Things you should never say to stay at home mums (and dads)

A parent’s decision to stay at home with their children instead of being out in the paid workforce can be mysterious to some people. Nonetheless, there are certain questions you shouldn’t ask a stay-at-home parent unless you want to be maimed – verbally or otherwise.

Here are some of our ‘favourites’ that you need to avoid.

Good on you, keeping all the local cafes in business!

Well, I tried my best. I really did. However, the last time we went out, between the child wailing that the carrots were the wrong colour, the other child just wailing, and a spectacular poo-explosion grand finale, I suspect the poor cafe actually lost business.

Can you do me this favour? Since you’ll be home all day? 

Only if you pay me the going hourly rate for it. Since you earn money all day.

I also want regular breaks, sick days, and a huge end-of-year staff blowout with drag karaoke and an open bar.

What reason could you possibly have to be tired?

Let’s see… Baby waking up 12 times in the night. Toddler tantrum over wrong-coloured carrot (can’t accuse her of inconsistency!) All while trying to keep on top of cooking, cleaning, sorting the bills…

I’m tired just writing this.

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Aren’t you worried that your husband and kids won’t respect you?

Nope. Cos I’m the only member of the household who knows today’s wifi password.

Don’t you worry about being a bad role model for your children? Especially your daughters?

By doing what, making a conscious, well-thought-out decision that works best for my family? No, not too worried.

What if your husband leaves you one day? How will you find a job when you’ve been out of the workforce so long?

Forget me. I’d be more worried about him. Assuming a fairly equal custody arrangement, how will he cope having the kids on his own all day? Good luck buddy.

Your husband must work very hard so you can stay at home.

Yes he does. The poor thing. Anyway, I’m off to my spa day now!

Your husband must be very rich.

Or maybe we can’t afford child care. Nor do we live near obliging relatives.

Honey, you won’t believe how exhausted I am. Work rode me absolutely senseless today! Where’s dinner?

Guess who won’t be riding you absolutely senseless tonight.

It’s a shame that you’re wasting all your education.

Believe me, I’ve learnt far more in the past few years than I ever did at a formal learning institution.

Don’t you feel unfulfilled?

Says the person who just spent the last hour complaining to me about their paid job.

Also, most of the time, I actually… like my kids.

Your house must be really clean, right?

A wise meme once said, cleaning while you have kids in the house is like brushing your teeth while eating Tim Tams. I hope that answers your question.

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Comments unique to stay-at-home dads

Aren’t you wonderful!

For doing the same thing my wife does, except with 10 times the praise?

Good on you! Babysitting so mum can have the day off.

Not babysitting. Parenting.

Did you lose your job?

Hmm well it’s been approximately 1 minute and 19 seconds since I last changed a nappy. So I’m pretty sure I’m still on the payroll.

Here, let me help you with…

It’s really sweet of you to offer, but I’ve been doing this for a few years now. I’ve got this.

Does your wife wear the pants in the family?

Yes, she literally does – given she’s currently the only member of the family who has to be out in public regularly. As for the rest of us, well… barge into our home at your own risk.

Your wife is very lucky to have you.

I’d prefer to think we’re lucky to have each other, actually.

Aren’t you lucky to have a sugar mama!

Sigh.

I would never force my wife to work while I stay at home all day.

Well then, you’re not doing marriage right, are you?

Which one is your child?

As proof to you that I’m not just some random pervert hovering around a group of unrelated children, my child is over there *point to own child, or child that looks most like me to remove all doubt*

I bet you’re a hit with all the hot mums at the playground/mothers’ group/PTA

You mean, apart from the ones who think I’m some kind of eunuch or pervert?

Even if they did want a piece of me, my sugar mama would never allow it. She owns me, remember?

Stay at home parents - dad and child