Life as a housewife is often seen by husbands and household members to be a piece of cake. You don’t have to go to work or make big decisions and the standard dialog of ” tum karti kya ho” can do so much damage to your psyche especially if the person wielding that hurtful sword like sarcasm happens to be your husband.
There can be a great deal of conflict when your husband criticizes you all the time. Which is normal in India, which then often leads to the wife retreating in hurt and anger (and then, of course, not wanting to have sex, among other issues).
In this write up i decided to focus on moms, the ones that enjoy being home with the kids, the ones that are not so great at housekeeping or cooking. They are more often ridiculed and made fun of, as the most sarcastic of comments come from husbands, relatives and friends. All of these people thinks that the wife is supposed to have her life and the household more under control,
They expect the home to look like the ones featured in the issues of “inside outside” or ” good housekeeping” and when she falls short she hears things like:
– why cant you cook proper meals when you’re home all day
– why cant you manage the bills
– why is the house a mess?” you’ve been home all day
– why don’t you take the kid dancing/swimming/skating…. You’re home all day
– “Why cant you wake up earlier and goto the gym , you’re home all day
– “All she does is go on Facebook.”
– why cant you dress better and put on make up
There are other women who goto work and look after their kids and have spotless houses….what do you do all day..
Let’s just say that all of these things are true, they are i guess in most cases. But there are others too… A few things about stay at home moms that could help at least husbands understand what’s going on.
1. Your wife is very lonely
Can husbands not understand the simple fact that having no adult around for half the day is unnatural for her. She is overwhelmed and has no one to talk to. If she doesn’t even facebook, she will have no social circle at all. She might be members with a mom club or school moms on watsapp but all the baby talk gets extremely monotonous and exhausting .
2. She’s busier than you think…
You think she should go to the gym. Newsflash: So does she! But playing with toddlers is exhausting. Mentally and physically. She has to conserve her energy for taking care of them once they are home. When they arent she needs to make sure the meals are cooked, the rooms are in a semblance of order, throw a small baby in the mix and your wife cant leave the baby alone for even a minute. Then she has to drive or walk them to classes??
You think she’s gonna be able to make multiple meals? Do the laundry? Washing? Cleaning? ….even with a maid, everything needs to be looked after. And instructions need to be given.
Gym might just not make it to the list at all!!
3. Spontaneity is the only saviour
You need to be a happy person… In the long term… Day in and day out! Thats NOT easy infact it is very difficult to fake happiness esp. when you are lonely, belittled and called unproductive most of the time. You cant do structured activities with kids all the time. You cant treat them like office projects.
Crazy conversations, soulful play and discreet love are required. These are traits of laid back relaxed people. Such people are rarely perfectionists. The warm artistic indulgent mother is hands down the best thing a child can get as a mother. She might not always make the best financial choices but her kids will never suffer the scarcity of love, cuddles and laughter.
You think this is nonsense? Dear husband? How does it feel to stand near the potty for an hour waiting for the kid to finish??
So before you criticize your wife for not having the best dinner on the table every night, or not dusting the railings, it will help you to know that your kids will remember her more for long drives and crazy conversations, though these traits hardly appeal to you at the moment.
Dear husband: You work with adults and they don’t literally piss on you. You might even hear “thank you” or “good job” and may be awarded with a hike or a promotion. Her payment comes in sloppy kisses alone and your criticism hurts her more than any physical wounds.
Dear husband: You could help in taking away her stress. The stress to get it all done, the stress to bring some money. Infact please water her plants if possible and if not give her a smile and say its ok…
Dear husband…If you feel she is depressed, find out..if she finds it difficult to get out of bed on a regular basis?? Is she sometimes exhausted by menial tasks like taking out kid’s clothes from the wardrobe? Is making a cup of tea for herself seem like too big a task to her even though she says she hasn’t done a lot in the day.
She might be depressed? many women have undiagnosed post-partum depression or anxiety, and this is not helped by feeling alone. Your condescension might be pulling her deeper each day. Treat her exactly how you’d like your own mother to be treated. Get her to go for counselling. But first and foremost please dont cease to love and care for her. It is overwhelming and exhausting, she has no identity of her own and she has made more than her share of sacrifices. She has always been there for you thick and thin… Would you desert her when she needs you the most???
She might not be perfect but her love is!!
Besides the children think the world of her and… They’re watching.