Originally Posted by Path2Felicity
And, as That Is Nice pointed out, it congratulates and encourages mediocre parenting. No, it's not okay for your partner to engage in less than ideal parenting. The couple's number one concern should be the child above all else. I don't see my marriage as a power struggle and my husband would respect me regardless of whether I stay at home or work full time. For women who are not in this situation, the book gives them the "ok" to let their partners do whatever they have to do to get by. It's just not acceptable to me.
Sigh. I never imagined it would be this difficult to leave DD.
Thank you. This was my main problem with the book. I don't think it's ever OK for a woman to have to accept mediocre parenting to scrape by in her career. In fact, I bet that is why many women contemplate leaving a career at all. Men can and do need to be held to high standards. They are just as capable. That is 50-50.
Secondly, do you think your husband's attitude is inherent to him as a person or was it something that you worked on as a couple (or was it shaped by other outside forces)?
Does that support come naturally to your husband?
I wonder if I can even change my husband to be something other than his natural or instinctive inclinations? I don't see a book or a thread or a magazine article - or for that matter, marriage counseling or discussions between DH and me - to be something that will evoke change.
My husband was raised by a very traditional household structure, and his father didn't even change a diaper. Now, that probably isn't very unusual, but it set a tone. My DH changes diapers and did so willingly and with interest. But to him that makes him super dad. He compares how he fathers to his dad's and grandfather's parenting, and he thinks of himself as a hero.
DH never had role models for balancing two professional careers with limited time off. He doesn't really get it, and he's too entrenched in his corporate culture and own career mishaps to ever feel comfortable being a sole provider or putting things on the line by say taking paternity leave. It works against his very nature.
DH's father was not a good role model for active and engaged fatherhood. And DH's mother was a stay-at-home mom until DH was about 10 years old. I think that she was a very hands-on mother when DH was young, but when he went to school, his mother got really into soap operas (and called them "my stories" which DH remembers vividly). His mom was probably still available to him when he got home from school in the afternoon, but I truly feel that DH thinks his mom should have been working instead of watching soap operas and that he sees no reason why I can't work during the time of day when his mom was watching soap operas. I can work - I just need more help from him!
His parents as role models definitely did have an impact on DH.
My DH would be less confrontational with me about things if I just didn't loft expectations on him. If he could be like his dad was, but with accolades and praise heaped on him for changing a diaper or giving our child a bath or dressing him in the morning, then DH would think our marriage is fantastic and he would be very, very satisfied.
It's DH's impressions about my so-called demands that cause problems. If DH could afford for me to be a stay-at-home mom easily with no additional effort or stress on his part, we'd probably have no problems (well, except that I truly do value my career and want to keep it going). DH wants me to tend to all the the things like I'm a stay-at-home mom (because he can't due to his work environment and structure) but he can't provide for us nor does he want to. And yet he won't change the work structure, either.
It really is a case of DH having his cake and eating it too.
So, I need a 50-50 book that provides guidance on transformative change. I don't know if that's possible.