May 22, 2012 by Carin
Do you ever get irked by a certain question or phrase that is often just a person being inquisitive? I get really irked when someone asks me or someone near me, often a mother, if her husband is home babysitting the kids. It isn’t meant to be anything but a question and is probably the easiest way for someone to ask if on that occasion if is the husband who is home with the kids. But it really bothers me that people use the term babysitting. It sounds like the husband is being paid or has been begged to take care of the kids that night because mom decided to go out and spend some much needed time with her friends or family. I don’t understand why husbands are often referred to as babysitters. They helped produce the children; he is their father, second parent and care provider. Yet, for some reason husbands are often, even in 2012, not thought of as daily care providers for their own children. Why in this day and age are fathers not given the credit they deserve by society to be appropriate care givers when their wife/partner is not home or around to care for the kids? By now it should be acceptable that men can and are often willing to take care of their kids. They are not babysitting, they are doing what any parents do, caring for their children. I am sure that when guys go out for happy hour or a guy’s night out, the guys don’t stand around and ask each other if their wife is home “babysitting”. It is often implied that if they men are out, the women must be doing their woman thing and taking care of the kids. But, when women go out and do their thing, the men must be doing something that is not manly by staying home with the kids, thus they are “babysitting”. A double standard if I do say so myself.
So, next time you are out and notice a woman having a fun night, don’t walk up to her and ask if her husband is home babysitting. Just assume he is home doing what any parent would do, taking care of his kids. Hopefully this helps people realize that dads don’t babysit, they do what women do when the men are out, they are taking care of the kids, house and everything else that happens on any given night