You can’t trust him
Trust is one of the most important pillars of a relationship, and it doesn’t only relate to loyalty. If you’re unable to trust your partner to follow through on his word or to carry out basic tasks, this can be a sign of immaturity or even manipulation on his end.
You shoulder the majority of the burden
In heterosexual relationships, women are often unfortunately expected to take on the more ‘traditional’ household roles. This usually involves shouldering the large majority of responsibilities and chores, despite their partner having the ability to contribute. If your partner reinforces this outdated dynamic, he’s likely not mature enough to be in a relationship.
You have to tell him what to do repeatedly
This isn’t always a sign of weaponized incompetence, sometimes life just gets in the way. But, if you constantly have to ask or remind your boyfriend to do basic chores, there might be a problem. Next time he complains that you’re ‘nagging’ him (eye-roll), try coming up with a shared list of tasks together so that you’re both aware of expectations.
He doesn’t try
Everyone comes from different walks of life, with their own set of life experiences and ideas of how things like household responsibilities should be handled. If your boyfriend constantly complains that he “isn’t good” at multiple chores and shows no willingness to learn, however, is likely a sign of weaponized incompetence.
He constantly puts things off
Do you feel like anything you ask of your boyfriend never gets done, and then it gets turned around on you for being “on his back” about it? If he needs constant reminders for basic things, he may just be hoping that you eventually get frustrated enough to cave and do it yourself.
He doesn’t support you
If you constantly voice your concerns about feeling unsupported and unequal in the relationship, yet he still makes no effort to ease the burden or offer you any sort of help, it can be a sign of disrespect. Weaponized incompetence shows he not only takes you for granted, but doesn’t respect your time.
You have to pick up his slack
Regularly having all the weight of responsibility on your shoulders can be not only extremely draining, but can also breed a lot of resentment within the relationship. Not being able to rely on your partner is a very isolating experience, and not one that you should have to put up with in an adult relationship.
He can’t handle simple tasks
Teaching your boyfriend how to chop an onion or use a dishwasher is not a responsibility that should fall to you in a relationship, nor should you have to put up with him complaining that he “doesn’t know how to do it right”. If he doesn’t know how to do something, he can look for advice in a productive way and be willing to learn- you shouldn’t have to parent him.
You feel manipulated
A tell-tale sign that your boyfriend is using weaponized incompetence against you is manipulation. He may try to use his so-called inability to do something to wear you down, leaving you to do what he wants. If so, he doesn’t respect you as a partner or as an equal in your relationship.
You feel alone or unheard
No one should feel alone in their relationship. Your spouse should be open to hearing your concerns and working with you towards a solution to any problems you face, not purposefully contributing towards them. Every partnership needs that balance of give and take, and if it doesn’t – it’s not something you need to put up with.