My daughter has a wonderful father. A fantastic parent, a real prince among fathers. He has a parenting philosophy and can cure a shattered heart through consenting tickling. This man was made to be a father. But there’s one thing about this entire awesome-dad thing that irritates me. Everything is attributed to him. When he performs the simplest acts of parenting, you’d believe he raised the whole sky; the moon, the stars, and the sun. Then, he magically brought the equinox and solstice.
What do mothers do on a daily basis? It’s completely unjust. They are the true gold medals people of the Olympics. Moms stand over here toiling away with not even a nod of acknowledgement. Dad receives a wave of applause. Like …
- When he brings the kids food shopping
People stare at us as we handle an infant, a squalling a 5-year-old toddler, as if to ask me to hush that kid up. When Dad does it, folks come running with offers of assistance and pats on the back. The kid doesn’t even have to be squalling. Even if they are perfectly behaved, he is still a hero. An elderly lady once put her hand on my husband’s shoulder complimenting his courageousness. What about the kid? He was an angel in every way. WTF.
- When he prepares dinner
Call someone to say that your spouse prepared supper, not grilled it. Just give it a go. Immediately you are begged to lend him and “I am so lucky to have found him”. My mom, as well, praise his bravery when he does something I have always been doing – when it come to me, it’s my business as usual. When dad cooks anything other than cereal, everyone applauds as if he’s won the Tour de France.
- When he has to change a diaper
One child equates to nearly seven million diaper changes, six million of which have erupted feces up to the back of their necks, and mom is expected to handle it all. Dad is a hero when he jumps in to give a helping hand. He’s supposed to be fumbling and foolish, even putting on the diaper sideways, and even that is heroic because feces.
My husband changed half of the diapers and even used flat diapers that he had to fold himself. This has half of my town’s hippy population lusting after his lovely, sweet ass. Meanwhile, I’ve been ninja-ing diapers all day, but no one has ever asked me whether I actually wash poopy clothes.
- After he has put the kids to bed
Who puts the children to bed? Mama tucks the children into bed. Why does mama put her children to bed? Inquire about typical Western gender roles. When Dad steps in to assist, he’s a treasure, a wonder, a rare bird. It’s difficult to read Dragons Love Tacos and then hold a child’s hand while playing on your phone for 20 minutes. Congratulations for your successful cruise!
- When he outfits the children not to resemble gamins
Are you kidding me? When the kids don’t match, it’s obvious that daddy clothed them. Before delivering a blow job to a partner who follows basic color coordination and chooses proper shoes for the season, you’re expected to hop up and down and kiss his feet. Kids don’t have to look very well to receive glowing praise. They only need to appear semi-decent and avoid mixing plaid shirts with stripes.
- When he does anything inappropriate with his daughter
You spend the entire day drinking tea with Peppa Pig, brushing snarls out of Barbie’s hair, and pretending to be Sailor Moon for the 500th time. However, when your spouse braids his daughter’s hair, the photos go immediately viral. In fact, the ability to cobble together a presentable ponytail qualifies him as a hero-dad, and playing restaurant for 20 minutes while pretending to eat wooden sushi secures him a “Dad of the Year” title. Where is our reward for doing this every day? You’re the one who will clean up the pretend food, at the end.
- When he speaks to his daughter as if she is not a space alien
My spouse speaks to our kid with the manners of a careful regular person, asking her about her day; her exact activities; sharing information on every possible topic. Strangers frequently approach him in public and praise the way he talks to her. If I did this, folks would regard it as worthless chit-chat and wish we’d just STFU.
- When he is knowledgeable about children’s pop culture.
Moms are supposed to recall the four members Peppa Pig, the girls of Sailor Moon, and the name of that idiotic captain on the spot.
Dads are parenthood gold if they can talk for hours about a child’s favorite character, episode, or even hum a theme song. Meanwhile, I’m trying to sleep, but all that information and the song keeps playing in my brain, so why is that so partial?
- Whenever he brings her somewhere instructive
Accept it: At the library story hour, everyone recognizes Dad. He’s very kind! So delicate! What a character! If he takes his children to dancing class and then talks to other people out there? Get the presses, this is world news. A museum for children? What a wonderful parent, spending quality time with his daughter.
If anyone cared to notice me when I perform any of these things; no flying colors would be given. Don’t even bother asking why? That’s because I’m the mother.
- When he isn’t talking on the phone.
If I sit on a playground seat and open Facebook, the ruckus breaks out. I’m expected to sit phone-free and watching as my kid plays on the playground, occasionally giving out orders and encouragement. Dad isn’t even required to go that far. Once he brought her to the park, he’s already a true hero! Oh, my goodness, he’s so involved in keeping an eye on her. He must be a wonderful father, keeping an eye on her. I’m just as loving over here, but Dad gets all the credit.
And if he gets up to push her on the swings, the whole paradise opens, angel choirs sing, and all the mothers rise in applause. I simply drag my body over there and push the kid till I pass out.
- When he wears his baby
For five years, I hauled my kid about on my front, back, and side, and no one bothered except to inform me that she might suffocate (she didn’t) or be late to walk (she wasn’t). When my husband puts a child on, especially in a wrap, here comes the Greek god. Strangers pay him compliments. They compliment him on being such a sweet good father, and they compliment him on the baby.
This is simply not fair, people.
- When he volunteers to help your child.
Nobody looks down on you because you organized the baking sale. It’s even unlikely that anyone will remember your name. But what about a Little League coach? The victorious hero has come! A Little League coach is evidently a community cornerstone. He’s the referee of disagreements, the wiper of tears, the yeller of encouragement and clichéd sports words. Meanwhile, you simmer in the corner of the stands with your forgotten bake sale, piled down with chalky commercial cookies. Unfortunately, Dad is the one with the bat.
Basically, when he takes time to be a parent, he performs anything slightly like housework or kid care. In the meanwhile, I spent 15 fucking hours a today being a parent, and no one approached me in the store, told me I was courageous, loved the way I spoke to my kids, or even complimented me on being a good mom. We’re just meant to nurture, read, tell stories, sing and dance like every possible animated character, while changing diapers, too.
And at the end he is the one everyone is delighted to have around and he is the one doing an excellent job. But, listen to me you “fabulous dad” – every once in a while, MOM DESERVES ADDITIONAL CREDIT.