Sometimes I wonder if it really is 2014.
I got a pitch last week in my inbox for recipes even Dad can handle. Wait, what? My husband is a much better cook than I am. And while I understand that historically Mom is the one in the kitchen, one shouldn’t assume that dads can’t handle it.
It’s the same in the media. While more and more men are choosing the stay home with their kids and/or take a more active role, there are still too many portrayals of bumbling buffoons and clueless fathers. I’m sure there are men who do fit that stereotype, but I definitely do NOT think it’s the norm. My husband is not a buffoon nor is he scared of our children. Over the years I’ve seen plenty of commercials, television shows and movies that depict dads this way, but as a whole I was hoping we were finally making some progress.
Sure, I know woman who tell me their husbands are clueless or that they don’t participate actively or heck, even some that have never changed a diaper (I’ll be honest, I don’t get that one.) But they aren’t inept…they surely are open to some suggestions or a polite request now and again?
There’s no parenting handbook. Nobody knows what the heck we are doing when we leave the hospital with that little bundle of joy.
We figure it out. Together.
We figure out how to change diapers without being peed on. We figure out what discipline style is going to work in our house. We figure out how to answer all those difficult questions that we’ll eventually be asked. Each parent has their strong suit.
That’s why it’s a partnership. Some days I’m the better parent. Other days I’m cranky and irritable and my husband steps in to take over. That’s how it should work. It’s not 50/50; every day is different.
We made a decision together that I would stay home. And I know that when I decide to go back to work full-time that my husband will support me 100%, and if he doesn’t, we’ll have a discussion and figure out a solution for our family. Together.
I often like to joke to him that I wear the pants in our relationship, but that’s not true. We each have a leg in. I am incredibly fortunate to have found a man who supports my career endeavors just as much as I support his. When I go out of town, it’s not any different than when he goes out of town, save a meal plan or two and the hiring of a babysitter for any weekdays.
Marriage is a partnership and so is parenting. We have to work as a team to make our family unit work. Some days we hit a lot of speedbumps, other days flow more smoothly. Such is life. We’re all human and have our good days and bad days.
The Bottom Line
My family wouldn’t be my family without my husband. He’s the patriarch. We work together, sometimes in tandem, sometimes a bit out of sync, but together nonetheless.
He’s a cook. He’s a housekeeper. He’s a hard worker. He’s a fantastic bedtime story teller. He’s the king of “chase me” and he plays a mean “Wreck It Ralph”. His Elmo impersonation is awesome. He changes the oil in my car, mows the lawn and deals with all my piles. He does all of this and SO. MUCH. MORE.
So just stop already with all the stereotypes and old school assumptions. Most of the men I am blessed to know are so much more than you make them out to be. Give them credit where credit is due.
Love you baby. Thanks for being my best everything.