DEAR ABBY: I am a 26-year-old wife and mother of a 16-month-old son. For the most part, I feel blessed. However, there are times when I feel overwhelmed working and being a wife and mom. I never seem to get a break.
We live with my husband's dad because we had some credit problems and are trying to get back on our feet. My father-in-law thinks I should do most of the household chores and that I should still be able to find enough time for myself -- but it hasn't worked out that way.
If I want to spend a few hours with my friends, my husband and his dad think it's an imposition when I ask them to baby-sit. On the other hand, my husband takes off and hangs out with his friends any time he feels like it.
Am I wrong to feel there's a double standard here? Don't get me wrong -- my husband and son and I do spend some time together, and we're active in our church. But I can't help feeling I need more time for myself. Please help. -- OVERLOADED IN THE NORTHWEST
DEAR OVERLOADED: Before any more tensions and resentments build, it's time to draw the line and speak up. As it stands, your father-in-law has a built-in maid and your husband has reverted to adolescence. Whether you get church-based or secular marriage counseling, get it NOW before you cave in under the stress of your current situation. You and your husband need to get back on your feet and find a place to call your own.