In The News
Give Dads a Break! Moms Mess Up Too
Yes, it’s true. Moms rock.
But let’s face it ladies, many of us are luckier than most in that we have a partner in our lives who helps us with it all. Some of us know him as the dad to our children.
My husband is an amazing dad. He is present and involved, loving and kind and his children adore him. When I am off traveling or hanging out with my girlfriends, I am not at all worried that my husband is going to mess things up or that our children are in danger, just as he isn’t worried when he is out working or enjoying time with his friends.
Will he do things the way I would? Well, not always, but sometimes he ends up doing it better and his way is not wrong – just different. I have learned over the years to let go and let him parent how he knows best, and in the process giving my children, our children, the opportunity to build unique relationships and memories with us as parents and as individuals.
There are tons of dads out there just like my children’s father and I think those dads should be celebrated and promoted more, as opposed to the stereotypical incompetent dad currently promoted in the media, like in Huggies’ “Dad Test” campaign, and one that has led one angry dad to put out a petition to stop the ads from airing.
I know many moms out there will say their husband’s an idiot, has no clue, can’t do anything without her, and without her direction he will just make things bad. Maybe it’s age, maybe it’s the three kids I have, but I am all for letting him mess up sometimes and learn in the process. I am lucky that when I mess up there aren’t too many people around me to see it. I have stories I can tell and scars on my children to show how I have totally dropped the ball, or the child, and never once had my husband paint me to be a dunce of a mother because of it.
Cause there are times when I feel I am in the same boat when it comes to caring for my kids. I don’t always have all the right answers. I don’t always make the right choices. I can make huge messes and yes, I sometimes just let things go to hell while I sit on the couch and watch it happen. I certainly wasn’t born ready, and I was just as horrified as my husband when I first saw the awful things that can come out of my boys' bottoms after feedings…and just as reluctant to touch it. But I did, after he did first because I was recovering from a C-section.
All I know is that I was Wonder Woman as a single mom when I needed to be, and am Wonder Woman as a married mom when I need to be, but even this superhero mom needs help and despite when I don’t think I need it, my Super Man husband is there. Yeah, I could probably take care of my kids without my husband – but I would never want to, and I’m sure he could as well, but would rather not.
Why can’t he be celebrated instead? There is nothing in these commercials that I have seen that wouldn’t be a challenge to me, as mom as well, but I would never be portrayed this way.
And I point all this out not just to speak out for the great dads out there, but also to help give us moms a break. Because the glorifying of moms, how perfect we are, and how well we do it all is a false portrayal of our reality which set unattainable expectations of us in ourselves and in society. It’s the kind of stupidity that has us yearning to be like other people – such as the French. The vilifying and stupefying of dads lowers the expectations and standards of what they are and can be in their roles as husband and fathers and it sends our children, especially our sons, the wrong message.
It needs to stop, because it’s not funny, nor helpful.
As the mother of three boys always on the look out for positive role models, that is whom I want them to see in the media. Not some dude given “the challenge” while babysitting caring for his kid. Because it’s not just a challenge for dad, it’s a challenge for all of us.
If your husband sucks in his role as a husband and as a dad, it’s not a “man” thing; it’s a you and him thing, which you all need to figure out. Don’t throw all dads into that category, certainly not the dad to my kids. Cause he is freaking awesome.