Beyond Babedom

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

I’ve Fallen and I Won’t Get up

Last night I spent several interesting  hours with friends of a friend (who, I think, I can now call my friends). You can’t imagine the subjects we broached (at least, not if you’re male), but one conversation in particular started it all rolling.

“I asked my husband to make our son a pizza bagel,” she said. Not a big deal, right? Put it in the toaster oven, set the timer, keep your eye on it to make sure it doesn’t burn, right? You’d think. But, this husband ended up cross examining his wife, as though he needed the formula for weapons grade plutonium. Why couldn’t she tell him exactly how long it would take? Why didn’t she know? How was he supposed to do this on his own?

Which led me to observe: they can’t figure out how long to cook a pizza bagel, but they’re running the world?

Now, really, couldn’t he figure it out on his own? Or is it that he just didn’t want to? Isn’t it just easier to let someone else do things for you, clean up after you, take responsibility for those day-to-day annoyances?

Isn’t that the way they’re raised, while we’re being raised to do everything for them?

Yes, okay, maybe we don’t all do everything for them. But enough of us do, plenty of times if not all of the time. Call the plumber. Suspend the newspaper delivery. Call the doctor to follow up on the kid’s treatment. Register the kids for karate or hockey or dance class. Or anything. Make sure things are done right, buttoned up, all completed.

Yet, they run the world. Amazing.

So, who’s fault is it? You know, maybe it’s our own. No one makes us take responsibility; we do it voluntarily. Like no one makes us take lower paying jobs or not ask for a raise or be willing to “just help out” at work when something extra has to be done.

So, stop it. Let them do it themselves.  Let the sewer back up. Let the dishwasher overflow. Let them burn the damned pizza bagel. Sisters, unite!

If the world is screwed up, maybe we let it happen by always being there to bail them out. So, stop it.

After all, unlike men, would we really need to go to war to prove ourselves? We already know how fabulous we are.

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This entry was posted on Saturday, February 20th, 2010 at 4:48 PM and is filed under Relationships. 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. msteinmetz says:

    You would be amazed if you just take a step they step up to the plate (and I don’t mean to just eat another meal!). When I was 37, I dx with stage III colon cancer…with the expectation of possible dying and leaving the last two children with Dad..I took a step back. Fearing they would show up for private school not wear their uniforms (plaid) with unmatched plaid socks! Don’t get me wrong he is an amazing husband and Dad…really pays attention to everyone needs..but like a man, he would look at the big picture..not alot of attention to detail. During my treatment, mornings would come, the alarm would go off…and I stayed put (it was hard not to jump in with all the loud,shrill voices going on about signing school papers and “Dad you volunteered for my class trip today”…Fast forward…I’m 14 years cancer free and even after remission he continued with parent/teacher conferences, rides to school, knew all their friends by name, horseback riding lessons and shows, handymans # etc…its amazing what they are capable of …if we just take a step back!

  2. Judy Herring says:

    As “girls” especially over 40 girls, most of us were raised by parents who are now or would be in their late 80’s and 90’s. They were of a generation of women doing for their men. Taking care of the house, the kids – most were stay at home mothers. The men went out to work. You know the rest of the story. As daughters, we mirror our mothers – that is until the wrench is thrown into the socket. Meaning we work outside the home, we continue our education, we take care of aging parents, we get sick, we wake up and realize – WE CAN”T DO IT ALL! Men are perfectly capable of figuring out the microwave, toaster oven, etc…I think some of them don’t think it’s their job to know how – rememeber..they were raised by the same mothers we were raised by..Learn to let go…so the pizza bagels might burn…tell him to order take out!!

  3. joan says:

    My experience is a little different. Having been a divorced mom raising my daughter alone for the last 10 years, I am very used to doing everything for my daughter and running a business at the same time. Now I am with a man who has Wednesday nights with his kids and so all the responsibilities of parenthood for one night a week. His one day of parenting consists of going to work, picking them up after their after school activities and getting them home for dinner (which I have prepared, by the way). After that are homework, showers and bedtime by 10. Instead of appreciating what a divorced mom goes through the other 6 days of the week, he can’t stop complaining about how difficult HIS life is and how tired he is after the one night a week!! Go figure

  4. Pat says:

    and when men are finally coerced into doing something they don’t want to do they seem to go out of their way to do it half-assed or wrong altogether. Then we, as women, end up redoing it or complaining to them that they’re “not doing it right”. Until ultimately we stop asking them because we can do it better ourselves – and that is what they are counting on. Kids pull the same crap…I think they get it from their dads. We do and do but no one goes out of their way to do for us. You are right, we have to stop! But then they bitch cause something’s not done – it’s a vicious circle.

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