In Praise of Men Who Cook
When I was first dating my husband, I remember him speaking with his mother on the phone one evening and recounting what he and I had shared for dinner:
No, I’m not lucky—I married a good person on purpose.
Fathers should be involved in parenting just as much as mothers are.
My mother says something to me often—she tells me how “lucky” I am to have such good kids, followed by how “lucky” I am to have a husband that helps out with the children.
Now, on one hand, of course I’m fortunate to have healthy children. But not once has she told me that I’m doing a good job raising them, or that my husband and I are a good team. She chalks it all up to me being lucky.
Recently, I read an article on Huffington Post that hit the nail on the head. In it, the author points out that fathers should be involved in parenting just as much as mothers are, because, well, they’re their kids too. Women work just as much as men do, and the trade-off should be equal, even if a mom has the flexibility to work from home, or be a stay-at-home mom. Being home doesn’t mean that you aren’t working yourself to the bone, and it doesn’t mean that Daddy doesn’t need to be involved in the day-to-day of raising little humans. In fact, I’m quite certain plays a pretty important part in shaping who they become.
So, no, I’m not lucky to have well-tempered children or a husband that helps me. We choose to marry each other because of love, yes, but also because we’re a team. And we know that it takes two to rear little ones the best we can (and believe me, there is some teaching that goes into helping a toddler deal with his/her emotions). We’re not perfect parents—we make mistakes all the time. We’re constantly looking for guidance and trying different things, because it’s a pretty steep learning curve. But we’re doing it together, because we feel that’s what’s best for our kids—in fact, I think there might even be a term for it—parenting (a.k.a. the best and hardest job in the world). And it’s got nothing to do with luck.