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I'm especially curious to hear what the parents on my list have to say about this article from Australia's News.com:

Critical dads 'devastate' new moms

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( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
sailormur
Aug. 7th, 2006 01:54 am (UTC)
And in other news, rain is wet.

Caring for a newborn is a staggering task. And if your partner isn't there for you - and if he expects you to do work for him then yes, you're suddenly the single parent of two feeble creatures and it can get it you.

I made sure before we discussed kids that our relationship wouldn't be like that. I had to know he would be an equal parent and partner. It makes me so sad that other women don't think to discuss this simple thing.
goodjoan
Aug. 7th, 2006 07:57 pm (UTC)
Right, parenting is exhausting in a way that is hard to explain to people who reguarly get to sleep more than an hour and a half at a time! Parenting is exhausting to all of your senses. After full day with a crying baby that's been alternatingly sucking on you, pooping on you, drooling on you, then sucking on you again, you just want 5 minutes of quiet, with no one actually touching your body or demanding anything of you. Parenting WITH HELP is hard, parenting without help is nearly impossible, but parenting with somone looking over your shoulder, critisizing and demanding more of you than you have to give will make anyone snap!

With your first baby you tend to impose a lot of unrealistic expectations on yourself (like being able to shower AND get dressed in the same day! Or be able to parent AND cook food or clean the house!) and even with a supportive husband and family, you can get yourself depressed because you find that all you have time for in those first few days is to sit quietly, feed and change the baby and try not to tweak your stitches. You see the mess but you don't really want to clean, and even if you did there's no time! You can hardly eat your food while it's hot, doing the dishes is impossible. Even if your hubby isn't saying the house is a sty, you're thinking that he's thinking it and you know it's true. If he actually said it out loud, you would indeed explode! Not in anger, because he's such a shallow, heartless, creep, but in tears because you feel like such an utter failure at everything you're doing or trying to do!

If you're lucky, you'll soon realize you can't do it all, you pick your priorities and you do those and you find ways to get the other things done that you need done. If Dan won't cut the grass, I'll call a landscaper and leave the bill on the dinner table. If the laundry s going to swallow me up, I send it off to the fluff and fold. If I ask Dan to wash the dishes and he doesn't, I order pizza every night for dinner and say "Sorry it's pizza again, I couldn't cook anything because all the dishes were in the sink and I couldn't wash them AND make dinner." Eventually he either gets sick of pizza and washes the dishes, or he realizes HE's overwhelmed as well and offers to pick up chinese on his way home!
sailormur
Aug. 7th, 2006 08:37 pm (UTC)
hee - we do our own lawn and laundry, but have a maid service every two weeks because neither of us have the time/energy to clean. It's worth every damn penny.
goodjoan
Aug. 8th, 2006 03:04 am (UTC)
Maids run screaming from my house! They don't want to work until they can see the floor. I say, if I could see the floor, the 5 minutes to wave my oreck over it is nothing! I need someone to help me pick up the piles of toys and books and dirty socks. Dishes are actually considered quiet time because you can say "Soapy hands, go ask your other parent!" and there are times that locking myself inthe bathroom with the bleach is a welcome respite from the kids! (I actually did an askgoodjoan question recently about bathroom cleaning!) Grocery shopping is similarly sacred, non kid time!

Dan does his own laundry now, because he knows that if he tosses his stuff in with the kids, he can't be sure when he'll see it again. I have my own hamper in my bathroom that is mine but also catches all the stuff the kids leave in my room and bathroom, and Audrey has her own hamper due to her entirely pink wardrobe. The 3 boys have 4 hampers just for their stuff. Bleachables (socks and underwear) darks, lights and uniforms. I try to do one hamper/load a day which leaves me one day of rest, in a perfect world!
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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