Leapdragon 2016 - Aron Hsiao Was Here

Parenthood, work, and life.  §

I am exhausted.

And behind. Behind, behind, behind.

Weekdays are nonstop sprints. I haven’t stopped running since first thing this morning. Much more to be done after the kids are asleep (we’re doing the bedtime routine in five minutes).

Tomorrow I will run, too.

All anyone ever asks when they hear this is would I like to have the kids taken off my hands for a while.

Howcome the answer to everything in this godforsaken society involves spending less time with your family?

How about asking if I’d like to have work taken off my hands for a while, if I’d like to have my bills paid for me for a while?

No, I wouldn’t like to have my kids taken off my hands for a while, and no I wouldn’t like to see less of my wife and my family.

I’d like the same economic system that was in place two generations ago, thanks very much, with dirt-cheap higher education, high wages, and easily affordable homes.

How about that?

And please don’t femsplain to me that at least I’m a man so I don’t have to cook and clean and take care of the kids all the time. That makes me want to give you a big, tall talking-to about your gendered preconceptions and the way in which nobody appreciates men’s work either. Work like, let’s see—doing the dishes, doing the laundry, vacuuming the house, feeding the kids, trying to keep a tidy appearance (in fact, this one is harder on men, since an unshowered woman in sweats is a “poor thing, hang in there, you’re a mom and a saint” while an unshowered man in sweats is a “disgusting loser, full stop”), somehow still being a professional, and generally trying to have it all while seeming not to have to work at it.

Yeah, I’ve been doing this stuff for few years, too. Gosh, surprise!

Sound familiar?

Only nobody praises a dad for it. Not on Facebook, not in everyday interaction, not in song. Everyone just assumes a man is never pulling his weight and has it easy.