Adapted from a recent online discussion.
Carolyn: Is it unreasonable to ask a spouse to drive you to an airport two hours away for a three-hour flight? I would normally drive myself and leave my car there, but I’ll have our toddler with me, and dealing with parking shuttles and luggage and a kid with unpredictable moods seems like an awful lot to take on by myself.
I’m going to this airport instead of a closer one because it would save a lot on airfare and we can get a nonstop flight.
My husband loves me, but he sometimes balks at even minor requests. On the other hand, I’m not sure this is a minor request because I’m basically asking him to make two 4-hour round trips. I feel like I’m bean counting, but I need an objective viewpoint here. Thanks.
If I were scripting the perfect scenario, he would offer to take you (to spare you the toddler- and luggage-wrangling hassles) and you would refuse the offer (to spare him eight hours of driving just to help you with, if you just suck it up and deal with it, what amounts to two sessions of toddler- and luggage-wrangling. What’s that, 30 inconvenient minutes each way, car to terminal and back?).
I imagine if he had a good record on helping out with the small stuff, you wouldn’t even think of asking him to help you here: You’d feel the natural obligation of partnership to shoulder your share of the weight. But, since he has been fussy about his share, you’re annoyed at having to go out of your way to spare him anything. Fair?
If so, then it doesn’t really matter how you handle this particular situation. You still need to address the bigger issue of your feeling as if you’re hauling more than your share.
Re: Request: Spend a little of the money you saved on airfare to ship your luggage ahead. That way you just have a carry-on and your child to deal with.
Great solution to the practical problem, thanks. (Which will presumably free up energy for the emotional problem.)
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