So, for my first blog post I thought I’d just jump straight in and talk a little bit about my husband. Obviously given the title of the blog post, the topic of discussion is whether or not he is in fact a “good dad” or a “bad dad”. For the purposes of this post, I’ll be using the terms “mum” and “dad” (with the whole, anyone can be a father, it takes a good one to be a ‘dad‘ and all that rigmarole).
What I’ve always found odd in the parental kingdom is the difference between what classes a mum or a dad as “good” or “bad”. My husband, for example is somewhat notorious throughout my friends. He is attractive, kind, caring, attentive, loving, giving, selfless, romantic…well I could go on, but the general consensus is that he is the perfect husband and an amazing dad. Now far be it from me to dispel any myths and say that my husband is not any of those things because if he wasn’t, I wouldn’t have married him and I sure as hell wouldn’t have procreated with him. However, due to all of the above and the fact that he is a “good dad”: he, like other “good dads”, is seemingly superhuman.
Now I have to give my husband props. Before our son was born, he worked 6 sometimes 7 days a week and a ridiculous amount of hours to make sure that I could go on endless shopping sprees for tiny pairs of Adidas trainers and a stock of 450 newborn nappies. I was a force to be reckoned with and what I missed out on in quality time, I made up for in retail therapy.
However, what I fail to understand is this. I carried our child myself (I suppose a lot of women can do that), tackled morning sickness, SPD, sciatica, headaches, heartburn, shortness of breath, increased THEN decreased appetite and amassed a large number of stretch marks in places that I didn’t even realise your skin could stretch. Not to mention to the horrendous act of induction of labour, followed by 7 hours of intense contractions, 25 minutes of pushing an 8lb 7oz human from my vagina which resulted in a 2nd degree tear, weeks of all the after stuff (nobody tells you about the after pains), sore, cracked and bleeding nipples from breastfeeding and boobs that have grown by 5 yes FIVE cup sizes and seem to want to venture to Antartica.
I’ve spent now 4 months at home with my little bundle of loveliness (he’s awesome I can’t lie), dealt with the majority of sickness, tears and poo explosions. I’ve learned to prepare meals, do my hair and makeup with one hand and isn’t it amazing how you learn to be okay with someone not only watching you shower but watching you poop? I haven’t actually spent a lot of time WITHOUT my baby, certainly not from the hours of 8:00-6:00 everyday (ahem, stay at home mum with working husband). Now, I am by no means bitter (I am definitely bitter) but I’m just wondering when all of that means that I’m a “good mum”.
Obviously, I’m not the first mother in this situation and I won’t be the last. However, I don’t think I ever really realised how little credit you get as a mother. If men, as the other parent, remain in their child’s life and basically just “parent” they are seen as these amazing one-in-a-million types. I’m not gonna lie, it irks me that as the family accountant, cleaner, chef and personal assistant, I’m not given more credit. What can you do? I’m patiently waiting for the details of my pay rise but maybe it got lost in the post.