In response to one of my recent posts about why daddy is more fun than mommy, I received a lot of negative comments. So I thought I should let my readers know why I am happy to be a June Cleaver in a feminist world.
A few weeks ago, I posted an article listing the 10 Reasons Daddy is More Fun than Mommy. I half-jokingly noted that my husband is usually the “fun” one in our house because I’m the one cleaning, cooking, setting up doctor’s appointments, planning birthday parties, etc. And what I said is absolutely true. But it also didn’t go into detail about why I’m okay with this so-called division of labor.
In response to my article, one person told me in no uncertain terms that my family life was certainly off balance and that I must be confused when I described my husband as a wonderful father and husband.
But here’s the question I would throw back at all of those nay-sayers – straight from the mouth of talk show host Phil McGraw – “How’s that working for you?”
There is a lot of truth in the old adage Different Strokes for Different Folks. What works for one family isn’t going to work for another. What works for parenting one child doesn’t necessarily work for another one…even if both the kids are yours!
In marriage, just as all facets of our lives, we have to figure out what we enjoy doing, what we don’t mind doing and what we hate doing. And more importantly, when we love someone else, we have to figure out how those three things mesh with that person’s opinion on the same 3 items.
So here’s the things I didn’t share with you about what my
HUSBAND does to make our little family tick:
– He works extremely hard in a very non 9-5 job so that I can stay home with our two kids. When Bryan and I first got married, we both worked full-time but once my daughter was born, I felt like I was punched in the stomach at the very mention of me going back to work. Bryan knew this, respected it, and found a way to work even harder so that we could afford for me to stay home.
– He always takes the trash out. Like ALWAYS. My friends who know me well are never surprised to come visit me and find 3 bags of trash thrown just outside my laundry door into the garage. You see, the roll-out trash can is outside and those few extra steps are just a pain for me. So Bryan comes home each night and dutifully carries all the trash out.
– If it’s outside, my husband handles it. Mowing the grass, planting flowers, bug spray, playground, etc. Even though I actually enjoy mowing the grass, he knows it’s too hard for me to manage with the girls any more.
– I don’t do oil changes…or inspections, or tire rotations or anything else to do with a car. I drive them and that’s about it.
And while we are on that subject…
– I haven’t washed my car in the past 13 years. No matter the mess he finds inside, Bryan washes and vacuums my van at least once a week.
– If I can dream up a home improvement project, Bryan can make it happen. He used all his vacation time when we first got married to put up crown moulding in our whole house…himself with no help. He’s painted, cut trim, laid tile, installed fans, and created kids’ work stations all with a smile on his face.
– He follows my lead in this parenting thing. Not because he doesn’t have great ideas and isn’t an awesome dad. But because he’s smart and he knows I spend all of my time with our girls and he’s only here after 7 pm and on the weekends. So he trusts me – he trusts that I know what is best for the girls, he trusts that I understand their needs better and he thinks I’m a really good mom. So he gives me ideas and we brainstorm when we need to but in general, he thinks I’m doing a good job and supports me.
– Not a day goes by that Bryan doesn’t compliment me. Even when I feel blah and gross, he tells me I’m beautiful. When I feel like a failure as a mom, he hugs me and assures me I’m the best mom in the world.
Honestly, I could go on and on…because my husband does SO MANY things to make our marriage and home work. And while it may not be right for someone else, it is just right for us.
So, yes, some may look at my way of life and think I am a relic of the past living in a feminist world. But I think just the opposite. I think what an amazing time I live in and that I am just the kind of “feminist” the word originally defined – a woman who can do anything a man can do and chooses to forge her own path with that knowledge. I know in my heart everything I do, Bryan could handle. And everything he does, I could do or learn to do just as well.
But why would we? What we have found is a perfect balance in which both of us feel the other is a true partner in this parenting and marriage thing and neither of us feel taken advantage of. And I think any successful partnership will always include those two things!