Thursday, October 9, 2008

My SAHF Frustrations Continue

Why can’t stay at home mom’s except stay at home dad’s as equals?

I need to understand. I am a working mother while my husband stays at home with our 2 year old twins. He has been trying to find play groups in our area since the boys were about 8 months old (we didn’t go out that first winter because they were preemies and the risk of RSV.) However, every group my husband found either ignored his inquiries or decided that they needed to “vote” on whether he could join or not. Do these women understand that my children deserve just as much playgroup time as their children? Just because our situation is reversed in our household shouldn’t cause my children to suffer in their social skills development. Now since I am the only one working we can’t afford daycare, not to mention we wouldn’t want the medical bills to go with going to daycare. We also can’t afford Gymboree classes, or other structured playgroups that cost money. And the playgroups that we have paid for usually are not worth it because we miss so many of the sessions because the instructor gets sick, our boys get sick or we get sick or something else comes up.

Here is a direct example of a situation my husband just went through recently. It was a beautiful day so my husband decided to take the boys to a park. They were having a good old time and there were 3 other mothers and their kids there. The mothers were talking and one of their little girls came over and was playing with my boys. After about 20 – 30 minutes my boys came over to my husband and got a drink of water. That is when the mother of the little girl came over and picked up the girl and said, “You can’t play with them.” My husband asked her, “Why? They were have a good time.” She wouldn’t give an answer. The little girl proceeded to scream because she wanted to play with my boys and was having fun so the mother left instead. Why was it okay for that little girl to play with my kids before the mother knew they were there with their dad? Why are dads just bad guys when they are playing with their kids and taking care of their kids? Why does it have to be so “strange” when a father is out with his children? This should be becoming a more prominent issue given the economy and some many husbands are losing their jobs. I live in Michigan so I think we’re even seeing it more than the rest of the nation. Have any of these women seen “Mr. Mom”?

I’m only going to mention this not the full story. But we have a little girl that lives right next door who is 1 month older than my boys. They have never played together. For her first 2 years she was home most days just this school year she started preschool everyday. When I asked her mom when my husband could come over with my boys so the kids could play together, nothing. She had to back pedal and try to stir us towards groups at the library…WHATEVER, you live right next door and you can’t trust my husband?!

If anyone has the answer I’m open ears. All I know is that I’m EXTREMELY frustrated and wish that our roles were reversed so that my kids could get the social development that they need and deserve. Do you know how hard it is to go to work everyday knowing that your kids would have better chances of being social if I were the one at home? I shouldn’t have to have this stress added upon the stress of being the sole provider for my family. Especially in this economy when no one knows if their job is secure.

Hopefully, there are some mothers out there that read this and maybe I can swing their opinions a little and they will allow the next father who asks to join their group to join. I understand there are concerns of sexual abuse and whatnot but guess what, background checks are easy enough and you can check the sex registry for free. And another bit of information, there are a lot of women on that registry as well as men. Do new moms have to jump through the same hoops to join your moms’ group?

Or maybe there is a stay at home father out there in the South-East Oakland County, MI area. Please contact this paper and ask to start a group with my husband so that all of our kids can get the social playgroup time that they deserve.

Or maybe you are a working mother in the same situation and you can just let me know that I’m not alone. I can’t believe the stress and frustration this has caused me. I’m actually hoping that my children will still have issues speaking next year so that they can get into the free preschool for early development next year. At least then they can play with other kids.

My husband has also set up a Yahoo group, a Google Group and a Meetup group so you can search for stay-at-home-dads in Oakland County, MI on those 3 groups webpages and you should be able to find him. All three of these groups haven’t had a single hit, so I’m curious to know if dads just aren’t looking of if truly there are no stay at home dads in our area.
Thanks for listening.