On Friday a friend called me really upset, her husband called her from work and told her he was going away on a...
Being a stay-at-home parent can be tough, but for many of those mums and dads, the light at the end of the parenting tunnel is a weekend with their partner home so they can share some responsibilities, get a break, and, hopefully, indulge in a few moments of self-care after a long week with the kids. Of course, the partner who's at work away from home all week should get the opportunity for a break as well, but after a friend asked if it was OK to be upset that her husband planned to go on a "spontaneous boys' weekend," mum blogger Constance Hall explained why her being upset is totally validated.
"She asked me, 'Is it OK that I'm so mad? Would you be upset?' So I thought about it, from both sides," Hall wrote in a post to her Facebook page. "And the truth is that yes, I would be upset."
The mum continued, explaining that many parents who don't stay at home with their kids don't realise the sacrifices their coparent makes by staying at home — "it's hard f*cking work and no matter how hard they work, the same amount of work is presented to them the following day" — and that the only break they get is the other parent being home, giving them some semblance of a typical weekend. She wrote:
You are the weekend, you are the break. Just knowing that [they're] not going to be the only one getting food down the kids' throats or not the only one to buckle in and buckle out every kid makes it so much easier. The kids are happier because you are home, the woman (or man) you love is happier because you are home. How crazy is that?
So the next time you want to spontaneously go away on a boys' weekend, and I'm not saying never have spontaneity, but I want you to understand why your partner may feel let down, imagine if you worked five days and just before you clocked off your partner called you and said, "By the way, you don't get a weekend this week, you're working all the way through."
You'd be kinda pissed too.
Hall ended her post by reminding work-away-from-home parents that if there's someone at home who wants them there — even if it's a little bit (OK, a lot a bit) because they need a break — they're "already winning at life."