A note to all at-home moms out there:
I am not a southern Belle. Yes, I like my tea sweet and I certainly mind my elders and manners. I like crawfish and boudin but the likeness ends there. I am a liberal in just about every other aspect in my life.
I like gays. Yes, I said I still like people even if they have sex with the same sex. The reason why is because I honestly do not give a rat’s butt who they have sex with behind closed doors and I believe their everlasting souls are theirs and theirs alone to grapple with. I am not an expert in souls or religious conversions and unless you graduated from theology school and have an IQ above 170 then I highly suggest you stop acting like it. It is no concern of mine. I’d rather be besties with a loving, interesting gay couple than an old, church deacon with a wandering eye and who largely ignores his kids. I like good people. I like kind, loving, selfless people who care about others and animals. I love folks who make it their mission to try to make the world a little bit better each day. That’s what I care about.
I do not care if a man and his wife are of different races. I abhor people who cannot get the Stick of Ignorance out of their butts and support a loving, married couple when they see one. I can’t stand it even more if a person judges a child for being of a mix race. Shame on them if they do. I once asked a man of the Deep South if he would rather his daughter marry a rich white man who beats her and her kids, or marry a black man, and do you know what he said? He’d go for the white son in law any day, even if he beats his daughter! People like this break my heart. I almost feel badly for them, almost.
The point is that the following post is not about being an old-fashioned Southern housewife. It is about shaping up and doing what you are supposed to be doing in the first place, simply because it is good for your family.
I love stay-at-home moms. I also love stay-at-home dads. The bottom line is that I love seeing a family working to do what is best for their children, and research certainly shows that kids with an at-home parent do better than those who are dropped off at daycare at 6 weeks old and only see their parents for two hours an evening and on weekends. I also need to clarify that the parent at home needs to be engaged with their kids. I am going to use this moment to shout out to all of the at-home parents out there to wake the hell up and start doing their jobs. I’m not going to sugar coat this, so get ready:
Your kids need to get more eye contact than your computer screens and more physical contact than your remotes. Engaging and being attentive to the kids is the key. If you can’t do this, then drop them off at daycare and let someone else raise your child because you are too selfish to do what you are supposed to be doing in the first place. (For working dads, this rule applies to you as well, especially on the weekends.)
Speaking of, I am a big fan of housewives/hubbies taking care of the house and cooking for their families. If you have a boob, you should be giving it all you have to nurse your infant. I have seen more parents concerned about how their child is dressed than the nutrition that they are putting into their tiny, growing bodies. Whats more important? Their clothes or their health?
Getting on the housewives topic, and I am talking about moms because unfortunately at-home moms are all I ever see. Moms need to get off of their spoiled, lazy butts and start taking care of their kids and houses better. I’ve seen at-home moms wait on their own working moms to clean their houses for them because they are too lazy and spoiled to do it themselves. This is utterly ridiculous and inexcusable. If you have a medical reason and give it your best shot, then I’m not talking to you. If you do a decent job keeping up with the bathrooms, dishes, clothes, and generally cleanliness then I’m also not talking to you. I’m talking to the lazy ones who just do not care or think they are above this sort of thing. I seriously do not understand why they think it is ok for their kids to grow up in filth and learn to be even lazier than them or become neat freaks because they are so embarrassed at how their parents chose to live. It is sad.
Speaking of, Moms, get off of your butts and cook for your family! Stop shoving junk down their throats and make them healthy snacks and meals. They are growing and need this. There are so many ways to learn cooking skills from basic to more advanced available, so its not excuse to say you just ‘cannot cook.’ I don’t care if you grew up on fast-food and never spent a moment cooking before the kids. Unless you are an idiot, then you should be able to look up videos on the internet or enroll in a class to learn how to make some basic meals for them. You can set timers and write down whatever you need in order to not burn stuff. You can ask other moms for tried and true recipes. There are tons of books filled with recipes with 5 ingredients or less, books with one-dish meals where you just throw everything in and bake. Easy peasy.
I’ve seen moms bragging (bragging!) about how they never cook. It is as if they think this is fashionable. Girls, it needs to be said that being so incompetent and/or self-centered as a person that you cannot cook is NOT fashionable.
Anyone can slap a few frozen chicken breast wrapped in foil with Italian dressing into the oven for 45 minutes. Anyone can throw some fresh, sliced veggies in a punctured ziplock with some water into the microwave for a few minutes to steam them. Anyone can open up a bag of lettuce, throw on some store-bought toppings and serve this all to their kids and husband. Total prep time takes all of 10 minutes, which is MUCH faster than packing up everyone and going to the drive-thru. I don’t care if your toddler/infant is demanding. Put the infant in a bouncer or high chair and let him watch you cook while you talk to him. Get your toddler up on a chair to watch you cook and give him a simple ‘job’ to do. Even a young toddler can help you stir the tea or put veggies into the bowl. Get older kids involved. Make this part of your daily routine and you and might just end up liking it, I promise your family will. Who cares if they make a mess? They’ll love the experience, and you, for doing this for them.
If you cannot do this, then you are lazy. So own up to it and sit yourself in the Hall of Shame. But just stop lying to everyone about how you can’t/won’t cook, because there is no excuse. No one on earth believes that you really ‘do not have time.’ By the way, if you are not pregnant or incapacitated for some reason, then do not even dare to ask your hard-working husband to stop at the store or pick up food. This is YOUR job, not his.
Harsh, I know, but someone has got to tell these moms to wake the hell up and start doing a better job with their families. The future depends on you.
For goodness stakes, please stop nagging your husbands! YES, staying at home raising kids and taking care of a house is exhausting. YES, the hubby really shouldn’t forget to take out the trash. YES, he should find the time to fix the fence. But you know what? In the grand scheme of things, SO CAN YOU! So stop nagging. Sit down like the loving couple you really should be and discuss these things together. Besides, be honest with yourself, do you really want to fight rush hour traffic every day and go to work? Then come home to try and handle kids who you don’t even know and still have to feed them and clean? Seriously? I think not.
Moms also need to remember that they need to stop treating their husbands like their best girlfriend. Your husband does not need to come home to you telling him all about your horrible period cramps and how that witch of a woman was so rude to you at the store. He doesn’t care and he doesn’t need to know this. He is a MAN. Pick up the phone and call a girlfriend. If you do not have a girlfriend then hit the community of at-home mom groups and find yourself one.
Moms also need to stop asking their husbands for a gold star every time you actually do the jobs that you are supposed to be doing in the first place. Just let the man come home and enjoy the fruits of your efforts. You certainly enjoy his. Stop acting like you are entitled to rewards for doing the ‘hardest job in the world’, but especially do not act entitled if you don’t do half the jobs that you are supposed to be doing. Your husband doesn’t owe you anything just because you chose to stay at home raising your own cotton-picking kids. Your reward is seeing your child grow up from little humans into unique young adults. Your reward is to see their first steps. Your reward is having little ones who worship the ground your walk on and your pride in knowing that you are the reason for all of the good things in their lives, taking them to the parks in the summertime, and hear their laughter throughout the day. THAT, ladies, is your reward.
Also, when he comes home, unless you have a very good reason (illness, pregnancy, no sleep, newborns), then you need to get yourself into the shower, put on some decent looking clothes of the non-pajama/exercise kind, and look decent for him. Just because you are at home all day does not mean that you can go around looking like a slob.
Men don’t like slobs. Men who are working hard and stressing the heck out over how to support you and your kids do not like slobs, nags, whiners, or spoiled brats who won’t cook or clean. Keep this in mind.
Bottom line? Your family deserves a clean house and good nutritious meals. YOU also deserve it to take good care of yourself. Don’t let yourself go just because you are a mom. Don’t completely neglect your social life, appearance, and personal time away from it all just because you have this particular job. Your family needs a happy mom, your husband needs a happy wife. So every now and then get a sitter and go on a double date or just get out for a little while. You may think that with everything I said above (the truth!) that the husband and kids are the most important. The fact is that YOU are the most important person in the family. Deep down inside your husband knows this and so does the rest of society. You are the one who keeps the house going and the family together. You are the one who is giving your kids the best chance at growing up to be loving, well-rounded individuals. In turn, your very efforts now will help secure a similar lifestyle for your grandchildren. You made the best possible choice for your little ones and they love you for this.
So Ladies, take care of yourself too. It doesn’t take a lot of money or even leaving the house. Fix yourself a glass of wine after the kids are in bed. Fix yourself a nice bubble bath. Or simply go to bed a little early with a good book and let your mind enter the world of whatever you are reading about. You can do this. Anyone can. You can do a better job taking care of the house and your families. There is no excuse not to. And when you do, you will feel proud of yourself. So Girls, please, I beg you, make some changes for your family and yourself. Your family will be happier, healthier, and stronger for it, and there is nothing better than this. You can do this, I promise, so get busy ladies! 🙂