My husband is a wonderful dad, and I love when people notice how amazing he is at this parenting gig. However, one thing that really annoys me is when people ask if it’s “daddy’s day to babysit”? News flash: a dad taking care of their children isn’t babysitting! It’s called being a parent, whether the mom is there or not.
Society’s double standard
This obvious double standard of praising a father for doing the same things that a mother does (usually with no recognition, let’s be honest) just goes to show that childcare is still viewed as a woman’s responsibility. Rarely do others take notice or comment when a mother has successfully managed three kids in Walmart, because that’s just her job. But when a dad takes the children anywhere, he turns into this mythical creature that people are in awe over! It’s a special day because dad has the kids, and the mom must’ve been busy. Even more, he should clearly be applauded for handling his wife’s work. (Insert eye roll!)
You are so lucky.
Dads shouldn’t be put on a pedestal and praised when it comes to parenting. It should be expected of them. It amazes me when people are shocked to hear that my husband and I work together to equally share parenting responsibilities. I often hear things like “You are so lucky that your husband is so involved” or “Must be nice to have a husband who helps so much.”
Luck has nothing to do with it! While I thoroughly appreciate everything my husband does, it’s just part of being an involved parent. I know that there are plenty of dads out there who don’t think twice about taking over when mom needs a break to use the bathroom without someone tapping on the door or go out for dinner with the girls. This should be the norm, not the exception.
Not a helper or a babysitter
When my husband is watching the kids so I can relax in a hot bubble bath or aimlessly browse the aisles of Target alone, I appreciate it more than he knows. Moms should really learn to expect that and not feel guilty! If my husband decides to cook dinner, do the dishes, or make school lunches, he is not helping. If he takes the kids out for the day, he’s not babysitting. It’s just a normal part of being a parent.