2. He cooked every night of both my pregnancies because I couldn’t stand the smell of ANYTHING. He also did all the washing up because it grossed me out and the washing cos I was knackered. He did virtually everything around the house.
3. He does most of the clothes washing.
4. He does the bins and the litter tray with little or no reminder.
5. He vacuums when it needs doing and not because I’ve asked.
6. He gets up with the kids every school day and gives them breakfast and gets one or both of them dressed.
7. He loves spending time with the kids and spends hours playing with them both.
8. He drives us everywhere.
9. He’s more than happy to stay in pretty much every night of the week and let me, if I wanted, go out and do whatever I like….go to an exercise class, go to the cinema, get drunk with mates etc.
10. He’s a lovely person, he’s funny, clever, handsome (in my opinion!) and he treats me with the perfect balance of respect and ridicule.
11. He doesn’t bash me in?
12. I don’t *think* he shags everything he sees?
13. He isn’t a massive racist, homophobic, sexist pig?
As you can see, by the question marks on points 11, 12 and 13, I am wondering if I am actually supposed to be grateful for these things too? Because as far as I am concerned, these are a given for me as well as the first 1-9.
I am grateful for ONE point. 10. I am grateful I met someone who I think fits this description and who feels the same way about me…. enough to want to marry me and have babies with and I am grateful that I met him so I am young enough to spend a big chunk of my life with him and our lush kids.
I am now going to address why I don’t think I should be grateful for 1-9:
1. I love cooking. I did most of the cooking except during my pregnancies both of which I spent the duration sick as a dog. I resumed cooking until I had a gastric band fitted and now I only cook occasionally because I always end up COOKING TOO MUCH! So we BOTH cook. And the only time I don’t cook is when I’m carrying a watermelon & on the verge of puking constantly or trying to save us money by not wasting food.
2. I was ill as shit during both pregnancies and then I squeezed a watermelon out my foof, had mental breakdowns in the form of PND and was an emotional & physical wreck both times. He didn’t/wasn’t.
3. He washes the clothes but he can’t fold for shit (despite trying), he has never picked up an iron (although to be fair, I rarely do) and doesn’t really do bed sheets or towels. He doesn’t BUY any clothes. He doesn’t decide what clothes NEED to be bought and when and what size and what the season dictates in terms of needs for the kids wardrobe. He doesn’t go through the drawers every so often and take out the clothes that don’t fit and then keep them in age-ordered bags to go through at a later date to decide whether they will be charity shop or hand-me-downs.
4. I’m in charge of making sure we have enough cat litter and bin liners, which sounds like a good part of the deal except it means that I organise ALL THE SHOPPING ALL THE TIME FOR EVERYTHING. It’s mostly me that notes down if we run out of anything then add it to the list, either sit at my iPad or writing my list to actually shop and remember what we need and what we will eat for the rest of the week and if we have enough snacks, toiletries, cleaning products, cat food, bog roll, nappies etc etc. I think about shopping most days.
5. He does vacuum but he’s never ever cleaned our toilet. But that’s ok because I like cleaning the bathroom (freak!) and he’s ok with vacuuming. We’re a team!
6. He has to wake up before me for work. He’s out of the house by 7.30 so he’s always awake with them in the week. I finish getting them ready and then have the sorry task of getting them actually out of the house (preferably without tantrums which is rarely) and to school on time every day. On weekends we take in turns to have lie ins.
7. I don’t think I need to address this point!
8. I have JUST failed my 5th test...go me! So I am trying. I do however cycle us wherever I can. I’m environmentally winning!
9. He thrives on his own company, just him, his guitars and all his musical computery shiz....writing songs and bashing out tunes in his little studio. I like being out with friends and chatting chatting chatting. This suits us both.
And to further that final point a bit....it is about personality types too. I am obviously not attracted to alpha male types who like their time “down the pub”, “flirting wiv da ladies” and thinking housework/cooking is women’s work. Obviously I am talking about the extreme here but really part of my being with Emlyn is because I am naturally attracted to someone who wants to treat me as an absolute equal in all things. That isn’t luck....that’s just DNA and pheromones, surely?!
And hold up a second here, why is Emlyn not lucky to have ME?! I am super hot, very funny, intelligent, I have impeccable taste and I produce gorgeous brilliant children! I bring good things to the table just as much as he does!
Seriously though, why should I be “lucky” to be receiving this complete parity? Why can I not accept this as just how it should be? Why do I need to be grateful that my husband likes his kids? We are not living in the Victorian times. Just under 100 years on from women getting the right to vote, I shouldn’t even need to be writing this. We must stop accepting old values as OK.
Each household is different obviously. And I am not dictating here that a man needs to do the dishes for your partnership to be equal. Nobody really knows what goes on behind closed doors (unless one of you writes a confessional style blog...ahem). If you do the lion’s share of the work but your partner works from 7am to midnight or whatever then that’s a totally different situation to mine and incomparable. And I am not casting judgement on those other partnerships either. What works for you, works for you.
But however your relationship works, if it’s different to mine or not, please don’t tell me I’m lucky.