A traditional mom does not understand why a dad would stay at home with his kids, and turns to ‘Dear Dad’ for advice.
I don’t want to even take away from real dads by addressing you as ‘dad’. You stay at home and live off your wife and probably watch TV all day doing nothing. Are you even a man?
A man’s job is to take care of his wife and children, not be Mary Poppins. I’m a mom who believes in doing things the traditional way. Sorry, I don’t get it.
Sorry, I typically like to find a quirky way of addressing the questioner where I call him or her by a defining word within the question. Here, I chose the first word (or maybe second) that came to mind when I read your question, and it was “practically perfect in every way,” even if not a direct word from your question. I can’t believe I am dignifying this question with a response – but this is not the first time I’ve been asked this question and I feel it is important to answer you.
I can assure you that I fathered three children, and have a penis. Does that make me a man?
I woke up this morning and I walked into my less than perfect kitchen that I will later clean spotless at least twice today (I admit to running out of steam last night, so dirty bowls, pans, and utensils remained everywhere), and cleared a space to prepare my children’s lunches. I then searched in my cupboard that I organized myself, for some plastic baggies (and they have Elsa and Anna on them– for the win!) to pack their snacks. I went to the garage, where I have two furniture restoration projects in the works, and gathered three bottles of water, as I learned that Florida has toilet to tap water, and I refuse to allow my children to drink the septic water that is recycled in school water fountains.
I packed everything in their bags, and then went to the laundry basket. I am imperfect, and do not put clothes away fast enough probably to be considered a ‘good housewife’; but, I do enough to ensure that clothes are always clean. I took three pairs of underwear, six socks, three pairs of pants, three shirts, and then three alternate shirts (see, I’ve done this before and know at least one of my kids will complain about the outfit I chose). I then set the outfits on the dining room table so everyone can get ready, once they are awake and eat the food I placed on the kitchen bar. I made three portions of breakfast, and hummed the familiar wake up song.
I proceeded to brew my wife her first cup of coffee (I would soon brew two more that she takes ‘to go’), and ensured that the leftovers from the dinner I cooked last night are ready to become an entirely new meal for her lunch this day; tucked perfectly in her bag, with a rose and a sonnet written on her napkin.
I walked into our bedroom that I had cleaned, dusted, and vacuumed the day prior, and with a concert of music with local critters whom I recently met upon relocating to Florida – including alligators, geckos, lizards, snakes, and bugs – I belted out a loving and uplifting tune to gently summon my wife from her blissful slumber all whilst said critters harmonized with my earth-shattering singing. They took off the comforter from our warm bed, placed my wife’s robe on her shoulders, slipped her slippers on her manicured feet (the critters JUST did her toes at my bidding yesterday), delivered her coffee, and drew her a bath. My lovely critters did all this whilst accompanying me singing our happy morning song! And this happens – every.single.day. #man
I’m unclear, ‘Anachronism’, what year/time period you are idealizing. I don’t mean to come across as stern, but I find it disheartening that there are people in the world who find it acceptable to be so insulting to someone you never met. My advice is to focus on tolerance and understand that not everyone is going to share your ideals or concept of what is right and wrong. I can respect if you choose to do things more traditionally, but please respect others who choose a different path that works for them.
I understand that part of a paradigm shift and in a revolution of gender roles that the pioneers will face backlash. What do you think? Can a man be a “real man” if he takes care of his children and domestic duties (even with a little help from magical singing critters)?
Originally appeared on Dear Dad. Reprinted with permission.
Photo: courtesy of author
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