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Saturday
Jun012013

Is Society Doing a "Job" on Parents?

So a recent article from ABC News, which brings to light new statistics on the prevalence of moms in the workforce and fathers taking over at home, suggests many American’s still aren’t comfortable with dads doing “mom’s job.” Now, I’m a working dad, so I don’t know what it’s like to stay at home and care for my kids full time – but neither does my wife. She works just as many hours outside the home as I do. But, if either one of us did stay home to raise our kids full-time, I can tell you right now, we would both resent being told that’s a “mom’s” job.

Americans Aren't That Comfortable With Stay-At-Home Dads - ABCNEWS.GO.COM


What’s up with that sh@#? Sure, for many centuries moms have been the ones to stay home and take care of the kids. I get it. Moms are supposed to have the market cornered on cooking and cleaning and caring for small children because that’s how it had been for thousands of years. Tricks of the trade have been handed down from generation to generation of moms, and since dads do not have this long standing tradition of learning the tricks of the trade from birth we’re simply not qualified to handle a household and we should get our asses out of the kitchen because we don’t belong there. Hmmm, where have I heard something like this before?

Well, screw Society and their double-standard, and let’s dispel the myth that staying home to care for the kids is better suited to moms. First off, moms can only do two things better than dads - carry a baby and deliver it, and breastfeed. Quite simply, it’s just biologically impossible for a man to do either of these two things. Take away breastfeeding, and all we’re left with is carrying and birthing a child, and even then, many moms might need the help of modern medical science to be able to pull this one off (fertillity drugs, c-sections). It is a miracle when a healthy child is born, and we’ll concede that most men couldn’t go through with it, and we’ll give it up to moms for taking one for the team – but that alone doesn’t make them domestic gods. But prevailing wisdom says if you’re the one who gives birth to a child that you are better suited to caring for that child. I say, that’s better propaganda than Rocky IV.

Staying at home to care for a child, or two children, or ten children, is not better suited to a woman as many would have you believe; it’s better suited to whomever has the most patience, the best time-management skills, and an ability to work long hours without a single person telling them what a great job he or she is doing. Are many moms cut out for this? Yes. Are there dads who can do this if given the chance? You better F@#%ing believe it. But, no matter what, some media outlet, mom or magazine article is going to try to keep the good men down and say they’re not cut out to do “a woman’s work.”

Men can’t clean? Who do you think all the owner/operators of all those multi-million dollar cleaning companies in the United States are? They built those companies from the ground up by… you guessed it… cleaning, and cleaning really well. Men can’t cook? Try naming ten of the top chefs in the U.S, I bet you five of your picks (at least) are MEN. And what about a man’s ability to care for a child- are we to assume that just because society says moms are better at it that it’s true? We’ve got male pediatricians, male nurses, single dads, stay-at-home-dads, involved dads, and they all seem to know what to do. So why are we keeping people down? Why are we making moms feel like the world will implode if they give up the laundry and the grocery shopping and the childrearing to men? And why are we telling men that they’re just not competent enough to do something just because moms have been doing it for centuries?

Managing a household isn’t a job for moms, it’s a job for the best candidate for the job; the person with the personality best-suited to handling it, and in more cases than moms or society would be willing to admit, dads step up to this challenge quite well.

“But my husband doesn’t do the cook the way I do? “ You say. Or, “He doesn’t fold the laundry the way I would.” You say. And he doesn’t have a “mother’s touch.” You say. You know why? HE’S A DAD! And he may not know how to do a lot of things at first when it comes raising children, but neither do most moms. Hell, you were both shown how to change your first diaper and feed your first bottle by the same nurse. If after that he’s not doing things how you would do them it’s because you developed your own way of doing things. Well, give a guy the same chance to do things his way. There a lots of places he can find the information to help him, I can name about 500 of them (parenting websites, dad blogs, books, government websites).

Ladies, don’t believe your own hype. It’s doing you and your significant others a huge disservice. You don’t all have to be “Supermoms” and you don’t all need to feel guilty if you’re not at home being the primary caregiver for your kids. If you want to work outside of the home, and you’re got a competent caregiver in your significant other, know that your children are well cared for by the best man for the job – the father of your children. And men, don’t let anybody ever tell you that just because you’re well-suited to carpooling your kids to school and making lunches and managing everything from the household finances and handling your kid’s first boo boo, that you’re less than a man because that’s a “mom’s job.” And don’t ever let a mom (any mom) tell you that just because you don’t do things their way that it’s automatically the “wrong way.” Because it’s not – it’s your way, and it may in fact be the BETTER way.

We’ve got a society of moms who are stressed out because they are told they should be at home, and population of dads who are told they are better serving their families by leaving the house at 6 in the morning and not returning until supper time. And, what we’re not doing is telling people that the person who should be at home raising the kids is the best person for the job. And if neither one of you can stay at home with the kids due to the sheer economics of what it costs to raise a family these days, rely on each other to co-parent with the best of them so no one person feels like they are doing the lion’s share of the work – the job of raising your kids. It’s not that hard when parents work as a team and no one gives in to this B.S. that moms are just better when it comes to childrearing. It’s a myth, and it’s time someone said it.

In 2013, moms and dads should be interchangeable. Anything moms can do, dads can do, and vice versa. It’s better for our kids, it’s better for our relationships and it’s better for our own well-being. And anyone who tells you differently, if trying to sell you a line of bulls@#%.

There are no “mom jobs” or “dad jobs”- there is only parenting. And we’re all in this together.

End rant.

 

Related Posts:

Anything Moms Can Do Dads Can Do... Equally. - Fodder 4 Fathers

How to Get Around the Working Mom/Stay-at-Home Dad Stigma
- Ask the Wife

Why Jokes Poking Fun At Fathers Are Funny
- Fodder

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