You may be wondering which roles I am referring to? Well in fact, I am referring to switching roles of a housewife to house-husband…..
Would you believe it, there are now over 200,000 house-husbands across the UK and research suggests this number will only rise. Only 18 years ago the figure was 119,000 and in 2009, 192,000.
Media would suggest that there may be a stigma attached, but what else would you expect them to say? I feel it should be embraced. As I have mentioned throughout many of my blogs that due to economic changes and flexible appetite of both mums and dads then I would only expect more dads to ditch their careers and focus on a new challenge – house-husband.
It is a conversation both my husband and I have had previously. Go back two years just after the markets crashed and just as I returned to work post maternity leave my husband lost his job suddenly. It was without a doubt that I returned to work full time and support my family. Fortunately my career would have allowed my husband to take over as a house-husband, but as I have written previously, my career needed to change along with my needs and so it wasn’t to be. If it was a career I adored and I didn’t feel the way I did, it may have been a big consideration.
I think society is embracing a more positive lifestyle choice and more men aren’t afraid to owning up in taking care of the domestic duties over a career they may perhaps have not much interest in and if their wife holds down the more dynamic and financially stronger position of the two. So why not?
I personally can think of a handful of house-husbands where the dynamics are just that. If it works and there isn’t a power struggle but some degree of harmony then it can work. I am sure many mums would rather their husband be in control of the care of the children than an outsider…..obviously from a responsibility point of view. I am also sure some women may have to firmly bite their lip at the way in which some husbands may carry out the domestic chores. I know I would be one of them! But, hey, a small price to pay in the grand scheme of things…
When we observe a child their primary needs are love, boundaries, structure and routine. I am pretty sure most dad’s can very naturally provide this. I believe what works within your family unit, works for you. I wholeheartedly support the house-husband, but as a nation are we doing enough to encourage more positive family lifestyle’s by exchanging roles completely?
That dreaded “G” word. You and I as working mums know how it feels….
I have committed to working in London this week to help out my former colleagues. Great fun, extra cash and a bit of old me back!
Always takes me longer to get ready when I go to work as little ones always demand extra attention and the big arm on the clock, for some reason swings around faster than usual. Two year old is “extra” clingy this morning and as I give mum the rundown I gently distract her, big kisses and leg it for the door. I haven’t noticed she isn’t feeling well.
Into London fully charged, I go through my mental checklist for the day and place the “guilt” far down the list as it “will soon be over and I will be on my way home”…I say to myself…
Rambling on through my first meeting, silently my Blackberry flashes up “home”! Heart sinks, try to keep calm, focussed and start panicking …..
As soon as we take a break, I call mum back and two year old “not herself” and has developed a temperature. Wants to sleep, won’t drink…..I suddenly want to go home. Excitement of day diminishes and I am losing my focus. Count to ten and my mind is back in perspective and I think I can keep going. Mum reassured me. “She’s gonna be fine”…..I carry on.
Afternoon flies by and I can’t wait to get home. Quick call and mum has made an appointment for Doctor as my daughter who is usually “full on” really isn’t well. Heart sinks. Feel really bad as I dismissed her a little this morning. Thought she was playing up.
Get home and take daughter straight to Doctors…..She isn’t right and he diagnoses her with septic tonsils. Now I feel really, really awful. How did I miss that! The guilt! It just doesn’t get any easier in all the years I have been a working mummy.
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