I guess that I'm still stuck on the fact that they have a toddler. I don't think it is right for one of the parents to disappear somewhere and leave the other parent with the task of childcare without a quick discussion. He didn't say, "I'm tired and need to lay down for a little bit, can you watch the kid?" In fact, he didn't say anything at all until CakeBeret came to find him. When you have responsibility for a small child, that's just unacceptable. I don't think that childcare is automatically the mother's job, but that seems to be what he assumed here.
I completely agree! When a couple has young children together, someone going off by themselves isn't as simple as just walking away and closing the door and expecting everything to be made smooth for them. One partner is really saying to the other, "I'm tired, and I'd really like some time to myself. Can you please be on duty with the kids and take care of all of our joint responsibilities for a while so I can rest?"
When one partner just checks out with no warning, the other partner has no choice but to step up and handle things. It's rude and disrespectful to put someone in a position where they have no choice in the matter, giving them no input into what they're being forced to do, especially with no warning. What if CakeBeret also needed down time? I bet her husband would be furious if he came home and she simply walked away and closed the door, and left him to deal with their son for an unknown amount of time, and then got angry at him if he got upset at "I'm tired" being the only thing she bothered saying to him all evening.
I completely understand needing down time. But partners with joint responsibilities need to do each other the courtesy of communicating about it, asking each other to take over duties, not just dropping the ball with no warning. I agree that CakeBeret and her husband need to find ways to give each other down time more smoothly, with more warning and better communication, but I can completely understand why she's upset in this situation.
Furthermore, let's not forget that CakeBeret -did- recognize what was going on, and took responsibility so her husband could have the downtime he clearly needed. It's unfair to keep taking her to task as if she kept nagging him to talk to her. But it's fair for her to be upset over being treated that way, and really unfair of her husband to get mad at her for being upset.