A Response to ’10 Reasons Fathers CAN be Referred to as Babysitters’

Sponsored Content

Premium Membership, The Good Men Project

About Robert Duffer

Robert Duffer (www.robertduffer.com) is the editor of the Dads & Families section of The Good Men Project. Winner of the Chicago Public Library's writing contest, his work appears in the Chicago Tribune, MAKE Magazine, Chicago Reader, Curbside Splendor, Time Out Chicago, Chicago Public Radio, Annalemma, New City, and other coffee-table favorites like Canadian Builders Quarterly. He teaches creative writing at Columbia College Chicago and lives in the suburbs with his wife, two kids, and their minivan. Follow @DufferRobert, Google+, facebook.


  1. Why is it that men who “work long hours away from home” are “grotesques”? Why, if I’m earning all the money, am I not pulling my load if I don’t know how my kid likes his hot dogs cut to the fraction of an inch? My work will pay the mortgage, put the kids through school and fund our retirement. But god help me if I don’t load the dishwasher often enough and just how she likes it. There must be something wrong with me for not sharing her neuroses.

    • The challenges for the family breadwinner are distinct yet as significant to the challenges for the family caretaker, Ben. The “grotesques” referred to above are the characterizations by Keesha in the original article, of the type of man-child husband whose care of his children unnerves his wife so much that she’s afraid to leave them alone. A hot dog’s a hot dog; the kid’s gonna like it as long as someone’s giving it to him. I’ve heard the dishwasher thing from one of my dearest friends, so much so that he doesn’t bother helping with the dishes anymore. Not because he’s lazy or inept, but because she’s going to change it to her way anyway. Like watching the kids: it might not be her way, but it’ll get done well enough.

  2. The title of the piece assumes a marriage. The disfunctions illustrated also apply to live-in relationships (including legally recognised “de facto”, etc.)

    Men should “man-up” when it comes to understanding their domestic situation.

    That said, some mysteries still elude me, such as where particular types of towels are meant to go. That is a mystery…. just as my wife has similar mystery when it comes to using a mower for the grass. :-)

  3. I agree with Ben.


  1. [...] in baby-town. I was irritated with other mothers that I met who described their male partners as “babysitting” their children while they were out, rather than thinking of their what their partners did as just [...]

  2. [...] something is not being communicated. Don’t blame him; it’s both of you. Read more at http://goodmenproject.com/families/a-response-to-10-reasons-fathers-can-be-referred-to-as-babysitter… SHARE THIS:MoreLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. Filed Under: Fatherhood Tagged With: [...]

  3. [...] A Response to 10 Reasons Fathers Can Be Referred to as Babysitters by Robert Duffer /* post_widget("#but1"); Filed Under: Families Tagged With: caretaking, children, dad, fathers, marriage, response, Scary Mommy About Chad MillerNot being told that he was to have been a statistic, Chad Miller defied the odds being born to a teenage mother, and a father who was not present. Now, Chad successfully influences Dads to be a productive and involved parent. His encouraging yet challenging style is leading a movement to change the image of Dad from family dud to Family Leader. [...]

Speak Your Mind