While not always the case, in today’s society it is still considered the norm for dad to take on the role of the family bread-winner, while mum (even working mothers) takes on responsibility of the child-rearing and general household duties.
But, what would happen if we went on strike? What would happen if we took a step back and didn’t impulsively jump every time something needed washing or someone needed a snack?
Why Mothers Should Go On Strike (Just For A Little While)
Do you find yourself jumping instantly to change a smelly nappy? Or crawling out of bed to get your toddler a bottle of water? Are you the main person to make the school lunches, make the phone calls to daycare and make plans for birthdays and playdates?
Have you ever wished for a little bit of shared responsibility, but always just got on with it instead of asking for help? What are you afraid of? That your family’s world will fall a part around them?
What if, for just one day, you sat back? What if, for just one day, you went on strike and watched your family pick up where you left off?
Here’s what you might discover:
Your Husband Isn’t Useless
Hesitate more, allow your husband the time and space to step up and change that nappy before you. You may be pleasantly surprised and see that your husband is actually perfectly capable of completely such a menial task. I promise you, given the chance, he can do it. And he can make lunches, appointments and pack a bag for the kids to take the to the park, without your intervention.
Perhaps he could even get the kids dressed and into bed, maybe even more efficiently than you.
Give the man some credit, hold yourself back from trying to micro-manage and you may just be rewarded with a more balanced parenting gig. 50/50 parenting anyone?
Children Can Do Things For Themselves
With a little bit of patience, a lot more spare time allocated and a bucket load of tolerance you could let your children do tasks for themselves. Yes, sometimes it’s quicker to do it yourself, but teaching your kids to take responsibility now will benefit them for life.
Whilst watching your 3-year-old son put on a pair of pants, inside out and back the front, without stepping in for intervention could force you to lose your sanity, it may just pay off in the long run!
Simply asking them to set the table with their own forks and cups can give them a moment of empowerment. Have them clear the tabl. Giving them that little extra responsibility and a lot of praise will encourage them to continue to help you.
Once they get the hang of these small tasks, it will save you time (eventually).
Take it from me, a woman who has three children who pack their own bags, put away their own clothes (not very well, admittedly), set their own placemats and retrieve their own water. Going on strike from carrying all responsibility of the household chores and child care, may just turn in to a new way of life.
And you may just discover that equal parenting isn’t a myth after all. Give it a go! And while on strike, try taking some time out for yourself too.