The thing with being home all day with kids AND doing housework on top of that, it is not exactly equal to a partner working outside of the house all day. If parent 1 takes care of children 9-5, 5 days per week and parent 2 works outside the house 9-5, 5 days per week then that might be considered an equal share of work (lets put aside the differences in the job such as paid breaks, uninterrupted time to pee, lunch breaks, super contribution etc).
Now, if you add in household chores not directly related to immediate child care such as house maintenance, meal preparation and clothes washing for adults etc, cleaning shared common areas like bathrooms, grocery shopping, paying bills, caring for pets, ad nauseum... doesn't that seem slightly unfair? Parent 1 ends up working 2 x full time jobs and parent 2 often ends up with the slightly troublesome attitude of 'Parent 1 does everything in the home, I dunno how to do it, they're better at it than me'.
And does parent 1. the primary child carer, have weekends off? Nights off? Not often. Everything should be 50/50 when parent 2 is home, or resentment builds.
The problem is that myth that caring for children and running a household is easier than working outside the home. That is malarkey. Absolute codswallop. I've done both, and paid work is so, so, so much easier, more satisfying and more respected.
See I find being at home so so so much easier. Both from a volume of work perspective and a logistics and household stress level perspective.
I'm currently lying in bed hubbing and face booking while I wait for DD to wake up. If I was still working I would have already have been up for two hours, been a part of the mad morning rush of everyone getting dressed and ready, confirming who was doing daycare drop off and pick up, done said drop off if it was my day and be at work in time for a day of meetings, calls, writing, talking, brainstorming, lunch at my desk and then racing home for the evening routine.
My days now involve far more flexibility and don't have to be at a breakneck pace. We can do things spontaneously or plan them. Weekends aren't spent trying to get over the week, they are spent enjoying ourselves.
I don't think anyone can categorically say 'employment is easier' or 'staying home is easier' because for every single family it is going to be a different experience.
I agree staying home is harder than working out of the home. I've also done both. But the stuff at home & the parenting doesn't go away either. So you've still really got 2 jobs.
I do a lot of housework during the day if I'm home which is rare as I don't like being at home. Dh does a STACK of housework too, as soon as he gets home from work he will clean something or just whatever needs doing. He also gets up early and irons the kids uniforms and gets the breakfast stuff out and puts on a load of washing if needed. Ds one hangs and brings in the washing. The kids all take their own bowls to the kitchen and ds2 wipes the table and puts the Brekky stuff away.
I generally vacuum and mop and fold clothes during the day and do dishes all day long haha.
We all just do what needs doing, it's pretty easy that way. Dh would never dream of leaving it all to me. When we both work (8 months a year) we get a cleaner but there is obviously still a lot to do with five kids.
Yes born to be - returning to work definitely did feel like a break for me.
I think it really does come down to perception and access to choice. It's not going to feel fair to someone who resents their role expectations while their partner is happy with theirs.
Your partner may come home complaining they've worked so hard too, but secretly would rather go out to work than be the SAHP, or the SAHP might rather stay home and do the child-minding and housework because they'd rather that than go out to work. If both partners would like a bit more balance regarding home and work then you will need to compromise, but the other partner has to be willing. And I see a lot of posts on this forum where that simply isn't the case. I would hate to be in that position.
Getting a break at work from the kids and getting to go to the toilet and eat in peace doesn't make going to work easier. Whenever that is mentioned I think well what about the stresses of that persons job?! I know mine has its own and some would have way more. It's draining and exhausting. If I had to come home from a draining day and someone handed me a toilet brush I would be pretty annoyed. Especially if they could have done that task themselves at some point in the day without a problem. It's the idea of "saving" work for the other person that doesn't sit right with me.
I don't really agree with this. If you don't have kids and work full time, You both need to do your equal share of the domestic chores. Even when it's after work. I agree is that stay at home mums sometimes get breaks during the day but they often have to work a lot in the evenings, well in excess of a regular working day. They are not slaves and shouldn't have to pander to their husband because they working during the day. The domestic chores should be split relatively equally when hubby is home and then both parties can rest together once they are done.
I know when I'm home I'll be doing more than dp. I'm totally cool with that. I'm not going to leave stuff just so when she gets home there's a job for each of us to do - I do things as I see them, she does things as she sees them. If I'm home during the day, more will get done (my choice) meaning there'll be less for her to do...meh. It's not like it'll be expected of me, it's just how I expect it'll happen. I'm sure there'll be days where I do nothing, too. I know that she will just get on and do it with me in that case.
On weekends and when she's home and I'm at work she does everything... It works out to be a fairly even split...
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