else he coveted to stay sain for the woman who now gets mad when he is tired from all the work. How many women would stay with a man who had no job, didn’t help with the kids/housework, and just laid on the couch all day?! No woman would. But we men put our “ego’s” aside for our wives. She has 2 stress about the baby, while I stress about the baby, bills, chores, the child, cleaning, keeping everyone fed, and the puppy. Who really needs 2 put their ego’s aside? The one who is busting their ass for everyone but themselves, or the one who has 2 lay on the couch with the big plasma, laptop, and tablet with all the food at their disposal? I eat once a day if im lucky enough 2 have the time and energy. Put ur ego aside, its got a free spot right next to u on the couch lady.

    Posted 10 Jul 2012 at
  13. Erica wrote:

    I get some of your points…but for you to say, and I quote ” My point is, bedrest is hard, but not in the ways people expect. People assume the woman is in pain and that it must be difficult to stand by, helpless, as she struggles. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Bedrest is not about physical pain. Bedrest is about emotional pain.” I have to say you are misinformed…you yourself are assuming every woman/every pregnancy is the same and it’s not.

    I am on bedrest due to multiple conditions that cause excrutiating pain (not fun at all). Especially when you don’t have people that can come and help you. I can’t even sit up, roll over and or use the restroom without breaking into tears. So no sir, I am sorry to burst your bubble…but you are Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. When you say bedrest is not about physical pain.

    Further more…I still have to take care of the house and kids alone all day. So I don’t have the luxury of being a spoiled princess like your wife having mommy and hubby at my beckon call.

    Before you ASSume things, maybe you should get facts.

    Posted 05 Jan 2013 at
  14. Christopher Herbert wrote:

    You obviously aren’t a regular reader of my blog…much of it is tongue in cheek. Sorry if I offended. Thanks for commenting though, I love comments! Best of luck with your pregnancy, I wish you the best.


    Posted 05 Jan 2013 at

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