I'm noticing lately that it is stressful on our family when I get sick. In 2011, I've had a breast infection, strep throat and today I'm down with a stomach bug. I've had all these problems on the weekend-which is good in a way b/c my DH is home to take care of the kids. He does an amazing job and he is not the one making me feel guilty....but I do. And it has got me thinking......when he gets sick, he gets a sick day. I don't have to go fill in for him at his job-it's all taken care of. He can stay home, go to bed and my life and the kids are relatively unaffected. We can just go on our merry way with our regular routines. When I get sick, HE has to cover for me! So, even though he is a very loving husband and would never want me to feel bad, I can see it in his face as he loses patience with our three year old's melt downs and our teething baby that he is HIGHLY annoyed-not with me, but the situation. We do not have family in town to rely on in these moments to give him a break so I'm wondering, what do other SAHP's do when you need a sick day? Should we work on finding a babysitter who can be on call in these moments? We don't really use babysitters much, we're pretty AP. It feels like our family needs to have a proactive plan for when mommy goes down! Any ideas out there?
Sarah, SAHM to dd C (8-9-07) and C (5-27-10), happily married to DH for 10 years
And when your DH is sick, someone is probably covering for him at work?? At least to some extent, if not fully taking over his job... so it's not like he just takes the day off & no one is affected.
I don't think you need to feel 'guilty' about your DH parenting your kids... But if you are sick frequently and your DH can't always take time off to help you out, it could be useful to have someone to call on for help... Me, I just kind of suffer through the day the best I can, but the second DH gets home (or all day, if it's the weekend) DH totally takes over -- well, except for nursing!
I don't know why but it seems like a lot of moms (myself included!) feel guilt whenever anyone else is parenting our kids... even their other parent(s)... but Dad is just as much a parent as Mom and there is nothing wrong with it, KWIM?
It's just one of those things that happens. It's not great, it's sure not fun, but it's life, and all you can do is get through it.
In my case, DH can't take off work in the vast majority of cases. He can sometimes leave an hour early, but that's about it. So I get stuck at home, alone, with the kids, the dog, the chickens.... and someone has to take care of them. Yay mom! lol.
And my DH is good at entertaining the kids and such, but he's not good at managing them and meeting their needs. It's not his job day to day, so he basically doesn't know how to do it. So I just have to let them flounder. It's only a day or two, everything won't go to pieces in that short of a time.
I think having a plan might be a good idea. Last spring I hurt my leg and couldn't walk. My baby wasn't mobile yet and for my older daughter we were able to have her go back to full time pre-school. Baby and I mostly lived on the sofa until I could get around. Thank goodness my mom could come and help. If that had happened this year with a toddler and big girl in a school I would have had to ask for help from friends.
There has been once or twice that I have gotten pretty sick, enough that I wasn't sure it was safe for me to be taking care of a 2 yr old and a baby in that condition. Once, I had gone to the ER the night before with breathing problems, and my throat was so sore I couldn't eat for over 24 hours, and drinking was barely managable. That was when my youngest was just 5 wks old, and my middle one was 2 (my oldest is a teen.) There was NO WAY DH could stay home. He works full time and goes to school full time, and staying home means having to make up the work hours another time, which is incredibly difficult with his school schedule. Not to mention missing class too...that would just put him way too far behind.
Thankfully, my parents, his parents, his sister, and 2 of my 3 siblings all live within an hour drive. So, have been able to have somone come out and help, at the very least, allow me to get a nap in, at least until my teen gets home. My teenager is such a big help, especially when I am sick. Even before the little ones were born, she's always been great about helping me out when I get sick.
No extended family living nearby, and no babysitter currently either. Yeah, babysitter for backup sounds like a good idea.
When your DC's are older, asking a few mommy friends to watch your kids for a few hours each might work ... you can watch their kids in return after getting better.
You can also ask some daycares around if they offer any kind of drop in - some call this backup childcare. So, if they have any spot that day, you can drop off your kid and pay by the hour. Around here, there's a Bright Horizon that offers this - I've never used it myself so don't know about the quality. They also charge quite a lot per hour, as much as a babysitter, for this - but it's another option.
Oh, last but not least - one time I setup Skype when my little one napped so my older one could do video conferencing with a few family members. Got me about 45 mins of napping - sounds little but helpful when you're sick as a dog. This probably won't work until your DC's older though.
But if it's ER in the middle of the night - DH, friends, and babysitter are probably the only options.
I was always lucky because here you can take sick days to care for sick kids or family members, so whenever I was really sick dh took a sick day and took care of the kids. Once I got really sick and my angel neighbor upstairs took my (4!!!) kids out the whole afternoon. I think the twins were only 5 and Avraham Tzvi about 1, and she has 4 littles of her own (same ages), but it was much needed because I was just sleeping and the kid were too young to be left on their own with me half asleep.
Three big girls (10) + (almost 9!);
One little boy (6) and a full on toddler (8/12) born with TAPVR (repaired at 6 days old).
The very few times that I have been really really sick, I've had DH stay home from work. If we had a home daycare provider, one of us would have to stay home from work when she's sick. It's only fair that I get sick days too. But I'm fortunate that DH has a very flexible job. He works very close to home and I've occasionally asked him to come home for lunch to handle the lunch rush. But now that my kids are 4 and 6 they understand when mommy is sick and will usually be good about letting me rest.