I am happy to say that so far I have not come across too much outward discrimination towards the stay at home dad. For the most part people have been very supportive and encouraging, commenting how more men should do it and how it is good for my relationship with my child.
The only blatant sexist comment has been from a female G.P. (of all people) who I went to see a few weeks back when I was suffering from the flu. She asked me what I did for a living and when I told her she looked at me incredulously and with a laugh said “Is that all you do?”
Mind you she also said that I did not have a flu (despite my dripping nose, sore throat, temperature, headache and general lethargy) but in fact I was suffering from reflux.
She slipped two or three sample packets of reflux tablets into my palm and with that the diagnosis was finished. In other words there is no doubt that this woman is an absolute fool.
The attitudes that are starting to rub me the wrong way are coming from people who I deal with on a weekly if not daily basis. For example there is a shop assistant woman who I see every week where I buy my fruit and vegetables.
We talk all the time and she knows all about my stay at home dad situation and even claims to support it. Why then does she continually ask my daughter, “Where is your Mummy?”
“Mummy is at work” we say.
“Where is your Mummy?” she asks again.
“Mummy is at work”
‘Where is your Mummy” she asks again and again.
And again and again, time after time and week after week. Can’t she think of anything else to say or does she just want to reinforce the fact that yes Mummy is at work and yes Dad is at home.
It is exactly the same with a neighbour of ours when we run into her around the apartment block during the day.
”Where’s Mummy, where’s Mummy, where’s mummy ?” She says again and again.
“Umm hello moron. Mummy is at work like she was the last fifty times you asked us!”
What is wrong with these people ? I bet they don’t say “Where is Daddy” to the stay at home Mums.
Do they think that we are stupid, do they not understand the answers, is that all they can say in English or is it a backhanded snipe at a man that they think should be at work while the mum stays at home with the child?
Do I have a genuine gripe or am I just becoming oversensitive and paranoid about not earning the bread?
Even though I feel extremely happy about our domestic situation (in fact I think I may have actually found my calling ) I still can’t help but feel the barbs of those who may not think that it is a worthwhile occupation for a man. Either way that stupid “Where is your Mum” question is really starting to annoy me.
I feel really sorry for the next person who asks….