I've been absent for a while now, pondering whether or not I really want to be a blogger. It seems narcissistic, self-indulgent, and egotistical. But it's also therapeutic, and kind of fun. So, I'm back. The thing is, I REALLY want to post pictures, so I need to do a little more research about blog privacy and things like that, just to see what the actual likelihood of the kids or me being stalked via blog truly is.
So, today's topic: Dads. I was out to dinner with some friends last week, all of whom happen to be moms. As it often does, the conversation turned to What Happens When We Leave the Kids With the Husbands. All of the girls had complaints. Big ones. Seems their husbands do nothing, or if they do, it's only with much complaint. Hearing all the griping made me wonder if the men really think watching their spawn for the night is so bad, or if it's all in our heads.
In preparation for a night out, we all seem to do the same thing, which is assume the husbands are incapable of doing anything at all. So, we feed the kids, bathe the kids, dress the kids for bed. All that's left for the men-folk to do is read a story or two and tuck their angelic offspring into bed, crack open a beer, and turn on Sports Center.
Why do we assume our men are so incapable of taking care of our kids? I mean, sure, the day to day activities are better done by the moms. I realize that statement may throw the Women's Movement back about 60 years, but seriously. There are few exceptions to this rule. We are the ones that have the kids because biologically, we are better caretakers. That's not to say that men don't have their own unique gifts to give their children. Dads are awesome. I have nothing but the best memories of my own Dad during my childhood. Talk about being there. From the time that I can remember, Saturday mornings were time with my dad. He took me out to breakfast, he took me to the pool, to the mall, ice skating.....he was completely involved, and I loved it.
My own husband is pretty much a rockstar dad. He has been known to spend multiple hours playing dollhouse with Ava, and he doesn't even complain. I, on the other hand, am not so into playing with my kids, preferring to observe and be amused while they entertain themselves.
But even knowing how good my baby daddy is, I still tend to lecture, or at least give detailed instructions on how to manage our children when I'm not there. And I feel the need to check in. And if I'm out on a daytime excursion, I feel compelled to rush through my activities so that I can return home and relieve him of his duties. Even when he insists that he is fine. Talk about silly.
Back to my friends and their husbands, though. I think we, as women, tend to complain about everything our husbands don't do, but we don't really even give them the chance to step up to the plate. What do we really think will happen if we go for a Girls' Night Out and don't have all the little details taken care of when we leave? Will our kids starve? No. They may not eat the organic, from-scratch meal we would have made, and dinner might even involve dinosaur-shaped chicken, but they will eat. And baths? Maybe they'll get one, maybe they won't. Does it matter? It's one night. What will happen is that they'll enjoy a fun night with Daddy, while we get a night away from having to worry with all the minutiae that we take care of all day and night.
So, ladies, next time you leave your kids with Daddy, skip the directions. Don't lecture. Don't tell him which pajamas they need to wear, or which sippy cup they should drink from. Let him take care of it. It really will be okay. He's their parent, too. And they'll all survive.