There is an anonymous page called “Man Who Has It All” on Facebook and Twitter using humor to call out the stereotypical questions women get bombarded with when they have the audacity to juggle parenthood with, well, anything else. Here are just a few examples of the hilarity:
The content, written by a self-proclaimed “working dad,” calls out the ludicrous questions women get asked by turning the tables and asking the same of men. This is funny because it never, ever happens. No one ever questions a father’s ability to return to the office after his child is born. No one doubts a father’s love for his child because he chooses to work outside of the home. No one body shames him for taking his own sweet time to lose the last of the baby weight.
This notion of having it all, cultivated by both men and women, has taken on a life of its own. Never has a generation before had greater expectation for mothers to have a moneymaking career and spotless home, all while remaining freshly manicured and managing to get to the gym five days a week. If you don’t have 47 balls in the air, you are lazy. If you don’t climb the corporate ladder, you are not a real woman. If you miss your child’s choir concert because of a work deadline, you are a shitty mom. If you go on a girl’s weekend, you are selfish. If you stay home with your kids, you are not living up to your potential. And so on and so on.
These types of comments toward women are not uncommon. I was once asked if a female co-worker was going to “shit out another baby” anytime soon. Because, you know, it’s time consuming for him redistributing her case load when she’s out. I can only assume this requires much more exertion than say, shitting out a human being.
Amy Westervelt cuts to the heart of the issue in her article “Having It All Kinda Sucks,” when she states, “Instead of changing the systems, we tell women to lean in. Because of course, it’s our fault for not taking initiative. F*%# you. I’m leaning so far in I’m falling flat on my face.” We do so much to prove our worth at work and be seen to be as capable as “one of the guys,” we often hide that fact that we even have children at home at all.
And what about fathers? Sure, they don’t get ridiculed the same way mothers do, but they have very real pressure to bring home the bacon and contribute at home. They are getting up before dawn to work a full day in the office and come home exhausted to a round of parenting roulette which includes laundry, meal prep, after-school activities, tantrums, and homework. In the game of parenting, if we don’t start treating each other as equals, everyone loses.
This “Man Who Has It All” page isn’t about man bashing. It’s pointing out a very real problem in our society about balance of power for parents. It is calling out the fact that gender roles are slowly vanishing and poking fun at the fact that society, as a whole, has some catching up to do.More On