6.22.2006

The Daddy Duhs


I was lying in bed, brushing the dander off the satanic cat when Nate called my name through the pocket doors from the adjacent baby's room. "Liz," he admonished, "do you have to leave the top open on the wipes? It dries them out."

I mumbled a half-hearted apology.

"This is like the third time you've done it though," he said as I heard the crinkle of a fresh diaper in his hands. "C'mon already."

Before he could continue, I bolted upright.

Oh lord. Nate sounds like me.

Which means I sound like...

It was like the third act of some big-budget, predictable romantic comedy. I'd like to think I'd be played by Jessica Alba, but I think I'll have to settle for Sara Jessica Parker under bad lighting.

The incident got me thinking, it possible that men aren't the clueless creatures that they proport to be? That they are indeed capable of remembering to check the diaper bag for diapers before leaving the house, to insert the little round disc in the bottle to keep it from leaking, to give the baby a bath and use soap--without being told? Is it possible that men do not in fact have a genetic affliction that keeps them from throwing the baby's clothes in the hamper and not on the floor beside it? Is it possible that they are actually able to care about things like appropriately moist diaper wipes, even if the diaper wipes are not blonde and braless and able to toss them a Bud while humming Hail to the Redskins?

Is there even a slight chance that as far as domestic cluelessness men are...faking it?

I hate to speak in generalizations because indeed there are men--some of them reading this very blog--who are capable and conscientious and fastidious, and very much in possession of the nurturing gene. But if I may generalize anyway (why thank you very much, I think I will generalize!) I am pretty sure that most men do not fit this description. They do not remember to pick up formula at the store, let alone checking the list to see if you need formula before going to the store, let alone even knowing that there's a list to look at, let alone going to the store in the first place.

They do not do these things because they have lead us to believe that they handle the parenting minutia poorly. Or worse, that they are incapable of handling it at all. And so, moms are left multitasking again, remarkably able to both clean up our partners' messes and shake our heads at the incompetence. Sometimes we even chew gum too!

They're the Daddy Duhs: Those little annoyances that we laugh about and roll our eyes about, and then go and fix so that we can be sure that things are done the right way So There.

The Daddy Duhs are rarely huge, horrible things like dropping the baby on her head or letting her play in the oven. They're the little annoyances--the hangnails of parenting. Like sticking the baby food jar that's been open for six days back in the fridge. Or putting the baby in a snow hat in 95-degree heat, because the summer one is "too pink."

I always assumed the Daddy Duhs could be justified by a combination of several factors: Career chaos occupying that grey matter that might be applied towards keeping the household in order; lack of time; lack of interest; basic genetics and evolutionary tendencies. But now I'm changing my tune: I think that men do as little as we allow them to do. Less rising to their own levels of incompetence than sinking to our own low expectations.

So while we get frustrated, what do they get? Less housework time, more PS2 time. Less bottle washing time, more SportsCenter time. Fewer nighttime feedings, more sleep.

Ladies, are we being had here?

On the other hand, I'm guilty of some mild deception myself. I spent many years pre-Nate as the single girl who changed her own lightbulbs, installed her own venetian blinds, killed her own mice. (Or at least called her own super.) I could carry my own luggage. I could hail my own cab. I owned tools for God's sake. Today, you'd be hard-pressed to catch me tippy-toed atop three phonebooks on a wobbly ladder, 75-watt bulb in hand. It's not that I can't, it's that I don't really need to.

And that's the point.

Maybe we just need to give the guys a chance to fail before they can succeed. Let them be the ones caught without a clean diaper in the park when three days of constipation come to an abrupt and malodorous end. Let them be the ones with 8 ounces of formula soaking through their brand new Ken Follett hardcover because they didn't bother to snap the lid on the bottle before sticking it in their backpack.

Let them be the ones who get stuck with a squirmy, excrement-coated 11 month old on the changing table with only a stale, dried-out wipe at the ready.

You'll see how fast things change.


59 Comments:

Blogger Chag said...

I know of at least one guy who fakes it. He told me that on his first wedding anniversary, he purposely bought his wife something hideous that she would hate, just so he wouldn't be bothered with buying her gifts in the future. Now, when Mother's Day, Xmas, or her birthday rolls around, she shops for herself. And they both end up happy.

6/22/06, 12:35 AM  
Blogger soleclaw said...

They totally fake it! And I just had this revelation the other day!

I asked hubs to do something for me and he didn't do it. So I told him from now on I wouldn't ask, I'd just do it myself and realized...

That's what he's wanted this whole time!

6/22/06, 12:45 AM  
Blogger toyfoto said...

Mine doesn't fake it, although he can't seem to close the diaper wipes box, like, EVER. But do I complain? Nope. Not on yer life. After all, I've been known to leave the milk out on the counter overnight ... like more times than I can count on two hands. I think when it comes to faking it, we're all just about even. Either that or we're all just sleep walking through life.

6/22/06, 12:52 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

I think you are on to something there.

Oh and the Jews for Jesus thing... My hubby dated a girl who was Jewish. It didn't work out and they stayed friends. Years later, she went back to school in another state. She came home a Jew for Jesus apparently. They got together to catch up and that's when she told him over a nice piece of fish... You know, if someone is going to buy me dinner, I think I'd refrain from the "Hey, you're going to hell when you die, by the way" talk... Maybe save that for later...

6/22/06, 1:00 AM  
Anonymous Naeva said...

Fake it or not, they deserve a chance to fail.

Let's just hope we're giving them chances will eventually help us.

:D

Btw, I put the link of this post in my blog. Hope you're ok with that.

6/22/06, 3:31 AM  
Blogger carrie said...

Hmmm . . . how DID I learn all those "motherly" tricks anyway? Aside from teenage babysitting gigs, I learned mostly from my very own mistakes! But it is so hard to see the mistake being made right in front of your own eyes and not correct it!! So hard, for me anyway. Wish I could fake it as well as my Hubby!

Carrie, Wife of Prepetual Diaper Wipe Lid Left Open Dad

6/22/06, 5:01 AM  
Blogger Daren said...

Oh my goodness. You're right. They know if they screw it up enough, we'll take over. Uh-oh. I've got to rethink some things, here. lol.

6/22/06, 5:24 AM  
Blogger Robin said...

Yeah, you've nailed us. Them. Whatever.

While *most* of the things that some dads don't do are --sort of-- deliberate, there are occasional things that honestly are a true challenge. (But changing diapers isn't one of them)

The only thing I couldn't do, for years and years, was clip baby fingernails. Freaked me out. So my wife handled that job exclusively. And eventually, by the fifth kid, I even was able to do that.

So we *can* be taught!

6/22/06, 7:00 AM  
Anonymous motherhooduncensored said...

I have a 50% faker at my place. How can someone who cleans the kitchen floor with a spray bottle and paper towel not be able to wipe a butt of a baby?

Exactly.

And I leave the wipes open, all the time. And I get yelled at.

All the time.

6/22/06, 8:52 AM  
Blogger Mother Bumper said...

Oh we are being had - I call him on it all the time. But I haven't yet mustered up the nerve to subject Bump to a night "on the edge" with just papa because I'm afraid of the end result. I'm pretty sure she'd live... but would he, after I got home?

6/22/06, 8:55 AM  
Anonymous Deb said...

This issue was addressed on an episode of 'Raymond' during the last season. Raymond's brother got out of his share of the wedding plans and associated work by being purposefully incompetent. So funny and sooo true, in most cases anyway.

6/22/06, 9:14 AM  
Anonymous Binkytown said...

You are lucky! My Mr Mom would hardly notice and use a dry wipe, wondering- why isn't this working? Oh I wish I could step back and let him work it out. I'm too afraid of the chaos that would ensue. I know I need to let go a little but I.just.can't. Am inspired to at least try.

6/22/06, 9:46 AM  
Blogger bubandpie said...

I'm guilty of a bit of strategic ignorance myself - I purposely never learned how to empty the Diaper Genie (a very handy tactic when the old pregnancy-nose clicked in, making any exposure to diapers a real risk of passing out).

6/22/06, 9:53 AM  
Blogger Jaelithe said...

I have found that the trick to overcoming this is to play on their insecurities.

"Oh, I know the baby always seems to want to go to me when he's upset, but I'm sure he loves you just as much as he loves me; he just doesn't see you as often, so he hasn't had an opportunity to build such a deep level of trust with you as he has with me. Hey, I have an idea! Why don't you give him his bath every night before bedtime? And then put him in his pajamas, brush his teeth, and help him pick up his room afterward? I'm sure he'll warm up to you in no time!"

Yes, I know I'm evil. Hehehe.

And the husband of this evil wife gives his son his bath EVERY NIGHT.

6/22/06, 9:57 AM  
Blogger Becky said...

my husband i believe fakes it occassionally. but most of his problem is selective hearing and selective memory. love this post. couldn't have said it better myself

6/22/06, 10:22 AM  
Blogger Jodi said...

HMMMMM...very interesting. I do believe you are truly onto something. I know I don't do half the stuff I did before hubby, the whole lightbulb, oil in the car, taking out the trash, things..because I know I have HIM to do it. So the reverse MUST be true as well. HMMMMMMM....

6/22/06, 10:24 AM  
Blogger Michele said...

Enabler.Me.Guilty as Charged.

I totally make DH's life a cakewalk. And he knows it. He will do anything I ask him to, but I just wish I didnt have to do all of the asking. Because asking sometimes feels just a breath away from nagging.

6/22/06, 10:48 AM  
Blogger T. said...

I can't fathom the fact that my hubs might be faking it. This morning I asked him to pack lunch for the kids and he thought a granola bar, a cheese slice and a pickle was appropriate??!! What the f%*K?

Not to mention, when I asked him to put bug spray on the boy for the field trip this morning, he grabbed the can and sprayed him inside my house, on my hardwood floor and straight into my kids eyes.

Yours might be capable, but mine seems like a loving dunderhead...

6/22/06, 10:49 AM  
Blogger Kristin said...

I am all for giving your Nate props but really, my husband still asks me things like, "what does she eat for dinner?" & "where are the diapers".

It is most likely learned helplessness because I needed to be the Queen of ALL things Children... man, I shot myself in the ass with that move.

6/22/06, 11:26 AM  
Blogger Binky said...

My husband is competent enough in most aspects of fatherhood (I said competent, not willing) that I know on the rare occasion he does something really stupid, it's completely natural. Take, for example, the fact that he CANNOT put the baby in a matching, seasonally appropriate outfit. I am still kicking myself for not taking photos of some of the ensembles he's come up with. It's not that he doesn't care what she wears; it's that he just doesn't get it. I mean, the man's mother still buys all his clothes. Other than that, it's usually me exhibiting all kinds of incompetence. And my husband knows it's not an act :)

6/22/06, 11:40 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

My husband is generally pretty good at the main tasks of parenthood, although many of the small tasks get left to me. Also, he doesn't improvise well. If she needs fed, he makes a PB&J - that's all he'll ever make for her to eat.Variety is not his thing.

It'll be interesting to see how well he cares for her while I'm at Blogher.

6/22/06, 12:20 PM  
Blogger Andrea said...

Hmmm. Experimentation in the old homestead will commence immediately. My hubs is fairly adept at changing diapers and giving baths, but the packing! Oh the packing he doesn't do! How far can I go with this in the next three weekends that we're taking short trips? We shall see. Mwaahhahahahahahahahahah!

6/22/06, 12:24 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

I used to hand out an article called "Baseball and Babies" which was about allowing male incompetance in the face of the feminine bastion of motherhood. It made the argument that we (women) facillitate the incompetance by rushing to fix it, do it, or relieve it right away.

As another mom with a SAHD, it is astounding at what things Terrance can handle.

6/22/06, 1:28 PM  
Blogger Denver Dad said...

I think Mom-101 hit it on the head with her comment: "I think that men do as little as we allow them to do. Less rising to their own levels of incompetence than sinking to our own low expectations."

Guys are big on taking the path of least resistance. Why? I don't know. We just do. Do I know when I should step up and take the added responsibility? Yes. Do I always do it? Most of the time, but not always.

I'll let you women in on a secret (this may get me kicked out of the guys club)... include us and we'll do just fine. If it's something new and weird, show us how something is done. And, don't show it to us like you're showing your two year old. We're smart. We get it. But, give us reason to want to get it. Include us and we might surprise you. Don't just assume and then roll your eyes when we don't tune our telepathic helmets to "unspoken desires of the motherly unit."

Wheew! Sorry. I don't mean to sound preachy, but guys are pretty simple. Seriously. I've been one for 35 years and I can tell you without pause that we're a lot less complicated than we get credit for.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go ignore that smell coming from my son's pants.

6/22/06, 1:50 PM  
Blogger stefanierj said...

I remember talking to a SAHM friend who was complaining that her husband (a lawyer who worked 12-14 hour days) never checked the diaper bag before they left the house. He had asked her to make a list of what was needed and leave it in the bag so he could check it, and she said, "But I shouldn't have to do that! He should know!"

Of course, it was easier for her to pack the bag herself than make a list, but you know, I think Dawn's right--that's another example of how we rush to fix it because it's being done wrong--and sometimes not even wrong, just Not Like We Want It, and the dudes figure, well, I'm an idiot and she clearly does it better and knows she does it better, so I'll just let her do it. I honestly don't even think there's always a calculation going on in their heads about how to get out of doing something--they just know that if they even try, we'll end up doing it anyway.

I've only ever heard one person say that poorly rendered help is better than no help at all, and I just have to think of that every time I want to refold the towels or re-clean the bathroom.

6/22/06, 1:54 PM  
Blogger stefanierj said...

I remember talking to a SAHM friend who was complaining that her husband (a lawyer who worked 12-14 hour days) never checked the diaper bag before they left the house. He had asked her to make a list of what was needed and leave it in the bag so he could check it, and she said, "But I shouldn't have to do that! He should know!"

Of course, it was easier for her to pack the bag herself than make a list, but you know, I think Dawn's right--that's another example of how we rush to fix it because it's being done wrong--and sometimes not even wrong, just Not Like We Want It, and the dudes figure, well, I'm an idiot and she clearly does it better and knows she does it better, so I'll just let her do it. I honestly don't even think there's always a calculation going on in their heads about how to get out of doing something--they just know that if they even try, we'll end up doing it anyway.

I've only ever heard one person say that poorly rendered help is better than no help at all, and I just have to think of that every time I want to refold the towels or re-clean the bathroom.

6/22/06, 1:54 PM  
Blogger Carrcakes said...

A man can parent and nurture brilliantly when he has to. When the situation doesn't require for him to do so, is when the ultimate slacker and 'duh man' comes out.

6/22/06, 2:15 PM  
Blogger Dana said...

My husband always leaves the wipes thing open and I HATE it. So yes, there are still men who are clueless in the diapering dept!!!! :)

6/22/06, 2:23 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

I know my husband isn't completely ignorant of all things domestic yet I don't think he's faking it either. Is there some middle ground? Like they just don't really care if the wipes get dried out so it would never occur to them to close it?

6/22/06, 2:24 PM  
Blogger Stephanie A. said...

I have NO idea what you're talking about here. None at all. In fact, I can't relate to you so much that I wonder why I come here to read your blog. Seriously, I can't relate and I didn't have a conversation like this over dinner last night. Nope. Not me. My life is perfection.

6/22/06, 2:26 PM  
Blogger Jill said...

Man, Nate really blew it for the guy team. I can hear my husband in the background saying "Thanks ALOT Nate."

6/22/06, 2:52 PM  
Blogger Jenn said...

How fucking hysterical! My husband and I have had that EXACT conversation about the wipe warmer lid. WOW! And yea, I believe that men are TOTALLY takin thier women for a ride most times. It's like when they walk into the kitchen and are all "babe? Where are the pots?"

I didn't marry one of those. Mine came with genes capable of nurturing/cleaning/and changing diapers. I'm lucky I know! Looks like you are too!

I try to remember to close the lid now.....most of the time anyway.

6/22/06, 3:02 PM  
Blogger Melissa said...

I think some guys fake it and some don't. SOme really are that dumb. The one who fake it do it, so next time we just do it all our selves. Hubby isn't in either set. Although he will never put a dam thing in the hamper. And he loves him some PS2 time, but he is good at the small things in child rearing too.

6/22/06, 3:45 PM  
Blogger Marie said...

Chuckling and nodding through this whole thing!! Soooo relating. Yes, we do seem to be enablers, we women folk.

I'll never forget the time my husband took our then infant son to a park with a bottle, AND FORGOT THE NIPPLE!!

A week or so ago, we had 2 brands of wipes going - good brand downstairs, and cheapo brand upstairs. Hubby commented that the little guy didn't mind the good ones, but that the cheapo ones upstairs seemed to irritate his little rash. You could have knocked me over with a feather.
I could NOT believe he freaking noticed that.

I sooo relate to the dry wipe comment!

I do think we underestimate what they're capable of... truly.

6/22/06, 3:57 PM  
Anonymous the weirdgirl said...

I learned this lesson early! I have three brothers and they often tried the "Im too stupid to do this" routine. And my reaction was ALWAYS "quit trying to play me, I ain't doing it for you".

To be fair, my hubby is the cook of the house and pretty good at the parenting stuff. He doesn't play the incompetent card. What he does is try for the old "slide". As in, if he knows I'm going to clean in the afternoon he just doesn't pick up after himself in the morning. I might fold a big basket of his clothes, but he'll ignore other baskets of laundry. If he's had a really busy streak at work and I've been taking on extra (i.e. his share) at home, he'll let that arrangement slide as long as possible. Until, in fact, I stop and say, "Dude you need to start frickin' helping."

If that makes me a big old bitch, so be it.

6/22/06, 4:01 PM  
Blogger Beth said...

Totally fakers. When Claire was born, I 'overhelped' and hubby got pissed at me. He said he could do it. I shouldn't care if he folded the dirty diaper 'wrong'. She is 2.5 now. Now when I ask him to attend to her odd cry at 2am, he says 'what should I do?' Bullshit! you know exactly what to do!

6/22/06, 4:23 PM  
Anonymous chelle said...

My husband does alright, but I never allowed him to make excuses! If her really doesn't know then ask me!!

6/22/06, 4:50 PM  
Blogger Jozet said...

"I think that men do as little as we allow them to do."

A-flippin'-men

Of course *eh-hem* I do pretend to not know the first thing about baseball. Otherwise, the half-hour monolouges about the Phillies might turn into full-day sermons. My blank stare usually overpowers him.

But yes, I wonder how many Daddy Duh's (love it!) are really well-planned flubs in the hopes that our needing to do damage control will prevent us from even asking again.

6/22/06, 5:40 PM  
Anonymous Motherhood Uncensored said...

Do they fake orgasms too?

I just thought of that...

6/22/06, 6:11 PM  
Anonymous mamatulip said...

I think you're on to something...Dave will sit around perfecting his ass groove until I tell him to get up and get crack-a-lackin'. And he does get up and do stuff, and he doesn't complain...within earshot.

6/22/06, 7:26 PM  
Blogger Ashley said...

that is definitely what is going on! although, i can't say much b/c there are things at work that i just don't want to do, so i deliberately "don't know how." funny how things work

6/22/06, 8:19 PM  
Blogger sunshine scribe said...

Oh they are so faking it. It is the grand secret they all share. Like how all women know we've faked it in bed. They fake it with the Daddy Duhs. It is payback or something.

6/22/06, 8:50 PM  
Blogger kate said...

a good (male) friend of mine once said about men, "one thought or fewer."

i think it's partly them playing us a bit and part how they are wired.

6/22/06, 8:58 PM  
Anonymous Ashley said...

Isn't amazing how we marry these brilliant men and then the minute we have a baby they become clueless? I agree with you. We need to let Dad find his own way. It's hard because it is often different from our way, the "right" way. If we are able to let Dad and babe be, step back and look the other way, they always end up doing just fine. And it is just the beginning of their unique relationship.

6/22/06, 9:12 PM  
Blogger Mega Mom said...

I loved this piece and laughed "noddingly", but I want to look at it seriously. Man or woman, it really does take practice. I didn't know how crappy the wipes got until I repeatedly left the lid off. Yes hubby makes the mistake, but he doesn't really know the outcome. Yes I get frantic about bedtime so they won't be grumpy the next day, but usually hubby isn't there the next day to see it.

However, I let him off the hook about as much as I let him have it. It is the re-occuring things that drive me nuts :)

6/22/06, 9:30 PM  
Blogger Teacher lady said...

Okay, I'm embarrassed to say this because in our marriage, I'm the clueless one and Mr. J. is all over everything 24/7. He knows if we need milk or not. He knows what day the trash guys come and whether or not we need to close the upstairs windows before we leave for work because it is (or isn't) going to rain. He knows when we're running low on toothpaste, toilet paper, Kleenex, etc., He's the one who cleans out the refrigerator at least once a month so the things I've forgotten about don't suddenly become alive and attack us. And I know it drives him crazy, but honestly? When I was single, I didn't do those things either, so often ended up in many, um, "compromising positions" so to speak. I do try to make more of an effort so he doesn't go insane, but certain things just don't hit my radar. Honest!!!!!!

6/22/06, 11:19 PM  
Anonymous neva said...

here's how you even the score. when your kid(s) get older, get a puppy. i don't know why, but all he was unable to do with a child(ren) he *will* do with a puppy, and that includes late nite potty trips and cleaning up poopie messes. yes, it's weird. but then, we're talking about men here, right?

seriously. puppies rule.

6/22/06, 11:32 PM  
Blogger Mommy off the Record said...

You know what? This is SO true. I totally see it now. I am going to stop doing everything for my husband where the baby is concerned and see what he can do. I know it's in him. I just don't think I've given him the chance to "shine".

6/23/06, 2:09 AM  
Anonymous dorf said...

I say: Pick yer battles. Remember, it's the same thing that happens when a parent says to her 5 year old, "Don't run with that stick in your hand or you'll fall and that thing will go down your throat." Give them a chance to fail before they can succed. Thanks for this gentle and beautiful reminder.

6/23/06, 6:29 AM  
Anonymous mummy v said...

i think you're on to something... but there is NO way they're pretending when they leave the damn wet towels on the bed... that is a purely male trait... argh

6/23/06, 11:46 AM  
Blogger Mary-LUE said...

I'm with the "sometimes they get it, sometimes they don't" crowd. My husband is his own little mix of things he is great about and things that don't matter to him so he just won't do them. Then, like some of the above commenters have obviously experienced, I have sometimes explained what needs to be done and what he does is sooooo far from what I asked, I have to scratch my head.

When my son was a mere babe, though, I did get challenged by a friend about being the "gatekeeper" of kid care. There were things I wanted to be done in a certain way (that I still believe were the better way) but if they didn't happen that way when by spousal unit was in charge weren't going to do any long term damage.

Lastly, I think doing things like avoiding the poopy diaper is not an exclusive male characteristic. We once were watching a friend's baby. I left to go run an errand and when I got back her diaper just reeked. Now, there were three adults at the house. One of them a woman. They all ignored it because they knew when I got back I would change it. Yellow-bellied cowards!

6/23/06, 12:38 PM  
Blogger tracey said...

Great theory. I'm right ther with ya. When I'm not around, my husband does the job perfectly. This mismatched clothing is the least of my worries. The more I help and take charge, the less he does, because the less he has to do. When there's not the "duh" option, there's no "duh" involved.
Although once there was a sunburn incident. You can bet he'll never do that again and I didn't even have to say a word about it. No more "duh".

6/23/06, 1:18 PM  
Blogger Stacy said...

You’re right. We should go ahead and let men fail, so they can learn from their mistakes and become more nurturing. On the other hand, it’s so hard for us mommies to teach them that lesson at the expense of our babies’ well being. A mother’s concern almost always lies first with her baby. I think it’s ingrained in us. It’s something we cannot undo. Do you think men, if they were in our roles, would make that sacrifice to teach us a lesson? I think so. More Sports Center for them. It’s called the “selfish” gene. Maybe it’s ingrained in them.

6/23/06, 2:09 PM  
Blogger Mom101 said...

All the perspectives are just so interesting. I think some of you are right, it is a combo of real cluelessness, feigned cluelessness, and cluelessness that we've inadvertently imposed on them.

Stacy - You raise a good point. But on the other hand, I think things like dried-out wipes and socks that don't match really have no affect on our babies' well-being. Maybe we have to be better at picking our battles. There's a difference between forgetting to use soap in the bathtub and letting her suck on the AA batteries lying around on the coffee table, right?

6/23/06, 2:29 PM  
Blogger mrsmogul said...

I like that..the DADDY DUHS..I think there was a class on it and my husband attended. Just recently he asked his SIL if his 20 month old nephew was on solids yet..WHAT? I WAS LAUGHING HARD!

6/23/06, 6:29 PM  
Blogger Her Bad Mother said...

'Daddy Duhs' and 'Hangnails of Parenting' are totally being added to my lexicon.

You are so, so right. About them. About us. About them. We'll be having our own test of this when I go to Blogher and Bad Husband goes Bad Father 'round the clock.

6/23/06, 9:33 PM  
Blogger EmilyRoseJewel said...

I haven't read all of the comments so pardon me if I have repeated any of this. I do think that men are quite capable of doing things right as far as most parenting goes, but I do think that women in general are better at multitasking. Men are really one track minded and parenting is usually many things at once. I think it would be really tough on Ron to do the stay at home thing and he tells me this after a few hours by himself with Justice, which is rare. He does complement my parenting though with bringing me down when I am all frazzled and stressed over parenting issues. He helps me remember important things for Justice on our trips and he is very hands on with Justice when asked. He does leave the wipes open on occasion though. I do think that Ron could handle the parenting things on his own, but I know they wouldn't be done the way I like them and what I feel is truly best, but he could do it. Great post!

6/23/06, 11:50 PM  
Anonymous Nila said...

I started working nights in order to give my husband the chance to screw up the kids too. Why should I be the only one, and when we're both home, I do everything kid related. He's less helpless than he was before. Even if they fake it, if you force them to it, they will make due and the children will survive. Hopefully.

6/24/06, 11:00 PM  
Blogger MommyWithAttitude said...

Totally right. I'm here most of the time and my husband isn't, so I'm the one who keeps track of those things. I complain about his messiness and all the little things he doesn't "do right." But sometimes I get to go away for the weekend all by myself and I come back to find everyone alive, the house and the kids clean even... and I know that those little things my husband "can't" do are really things he just doesn't do, because he doesn't have to.

At the same time I'm perfectly capable of mowing the lawn, but I'll leave it grow until hell freezes over or he mows it... so it all evens out here at least.

6/27/06, 2:46 PM  

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