In the last post we looked at a survey that noted that men have better relationships when they help out...
In the last post we looked at a survey that noted that men have better relationships when they help out around the house. The men in said study noted that they DO help out around the house. I'm not quite sure where they found these men to survey, but in my experience (as I've noted time and time again) it's a myth that men are happily helping out. In the vast majority of families I know, including my own it takes a ton of whining, asking, explaining, bribes, arguments and other tactics to get men to help out. I'm not trying to be mean to the fellas, this is just what I see among almost all my friends and in my own house. The mama may work a FT job just like dad but she'll still do a large majority of the cleaning and child care. Sometimes it's unclear if new dads are really clueless or just acting clueless which is hyper frustrating. Sometimes this whole, "men not helping" issue is our fault. Many mamas I know, self included, sometimes feel like we know what's best and thus take over decision making, cleaning and other tasks. Chilling out can help - accept that your guy CAN handle 1/2 of the housework and baby care too. They're just as capable as us mamas. Now that said, it's not always our fault. I DO expect my boyfriend to clean as much as me - but sadly that doesn't mean he does. My female friends have complained about just this same issue. Even when we allow men to fully help they don't always. For example, my idea of what happens when the kitchen needs cleaned is as follows... you clean the freaking kitchen until it's CLEAN. That's not, in my experience how men see a clean kitchen. Here's what the guys I know think is a clean kitchen - the floor is still sticky, there are pools of pancake batter, soup or what have you left on the counter, there is a stack of crumbs sitting in plain sight and so on. It's easier for me to just clean the kitchen which yeah is frustrating and annoying and makes me want to move far far away. Ok rant over. Here are some tips for dads - otherwise known as what my female friends (and myself) have said they'd like to see in their relationships... How to be the kind of dad that women adore: Learn what constitutes clean - clean is variable. However, it doesn't take a degree to know that red juice drops all over the counter is not clean, but a mess. Hyper clean is not necessary but make sure you know the basics. Helping out once a month does not make you a hero - I've met dads who say, "I spent a whole Sunday last month cleaning! Whew!" like they deserve an award. Most mamas I know clean weekly, even daily. You don't get props for helping out 10% of the time. You are not a babysitter - nothing irks me more than dads who proudly announce, "I watched Sam all day" or "I changed a diaper!" If Sam is your child then no, you didn't watch Sam all day, you were performing your responsibility as a parent. You are a parent not a babysitter of your own kids. You don't get a cookie for bathing, diapering or playing with your child - you should be doing this stuff anyhow. It kind of sucks because our society really loves dads who claim they help out with even the basics. For example, you'll hear, "Wow, isn't it cool how Bob helps out so much with the kids and cleans!?" But no one ever says that about mamas. If you're parenting and cleaning and a mama, no one calls you out as extraordinary it's just expected. As a society we need to quit calling out dads who help out as hyper awesome and accept that this should be the norm. Do it before we ask - IF I get help around my house it's only because I ask. Right now this is a sore point with me because it's not just my house. I shouldn't have to ask for help. I mainly clean once a week (like the bathrooms, bedrooms, etc) and the only time I get help is if I specifically ask. AND worse unless I spell out what needs cleaned it doesn't matter anyhow because it won't get done. Here's the thing, your partner (wife or girlfriend) is not your mother. If your partner needs to set you up a little chore chart schedule or ask you to do basic child care or has to teach you how to clean a bathroom you should know that this is super lame. One girlfriend I have told me recently, "Why doesn't my husband just go back and live with his mom if he wants someone to tell him what to do?" I agree and she's not the only friend I have who has said this. Coming up soon some tips for mamas who might like more help and don't know how to get it. Also some helpful tips about how we can help support fathers.

Tags: becoming a dad better dads build active fathers dad bonding married couple new parents

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