Thursday, April 23, 2009

Our choices belong to us

This post will seem a little disjointed, but it's because I'm tired, but I've needed to write this for a long time and I don't have much patience for editing.

It's moms whining. I'm whining about moms whining. I'm tired of people talking to moms like we are THE martyrs for our families. Like we are some sort of indentured servants with no choices. Examples are rampant, but in the interest of being not too mean I won't mention them specifically. But maybe you know what I mean: blog posts, daytime talk shows, morning news shows, newspapers and magazines...they are all full of stories about how much women, specifically mothers, sacrifice for their families and don't pay any attention to themselves.

If you listen to mainstream media, moms are always exhausted, overworked, under-appreciated, and we don't wear make-up. We're urged to schedule Me Time and Moms' Nights and Girlfriend Getaways. And we get pats on the back every time we take time or effort for it's nearly impossible to accomplish it.

So what about Dads?? Where's the sympathy for dads who work all day, too? And then come home and get henpecked by their work-all-day wives to chip in and help? Why don't we see articles on a regular basis encouraging hard-working men to take well-deserved golf outings once a week? We don't. Because we women would go nuts on them.

The fact is, women DO make choices. They choose their spouses, they choose whether to have children, and they choose whether to work outside the home or not. Choose, choose, choose...that's all we've done, and been encouraged to do, our whole adult lives.

Then we sit back and whine about how all our choices have made us exhausted and we don't have time for anything. So we say that a lot. "I don't have time..." or "I didn't have time to do that..." But the truth is we DO have time, we have just chosen to fill it with something else. Recently I have made a strong effort to say "I didn't make time for that..." Because that's more truthful for me. You think I "have time" to blog? NO! Most of the time when I sit down at the computer I can think of 47 other things that need to be done. But I take the time because it's important to's my choice.

And another thing: moms aren't the only people who work hard out there. Women without kids can...surprise!...get tired and feel unappreciated, too. It's not a competition to see who has the most stressful life. I just get tired of reading and hearing about how women don't do enough for themselves. If that's true, friends, it's our choice, not our lot in life.

** I wrote this post a few days ago, then hurriedly took it down. I didn't want my haste to cause me to neglect a very important point, and that is I understand our lives are not entirely choices. Everyone has circumstances they've been dealt. My gripe is not with people dealing with their circumstances, it's with people creating circumstances and then spending their lives wailing about them.

Okay...tirade over.

Can someone please tell a joke now?


Chilihead said...

I'm so glad you put this post back up. I love it. You've said some powerful things that really need to be considered.

Musings of a Housewife said...

Here from Chilihead's tweet. I think you said this very well.

Anonymous said...

Can you give that little boy in the picture a sucker and some gum and maybe a new toy for me? Can't stand to see him unhappy!
aunt jw

Anonymous said...

Well, here's the joke you wanted...oops don't have time, gotta go to a ball game. he he rw

Erin said...

I started reading a book once, and I had to stop reading it because it was making me mad. (I can't remember the name of it, thankfully.) It was about how much we "should" be getting paid if we are full-time mothers, and how our government does nothing to help us. It gave all sorts of statistics to back up their statements. I just say enjoy the journey. Play with your kids. Teach them, learn from them and love them.

(P.S. I hope my blog is one that you never hear whining from about being a mom.)

Anonymous said...

I agree even though I'm the worst complainer ever. It's kind of a hobby. I disguise it by calling it "venting".

Now you have to put some angelic pics up of the boys to make up for the tortued time out look.


~ Straight Shooter ~ said...

So very true.
Makes me stop and think.
Thank you!

Emily said...