Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from CoffeeQueen. Show CoffeeQueen's posts

    Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    I know this has been discussed on these boards before but I had to share.  This past weekend DH, DS and myself went to Target to do our normal errands.  Per usual, DH takes DS in the stroller and hangs out in the electronics and book section while I shop (super helpful might I add).  Well, haha, when I was done and ready to check out, the two of them where no where to be found. Couldn't read DH on his cell so I wandered around and found the two of them in the Baby section SURROUNDED by a flock of Nanas.  DH had a huge smile on his face and as I approached I heard one of the women say something about how "nice it is to see a hands on Dad who's willing to take the baby out to do errands."  Then they decended into talking about their own husbands and how they barely even changed a diaper.  Their parting words were something about how DH is "such a good father" (for carrying HIS OWN SON in a store????) and how I am so lucky.  I am lucky, my hudband totally rocks.  He's there when I need him and takes direction very well (tee hee).  What I can't get over is the pedastal those women put him on for simply doing what he's supposed to as a parent.  It just kills me!  Strangers aren't approaching me and commending me on my stellar mothering skills when I have the little banshee strapped to my body in the grocery store and he's mashing mum mums in my hair!

    What gives? :)
     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from beniceboston. Show beniceboston's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    My mom says the same things about my husband on a regular basis. Husbands back in their day were definitely not expected to "parent" as much as they are these days. It's one thing about society that has actually improved.
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from JACON. Show JACON's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    I agree that husbands shouldn't get a medal for hands-on parenting anymore than I expect a medal. But on the flip side, I see how hands-off so many of my friends' DHs are with their kids that it does make me appreciate all the more how involved my DH is with DS. And DH is so involved because he wants to be and he doesn't understand how some fathers do so little.  I think there are still quite a few fathers that don't do enough. So to help the shift I think a little positive reinforcement is a good thing even if it is a tad annoying. And I would have done some major eye rolling at those ladies. :)

    Oh and I did LOL at the visual of mashing mum-mums in your hair. Sorry. :)
     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from lemonmelon. Show lemonmelon's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    Aaron Traister has a great article about it in Salon (almost all his stuff is great, by the way) http://www.salon.com/life/feature/2010/07/20/stay_at_home_dads/index.html

    I was just last night complaining bitterly about an incident where I was helping out with my mom and my daughter was very upset so I strapped her to my back and was dragging furniture around and hoyering and doing various unpleasant duties while my daughter happily yanked my hair out and sang, and then my husband sat down to assemble the vacuum we'd just purchased for the home health aid to use and my daughter wanted in on the action,so she sat next to him and knocked two blocks of styrophome together and my SIL launched into this big Teachable Moment where she told me to observe how my husband "involves" our daughter in his activities and, by doing so, "validates her and makes her feel important." Lady, I just lifted someone onto a bedpan with her glued to my back -- she's involved! It's nice for my husband to get affirmation for beinga great dad, but maybe I deserve a little credit for being a good mom, too. At the very least, I don't deserve to lose by comparison.

    Hey, guess what -- you can't say "b@nged" on here. So if you don't want to work, don't count on putting stick to drum all day.
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from CoffeeQueen. Show CoffeeQueen's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    "Lady, I just lifted someone onto a bedpan with her glued to my back -- she's involved"

    Lemon - YOU KILL ME! Haha.

    Well I guess I need to remember that all the hoops and hurdles that I manuever during the day are simply what is expected of me as a fulltime mom/wife/breadwinner.  Anything "extra" that gets done by DH is simply monumental. Tongue and cheek of course.

    JACON - I hear you on the positive reinforcement.  I make sure to give accolades to DH in my own way but it's not the same as being praised by a total stranger.  He ate it right up!  Good for me because he has been a little extra puffed up since and voluntarily got up early both yesterday and today to take DS to daycare so I wouldnt have to rush. ;)
     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from Rirlo01. Show Rirlo01's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    DH and I don't have children yet, but we talk about this a lot.  Thank you all for validating my (our, hopefully) feelings! 
     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from medfordcc. Show medfordcc's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    In Response to Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad:
    my SIL launched into this big Teachable Moment where she told me to observe how my husband "involves" our daughter in his activities and, by doing so, "validates her and makes her feel important."
    Posted by lemonmelon


    I am pretty sure I could not have resisted giving her a good kick in the shins.  If the SIL complained, I would tell her that it validates me, and makes me feel important.

    People gushing over the dads is really annoying.  But I try to give a pass to the little old ladies because I think in their time many of them got NO parenting help out of their husbands.


     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from CoffeeQueen. Show CoffeeQueen's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    These Nanas were in their 50's. They were shopping for their daughter/niece's baby shower.  They were cute, asking DH how many onsies our son went through in the beginning.  Imagine their shock when he went into full detail about newborn blowouts.....haha.

     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from misslily. Show misslily's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    Well you are all very lucky.  My husband still thinks he's Ward Cleaver.  He plays with the twins, but doesn't help with any feeding, washing, changing.  We are now bathing them together in the big tub.  I undress them both, wash them both, dry them off, re-diaper and put on their pj's.  He watches and plays with tub toys!  don't you think it would go faster if he'd do one kid while I do the other? Oh well...
     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from beniceboston. Show beniceboston's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    And when you say "hey, can you help me change a diaper" he says.... ?
     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from CoffeeQueen. Show CoffeeQueen's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    Not gonna lie, if I stayed home I'm pretty sure DH would do a lot less. I think he has an inner Ward Cleaver lurking around in his sub-concious.  When DS was itty bitty I was frustrated that DH wasn't willing to jump in and help more (I initially thought he was intimidated), he actualy said, "You are the starter and I'm on the bench. I have no problem riding the pine." Once I figured out the sports reference we had a LONG chat about expectations and pulling the load as an equal team.  Our (his) turning point. ;)
     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from SarahInActon. Show SarahInActon's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    Yeah Lilly, time to light a fire under someone's darling derriere.
     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from capecod1818. Show capecod1818's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    Just think ladies.  That is why mother's day is a much bigger holiday than father's day.  Moms rock!
     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from LiveLoveLearnEnjoy. Show LiveLoveLearnEnjoy's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    Anytime DH goes out with DS on his own he comes back with all these stories about how women he would see would comment about how nice it is he is out with his son and what a great dad he is etc and he just loves to tell the stories.  Of course when I am out all I get is how adorable DS is!

    I can't complain too much about DH....he does the cooking, watches DS without an issue whenever I need him to and will put DS to bed sometimes (though honestly I just like putting DS to bed so either I do it or we both do it) but my complaint is in the morning.  DH got laid off in January and one would think after nursing him once or twice during the night that sometimes DH would say at 6am when DS wakes up "Let me take him now that he is fed and you go back to bed for a bit."  But no, not even on my birthday after lots of "it would nice for you to get up once in a while in the morning so I could sleep" comments.  Instead he sleeps in.  I have woken him and up and said here DS is fed and it's your turn to watch him while I get some more sleep but sometimes a girl just wants her man to step up on his own!
     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from lemonmelon. Show lemonmelon's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    LLLE -- maybe he can't hear the baby:

    http://parenting.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/12/08/why-mom-wakes-up-when-baby-cries/

    You could get a tape of a car alarm and hit "play" whenever the baby starts crying.
     
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  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from poppy609. Show poppy609's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    LLLE - I finally said to my husband, "I need you to take DD one morning a week so I can sleep in a bit."  (Since I am up 2 times every night with her).  He was totally agreeable and it's going to be Saturdays.  I think it helps to have something consistent in place so you don't have to always ask.
     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    DH is so great with the baby so far.  He jumped right in and started changing diapers, etc.  Apparently a bunch of guys at work were shocked to hear he changes diapers - some our age (30) and some of the older crowd.  Thank goodness I don't have one of those husbands!!

    And I think some guy makes a good point.  Some of the comments women make are much like the babysitting dad kind of comment.  Clearly I am new to this, so I'm not judging!
     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from CT-DC. Show CT-DC's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    The world is ending.  Why?  Because I AGREE with some_guy!!!!!!

    But it's hard to change our language, too, because WE were raised with our fathers being pretty hands off except if our mother specifically asked for things.  So we are all charting new waters, exploring new territory, and doing other trite sayings!

    But, still, I agree with some-guy... is earth still rotating on its axis????
     
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from lemonmelon. Show lemonmelon's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    I must run with a very progressive crowd, because I can't fathom anything less than 50/50 parenting and I don't know any fathers who hold old timey father roles. Most of the dads I know are at least partially SAH anyway (we know a lot of freelancers), so I guess in the case of my family and my friends, the dads are the ones home with the kids more. I think that in the first few months, a baby and mom are still a unit, particularly if you're exclusively breastfeeding like we did. My husband functioned pretty well as a baby delivery system -- bringing the angry baby to me to nurse at night -- but there wasn't much else he could do in that department. We always switch off with diaper changes, although neither of us minds it that much. (It was a different story when our daughter was going through her diaper-resistant stage, of course -- there was lots of bargaining and weaseling during that time.)

    I also think that dads who don't engage in the grunt work would really miss out. Changing diapers can be gross, but some of our best conversations occur over the diaper table. Last night she made a long speech about Halloween and the fun she had and what everyone wore. And she likes to play with her Ikea finger puppets and make up little stories about babies falling down and crying for mommy. Today in the bath she had her shark sink to the bottom, and her frog saved it, and then the shark ate the frog. That's the cool stuff you miss when you weasle out of the wetwork.

    My own dad was really nurturing -- much more so than my mom -- so I guess I just always expected that my husband would be the same. Maybe he does deserve a little praise. Just a little, though. He's already entirely too pleased with himself in general.
     
  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from LiveLoveLearnEnjoy. Show LiveLoveLearnEnjoy's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    Lemon he is a pretty sound sleeper but I just tap him and he will go get the baby for nursing at night.  And he will get up with me if DS wakes up and won't back to sleep.

    I agree with some-guy as well and the words I used probably weren't the right ones.  We do need to change our thinking as CT-DC said.  DH is very hands on and is a wonderful father.  He changes diapers, clothes, does baths, everything without prompting by me.  And like Lemon's DH he has been a great delivery system as I am bfing. 

    I think the point kind of was that all parents deserve praise!
     
  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from winter09wedding. Show winter09wedding's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    I am so lucky to have a husband who wants to be involved in everything- he does have some anxiety (we both did initially) so there are some things one of us had to be bold about (who picks up the slippery baby from the bath) which tended to be me because I was home during maternity leave. However, I thank my lucky stars that my husband is a 50/50 parent.

    that said, I work a second job in the evenings two nights a week to make ends meet. and my MIL always calls that time "babysitting." which infuriates me. I always immediately say "parenting." but... it does not seem to be a winning battle.
     
  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from ml2620-2. Show ml2620-2's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    Some-guy, I actually agree with you completely! This post made me call my husband and tell him I forgot how lucky I am to have a partner very involved (in many ways more involved) in raising our daughter. Although I sometimes dream of being June Cleaver and staying home and managing baby and homestead, I just don't think I could stand being married to Ward.

    By praising the OPs husband like a child and putting him on a pedestal  like that, it seems to be they were really treating him like a child ("aren't you such a good boy....), rather negating him as a man. I suppose they do that because it's easier to think it's unusual and cute to be a hands-on father than realize what an lousy husband and father of your children you have.

    That said, especially at first, getting praise from family AND non-family members went a very long way in building my husband's confidence as a father.
     
  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from Lostgrouse. Show Lostgrouse's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    I don't even think about the difference between my husband and me when it comes to taking care of the kids.  We work well together because we both work and we both know what needs to get done.  I usually do the cooking at home because I enjoy it and while I cook, he plays with the kids.  He mows the lawn and does a lot of the outdoor stuff because he enjoys it, and I play with the kids.  The only thing that always falls to me is nursing, but then again, unless we go the Focker route, he can't help out with that.  I also change the baby's diaper at night because what's the point of making him get up when I have to get up anyway?  He usually takes care of our 2.5 y.o. at night if she wakes up and needs to use the bathroom or has a bad dream.  We don't plan any of the division, it just works that way and neither of us resents the other for any of it, but if we were starting to feel overwealmed we would speak up.  

    He drops off my son at daycare in the morning and I drop off my daughter.  He gets both kids all day on Saturday when I work during tax season.  I get them when I want to take time off of work outside of tax season.  

    The only thing that my husband doesn't do well is read my mind.  If he did then it would be great to have flowers every week and a back massage every night, but I'll "settle" for getting those when I ask him for them.  
     
  25. You have chosen to ignore posts from CoffeeQueen. Show CoffeeQueen's posts

    Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad

    In Response to Re: Mini Rant - "Medals" for hands on Dad:
    I don't quite know how to put this, but when you use phrases like  "He's there when I need him and takes direction very well (tee hee)." and  "watches DS without an issue whenever I need him to" it kinda feeds that vibe that you're the #1 for the kid and the father is just there to assist you when asked. I agree that there are a lot of guys out there that don't do enough with/for their kids. Maybe it's their upbringing, maybe they're intimidated or lazy.  Or, maybe it's because their wives constantly talk like that and invalidate them to the point where they don't want to be involved because they're just going to be told how they're 'doing it wrong' etc. So while you don't want people puting dads up on a pedestal for taking the kid to target for an hour (really not a big deal) you're at the same time puting yourself up on a pedestal just for being a 'mom'.  The mommy martyr syndrome is a serious problem here.
    Posted by some-guy


    SomeGuy, thank you for calling me out.  I shouldn't have put my DH down with my "taking directions" comment.  It wasn't my intention, I often think that I'm being playful when I am actually being hurtful and detrimental.  I grew up with a "Traditional Italian" Father who was the breadwinner and would (literally) come home and put his feet up and watch my mom scrambble and struggle to feed, bathe and discipline my brother and I.  I know that I subconciously put DH into that role and assume that he doesn't know what he's doing (neither do I most of the time).

     
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