Beyond Babedom

We're (way) over 40. Deal with it.

No Experience Needed

Here’s the scenario: a couple meets, dates, gets married, has babies (more or less in that order). The babies need to be fed, changed, put to bed, bathed (probably not in that order). In most cases – not all, but most – the woman ends up with the majority of these jobs. Sure, some are “stay-at-home” moms, but most aren’t. Who can afford the luxury of one income?

So, here’s the deal: she works, he works, she does the baby stuff (and probably most of the housework, grocery shopping laundry. . . but that’s another post). And every once in a while, he takes over: mommy gets a night out. And how does she describe this situation? My husband is babysitting tonight. Are you kidding? Babysitting?

Do you pay him, too? Does he eat all your potato chips? (Well; he probably does, but that – too – is a different post) Do you have to drive him home and make sure he doesn’t have friends over to party and have sex with? (No comment here) Isn’t that what 15 year old girls do to make money to buy their cheerleading jacket? Okay; I’m dating myself (hey! I’m a woman over 40!), but you get the point. Babysitting is something a mother, a friend, a teen, another adult does for pay or as a favor. . .but not the kid’s father! It’s his kid. He’s not doing you a favor and it’s not babysitting.

Why do women do that to themselves? Allow themselves to not only¬† describe male child care that way to others – but also to believe that’s what it is as well. Basically, she’s admitting that all the responsibility of child-rearing is hers, and her partner-in-life only has to “babysit” every so often. Is it any wonder men are still running the world (and screwing it up, I might add)? When we were in grammar school, no one would give a boy any responsibility. They knew better. Even in high school, it was a rare boy who acted with any type of maturity or could be trusted with anything – the car, the house, the kids. You could be a 12 year old girl and get more trust than your 17 year old brother.

But once they become a dad, sorry boys, no experience needed. No more babysitting. It’s time to man up and call it what it is.

Fatherhood.

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This entry was posted on Thursday, April 7th, 2011 at 7:49 PM and is filed under My Pet Peeves. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

  1. Pat says:

    A Mom’s job is 24-7 cause usually (there are a few men who are the exception) somebody has to do it no matter what – and he is just not ready for that type of commitment. That’s when she realizes that she actually has another kid to take care of. The only difference is that he’s too big to send to his room – unless you want to go with him – but that’s another story. When you ask them to do chores or, God forbid, take over with the kids for even one WHOLE day, they find an excuse (any excuse) to get out of it. Or laugh and say, “In your dreams”.
    Exactly, in a woman’s dreams she imagines him going out of his way to spend time with the kids on a somewhat regular basis because he wants to, not cause he has to. “I work hard all day,” he says, “when I come home I want to relax.” WELL SO DO I YOU !#@##!!! But there’s dinner, homework, baths, bedtime stories…yadda, yadda, yadda. And when the kids are finally in bed for the night and Mom is tired then “daddy” is rested and frisky. Oh brother!
    If a man is considerate (and if he values his manhood)he will at least have done the dishes by this time and have a drink waiting for her when she comes downstairs…but,as he so aptly put it, “In your dreams!”
    p.s. and don’t you just love it when you ask them to do something and they look you square in the eye and say, “Isn’t that what we had kids for”.
    You have to cultivate your relationship with your kids, and not just a day here and there, but all of their lives. Kids remember when a parent goes out of their way to make time for them. What a man finds hard to accept is that he’s not the center of attention anymore. But instead of looking at his kids as usurpers to the throne, he should try to find some common ground, a piece of himself as it were, that he can share with them. It makes a difference. The only trouble is that by the time he realizes it, it’s too late.

  2. Terri says:

    Pat I couldn’t have said it better! My son knows which one of us he can count on and which one he can’t. Do you ever notice how many successful people thank their Mom’s in a speech! Because Mom is always there! From midnite feedings and changing diapers, to helping with the latest school project, to driving them to whatever sport of club they need to get to after school. All while working a full time job themselves most of the time. So if the house is messy, that particlular shirt you wanted to wear didn’t get washed, and dinner is pizza–deal with it!!! Now shut up and go mow the lawn!

  3. Bud from Bayonne says:

    If you want to play…….you got to pay!!!! Call it what ever you want, it’s still sitting with the baby!!! I also agree that it isn’t a favor! Was it a favor at the time of conception?

  4. Janeen says:

    It’s a big difference from when we were 15 year olds. I remember baby-sitting for extra money and didn’t have to be worried about being raped. 15 year olds are a lot different today, they are much bigger and smarter, but the fact is no matter how “fast” they may be, they are still 15 yr old Children with the emphasis being on “Child”….

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