Recently this article was shared on Facebook. "How I Tricked My Husband to Think I Cleaned - when I didn't".
Go ahead, jump over and read it. At first I really thought it was written to be humorous. As I read it, it really doesn't seem that way. I mean honestly she posted before and after pictures. Then I skimmed the Facebook comments - always a mistake, when will I ever learn - of course their were the the ... "what?" and the "that really sounds like cleaning". Many of the comments centered around the whole notion that if he wants a clean house he can do it himself.
So my first notion was to try out her "tips" and I did. You can read that here. Strange thing happened when I was tricking my husband I cleaned. MY HOUSE GOT CLEAN.
This author did her job because I am writing about her post, it was shared on Facebook who knows how many times, I am even still thinking about her post - so good job (Keeping Life Sane)
Here are my thoughts --
1. If you truly have to trick your husband to think you cleaned when you didn't there might be something missing from your relationship. You shouldn't have to trick your husband on ... well almost anything. I mean if you are throwing him a surprise birthday party some tricks may have to happen -- everyday life not so much.
2. Yes, as a Stay At Home Mom time can get away from you. Yes, as a Stay At Home Mom there are going to be days where you get nothing done. Yes, you will feel guilty -- the enemy is good at that one. Yes, as a Stay At Home Mom you will think it is SOLELY your job to parent, cook, clean and kiss the boo boos - you are not alone in this ... your husband is part of the team!
3. For those who think "He should do it himself". What if you had to switch roles? What if you had to be the parent out of the house working? Would you really want to come home to a house in such a mess that you then had to clean yourself? The answer is no. That would lead to more problems. We are women, we are emotional by creation. We would be all up in his stuff while we were throwing stuff around "putting it away" and "do I have to do everything around here?"
4. We all have different standards of "clean". Mine have actually really changed over the last 2 years.
A quick story --
In 2013 I was the working parent. My husband had lost his job and had been doing a 100% commission position that was just not taking off in the market we live in. We HAD to pay our bills. We HAD to put food on the table. We HAD to do something. So we talked about it and he would continue to look for a job that paid well. While he was looking I would get a job. He was the staying home parent and responsible for finding babysitting when he had a job interview. I would be the working parent.
He got to see first hand what I do, day in and day out. He even said to me during that time ... how do you get it all done? I would come home from work at 6:30. He would have dinner done. Man we ate A LOT of spaghetti and egg mess at that time. He would have attempted to get laundry done and have the living spaces straightened up. I would get home and he would collapse. It is tons of work taking care of at the time a 1 and 3 year old.
When the words "What did you do all day?" came out of my mouth it was not in that accusatory tone -- wow this place is a mess what did you do all day -- it was from that place of "I want to hear about your day - the good, the bad and the ugly."
Fast forward to 2014, he had gotten a job and I had all intentions of keeping mine until he made me quit. No one had ever met him at the daycare I worked at. The one time he came in to pick up the kids he was able to get all the way to our son's room in the back of the school without any security measures. When we got home he said, "You are going to work Friday and you and the kids will not be back in that school ever." He never puts his foot down like that, so of course I listened. I would rather be home with my babies anyway.
Remember there are always two sides to every coin.
Now, I have a husband that has never said to me, "What did you do all day?" accusing me of sitting around doing nothing. Has my husband walked into a house a straight up hot mess of hurricane Miss and volcano Mister? You better believe it! Has he walked in and I am just starting to cook dinner ... YEP! Does he know that I take my job as Wife and Mama seriously? Of course. If our home is a HOT MESS he knows one of two things. One the kids have been horrendous and are probably in their rooms until Daddy get's home. Or two, we have had so much fun playing that time just got away from us. It could be either really.
Are there times that he has come home to dinner being cooked and the house being clean. OF COURSE, more times than the other really.
If you are finding yourself "tricking your husband to think you cleaned" ask yourself ... are your expectations of what your husband expects unrealistic? My husband does not need to come home to a dust free house. Of course he prefers to come home to a straighten up house so he is not tripping on toys the moment he walks in, but clean is not necessary. Ask yourself are you taking on more than you can handle? This was me for a long time. I thought it was my job as the Stay at Home Mom that I had to be the one to do all the cooking and cleaning. We are a team, and if I ask my husband to do this or that ... it is OKAY! Most ... okay really all ... that pressure I was putting on myself.
Now, truth of the matter is that I do 97% of all the cleaning and cooking -- because I want to. And yes, I work from home. Truth be told, I want to spoil my husband. I know he works hard and I know that it is really cost inefficient for me to go out and get a job. The least I can do is make sure he has a clean home and dinner waiting.