Drum and Fife vs. Tabor and Pipe

I've been busy at work, which is good, but it's been hard seeing Nugget so seldom. I've been thinking about the reversal in traditional gender roles in my family--my husband is home with Nugget while I work full-time--and wondering if men find it so hard to miss so much, and to always feel like their spouse knows the baby better. Is it easier when it's the way things have always been? I suspect it is. If nothing else, they don't have the worry that people are judging them for being an unnatural mother--how can she be at work at 8 o'clock at night instead of home with her baby? She must not be that into motherhood. Maybe she hasn't bonded with the baby. The ironic thing is I've had similar thoughts about other women. I could kick myself for it now, but it makes me more sure that people are thinking those things about me. I don't love my baby any less because I'm at work all day (and sometimes night). I truly believe that I'll be a better mother if my whole life doesn't revolve around my son, and I've been trying to be a laidback parent, but the thing that gets in the way of that the most is the judgment of other people--whether it's real or just in my head. Our society seems to value intensive parenting (even as it ridicules "helicopter" parenting and decries "the overparenting crisis"), and the amount of judgmental scrutiny parents come in for is truly astonishing. Someday soon I'll be trying to teach my son to follow the beat of his own drum, and I'm trying to practice what I preach now. It's not easy.

1 comment:

Erin Davis said...

Why are we so quick to judge one another on our approaches to parenting? I think sometimes women judge each other more harshly than men judge us.