Daddy's Home

Listening to National Public Radio last week I heard seven precious words: Scott Simon is away on paternity leave.

Don't get me wrong: I like Scott Simon. But I was thrilled to hear he's taking NPR's paternity leave. Only a few years ago, the bravest expectant dads would slink into my office to whisper that they were considering taking time off when their babies arrived. Would they get fired? Not get a promotion ever again? Be ridiculed while they were out? (I'm happy to report none of their fears came true. What actually happened was that people barely noticed they were gone.) A male public figure like Scott Simon taking leave to be a dad first and foremost is a small, important step to expand child-care policies as a mainstream workplace concern, instead of being relegated to "oh that's a woman's issue" domain.

More good news for moms and dads: Yesterday's Washington Post ran a front page Father's Day story about stay-at-home dads. The headlines and subheads were as follows:

Stay-at-Home Dads Forge New Identities, Roles

More Fathers Than Ever Are Primary Caregivers

Dads do Child Care Without the Frills

The article chronicled the increasing prevalence of men's restrooms with changing tables, a stroller model named "the Bob", gender-neutral diaper bags, and support groups for stay-at-home dads. The photographs and individuals featured included Caucasian, African-American and Asian men. And instead of painting a rosy picture, the piece included some struggles, including exclusion, loneliness and very messy houses, that plague some dads who stay home.

"Those fathers are changing the way many children are growing up and the calculations families make as they try to balance busy and often conflicting lives," Katherine Shaver wrote in the article. "Like their female counterparts, most stay-at-home fathers say they plan to return to work, many when their youngest child reaches kindergarten. But many said they will look for limited hours and flexible schedules...They don't want to lose the intimacy, the way they have come to know their children's daily rhythms like no one else...Some call it their mother's intuition."

According to U.S. Census figures, there are 159,000 "official" stay-at-home dads in this country, or roughly 2.7 percent of all at-home parents. The numbers are actually far larger, because of underreporting and the fact that the Census figures do not include single fathers, those who work part-time or flexible hours, or dads with children older than 15. Nonetheless, the percent of at-home parents who are dads has tripled in the last decade.

Let's hear from stay-at-home dads (and wannabes) out there. Why did you stay home? What do you like most and hate most about being home? What are the tradeoffs? Working dads or pre-dads: If you could stay home, would you? And women, what appeals to you (or turns you off) about dads who stay home?

By Leslie Morgan Steiner |  June 18, 2007; 7:00 AM ET  | Category:  Dads
Previous: Happy Father's Day, Dad | Next: The Breadwinner


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first......

Posted by: bryn mawr | June 18, 2007 7:28 AM

"Scott Simon is away on paternity leave."

Ha! Maybe it's about time a woman take his job.

Listen, the reason men take paternity leave is to:

1. Take care of his wife
2. Finish up on some of those lingering household projects that his wife has been nagging him to complete.
3. Work on his golf game.

Yeah, sure, he'll change a few diapers if he's a good husband and maybe swing the baby around a little or take it on a walk to show it off to the neighbors, but really, what else is there to do? Surely he shouldn't be feeding the baby out of a bottle because we all know that breast feeding is best and that task should be left to his wife as he does something productive like fix the gutters or something.

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 7:47 AM

Why do stay-at-home Dad's need support groups? Mom's have been doing it forever with coffee buddies and phone calls to friends, we never needed support groups...

Posted by: Chris 1458 | June 18, 2007 7:48 AM

Hey, moms need (and have)formal and informal support groups too!

And it's because they are such a small minority that groups for men are important. It's got to be tough to be the only man in some of these mom-dominated gatherings.

Posted by: Leslie | June 18, 2007 7:52 AM

Think Father of 4 has a case of the mundays.

Posted by: teabag tim | June 18, 2007 7:52 AM

When DS is born, DH will be taking at least 2-3 weeks paternity leave. I assure you he will NOT be working on his golf game. He will be changing diapers, assisting around the house and more bonding with baby and supporting me. More than anything else, he will be spending extra time with DS#1 to make sure he doesn't feel neglected or left out in any way.

I recall with DS#1 there being lots of things for daddy to do, so I'm suprised there is a feeling that DH just can't do much.

Posted by: londonmom | June 18, 2007 7:53 AM

Never heard of Scott Simon.

Don't care if fathers and/or mothers stay home with their kids! It's a boring subject!

Where's your explanation for Joel Rose's fradulent post last week?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 7:54 AM

Support groups for men? Sounds like a discrimination lawsuit just waiting to happen! :-)

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 7:55 AM

Father of 4

"Listen, the reason men take paternity leave is to:"

Right, like you know anything about a paternity leave! You said "a dude doesn't
get much out of holding an infant all day"!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 7:57 AM

I think this is great! It's wonderful to see men take a greater role in childrearing (as it should be anyhow) AND forcing their bosses and the rest of the world to deal with the fact they, too, are parents and will be exercising that right.

Hurray!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:01 AM

My husband cashed in all his vacation time, etc. to stay home for 4 wks when our son was born. Sexiest thing he ever did! There is nothing like the look of a dragged out unshaven guy with a newborn sleeping on his chest.

Posted by: Shandra | June 18, 2007 8:03 AM

And I would think, Shandra, that by the two of you sharing those moments with your baby help you both to really "get it", you know?

Posted by: Just wonderin' | June 18, 2007 8:08 AM

I am so glad that my baby days are over so I don't have to deal with any of this tripe!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:10 AM

Oooh! I just spotted some fuzz in my navel....

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:12 AM

I fully intend to stay at home for as long as my wife needs help after we've got a baby. I just see doing this as what I want to do, based on my attitude and expectations of how I want to be a father.

My dad didn't do this; he went to work and when he came home, we assisted him in working on the farm. There was little "bonding" between us children and him, as men now appear to define that, but that was OK back then. I guess a fathers' role has changed over the years (perhaps because more women work and they want partners to assist at home and with the kids now?) and I see no problem with it.

Posted by: John L | June 18, 2007 8:21 AM

Just thought I would let you all know that before the posts get nasty.

Posted by: no one is perfect | June 18, 2007 8:22 AM

I will be making an early appearence today!

Posted by: Mako | June 18, 2007 8:25 AM

"Why do stay-at-home Dad's need support groups? Mom's have been doing it forever with coffee buddies and phone calls to friends, we never needed support groups..."

Umm, check out http://www.momsclub.org/

Over 2000 chapters and over 100,000 members in this support organization for stay-at-home mothers...

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:28 AM

Mako

"I will be making an early appearence today!"

Learn how to spell first!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:29 AM

I think it's great that Simon is setting a precedent or being a role model or whatever you want to call it.

But taking a few months off work and deciding to stay at home full time are two different things in my book. I think all men should take their paternity leave or use all their vacation to be there for the first few weeks. I can't imagine why they wouldn't want to! But staying at home full time is not suited for every man or woman, and while it's great if you're rich, it's not always the most financially responsible choice for either parent.

And the baby culture geared toward men (changing tables in the men's room, manly diaper bags and strollers) really reflect the increased involvement of dads of all types, not just the ones who stay at home. I think that's awesome. I always wondered why baby things were always pink with flowers and bows and stuff. I mean, did the mom turn 12 once she had her baby?

Posted by: Meesh | June 18, 2007 8:29 AM

Mako

"I will be making an early appearence today!"

Learn how to spell first!

What a jerk.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:34 AM

Mako

"I will be making an early appearence today!"

Learn how to spell first!

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 08:29 AM

It is spelled correctly. Mako, as in Mako shark.

This is all leading to unofficial guesses as to when this blog will "jump the shark" today. Okay, Mako has made an official guess.

Posted by: oh dear | June 18, 2007 8:36 AM

Who is Mako?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:36 AM

I will be making an early appearance today!

(Does this make you happy?)

Posted by: Mako | June 18, 2007 8:37 AM

Meesh: for someone without kids you sure know a lot about what's best for families.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:37 AM

"Meesh: for someone without kids you sure know a lot about what's best for families."

So does catlady! Small world!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:39 AM

I never really cared if my husband changed as many diapers as I did. Maybe we can all achieve this "balance" if we stop keeping score of everything that men and women do.

Posted by: Keeping score causes resentment | June 18, 2007 8:41 AM

Crabby aren't we? It seems everyone has a case of Monday-itis!

Posted by: Mako | June 18, 2007 8:42 AM

Father of 4,

Paternity leave doesn't have to just be when baby is first born. When our #3 was born in the fall, my husband took off a couple of weeks immediately. Then he took off another 4 weeks with baby after my 3 month maternity leave. So he got to experience solo baby duty with no one looking over his shoulder all the time. When no one else is around, daddy can't get away with just changing a few diapers.

Posted by: Rockville Mom | June 18, 2007 8:42 AM

I will be making an early appearance today!

(Does this make you happy?)

This person is only happy when they can point out spelling or grammar errors. It looks like someone needs to find a job or join a support group for people with low self esteem.

I would be happy if they jumped the shark, fell in and were devoured quickly. Thus, never making another APPEARANCE on the blog again.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:43 AM

Meesh- You were actually spot on. The trolls are out early.

DH took the first 2 weeks off with DD. When she was 8 weeks, I worked T/Th and he worked M/W/F, so he had some solid SAHD time. At 14 weeks I went back FT, and he still only works 1/2 days T/Th. We're looking forward to the day when we can both do 4 day/32 hour work weeks. That way DD would get a daddy day, a mommy day, 2 family days, and 3 days at school with the other kids. Neither of us is particularly interested in FT SAHPing. It's just not for everyone.

Posted by: atb | June 18, 2007 8:48 AM

Love, love, love Scott Simons, but his audience is full of enlightened males and I'll bet many more of them have taken paternity leave than the men who listen to, say, Rush Limbaugh. Scott is preaching to the converted.

Posted by: WorkingMomX | June 18, 2007 8:48 AM

8:37, well, I know what's best for my family.

Having opinions and knowing exactly what families should be doing are two very different things.

No one knows what's best for all families except for the members of those families, and even they're wrong sometimes. That's why we all offer our opinions.

Posted by: Meesh | June 18, 2007 8:50 AM

Although I haven't heard Scott Simon announce the circumstances surrounding the arrival of his and his wife's second child, he has frequently mentioned on-air that their first child was adopted from China. This entailed traveling to China to handle paperwork, then bringing their new daughter home with them -- a process which probably took longer than biological birth-giving in many cases.

If the Simons are also adopting their second child, they very likely would have to go through similar procedures. And, Father of 4 and Fred, in cases of adoption the adoptive mother doesn't breast-feed, so the adoptive father is just as capable of feeding the baby as the mother (or anyone else sharing in the care of the baby, e.g., a grandparent).

Posted by: catlady | June 18, 2007 8:50 AM

Meesh

"No one knows what's best for all families except for the members of those families, and even they're wrong sometimes. That's why we all offer our opinions. "

I don't have dogs and I don't offer opinions concerning owning dogs!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:52 AM

"Over 2000 chapters and over 100,000 members in this support organization for stay-at-home mothers..."

Oh, my God! Can you imagine?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 8:56 AM

I kind of agree with Father of 4. When competant wife is home caring for baby -- and that really does mean breatfeeding -- what does a father do to help? Add to that, MIL visits the during the first week, so how many people need to sit around and admire the baby? Wife appreciates me much more several months later when she's back at work, and there is a sick kid or a field trip and I still have leave that I can take to care for kids. It's the two-working-parents mantra: divide and conquer!

As far as the stay-at-home Dads article, hate to snark this early, but I saw a nice headline and a picture of kids watching tv / playing video games. Way to perpetuate the stereotype.

Posted by: Arlington Dad | June 18, 2007 8:57 AM

Rockville Mom, like your husband, the way I worked it for most of my babies was to take off for a few days after my wife came home from the hospital, then I took off a few days a week and kind of spread my vacation time out. And when a new infant is introduced to the family, it kicks the parents into a 24 hour mode and that goes along with working a half day here, a full day there, a day off every now and then, a little work from home, and flexable hours blend in with the time spent fondling baby.

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 8:57 AM

Rockville Mom,

You know, that's a really good idea (new dad taking time off after Mom goes back to work), and one I hadn't thought of. We will be in the position of my wife not having to return to work if she chooses to stay home, but if she does go back I think I wouldn't mind staying home with the baby for a few weeks myself. I'll have tons of sick leave available and my office allows us to use family leave just like women do, so that's certainly an option for me.

Posted by: John L | June 18, 2007 8:58 AM

I'm glad everyone's pissy this morning, because I am really cranky. Catlady, I will say this nicely before someone gets freaky about it, but believe it or not, adoptive mothers can breastfeed if they take certain medications and are willing to suffer a bit (or a lot). I used to be in a LLL group and one of the more extreme bf moms was constantly reminding us all of that. Personally, I would never do it but to each his/her own!

Posted by: WorkingMomX | June 18, 2007 9:00 AM

I don't have dogs and I don't offer opinions concerning owning dogs!

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 08:52 AM

Since you're a troll, you shouldn't be offering opinions on anything human.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:01 AM

Of the first 35 comments today, 9 were off topic, 10 were personal attacks and 16 were on topic or reasonably so. Personal attacks have already taken up 28% of comments by individuals who are presumed to have some capacity for intelligent discussion. After all, many of the individuals here have stated their qualifications as having attended Ivy League schools and possessing advanced degrees. No wonder this country's educations system seems to be in a downward spiral.

Posted by: Comment Counter | June 18, 2007 9:05 AM

Arlington Dad,

"When competant wife is home caring for baby -- and that really does mean breatfeeding -- what does a father do to help?"

You were being facetious when you said that, right? I'm not a dad yet but I can think of several things that having another willing set of hands around would be much appreciated by a new mom:

1) Diaper changing
2) Bathing
3) Burping
4) Cleaning up after burping
5) General holding/comforting
6) Errands
7) Doctor appointments
8) Answering the phone
9) Food preparation (for adults)
10) Feeding baby (if not bf-ing)
11) Housecleaning

Posted by: John L | June 18, 2007 9:06 AM

"I kind of agree with Father of 4. When competant wife is home caring for baby -- and that really does mean breatfeeding -- what does a father do to help? Add to that, MIL visits the during the first week, so how many people need to sit around and admire the baby? Wife appreciates me much more several months later when she's back at work, and there is a sick kid or a field trip and I still have leave that I can take to care for kids. It's the two-working-parents mantra: divide and conquer!"

I was pretty beat-up and sore after delivering my kids. Personally, I would have appreciated it if my husband had taken a week off and dealt with the things that I was told NOT to do by my physician: lifting loads of laundry (up and down 2 flights of stairs), vacuuming, mowing the lawn, tending to the wailing newborn while I tried to spend some "quality time" with my sitz bath.

Also if there had been some meals appearing by magic and some dishes washed, that would have been great. At least until I wasn't oozing and the stitches were well on their way towards being dissolved...

Not everyone is inundated with helpful (?) family immediately after birth.

And yes, if both parties can save up sick leave in order to spell one another (even SAHPs get sick!), that's fantastic.

But do whatever works best for your family. It is nice to have an addition set of helpful competent hands around the house for the first few days though.

Posted by: Bedrock | June 18, 2007 9:09 AM

Comment Counter

"Of the first 35 comments today, 9 were off topic, 10 were personal attacks and 16 were on topic or reasonably so."

Try masturbating instead of comment counting! That's what I did in the Ivy League!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:10 AM

When competant[sic] wife is home caring for baby -- and that really does mean breatfeeding[sic] -- what does a father do to help?

Participating in all the other care of the new baby besides breastfeeding, like changing the new baby's diapers and bathing the new baby.

Caring for any other children in the household.

Social interactions like answering the phone, dealing with visitors.

Routine household tasks like fixing meals, cleaning, laundry. Handling the mail, paying bills. Running errands.

I'm sure folks can suggest lots of other appropriate responsibilities for a father staying home with his new baby.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:10 AM

My blue collar husband took one week vacation when I came home from hospital after a c-section. MIL came the next week. My own mother scheduled her vacation based on her best guess when she could help, but the baby didn't cooperate and mom's vaction ended while we were still in the hospital.

DH had no trouble bonding with baby. He spent his evening hours bonding while I rested and did other things. He sat with us during feedings and the baby held his finger. Of course, he had a 20 minute commute and a 40 hour work week. We didn't care about the house being spotless - the baby wasn't going to be on the dirty floor and unvacuumed carpet. Since his non-work time was almost exclusively devoted to baby time, bonding wasn't a problem, even without paternity leave. YMMV.

Posted by: nan | June 18, 2007 9:12 AM

Paternity leave is great if you can afford it. My father was a sole practitioner. If he didn't go to the office, if he didn't go to court -- no client would pay him. When our mother needed help with me or my brother, her oldest sister, Jessie, whose children were already grown up, would come and help her.

Remember, paternity leave depends on someone's being willing to pay Dad while he stays home with the children. Are *you* gonna pay your lawyer -- or your barber, or your plumber, or your physician -- while he does nothing for you?

Posted by: Matt in Aberdeen | June 18, 2007 9:12 AM

"I'm sure folks can suggest lots of other appropriate responsibilities for a father staying home with his new baby."

But why pursue this mind numbing subject?


Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:13 AM

Darn.

It is nice to have an addition set of helpful competent hands around the house for the first few days though.

Insert "additional" where "addition" currently resides.

Now, would someone please pour me a cup from the cyber coffee pot?

Posted by: Bedrock | June 18, 2007 9:14 AM

"I'm sure folks can suggest lots of other appropriate responsibilities for a father staying home with his new baby."

But why pursue this mind numbing subject?

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 09:13 AM

Just to piss you off.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:17 AM

Another reason it's good for fathers to take off when baby is born is to deal with any other kids. While parents do have to learn how to properly pay attention to multiple kids often all at the same time, it's good if it doesn't have to happen the exact moment you return from the hospital. And even if older kids have childcare or school, someone still needs to transport them, pack their lunches/backpacks, etc.

Posted by: Rockville Mom | June 18, 2007 9:18 AM

Plumbers and barbers work "on call" though; they don't work regular hours or have vacation/sick leave in most cases. If they can afford to cut back on their hours so they can help the mother to raise a new baby, more power to them.

My dad, AFAIK, never took any time off to help my mom with the new babies. With my younger brother, once he knew she and the baby were safely past the birthing process, he went deer hunting!

Posted by: John L | June 18, 2007 9:19 AM

Wonderful as it was to have people helping me with my newborn(s), I want to warmly remember the people who took care of my horses for me while I was home. That qualifies as good friends indeed.

Horse people may be nuts, we may even argue ferociously about our preferred kind of nut (breed), but when you really need a hand, you can't beat other horse lovers. Or animal lovers in general.

The first week was pretty hard on me, personally. It was nice having someone else handle tidying, cooking and providing me with the "shuffle-time" necessary to get to the bathroom to tend to myself. Ouch!

Posted by: Maryland Mother | June 18, 2007 9:20 AM

Thanks, WorkingMomX, I never knew that! But I do wonder whether the drug necessary to induce breast milk in adoptive mothers mightn't have risky side-effects. However let's defer to Fred, or more accurately to Frieda, for further information on the topic.

BTW, WorkingMomX, I could tell that you meant to be nice, even without you're saying so :-) But isn't it just a shame that some of the posters (usually anonymous) try so hard to poison the atmosphere here that it can become necessary to specify we're being nice merely in order to present a different piece of information, let alone raise a different perspective?

Posted by: catlady | June 18, 2007 9:21 AM

Bedrock said:
"Also if there had been some meals appearing by magic and some dishes washed, that would have been great."

This is good advice to anyone who knows anyone having a baby. The magic casserole is a huge help when we are the new parents, and something we try to deliver to our new parent friends.

John L -- you'll see. It may take a couple of kids, but you'll see! Also, many of those things on your list can be accomplished by a competant father after work, on weekends, during a week off, or during sporadic days off when new Mom needs you -- I saw no need to burn through my sick and vacation time. As I said, I needed that time later on to care for kids.

Posted by: Arlington Dad | June 18, 2007 9:23 AM

Remember, paternity leave depends on someone's being willing to pay Dad while he stays home with the children. Are *you* gonna pay your lawyer -- or your barber, or your plumber, or your physician -- while he does nothing for you?

Posted by: Matt in Aberdeen | June 18, 2007 09:12 AM

Have you never heard of savings?

Posted by: To Matt | June 18, 2007 9:23 AM

A lawyer without enough cash to go into work for a few days? Wasn't a nine-month gestation long enough to plan for a little break?

Posted by: to Matt | June 18, 2007 9:25 AM

"I'm sure folks can suggest lots of other appropriate responsibilities for a father staying home with his new baby."

But why pursue this mind numbing subject?

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 09:13 AM

Because it's part of today's topic, numbnuts!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:27 AM

Remember, paternity leave depends on someone's being willing to pay Dad while he stays home with the children. Are *you* gonna pay your lawyer -- or your barber, or your plumber, or your physician -- while he does nothing for you?

Posted by: Matt in Aberdeen | June 18, 2007 09:12 AM

Did he never take a vacation? Isn't that the same idea? Or was business so lousy that he wasn't able to save up enough money to take few days off here and there?

Posted by: Really? | June 18, 2007 9:27 AM

To 9:10,

Your Ivy League education certainly provided you with witty rejoinders! I believed that I heard that one as a sophomore, in high school!

BTW, I had a partner to fulfill my needs unlike you.

Posted by: Comment Counter | June 18, 2007 9:27 AM

Matt

Your father's experience is ancient history!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:28 AM

Never heard of Scott Simon?!?!?!?!?! Or, more to the point, never HEARD him!!! Oh my! You don't know what you're missing! The man's got a voice to die for! BTW, he's the regular host of Morning Edition (Saturday) on National Public Radio - airs Saturday mornings, 8:00 - 10:00 a.m. Glad to know that he's taking paternity leave, but I can't wait for him to return to his Morning Edition duties!

Posted by: Murphy | June 18, 2007 9:29 AM

Arlington Dad,

I kind of doubt that the diaper changing/feeding/cleaning/bathing can wait until Dad gets home, especially if Mom is still recovering from the birthing process. As others have said, if there are already children in the household, I'd say that another adult to handle them would come in really handy for a new mom as well.

A friend of mine married a man with a young daughter and got pregnant immediately. She had her hands full dealing with both her first baby AND a 6 year old those first months; her husband is a firefighter so at least he had time when he was at home (work shift was 3 days on, three days off), but it was still a huge sea change for her.

Posted by: John L | June 18, 2007 9:29 AM

OK, maybe it's selective memory, but I don't remember it being all that hard to be home by myself with the children when they were babies. They're teens now, so it has been a while. They're four years apart and the four year old was not much trouble.

Of course, there were moments, but not hours and/or days of feeling like I really needed help. I did what I could regarding housework and laundry, and what I couldn't do just didn't get done until DH was home in the evenings and weekends.

Oh, and I actually let my older child watch tv and videos while I was tending to the baby. It's not a terrible thing to do.

Posted by: me | June 18, 2007 9:30 AM

"Listen, the reason men take paternity leave is to:

1. Take care of his wife
2. Finish up on some of those lingering household projects that his wife has been nagging him to complete.
3. Work on his golf game."

Wow...just...wow.
I guess your wife had really easy deliveries with all your kids. Well, bless her! I was flat on my back with a spinal headache for almost the first week after my daughter was born, and I could barely walk for close to 2 weeks. I fed the baby, but my husband did everything else. Plus, when you are nursing in the early weeks, you can barely get the baby detached from you long enough to go into the kitchen and prepare a meal. I was practically an invalid the first 2 weeks of DD's life, and I really appreciated having my husband around! Plus, he actually had time to get to know our daughter, and I'm sure this has made a difference with how he has interacted with her through her infancy/toddlerhood. The men I know who took paternity leave were generally much more comfortable taking care of newborns/infants than those who didn't, just because they'd had the extra practice.

Plus, I can't imagine taking care of a newborn and other small children all by myself. When would you have a chance to sleep and recover from childbirth? How can you chase a toddler after that?

Posted by: va | June 18, 2007 9:33 AM

"Listen, the reason men take paternity leave is to:

1. Take care of his wife
2. Finish up on some of those lingering household projects that his wife has been nagging him to complete.
3. Work on his golf game."

Wow...just...wow.
I guess your wife had really easy deliveries with all your kids. Well, bless her! I was flat on my back with a spinal headache for almost the first week after my daughter was born, and I could barely walk for close to 2 weeks. I fed the baby, but my husband did everything else. Plus, when you are nursing in the early weeks, you can barely get the baby detached from you long enough to go into the kitchen and prepare a meal. I was practically an invalid the first 2 weeks of DD's life, and I really appreciated having my husband around! Plus, he actually had time to get to know our daughter, and I'm sure this has made a difference with how he has interacted with her through her infancy/toddlerhood. The men I know who took paternity leave were generally much more comfortable taking care of newborns/infants than those who didn't, just because they'd had the extra practice.

Plus, I can't imagine taking care of a newborn and other small children all by myself. When would you have a chance to sleep and recover from childbirth? How can you chase a toddler after that?

Posted by: va | June 18, 2007 9:33 AM

"Oh, and I actually let my older child watch tv and videos while I was tending to the baby."

Shocking! Where is CPS!!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:33 AM

"Add to that, MIL visits the during the first week, so how many people need to sit around and admire the baby?"

Husband may be needed to (1) defend weepy. postpartum wife from wacky MIL's constant harassment/criticism and (2) clean up MIL's messes. Not that I know from personal experience or anything...

Posted by: MBA Mom | June 18, 2007 9:35 AM

"Oh, and I actually let my older child watch tv and videos while I was tending to the baby."

Shocking! Where is CPS!!


Hey, I thought it was completely normal, but apparently many people on this blog feel that you have to engage with and interact with your children on productive, educational activities every waking minute.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:35 AM

"Plus, when you are nursing in the early weeks, you can barely get the baby detached from you long enough to go into the kitchen and prepare a meal."

That depends on the baby. You could try fixing meals when DH is around to help with the baby, or have DH fix the meals. Prepare plenty and eat leftovers during the day so the only meal preparation needed would be reheating.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:42 AM

"I don't have dogs and I don't offer opinions concerning owning dogs!"

LOL. Alright, anon, you win. I will never know anything until I have a baby. So feel free to ignore.

Please note that my comments are meant to be helpful. Yours are not. Instead of being obnoxious, why not offer helpful advice?

Posted by: Meesh | June 18, 2007 9:42 AM

Yes, even putting the child in front of the tv with opera on the tube is a case for CPS.

Posted by: to 9:35 | June 18, 2007 9:42 AM

Agree that there is nothing sexier than an unshaven, sleep deprived husband with a newborn on his bare chest.

One of my old companies had a ridiculous rule that in order to take paternity leave, your wife had to have already returned to paid work. What a crock. Paternity leave is for men to bond with their babies and help their families (and themselves) adjust to this enormous change. Doesn't matter whether mom works outside the home or not.

All this golf stuff reminds of my husband's occasional pitch that he'd like to stay home with the kids. I always ask him to describe what he thinks his days would be like. "Well, I'd get to work out a lot and play tennis and golf and see my friends." No mention of actually taking care of our children! What he wants (and I don't blame him) is to not work -- and this is far different than taking care of children.

Also, I remember when another manager at work teased me about "Looking forward to a nice long vacation" when I was nine months pregnant with my third child. I wanted to kill him. I had a closed door chat with him and I think he realized that what he said was offensive. Maybe...

Posted by: Leslie | June 18, 2007 9:46 AM

to just wondering'& generally - having my husband home did help us both "get it" in terms of sort of going through that transition to parenting. (We knew it would be a fraught time, too, since our daughter died after her birth, and it really was - I think all new parents go through a lot of fear, but neither of us could even sleep for about two weeks.)

I think for us the big deal about the paternity leave was that we were both at the same stage - both incompetent, both learning for the first time - so we managed to avoid a /little/ bit that syndrome where one person HAS to get competent and then, meaning to or not, gives the other person the idea that they are not competent enough to parent. We've hit that over again at different points, but we have that experience to go back to.

My husband is a great dad and would have been anyway I'm sure. But I do think the bonding my husband did to my son in that time, etc., promoted that a lot. I would want to do it over again the same way, even with unfunded leave.

Sure, it's not the same as being home and as the part time working parent in our family I have done the heavy lifting, esp. w.r.t. housework. But still, it was a good start, which helps.

And it is a very sexy memory still. :)

Posted by: Shandra | June 18, 2007 9:47 AM

Call me vain, but I did not even want my husband in a delivery room, with all this blood and gore (he was peeking anyway). After we were ceremoniously brought home the very next day (hate hospitals!) it was great to luxiriate in a high bed watching the swarm of female relatives (mostly in-laws) to coo over the baby. I never thought I was marrying into such wonderful family! When my beloved husband would come home, we would enjoy the rerun of the same cooing spectacle together. Beats snapping at unshaven sleep-deprived husband on paternity leave and ordering Chinese takeout. DD is 4 now, and we are considering another one. The Family is excited in advance.

Posted by: lucky | June 18, 2007 9:48 AM

"Did he never take a vacation? Isn't that the same idea? Or was business so lousy that he wasn't able to save up enough money to take few days off here and there?"

Posted by: Really? | June 18, 2007 09:27 AM

A vacation? We would rent a bungalow or an apartment near the beach -- but always within the City, an hour or two subway ride from Dad's office, so he could come visit Mother, my brother and me on weekends and occasionally even during the week. Car trips? Forget it -- there was no car. Boat or plane trips to the Caribbean or Europe? That was for the rich people, not us. Plus, if you disappear for a couple of weeks, your clients will go somewhere else -- and they might not come back.

What about a storekeeper? Will you -- *can you* -- shop at his store if it's closed 'cause he's on vacation?

Our father worked his tail off for us, sometimes not getting home until 10 PM, waiting for the bus, standing on the bus till it got him to the subway, waiting on the platform for the train, standing on the train until it got him downtown to his office, sweating out closings in his non-air-conditioned office.

Would he take us to the Zoo, or walk across the bridge with us so we could play cops'n'robbers in the park on the other side of the river? Would he throw the ball around with us in the schoolyard half a block away? Would he pick us up out of our beds if the idiot tenant upstairs let his bathtub overflow and water leaked onto us? Would he take us to a plumber who had the Babbitt metal and pipe fittings we could use to build a telescope equatorial mount for a Science project? Sure. But business was never good enough for us to take the stereotypical American two-week vacation trip.

My father never lived to see any daughters-in-law or grandchildren, but I have done my best to follow his example. For us, it's as if (what Francis Fukuyama called) "the Great Disruption" of the 60's and 70's never happened. My father put our mother and us first. That's what a husbnd and father is supposed to do, right?

Posted by: Matt in Aberdeen | June 18, 2007 9:49 AM

Think Father of 4 has a case of the mundays.

Posted by: teabag tim | June 18, 2007 07:52 AM

Nah. Father of 4 has a perpetual case of he-man-itis.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:52 AM

What about a storekeeper? Will you -- *can you* -- shop at his store if it's closed 'cause he's on vacation?

Mom & pop shops are pretty much a thing of the past. Most folks aren't self-employed but work for someone else nowadays.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:54 AM

For us, it's as if (what Francis Fukuyama called) "the Great Disruption" of the 60's and 70's never happened.

So Matt, you're still living in the 1950s? How's that McCarthy witchhunt going?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 9:56 AM

'Are *you* gonna pay your lawyer -- or your barber, or your plumber, or your physician -- while he does nothing for you?'

Posted by: Matt in Aberdeen | June 18, 2007 09:12 AM

"Have you never heard of savings?"

Posted by: To Matt | June 18, 2007 09:23 AM

The savings were there to pay for medical and hospital bills. And, eventually, to send my brother and me to the best colleges in Canada and the United States.

Yes, this was ancient history. We live better now, thanks to an America that rewards hard work with better living. The question is, ¿will our children continue to live this well in a world where everything you can pick up and hold in your hand has "Made in China" printed on it?

Posted by: Matt in Aberdeen | June 18, 2007 9:58 AM

Considering that yesterday was Father's Day and many people spoke highly of their fathers on Friday's blog, do you really think that a father can't bond with his children if he doesn't stay home on paternity leave?

I've got nothing against paternity leave, but I do believe that you can bond with your child without it.

Posted by: just wondering | June 18, 2007 9:59 AM

The savings were there to pay for medical and hospital bills.

That's what health insurance is for.

And, eventually, to send my brother and me to the best colleges in Canada and the United States.

Heaven forfend you'd have to attend a CSS. Are you married to Cream of the Crop or something?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 10:01 AM

just wondering

"Considering that yesterday was Father's Day and many people spoke highly of their fathers on Friday's blog"

What? Friday's blog had a lot of comments about cheatin' fathers...

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 10:04 AM

I don't remember my husband taking off for any of our kids, but it was a while ago. I do remember not wanting him too. Gasp you say? I wanted him to take off about 4-6 weeks later when I was incredibly sleep deprived, cranky and waiting to sleep through the night. The euphoria had worn off, the family had gone home and reality was biting. That was when he stepped up to feed the baby at night so I could sleep. Luckily none minded going back and forth between breast and bottle. I particularly remember the midnight feeding picture: Dad with his bottle and junior with his...different bottles of course.

Posted by: dotted | June 18, 2007 10:07 AM

You guys are always good for some entertainment.

My dh took off four weeks After ds no. 1 was born (when I told my sister, she said: my husband took no days off - good thing their kid was born on a saturday- she wore that like a badge of honor). He also had taken off a week before the birth as I was in the hospital. Since I wasn't supposed to drive, it was a good thing he was there. We needed so much stuff! Even tho we were at my in-laws house for a few months (renovations make babies!).

It was great that he was home (so to speak) and helping, etc. I was so tired.

With no 2, he took off 3 weeks which was great since he entertained no 1.

DH would never have considered not being there.

Every once in a while he considers staying home, but I'm not sure he's up to the task. I have a few male friends who are SAHDs and they love it. I think my DH could do it if he were doing other stuff too (starting his own business) but not if he were just home.

Posted by: atlmom | June 18, 2007 10:09 AM

"Most folks aren't self-employed but work for someone else nowadays."

Maybe. (Where I live, there's a ton of small shops, not big-box stores. Who owns them?) But some (like me) are. You can't just say that the concerns of the sole proprietor don't matter because you don't personally know someone who is one.

So yeah--if you want time off, you appease your clients as best you can, try to do it during a time when they won't be calling, and refer business if you absolutely must. And you keep checking in. Easier with email.

Posted by: Lone cowboy | June 18, 2007 10:11 AM

John L -- I completely agree with you and Rockville Mom about fathers taking over care of the other kids when baby is born. That to me sounds like a good reason for paternity leave -- those kids need attention and stability while Mom is preoccupied with baby.

As for my family, my kids were in daycare or school when new babies arrived -- so their schedules remained pretty much the same and I was almost always around the house when they were. But if these kids had been at home all day, I'm sure that would have been a good reason for me to take more time off -- but if my wife were a SAHM, then I wouldn't need to bank so much vacation and sick time for sick kids and field trips since she'd cover that.

Posted by: Arlington Dad | June 18, 2007 10:12 AM

You can't just say that the concerns of the sole proprietor don't matter because you don't personally know someone who is one.

Just sayin' it's not an issue for the majority of today's new parents.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 10:15 AM

While talking about the concerns of the sole proprietor - what about the case where the wife is the one self-employeed or the one with the small company and no maternity leave or FLMA (to small to be covered) - especially if she is the higher earner? In that case paternity leave is very important in providing care in the early months.

Posted by: Divorced mom of 1 | June 18, 2007 10:23 AM


I'll chime in as one of those moms who was closer to an invalid than a 'competent' stay-alone parent for the first weeks after delivery.

Both my births had complications in the 3rd stage . . . they left me woozy and rubbery in the middle for a few weeks whenever I tried to stand or pick up a baby. It was both safer for the baby and supportive of my recovery to have another adult around to handle baby toting. So baby slept and nursed with me but other adult(s) did the ensuing diaper changes . . .

Also, if MIL is coming from out of town she may or may not manage to time her airline tickets just right to be there for the baby's arrival and first week(s). It may be more urgent that she be there early, to become familiar to older kids and routines that she will help with after birth . . .

Dads-to-be, please *get it* beforehand that the birth, its timing, and the condition of mom and baby afterward are utterly unpredictable and can zoom to absolute first priority, totally snatching you out of day-to-day responsibilities for weeks, with little notice beforehand. Moms-to-be plan for this --- my first arrived earlier than expected but I had planned for the contingency, had all my grading caught up and everything lined up for end of semester, just stopped by the office on my way to l+d to drop off all handouts and info to a fellow faculty member to sub for me . . . I had them videotape students' final projects so I could grade them at home while convalescing, I planned it that way just in case. . . even though baby was *supposed* to come well after the end of the semester. I had a contingency plan I could put into action within an hour in early labor. DH, who was expecting the same baby, somehow had no contingency plan for an early arrival . . . he had a huge backlog of grading to finish . . . he actually had to leave us alone in the hospital in the brief 48 hour period after delivery, to write final exams and deliver them to his subs . . .

Dads-to-be, if you're ready and primed to cast everything aside and be a rock, ever-present, when the events come, you will reap an unparalleled bonding experience mot just with your baby but with your wife, who will be so grateful to be able to count on you through exhausting and potentially traumatic times . . .

Posted by: KB | June 18, 2007 10:24 AM

I haven't one iota to contribute to this topic. Nevertheless, since I am desperate for attention, even from cyber strangers on the Net, I will interject a bunch of baloney.

When it is brought to my attention that my posts are outdated and/or not very relevant, I will fight to the death for my place in the sun!

Posted by: Windbag | June 18, 2007 10:27 AM

Windbag,

Don't make me count again!

Posted by: Comment Counter | June 18, 2007 10:28 AM

Go play your bagpipes.

Posted by: To windbag | June 18, 2007 10:29 AM

While my dad technically didn't work for himself, he was in sales, so when he didn't sell, he didn't make money. He maybe took a couple of days off when my sisters and I were born, but maybe not. My grandmother was around and she helped out. Mom was happy enough not having him around anyway (she apparently didn't even tell *him* she was pregnant until she had to).

Posted by: atlmom | June 18, 2007 10:30 AM

For those of you in NC, the Cary Times also had an article about men and how they "balance" fatherhood and work. It was pretty interesting. There were pieces of advice like asking your employer for flex time and setting boundaries. It made me wonder if the writers had been reading this blog :)

Posted by: Meesh | June 18, 2007 10:41 AM

Wow, I miss last week and come back to find things even snarkier here than at my trial. Dang.

Anyway, I vote in favor of early paternity leave. My husband had plenty of time with our first, because he was job-hunting after a plant shutdown, and it was great -- it was nice to be able to tag team things like diapers and groceries, one take the late night feeding and the other the early AM feeding so we each got 4-5 hrs of uninterrupted sleep, etc. But I think the biggest benefit was psychological. I remember shortly after we got her home, my husband asked me how to do something simple, like diapering or bath or something, and I said "I don't know, I haven't done this before either." I think if I had spent the first 12 weeks alone with her, it would have established me as the "expert" and him as the "assistant." But because we both learned together in the early days, he figured out quickly that he was just as competent as I was.

With our son, it was just as important that my husband took time off, but for different reasons. Our 4-yr-old daughter needed a lot of attention, so having as much Daddy as she could take helped tremendously (for the first three weeks, I was "contaminated" by baby, and she wanted nothing to do with me). And, oh yeah, I also needed him to run interference with the "helpful" in-laws (love them to death, really do, but 3 weeks was WAAAAAAYY too much).

Once he went back to work, it became MUCH harder. Not so much the food and all that -- we just ate a lot of spaghetti-Os and box mac and cheese and takeout. It was the sleep: suddenly, I had to take over all of the overnight feedings, because he needed to get up at 6 AM and go to work all day. I don't function well with sleep deprivation, and the boy refused to sleep even 4-5 hrs at a stretch until he was @ 8-10 weeks old, so that was just a pretty miserable couple of months. My memory of that time is one big blur of crying because I was so desperate for a nap, and telling myself repeatedly that it WOULD end sooner or later and I just needed to hold on until then.

Posted by: Laura | June 18, 2007 10:42 AM

Mom...apparently didn't even tell *him* she was pregnant until she had to.

How times have changed!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 10:43 AM

Regarding paternity leave, I took several months paternity leave when first kid was born. Never made that mistake again.

Regarding being a stay at home dad, who would do this? Bored silly, never get anything done, interacting with no one but a child all day long. This is a great recipe for mental illness.

Don't get me wrong, I love my kids, but that doesn't mean I want to be with them 24/7.

Posted by: Bob | June 18, 2007 10:45 AM

Bob

"I love my kids, but that doesn't mean I want to be with them 24/7."

Not to worry! When you are a lonely old man in a nursing home, your kids won't want to be with 24/7 either!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 10:48 AM

Regarding being a stay at home dad, who would do this? Bored silly, never get anything done, interacting with no one but a child all day long. This is a great recipe for mental illness.

Change the word dad to mom, then reread.

Posted by: To Bob | June 18, 2007 10:51 AM

"Bored silly, never get anything done, interacting with no one but a child all day long. This is a great recipe for mental illness."

Can you say Andrea Yates?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 10:52 AM

Laura - Well said on sleep deprivation and psych benefits of two parents handling newborn in early weeks. very necessary. good for whole family.

Bob -- You are a dope! The recipe for mental illness is for your kids and wife with a dad who thinks so little of them!

Posted by: Leslie | June 18, 2007 10:54 AM

Not only did Rusty Yates husband not lift a finger to help with 5 kids, he expected Andrea to home school them.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 10:55 AM

Not to worry! When you are a lonely old man in a nursing home, your kids won't want to be with 24/7 either!

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 10:48 AM

Really, I hope my kids have better things to do than hang around a nursing home all day long.

------------------------------------------

Change the word dad to mom, then reread.

Posted by: To Bob | June 18, 2007 10:51 AM

I don't see how this changes anything.

Posted by: Bob | June 18, 2007 10:56 AM

"Wow, I miss last week and come back to find things even snarkier here than at my trial. Dang."

Well Laura, what did you expect when one of our most reasonable mommies leave the blog? Roses and olive branches?

Please don't go away again!

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 10:57 AM

"Not to worry! When you are a lonely old man in a nursing home, your kids won't want to be with 24/7 either!"

who DOES want to be with someone -- even the best parent ever -- in a nursing home 24/7?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 10:57 AM

Mom, it ain't a nursing home!

Posted by: Tony Soprano | June 18, 2007 11:00 AM

Bob -- You are a dope! The recipe for mental illness is for your kids and wife with a dad who thinks so little of them!

Posted by: Leslie | June 18, 2007 10:54 AM

Hopefully you might see the difference between caring little of someone and not being with them 24/7.

They invented color television decades ago. Your world doesn't have to be in black and white anymore.

Posted by: Bob | June 18, 2007 11:01 AM

"who DOES want to be with someone -- even the best parent ever -- in a nursing home 24/7?"

Perhaps to comfort a beloved dying parent before s/he goes gently into that good night...

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:02 AM

With andrea yates, I always wondered why rusty didn't get more attention. It would seem that he knew that his wife had these tendencies-so wouldn't it be possible that he could have been helping to put those thoughts in her head?
I mean you *never* heard from him at all and no one even deigned to think that. If he knew about these tendencies, why would he leave her alone with all those kids all day?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:03 AM

"who DOES want to be with someone -- even the best parent ever -- in a nursing home 24/7?"

Perhaps to comfort a beloved dying parent before s/he goes gently into that good night...which is differnt from being with someone in a nursing home 24/7

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:03 AM

Change the word dad to mom, then reread.

Posted by: To Bob | June 18, 2007 10:51 AM

I don't see how this changes anything.

Posted by: Bob | June 18, 2007 10:56 AM

Sheesh, you are stoopid.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:05 AM

I would worry if any of you on this blog spent 24/7 with your children. Staying home with kids is tough work and it isn't for everyone.

I also don't want to raise my kids to sit with me in a nursing home 24/7. If I am sick that is one thing, otherwise come a few times a week and take me out to dinner, bring the grandkids, etc. Also, why is Bob stupid for thinking that neither parent may want to be home with the kids 24/7? I mean really, why is he getting such a hard time when the majority of the parents on here both work.

My husband is probably only going to take a week off when the baby is born. He just doesn't have the vacation time to take much more.

Posted by: scarry | June 18, 2007 11:08 AM

"They invented color television decades ago. Your world doesn't have to be in black and white anymore."

Funny. True.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:08 AM

The post mentioned that it did not account for single dads. I doubt any single dads CAN stay at home, just as hardly any single moms can. Unless there's some kind of fantastic nest egg, someone has to bring in some money, and there's only the one parent to do it.

Posted by: Lynne | June 18, 2007 11:11 AM

scarry

"I would worry if any of you on this blog spent 24/7 with your children."

I did when my babies were newborns.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:11 AM

"They invented color television decades ago. Your world doesn't have to be in black and white anymore."

Even black and white sets had shades of gray, except on yours, I guess.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:11 AM

Frankly, i think this is the trend. As the workaholic babyboomers get the heaveho, the x'er's and below will demand it and expect it. People know that they won't stay with one company their whole lives so benefits will be the perks that sway people.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 11:12 AM

After reading Bob's comment about how boring staying at home with kids was, my first thought was "welcome to your wife's world, Bob".

Or perhaps not; maybe his wife can keep herself un-bored easier than him while still taking care of the children. Staying at home taking care of the kids isn't for everyone, man or woman, but unless the parent(s) have plenty of money for daycare, someone is going to have to do it. Sounds like one of those issues to discuss before the babies start arriving.

Posted by: John L | June 18, 2007 11:15 AM

scarry

"I would worry if any of you on this blog spent 24/7 with your children."

I did when my babies were newborns

I couldn't have even if I did want to. My daughter slept through the night, my husband watched her when I went to get groceries, cooked dinner, ran for take out, took a shower/bath, etc. After three months I had to go back to work, so she was in daycare 8 hours a day.

I didn't mean to insult you; I just think that people are being a bit hard on Bob.

Posted by: scarry | June 18, 2007 11:16 AM

"scarry

"I would worry if any of you on this blog spent 24/7 with your children."

I did when my babies were newborns."

I didn't spend 24/7 with my children, even when they were newborn babies. They went to a crib in a different bedroom the day they came home from the hospital. The baby monitor picked up every sound just as clearly as if they were in the same room we were. A bonus was that they sometimes went back to sleep before I could get out of my room. I imagine if they were right with me I would have spoken at the first sound and kept them awake when they might otherwise have gone back to sleep on their own. If they truly needed me, they continued crying.

Posted by: xyz | June 18, 2007 11:20 AM

"After three months I had to go back to work, so she was in daycare 8 hours a day."

Sad, really sad. Why bother to have kids? Is the next baby going be dumped in daycare? What will happen to your 16 year old niece's baby?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:21 AM

"The post mentioned that it did not account for single dads. I doubt any single dads CAN stay at home, just as hardly any single moms can. Unless there's some kind of fantastic nest egg, someone has to bring in some money, and there's only the one parent to do it."

Sad but true story from pre WW II rural America: My husband's grandmother died while giving birth, so grandfather pulled his oldest daughter (my future mother-in-law) out of 7th grade to stay home and care for the newborn and other kids, while he went on a multi-year drunken toot. Back then there were no social workers in remote rural counties to check on underage school dropouts, and besides pulling a child out of school to help with the household was still generally considered an acceptable practice under such circumstances (ditto if a father died and an older son had to run the family farm). After my future mother-in-law married in her teens, she and my future father-in-law raised her younger siblings (and later, him as well). MIL eventually attended night school for a while, but never graduated and never was able to find jobs much above minimum wage (though thank goodness even for that).

Posted by: Regular, but no name this time | June 18, 2007 11:24 AM

My job gave me two weeks of paternity leave and it was very useful. Our newborn had some medical issues and I used part of the time to take him to doctor appointments with my wife. I'd love to be a full-time Dad but think there's a downside of being home too much for either parent. I get caught up too much in household projects. Plus I do spoil my son with a lot of affection. While not too bad, it makes him hard to adapt to being with strangers (or to let me leave the room!). One positive side of daycare is he gets used to being with other people i.e. becomes more social. I don't want to change that.

Posted by: New Dad at 39 | June 18, 2007 11:28 AM

"Sad but true story from pre WW II rural America: My husband's grandmother died while giving birth, so grandfather pulled his oldest daughter...."

Right, I saw that episode of "Gunsmoke" earlier this week!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:30 AM

After reading Bob's comment about how boring staying at home with kids was, my first thought was "welcome to your wife's world, Bob".

Posted by: John L | June 18, 2007 11:15 AM

Why would my wife stay home with the kids?

Posted by: Bob | June 18, 2007 11:31 AM

i kind of like Bob

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:32 AM

To 11:21

Your comments are just uncalled for. But, really, if someone decides what is best for their family who are you to hudge. You have presumably figured out what is best for your family. You're not going to change scarry's mind, so what are you trying to do?

I have a friend who used to thin, even yrs and yrs before she was married that doing anything other tha having the mom stay home with the kids was akin to child abuse. That she was going to stay home and her dh was going to support her (and whatever lifestyle she wanted to have -but honey-it's for the *kids*). Well, six months after no 2 was born she went back to work part time from home. So she excused that because she was home 'nearby'. But really she works as much as I do, since now she has at least four or five part time jobs- so she's not 'nearby, anymore when she's working.
So being judgemental usually ends up biting you in the a$$.

Posted by: atlmom | June 18, 2007 11:33 AM

Why?

Well if people like scarry didn't have kids, then your kids would be without a lot of the things they probably like at school. You know, there wouldn't be as much taxes for the school district.

You would also probably have fewer children to obsess over when you run to the school everyday to be a helicopter parent or nothing to talk about with the other SAHMs when you pick up your 16 year old from school.

Posted by: to 11:21 AM | June 18, 2007 11:36 AM

"After three months I had to go back to work, so she was in daycare 8 hours a day."

Sad, really sad. Why bother to have kids? Is the next baby going be dumped in daycare? What will happen to your 16 year old niece's baby?


Posted by: | June 18, 2007 11:21 AM

Well, I guess when you have kids, you'll do it differently, huh? Because what works for her life will not work for yours, so it's beyond worthless for you to make your snarky remark.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:36 AM

Hudge equals judge. Sorry

And she went back to work 6 mos after number *one* was born. Y'all can figure out the rest of the typos yourself.

Posted by: atlmom | June 18, 2007 11:40 AM

OT to atlmom: tell me about coronado when you return!

As I read today's entries, I can't help but start humming to myself "The snarks are back in town, snarks are back in town...."

Fo4: I did kinda expect you to pick up my father/son bottles comment..sniff sniff

Posted by: dotted | June 18, 2007 11:40 AM

"Sad but true story from pre WW II rural America: My husband's grandmother died while giving birth, so grandfather pulled his oldest daughter...."

Right, I saw that episode of "Gunsmoke" earlier this week!

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 11:30 AM

Your lack of compassion for family tragedies is stunning. You probably kick puppies too.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:42 AM

love to know how many male editors and reporters at the WaPost--the newspaper not the website-- have taken paternity leave and what it's done to/for their careers. Leslie can you please enlighten us?

Posted by: June 16 | June 18, 2007 11:52 AM

"You would also probably have fewer children to obsess over when you run to the school everyday to be a helicopter parent or nothing to talk about with the other SAHMs when you pick up your 16 year old from school."

I am the high school lunch mother and I join my teen DS & DD at the school cafeteria. I am very popular with the other SAHMs! You're mean!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:52 AM

Dotted, well you see I have a tea-totaler hovering troll that lurks in my shadow...

What do you think about those Budwiser baby bottles? Harmless, or will baby grow up to be an alcoholic just like Mom and Dad?

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 11:59 AM

dotted

"Fo4: I did kinda expect you to pick up my father/son bottles comment..sniff sniff"

I thought you were referring to father and baby sucking from the same boob(s).

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:03 PM

am the high school lunch mother and I join my teen DS & DD at the school cafeteria. I am very popular with the other SAHMs! You're mean!


Posted by: | June 18, 2007 11:52 AM

Mom,

Please go away so I can get some action. Is it to late for me to go to day care.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:04 PM

Bob wasn't the most tactful about it, but I agree with him. I prefer to work. I don't want to be with the kids 24/7 (I don't want to be with ANYONE 24/7), I get a lot of satisfaction from my job, and someone needs to come home with a paycheck.

That you get satisfaction from supporting your family financially and spending time when you're home doesn't make you a bad parent. And if the kids insist on being 24/7 with me while I'm at the old folk's home, I'm calling the cops.

Posted by: Clever moniker | June 18, 2007 12:19 PM

What high school kids want to eat lunch with their mother? Most won't even eat with a sibling.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:19 PM

I led a lunch time "Great Books" discussion with my DS's 7th grade class.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:22 PM

I led a lunch time "Great Books" discussion with my DS's 7th grade class.

That is different than being there everyday and bashing working mothers.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:25 PM

"Bored silly, never get anything done, interacting with no one but a child all day long. This is a great recipe for mental illness."

Can you say Andrea Yates?


Posted by: | June 18, 2007 10:52 AM

Not funny.

Given his wife's extensive mental health history, I think Rusty Yate's has far more to answer for. She was and is a very ill person.

Posted by: Maryland Mother | June 18, 2007 12:27 PM

My mistake. Ex-wife.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:32 PM

My mistake. Ex-wife.

Hasn't Rusty Yates remarried? Any other kiddies in sight?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:34 PM

to dotted: sure - can do. There's a little buzz at the office as we're all getting a little excited.

My grandmother stopped going to school about 6th or 7th grade cause she had to support the kids (her siblings). Before that, she went to work after school - she told us the story of how she was picked to be in a school play but the practices were after school so she would always miss them and got into trouble when they had to perform. Back then they were allowed to hit kids. She never finished high school - i doubt she finished junior high. She is and always will be my hero - she is one of the brightest ladies I know.
She took care of her two kids when my grandfather passed away when he was very young (kids were under 10). And my mom and her sister always had what they needed and then some.

Posted by: atlmom | June 18, 2007 12:37 PM

Damn it.

Rusty Yates.

Yes, he's remarried and has two step-sons.

Posted by: Maryland Mother | June 18, 2007 12:37 PM

Not funny.

"Given his wife's extensive mental health history, I think Rusty Yate's has far more to answer for. She was and is a very ill person."

I certainly would not say that he does not have much to answer for but remember he lost FIVE children. I think he has paid more than anyone could imagine.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 12:41 PM

http://crime.about.com/od/current/p/andreayates.htm

Posted by: Whale shark | June 18, 2007 12:41 PM

"Damn it.

Rusty Yates.

Yes, he's remarried and has two step-sons."

Yikes! Who would marry Rusty Yates?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:42 PM

Off-topic:

Thanks, FO4 -- hope your kids brought you some celebratory beer this weekend. Trial was fun, though: really hard work and long hours, but someone else was already the "group mom," so I pretty much just got to go along for the ride instead of making sure everyone else was taken care of. Nice change of pace! Will be back there later this week, but hope that's the end of it.

Since I've missed so much lately, I'm hoping someone can bring me up to speed on recent events. How's Chris' wife? How are Emily's and Scarry's pregnancies?

Posted by: Laura | June 18, 2007 12:44 PM

pATRICK: Actually, I always thought that Rusy wanted out but being religious, couldn't get a divorce and knew about his wife's tendencies.

Just a thought...

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:45 PM

I feel sad for SAHDs who say they are ignored by SAHMs (effectively, their peers) at the playground, etc. Also, SAHDs are usually regarded with more suspicion around kids, because many people who sees a man alone with a kid, or attempting to arrange play-dates (sorry to bring this up again, pATRICK), is going to raise an eyebrow. I hear SAHMs talk about the alienation they feel from other adults upon leaving the workforce, and I imagine dads feel the same thing. If my husband wanted to stay home to take care of the kids, and I earned enough to cover our expenses, I'd fully support him--but I'd also be sensitive to his needs as an adult, not just as a dad, just as I'd expect him to be if I chose to stay home.

Posted by: Mona | June 18, 2007 12:46 PM

My husband and I wouldn't have missed out on getting to know each of our babies - together -- for the world. Because we figured it out together, neither of us had a corner on The Way Things Must Be Done. What I cannot imagine is wanting to have a mother, sister or mother-in-law around during those early days of learning to be a new family, but to each his own.

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | June 18, 2007 12:48 PM

"pATRICK: Actually, I always thought that Rusy wanted out but being religious, couldn't get a divorce and knew about his wife's tendencies.

Just a thought..."


I think the whole thing was creepy. Him, her, the trailer etc. I still feel very sad for the children,none of them deserved such a death.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 12:48 PM

"I think the whole thing was creepy. Him, her, the trailer etc."

So how did Rusty find a woman to marry him after his divorce from Andrea?

Weird & creepy. Creepy & weird.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:52 PM

I always thought I wanted to find a DH who would want to stay at home with the kids cause it wasn't for me. That's not exactly what happened - altho we both work now.

There are a couple of dad's who get together weekly at the coffee shop just to hang out. Their wives, I'm sure, have the same 'beef' with them(hey the kids are in preschool for 3 whole hours, can't you get anything done) as any DH working outside the home.

:)

Posted by: atlmom | June 18, 2007 12:53 PM

Besides money and fast cars, there exists no chick magnet stronger than a man with a baby.

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 12:54 PM

I think rusty had a girlfriend within two seconds of them taking andrea off to jail. Just my opinion...

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:56 PM

"There are a couple of dad's who get together weekly at the coffee shop just to hang out"

Interesting. The SAHWs in my neighborhood gather on a DAILY basis to hang out before the stores and the Mall open...

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:57 PM

"Stormy, a cuddly mixed-breed who serves as an on-air mascot for CBS affiliate KYTX/Ch. 19 in Tyler, Texas, is no longer top dog at the station, now that a bikini model with no journalism experience has taken up residence as a co-anchor on the station's 5 p.m. news"

I wonder what some of you think about this? Not so much the bikini girl angle, but the no experience angle. I personally think that it is silly to have a "an experienced journalist" read a teleprompter and introduce stories. An actor can do that. I think this was a smart move and will capture viewers. The media takes itself far too seriously and the general public does not.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 12:57 PM

Fo4: I liked pony bottles when I was in my 20s. Then it was real Rolling Rock in those ponies (vs the fake RR of today). Of course, this is assuming the small Budweisers of today are like the ponies of old: if they are baby bottle shaped, my opinion shifts way negative.

MN--hear hear! I didn't want my mom or my MIL around too much either. "Come over, do something and then leave so I wouldn't feel like I had to entertain them" was my credo. By the way, is it hot enough for you outside?

Posted by: dotted | June 18, 2007 12:59 PM

pATRICK

"I wonder what some of you think about this?"

I think you are a VERY lonely guy...

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 12:59 PM


"pATRICK

"I wonder what some of you think about this?"

I think you are a VERY lonely guy...

LOL, I wish. I can't remember the last time I had some time to myself. Just curious about the media angle.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 1:02 PM

I personally think that it is silly to have a "an experienced journalist" read a teleprompter and introduce stories. An actor can do that. I think this was a smart move and will capture viewers. The media takes itself far too seriously and the general public does not.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 12:57 PM

Actually, at most local TV stations, except perhaps in the largest media markets, newsreaders also write most of their own copy to read on-air.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:02 PM

Yikes! Who would marry Rusty Yates?

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 12:42 PM

Someone who blames Andrea and pities Rusty for losing those children. Someone who is not very thoughtul.

The same sorts of women who write love letters to Scott Peterson in prison.

Jeffrey MacDonald remarried while in jail.

Ted Bundy used to get fan mail.

There's no accounting for the excuses some women will make for some men.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:03 PM

Father of 4

"Besides money and fast cars, there exists no chick magnet stronger than a man with a baby."

Ha, Ha! Right! Like you know anything about being a chick magnet!!!

When was the last time you got laid by a chick other than your wife?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:03 PM

Re: SAHD's shunned by SAHM's: It seems to happen a lot, and yes in many cases the men are looked on as "weird"

I was never a SAHD, but because of work schedules I was usually the one who took the oldest kid to birthday parties, swimming lessons, softball and basketball games, dance class, etc. There was only one other father who did most of that, and often we'd go off in a corner and talk football, baseball or whatever because we just didn't want to get into the discussions of which brand of jeans make your rear end look fat or what was happening on Melrose Place or 30Something.

One time a co-worker who was one of the mothers in that group told me privately that "a lot of the mothers think that you and Steve are weird because you're bringing your daughters to 4 pm swimming lessons or Saturday birthday parties. I had to tell them that no, you're really a normal guy."

Posted by: Anonymous Invertebrate | June 18, 2007 1:04 PM

Ha, Ha! Right! Like you know anything about being a chick magnet!!!

When was the last time you got laid by a chick other than your wife?

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 01:03 PM

So now you're flaming Father of 4 for NOT being an adulterer? What was your opinion of Friday's guest blogger?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:06 PM

"One time a co-worker who was one of the mothers in that group told me privately that "a lot of the mothers think that you and Steve are weird because you're bringing your daughters to 4 pm swimming lessons or Saturday birthday parties. I had to tell them that no, you're really a normal guy."

I never understand people who would congratulate me on doing these things. They are my kids and I love them. Why would I not want to do these things? I like football and sports as much as the next guy but zoning out all weekend always struck me as a colossal waste of time.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 1:08 PM

"what was happening on Melrose Place or 30Something. "

Which is Proust compared to the dreck that is "must see" television today...

Posted by: Flaming Vertebrate | June 18, 2007 1:09 PM

Mais oui, à la recherche du temps perdu!

Posted by: Marcel Proust | June 18, 2007 1:12 PM

pATRICK

"I never understand people who would congratulate me on doing these things."

They wouldn't congratulate you if they knew what a paranoid fanatic you are about your kids....

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:16 PM

"pATRICK

"I never understand people who would congratulate me on doing these things."

They wouldn't congratulate you if they knew what a paranoid fanatic you are about your kids...."


let's see so far I am a lonely, paranoid fanatic. Keep trying anonymous gutless coward....

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 1:18 PM

Next thing you know, you'll get flamed like Father of 4 for NOT being an adulterer!

Posted by: To pATRICK | June 18, 2007 1:21 PM

go back to Cimetière du Père-Lachaise!

Posted by: To Proust | June 18, 2007 1:22 PM

"Besides money and fast cars, there exists no chick magnet stronger than a man with a baby."

I disagree. Puppies are the No. 1 chick magnet. Lots of women don't want to be step-moms, or deal with divorce baggage.

dotted - I deal with heat well, LOL. Having said that, I'm glad I'm not a kid participating in outdoor sports camps today. It was already in the high 80s when I dropped my son off this morning.

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | June 18, 2007 1:22 PM

Yeah, dh jokes all the time that having a wedding band, a baby and the dig is a surefire technique to pick up cute chicks.

B/c of dh's work schedule at one time he would take ds to music classes every other week. Ds was under a year old and one mother asked him if that was 'due to the custody agreement.'. I thought this was a sad commentary on our world.

Posted by: atlmom | June 18, 2007 1:23 PM

Jim Morrison is calling you!

Posted by: To Proust | June 18, 2007 1:24 PM

"B/c of dh's work schedule at one time he would take ds to music classes every other week. Ds was under a year old and one mother asked him if that was 'due to the custody agreement.'. I thought this was a sad commentary on our world. "


I can tell you that it is far more assumed that you are a divorced dad playing with his kids on his custody day rather than as normal person out with their kids. That is sad. I get that look alot when I take my daughter to ice skating.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 1:26 PM

"Lots of women don't want to be step-moms, or deal with divorce baggage."

Agree. Who wants to change poopy nappies for someone else's kid? Who wants to deal with psycho exes? Fay Furillo?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:27 PM


pATRICK

"That is sad. I get that look alot when I take my daughter to ice skating."

Do you have any tips for Father of 4,(another Patrick), who can't afford ice skating lessons for his younger daughter?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:32 PM

Besides money and fast cars, there exists no chick magnet stronger than a man with a baby.

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 12:54 PM

You're an idiot.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:34 PM

pATRICK

"That is sad. I get that look alot when I take my daughter to ice skating."

Do you have any tips for Father of 4,(another Patrick), who can't afford ice skating lessons for his younger daughter?"

I am not sure what you mean, could you be more specific?

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 1:34 PM

MN - youngest son just called. He's at the pool swimming. good thing to be doing today, imho.

Posted by: dotted | June 18, 2007 1:35 PM

"Besides money and fast cars, there exists no chick magnet stronger than a man with a baby."

What about a big c@ck?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:35 PM

"Besides money and fast cars, there exists no chick magnet stronger than a man with a baby."

"What about a big c@ck?"

Big c@ck trumps everything else for me.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:39 PM

They wouldn't congratulate you if they knew what a paranoid fanatic you are about your kids....

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 01:16 PM

I suspect anyone who knows pATRICK would congratulate him for loving his daughter enough to thoughtfully consider in whose care he leaves her.

The manner in which he conveys his opinion to others might be abrasive from time to time, but fanaticism and paranoia have not a jot to do with it.

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | June 18, 2007 1:40 PM

Thank you, MN. Reasonable as always.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 1:45 PM

"If my husband wanted to stay home to take care of the kids, and I earned enough to cover our expenses, I'd fully support him"

Posted by: Mona | June 18, 2007 12:46 PM

CONGRATS Mona! When did you get married?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:45 PM

Maybe this is a regional thing, but there are many happily married dads taking kids to activities, birthday parties, etc. in this area. That's part of why we moved here, of course, but I'm wondering why you all want to live in areas where active dads are assumed to either be divorced or, the most condescending, "weird"?

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 1:46 PM

SCARRY, I have been meaning to write to you. The beating you have been taking over spelling and grammar by these nitwits is really ridiculous. Just wanted to let you know. Have a nice day.

Posted by: pATRICK-TO SCARRY | June 18, 2007 1:49 PM

MN

"I'm wondering why you all want to live in areas where active dads are assumed to either be divorced or, the most condescending, "weird"?"

That's where the highest salaries are paid...

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 1:49 PM


To the lascivious strumpet who wrote "Dumping kids in daycare" -- this phrase is an insult to the thousands of fabulous daycare centers in this country, and the men and women who work in them for low wages providing safe, stimulating, educational care for our babies. I think it is far riskier and more dangerous to leave kids at home with one caregiver, which leads us to...

Rusty Yates. Yes, I agree. Why didn't Rusty get more scrutiny? What a horribly cruel and insensitive person to let his wife and kids suffer so greatly every day. He had to know Andrea had serious problems. Yet he abandoned them all every day when he went to work. He should have been prosecuted as well. Mothers and fathers should be treated equally...which leads us to the question of whether

Wash Post newspaper editors take paternity leave. Too bad Amy Joyce is out on leave herself now, because she could answer this for us. I don't know. My experience at the newspaper was in the Advertising Dept. I know several female reporters and editors who took maternity leave, but I don't know any male newsroom employees who took paternity leave. I sure hope there were at least a few!

Posted by: Leslie | June 18, 2007 1:53 PM

I have been officially jumped as of 1:35 pm

Posted by: Mako | June 18, 2007 1:53 PM

Wow. I can't believe the fuss I missed with this Joel Rose business on Friday. I'm glad I missed it.

Posted by: Proud Papa | June 18, 2007 1:55 PM

I wonder if LESLIE briefs these bloggers, so they can be prepared to have their blogs ripped apart from time to time. If not, it must be a hell of rude awakening. "hey I am writing for the on balance blog, check me out", then that person says "I didn't know you had two children you abandoned and cheated on your wife" WHOA!

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 1:59 PM

Oh pATRICK, it is nice of you to think of me. I really don't care what they say. I mean does anyone really care what obsessive anons have to say about them?

I should mis-spell on purpose though because if I don't they ask me questions about my niece and call me a bad parent because I take my daughter to day care. Again, who cares!

Posted by: scarry | June 18, 2007 1:59 PM

"Amy Joyce: I am a very lucky woman. The Post has been generous with leave. It's not all paid. We get four weeks of paid parental leave, then use sick leave and vacation time... that gets me about halfway through the six months. We've been budgeting ourselves so we can get me through to the end. My leave is actually pretty standard here, so I didn't really have to do any negotiating."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/discussion/2007/06/05/DI2007060500924.html

Posted by: Elaine | June 18, 2007 2:03 PM

Why do I adore Leslie? Today, it boils down to two words, and I quote:

"lascivious strumpet"

Posted by: Arlington Dad | June 18, 2007 2:04 PM

Besides money and fast cars, there exists no chick magnet stronger than a man with a baby.

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 12:54 PM

Ah-ha. Now we know the real reason why Father of 4 is anti-contraception.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:05 PM

Do you know who I think is worse than Yates? It is OJ, what womAn could sleep in the same house and not wonder if he was about to chop her whole head off?

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 2:07 PM

As a SAHD it became obvious that I had to hang around people who were confident and secure in both who they were and in their marriages. I am. I never try to force myself into discussions with the women at whatever event I might be attending with my kids. Some women are either not comfortable with a guy with kids, or they know their husbands will be jealous or uncofortable with them hanging around a man.

Over time I have developed friendships with every husband/father that my kids play with. They have also met my wife and know that we are very happily married. It took a long-time to develop these relationships, but things are working out great now.

Most importantly, I have always been fine on my own with just me and the kids. If your sense-of-self is wrapped up in other people's perceptions of you, you are probably going to have a hard time handling being a man toting around 3 kids all the time.

Posted by: Tillman | June 18, 2007 2:08 PM

Yes, Arlington Dad, that was a pretty good phrase by Leslie.

I would have preferred to call her an 'obnoxious, small-minded a$$hat", but Leslie's phrase works too.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:08 PM

"Rusty Yates. Yes, I agree. Why didn't Rusty get more scrutiny? What a horribly cruel and insensitive person to let his wife and kids suffer so greatly every day. He had to know Andrea had serious problems. Yet he abandoned them all every day when he went to work. He should have been prosecuted as well. Mothers and fathers should be treated equally...which leads us to the question of whether"

Well, I haven't looked it up, but my memory seems to be that he knew she had problems, she was being monitored. One of the grandmothers was coming to the house to stay with her when Rusty went to work. On the day in question, there was going to be a one-hour period where she was alone with the children which, unfortunately, was ill-fated. I thought that she was in treatment and everyone was working with her. The plan was to gradually increase her time alone with the children.

As many here have said, someone has to support the family financially. You may not agree with the one SAH parent, home-school model (I certainly don't agree with it for me), but it works for many families in this country. The Yates case is extremely tragic. Not everyone who has post-partum depression kills their children. The husband was helping her (treatment, supervisiion), etc. He was not ignoring the fact that she needed help as many are implying. Blaming him changes nothing.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:09 PM

pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear. I never knew that until 2 days ago.

Not that I'm trying to make a point or anything, but when selecting an activity for your daughter, you may want to take some other things into consideration besides time, money, commitment...

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 2:12 PM

"Lascivious strumpet" was too kind a description of that hateful poster.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:12 PM

"Blaming him changes nothing."

Neither does letting Rusty off the hook!

He messed up big time!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:12 PM

"pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear. I never knew that until 2 days ago."

was that previous post from you to me? It was anonymous.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 2:17 PM

Father of 4

"pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear."

Required info for every chick magnet dude!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:18 PM

okay old men, you are getting "pervy" stop it

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:20 PM

I think we should leave all 12 year old hymens out of our conversations, I am a paranoid fanatic remember? ;)

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 2:22 PM

"okay old men, you are getting "pervy" stop it"

That is the whole point!

Sounds like a code language to me. One wacko reaching out to another on the Net.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:23 PM

Well, I haven't looked it up

Please do. She didn't just have some problems, she had huge ones. And his actions were reprehensible in a lot of ways.

While Saeed's misdiagnosis of Andrea's psychosis was probably responsible for its reemergence, trial testimony showed Saeed had also instructed Mr.Yates that he was not to leave Andrea unsupervised, since she had a history of suicide attempts; Rusty chose to deviate from this instruction without consulting the doctor. Instead, Andrea was given the time and space to act on her delusions, which resulted in the deaths of her children.

His religious philosophy that declares that women are always subservient to men (particularly a wife to her husband), means that he is in charge, in control, and responsible. That she is the only one in jail in light of his belief system, is very sad indeed.

Posted by: No Rusty-fan | June 18, 2007 2:23 PM

Talk about a person who needed to take some time off to care for his children, and his wife. I mean, really now!

Expert legal opinion obtained by the Houston Chronicle asserted that Mr. Yates had virtually no winnable case against Saeed in a third party malpractice lawsuit; in fact, such a lawsuit would have almost certainly have incriminated him for parental negligence.

Without consulting the doctor on his plans, Rusty had announced to a family gathering the weekend before the tragedy that he had decided to leave Andrea home alone for an hour each morning and evening, so that she would not become totally dependent on him and his mother for her maternal responsibilities. Andrea's brother, Brian Kennedy, told Larry King on a broadcast of CNN's Larry King Live that Rusty expressed to him in 2001 while transporting Andrea to Devereux treatment facility that all depressed people needed was a "swift kick in the pants". Andrea's mother, Jutta Karin Kennedy, expressed shock when she heard of Rusty's plan while at the dinner gathering with them, saying that Andrea wasn't safe enough to care for the children. She said that Andrea demonstrated she wasn't in her right mind when she nearly choked her still-toothless infant Mary, by trying to feed her solid food.

Posted by: Eeww | June 18, 2007 2:25 PM

pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear. I never knew that until 2 days ago.

Not that I'm trying to make a point or anything, but when selecting an activity for your daughter, you may want to take some other things into consideration besides time, money, commitment...

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 02:12 PM

So can riding a bicycle, gymnastics, or any number of other activities.

As a young girl, the hymen is a membrane designed to perforate in the center, with resulting tears extending out toward the perimeter of the entrance of the vagina. Intercourse is famous for doing this very thing and the hymen has been important in many cultures in the act of consummating a marriage. But the hymen can be pretty flimsy, and athletic girls may find its central perforation already enlarged before sexual activity were to begin. Tampon use has certainly made less important this "sealed" symbol of virginity. Horse back riding, gymnastics, and other physical sports can produce enough tension to disrupt the intact hymen as well.

Your family physician may be able to allay your fears.

Posted by: you gents are kidding, right? | June 18, 2007 2:30 PM

Father of 4

"pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear. I never knew that until 2 days ago."


Please discuss this with your wife - the nurse.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:31 PM

"CONGRATS Mona! When did you get married?

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 01:45 PM "

I'll assume you're not being sarcastic, and say thanks for the sentiment, but I was speaking hypothetically. :-) BF and I have a very looooong way to go before we even consider such a thing. Yes, we have discussed the family dynamics we expect to encounter, but it is more so we know what to expect, not because we're in the planning stages.

From the "oh that's so sweet!" files: I found out a few days ago that he'd bought tickets for a Broadway show for the weekend after I arrive in CA. He's not a fan of musicals, but he knows I am, so he thought it would be a nice gesture.

He also let it slip that he'd secretly bought my mom a ticket to fly out there to stay with me for a week to help me set things up in my new place, and he bought her a ticket to the show too, and he had arranged a Napa Valley driving tour, and sightseeing in SF (she's never been to CA)...all so I'd feel more comfortable my first couple of weeks in CA. We have our ups and downs, but this is such a sweet thing that I had to share. I actually cried when he told me about it, because it's a completely unselfish thing to do--he gets nothing out of it, especially considering he's going to be doing all the chauffeuring and such.

I know there will be some trolls who have something mean to say about him, me, or our relationship, but I had to share this. It really meant so much to me. Like I said, I know he can be difficult sometimes, and so can I, but this was too nice a surprise to keep to myself. :-)

Posted by: Mona | June 18, 2007 2:32 PM

http://www.onlinesurgery.com/plasticsurgery/hymenoplasty.asp

But if a membrane is all-important to you, or your daughter...

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:33 PM

Yes, I do warn Guest Bloggers. But nothing can fully prepare anyone for the On Balance tidal wave of weird, unbalanced condemnation...

Arlington Dad...background...have to confess I didn't make up that descriptor. I had a very creative high school boyfriend who used to call me that.

Posted by: Leslie | June 18, 2007 2:34 PM

i was being sarcastic

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:35 PM

"pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear. I never knew that until 2 days ago.

Not that I'm trying to make a point or anything, but when selecting an activity for your daughter, you may want to take some other things into consideration besides time, money, commitment...

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 02:12 PM "

Really, really PERVY post.... I'm forwarding it to "Dateline".

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:35 PM

http://www.soc.ucsb.edu/sexinfo/?article=anatomy&refid=027

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:36 PM

The shark has REALLY been jumped!

Posted by: Jaws | June 18, 2007 2:41 PM

LESLIE, don't corral my post, you said it and I am asking a question.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 2:42 PM

"I suspect anyone who knows pATRICK would congratulate him for loving his daughter enough to thoughtfully consider in whose care he leaves her. "

Such as Father of 4.....

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:44 PM

"I'm wondering why you all want to live in areas where active dads are assumed to either be divorced or, the most condescending, "weird"?"

That's where the highest salaries are paid...


Posted by: | June 18, 2007 01:49 PM

I'd like to see any statistics supporting your assertion, but I think this is far more of an insular, small, conservative city or town phenomena -- and it correlates to women more often being the primary childcare parent regardless of employment status in such areas. The highest salaries, on the other hand, are paid in large cities -- the same cities in which two-income households are more common than single-income household, and in which participants, IMO, tend to subscribe less to gender-specific parenting roles. In my experience, cities in which both parents tend to be employed outside the household, and in which professional careers are the norm, ferrying our kids from place to place tends not to be divvied up by gender as often as by convenience. I can't remember when I last attended a kids' camp, field trip, or birthday party at which at least 30% of the parents were dads happily married to the mother of the child being ferried.

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 2:45 PM

Father of 4

"pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear."

Yes, indeed, folks. Today's topic is "Daddy's Home"....

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:53 PM

I wanna' withdraw my guest blog!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:53 PM

"Father of 4

"pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear."

Yes, indeed, folks. Today's topic is "Daddy's Home"...."

What bad luck to be named in this post, I am sure I will never hear the end of it, even though I didn't write it.....

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 2:57 PM

Father of 4

"Besides money and fast cars, there exists no chick magnet stronger than a man with a baby."

Later that day.....

Father of 4

"pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear."


Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 2:58 PM

Take note 9:10, saying "lascivious strumpet" is a much more intellectual way to insult someone rather than your commonplace and pedestrian attempt.

Leslie may even win that quote of the day thing.

Posted by: Comment Counter | June 18, 2007 2:58 PM

Does anyone else think it's just one person making all the nasty remarks to Mona, scarry, pATRICK, Father of 4, and the rest of us? I think it's the same person who corrects grammar and talks about that frigging jumping shark.

Posted by: Meesh | June 18, 2007 3:00 PM

does anyone really care?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:01 PM

Father of 4

"Besides money and fast cars, there exists no chick magnet stronger than a man with a baby."

Later that day.....

Father of 4

"pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear."

Father of 4, you might want to quit while you are ahead, I think you already won quote of the day.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 3:02 PM

Posted by: Meesh | June 18, 2007 03:00 PM

MEESH, yes I do. The writing style is very similar.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 3:04 PM

pATRICK

"Father of 4

"Besides money and fast cars, there exists no chick magnet stronger than a man with a baby."

Later that day.....

Father of 4

"pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear."

Father of 4, you might want to quit while you are ahead, I think you already won quote of the day."


Oh, my God!

pATRICK, Do you realize what you are saying??


Posted by: Elaine | June 18, 2007 3:05 PM

Father of 4

"Besides money and fast cars, there exists no chick magnet stronger than a man with a baby."

Later that day.....

Father of 4

"pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear."

My eyes! My eyes!!!

(Did Father of 4 really and truly post any of this stuff, or was it one of our nameless resident underminers?)

Posted by: Maryland Mother | June 18, 2007 3:06 PM

ELAINE, I didn't say it was pretty, witty or nice. Just a quote of the day, which is usually the best post or the weirdest post. I am not endorsing his post.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 3:08 PM

Meesh, the thought has crossed my mind several times. I even considered the possibility that it could be someone who signs his/her posts when s/he has something nice to say, but snarks anonymously. I hope I'm wrong, though. Most people here who are reasonable (such as MN, Laura, and many others) own up to the criticisms they lay on other people, and write with the eloquence that would suggest they should be proud to sign their posts.

Posted by: Mona | June 18, 2007 3:09 PM

Re: "Lascivious strumpet": umm, not to be prudish, but do you folks know the meaning of that?

Leslie: "I had a very creative high school boyfriend who used to call me that." Ooookayyy then, we won't go there.

It's an interesting "insult", I guess, but probably not along the lines that one would typically use.

Posted by: Army Brat | June 18, 2007 3:09 PM

MONA, sadly I think you are right. The person has knowledge of posts that are days or weeks old.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 3:11 PM

I'd rather be called a "lascivious strumpet" than a "stuck in the past idiot", which would have been a more appropriate and on-point insult for the "dumping into daycare" post.

Posted by: jen s. | June 18, 2007 3:16 PM

There are many long time lurkers here, like me! We do surface occasionaly.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:18 PM

MONA, sadly I think you are right. The person has knowledge of posts that are days or weeks old.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 03:11 PM

Give me a break. You LOVE the attention!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:18 PM

"MONA, sadly I think you are right. The person has knowledge of posts that are days or weeks old.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 03:11 PM"

pATRICK,

My guess is that you and Mona both also have knowlege of posts that are days or weeks old. LOL :>)

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:21 PM

Fo4 is off his medication. The past few blogs have not reflected kindly (nor accurately, I hope) on him.

Posted by: atb | June 18, 2007 3:22 PM

'MONA, sadly I think you are right. The person has knowledge of posts that are days or weeks old.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 03:11 PM

Give me a break. You LOVE the attention!"

No, I don't. Hit and run trolls rarely add anything and play gotcha. I think anonymous posts only show that the person does not want to be held accountable for all posts on a consistent basis. I think YOU love the attention of hit and run posting.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 3:25 PM

las·civ·i·ous (lə-sĭv'ē-əs)
adj.
Given to or expressing lust; lecherous.
Exciting sexual desires; salacious.

strum·pet (strŭm'pĭt)
n.
A woman prostitute.

[Middle English.]

I find it interesting that lascivious works both ways. So was Leslie's ex-boyfriend saying that she turned him on AND that she was a prostitute, or that he was a prostitute who enjoyed her work?

Either way, I certainly hope he left that phrase way back in the dust of his youth.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:26 PM

if I wrote about a teenage girl's private parts, I would have the good sense not to sign it.

more inappropriate and crazy comments than one troll could handle on this blog!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:31 PM

atb

"Fo4 is off his medication. The past few blogs have not reflected kindly (nor accurately, I hope) on him. "

How do you know? Why should I take your word?
Did he post this stuff, or not?

Posted by: Elaine | June 18, 2007 3:33 PM

This link just in for you:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MpraJYnbVtE&mode=related&search=

Posted by: to Meesh | June 18, 2007 3:35 PM

I'm just about certain that Leslie's high school boyfriend was just being silly when when he called her that! It's called irony. Maybe Leslie and I dated the same guy . . . I can almost recall someone calling me that in my youth and it was funny because I was actually quite prudish back then.

Posted by: Jen S. | June 18, 2007 3:36 PM

"if I wrote about a teenage girl's private parts, I would have the good sense not to sign it."

It was a 12 year old daughter's discussion with her Dad .....

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:36 PM

Elaine- How do I know you're Elaine?

Posted by: atb | June 18, 2007 3:37 PM

'atb

"Fo4 is off his medication. The past few blogs have not reflected kindly (nor accurately, I hope) on him. "

How do you know? Why should I take your word?
Did he post this stuff, or not?"

ELAINE, give him a pass, he wrote a weird post. Someday YOU may write a weird post and we will give you a pass. The trolls never get a pass becuase no one knows who the hell they are.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 3:37 PM

furthermore, I hope that leslie's ex hasn't utterly dropped the phrase from his use-- said at the right time and with the right inflection, I'm sure his wife would find it quite playful!

Posted by: Jen S. | June 18, 2007 3:38 PM

pATRICK

"ELAINE, give him a pass, he wrote a weird post"

These guys COUNT on getting a pass! Why are you sticking up for him? Why doesn't he stick up for himself?

Posted by: Elaine | June 18, 2007 3:41 PM

Jen S., I can certainly see the term being put to good use, just not in the way it was used in this discussion. :-)

Posted by: Army Brat | June 18, 2007 3:42 PM

"I'm just about certain that Leslie's high school boyfriend was just being silly when when he called her that!"

It's a fairly well know quote....

Posted by: Jen S. | June 18, 2007 3:43 PM

Rusty Yates. Yes, I agree. Why didn't Rusty get more scrutiny? What a horribly cruel and insensitive person to let his wife and kids suffer so greatly every day. He had to know Andrea had serious problems. Yet he abandoned them all every day when he went to work. He should have been prosecuted as well. Mothers and fathers should be treated equally...which leads us to the question of whether

-LESLIE

This is disgusting. His wife was under the care of more than one doctor who said she was not a danger. His mother was due at the house withtin the hour that she killed the kids. Hindsight is always 20-20, we know now that the correct thing to do was to have the kids removed from their mother. But had the evil Rusty done that he would have been vilified for taking the kids away from thier mother.

I don't know where you were reading but Rusty got and still gets plenty of attention.

Mothers and Fathers should be treated equally, so when mentally ill fathers kill their kids, why don't we EVER blame the mother?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:44 PM

My favorite insult is from SNL: "Jane, you ignorant sl*t." It's perfectly applicable to all kinds of situations and people.

Posted by: Meesh | June 18, 2007 3:47 PM

What is disgusting is that you apparantly haven't read enough about this case to have an informed opinion.

Facts are your friends, bucko. I don't know what boulder you've been living under, but when a mentally ill dad kills his kids, the mother IS blamed. It is highly unlikely, though, that a mother would have held a family meeting with all of her husband's and her relatives to say that she didn't want the father of her children to get too dependent on everyone, and demand that he home school.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:48 PM

I suppose the difference between a lascivious strumpet and a mere strumpet is that you don't have to pay the former!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:49 PM

Umm-- who posted at 3:43 with my name? I fear I'm slow as I don't know what quote you are referring to that is "well-known." And even if it is a well known quote, I don't see that it can't also be silly when used in different circumstances.

and Army Brat, I certainly agree! Why should Leslie be playful with people that say such things about daycare use? Maybe she knows more about human nature than I do, but I imagine the poster was merely confused by the insult since it was pretty off-point.

Posted by: Jen S. | June 18, 2007 3:49 PM

when mentally ill fathers kill their kids, why don't we EVER blame the mother?

Oh, you're so wrong. The public often asks, why didn't she pack up the kids and leave an abusive home situation? Even if the poor woman has no money and no place to go (uncaring relatives, or family in denial, not enough battered-women shelters).

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:50 PM

the mother IS blamed.

Anon

Out of curiousity, can you name one?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:50 PM

when mentally ill fathers kill their kids, why don't we EVER blame the mother?

Oh, you're so wrong. The public often asks, why didn't she pack up the kids and leave an abusive home situation? Even if the poor woman has no money and no place to go (uncaring relatives, or family in denial, not enough battered-women shelters).

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 03:50 PM

NO, I am asking why people don't suggest that they are more to blame, and should be prosecuted. Which is quite different than "why didn't she leave?".

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 3:55 PM

"if I wrote about a teenage girl's private parts, I would have the good sense not to sign it."

I say if a man can't (or refuses) to discuss his daughter's or son's curiosities of anatomy, sex, purpose, or desires with his teenager, in a practical mature, informational manner, he should relinquish his own self-perception of being an involved parent.

That's my story, and I'm sticking with it.

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 3:55 PM

Fo4- A piece of advice: never talk publicly about your daughter's anatomy, or anyone under 18's anatomy. It's bad form.

Posted by: atb | June 18, 2007 4:00 PM

Another blog about fathers that ends up discussing one of the worst example of fatherhood. Yay LESLIE.

Leslie, please don't write any more father-centric topics. They depress me.

Posted by: devils advocate | June 18, 2007 4:01 PM

pATRICK, my 12 year old daughter informed me that horseback riding can cause a virgins hymen to tear. I never knew that until 2 days ago.

Not that I'm trying to make a point or anything, but when selecting an activity for your daughter, you may want to take some other things into consideration besides time, money, commitment...

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 02:12 PM

Father of 4, With all due respect, I am far more disturbed by the second part of your message than the first. I hope when your daughter told you this that your response was, "So?" I fear, based on your advice to pATRICK that you actually think this info matters which brings me to, why would any parent give a da*n about whether his daughter's hymen tears? It's not as though hymen = virgin.

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 4:01 PM

I say if a man can't (or refuses) to discuss his daughter's or son's curiosities of anatomy, sex, purpose, or desires with his teenager, in a practical mature, informational manner, he should relinquish his own self-perception of being an involved parent.

with his teenager = good
at length on a blog = pervy

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:03 PM

"Father of 4

I say if a man can't (or refuses) to discuss his daughter's or son's curiosities of anatomy, sex, purpose, or desires with his teenager, in a practical mature, informational manner, he should relinquish his own self-perception of being an involved parent."


"That's my story, and I'm sticking with it. "

And that's what I am forwarding to Dateline.

1) Why initiate a conversation with a male cyber stranger about your 12 year old daughter's private parts on the Net?

Did you think pATRICK has a special interest in this topic?

2)Discuss this stuff with the medical professional you live with, your wife, the nurse, your daughter's mother.

This is really, really weird and pervy.

Expect a call from Chris Hansen...

Posted by: Elaine | June 18, 2007 4:04 PM

I must admit father of 4 's post was lost on me. ELAINE, Father of 4 is not "one of those guys", he posts regularly, signs his name and takes responsibility. I think we should just drop it. I think it was inappropriate to discuss but I am not going to torch him for it.MN , as you probably can imagine, my daughter's hymen would be the furtherest thing from my mind on what I sign her up for.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 4:06 PM

"Leslie, please don't write any more father-centric topics. They depress me.


Daddy's Home

Irony......

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:06 PM

"Did you think pATRICK has a special interest in this topic?"

no,no,no,no,no, double no. I may have to take a shower after this blog today.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 4:09 PM

pATRICK

"I think we should just drop it"

I am going to drop Father of 4. God is my witness.

Posted by: Elaine | June 18, 2007 4:11 PM

Elaine, I conclude the folowwing about you :

1. You are totally against the concept of encouraging men to be stay at home parents.
2. You don't have any children, at least not teenagers, and
3. if you did, your husband isn't involved.

Please tell me if I'm wrong, I don't like making assumptions.

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 4:18 PM

I have two question.

In order for a dad to be a SAHD, it is necessary for the mother to be the breadwinner. How many women here would be willing to support both their chilren and their husband?

What does paternity leave have to do with being a SAHD? I mean, when we mention maternity leave, we assume the woman is coming back, why would paternity leave be any different.

Posted by: devils advocate | June 18, 2007 4:29 PM

Jen S -- That high school boyfriend, much as I adored him, had a thing for every other girl in our school and perhaps all of DC so if your paths crossed it could be that he called you a Lascivious Strumpet as well. Although he used to call me "THE Lascivious Strumpet," so I'm not sure. And it was a pretty apt descriptor, I have to say -- maybe of both you and me!

Posted by: Leslie | June 18, 2007 4:33 PM

"In order for a dad to be a SAHD, it is necessary for the mother to be the breadwinner. How many women here would be willing to support both their chilren and their husband?"

Did it for more than 10 years. Not a big deal.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:34 PM

"How many women here would be willing to support both their chilren and their husband?"

I wouldn't but only because I would rather be home than at work. If I had one of those careers that I loved and defined me and made me whole, then I wouldn't mind supporting him at all.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:36 PM

Wasn't the original purpose of maternity leave just so the mother could have a little time to recuperate from the physical ravages of giving birth?

Posted by: Just wondering | June 18, 2007 4:37 PM

"In order for a dad to be a SAHD, it is necessary for the mother to be the breadwinner. How many women here would be willing to support both their chilren and their husband?"

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 04:34 PM

*raises hand*

It would be the easiest thing for our family by a longshot.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:37 PM

Elaine = strident nag.

Posted by: DC lurker | June 18, 2007 4:38 PM

"Wasn't the original purpose of maternity leave just so the mother could have a little time to recuperate from the physical ravages of giving birth?"

For adoptive mothers?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:39 PM

Maybe Elaine named herself after the whiny self-centered Seinfeld character.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:39 PM

"I say if a man can't (or refuses) to discuss his daughter's or son's curiosities of anatomy, sex, purpose, or desires with his teenager, in a practical mature, informational manner, he should relinquish his own self-perception of being an involved parent"

Right on, Fo4 - except I'd say men and women should be able to do that. But I'm with MN on the second part of your comment to pATRICK, LOL. I can only guess you were trying to tease him given his established discomfort with the topic.

Devils Advocate - as others already know since we've been through this before, fine with me. There are more of us than people seem to want to assume.

Posted by: Megan | June 18, 2007 4:40 PM

Devils Advocate, I would be willing, as I mentioned above.

Posted by: Mona | June 18, 2007 4:41 PM

Adoptive mothers didn't used to get maternity leave. Notthat it was right, but I'm just sayin'

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:41 PM

I'd be willing to support my husband and children, but only if my expectations of what he would be doing all day were respected. I'd want the same level of care given to the household and children as I have given when I was staying at home.

He didn't tell me what he expected of me when I stayed home so maybe this sounds unfair that I would tell him my expectations. But on the other hand, he also had no experience being a stay at home parent so he lacked context of what can realistically be expected, so he wisely kept his mouth shut! I'm not blind to what can be done, so I feel it is not unreasonable to speak up.

but it's all pretty moot since my husband said he wouldn't want to do it--- and that was BEFORE I started listing all the things I would expect if he did stay home! he loves his job. He loves his kids too, but he thinks he can enjoy them both without detriment to either one.

Posted by: Jen S. | June 18, 2007 4:41 PM

"Elaine = strident nag. "

THERE'S the Quote of the Day!

Posted by: Elaine | June 18, 2007 4:42 PM

I wouldn't but only because I would rather be home than at work. If I had one of those careers that I loved and defined me and made me whole, then I wouldn't mind supporting him at all.


Posted by: | June 18, 2007 04:36 PM

egad. I'd rather be at home, too, but we can't live on love. It doesn't have squat to do with what I love or what defines me, but it certainly would relieve alot of stress in our house if I was the only parent working. If DH were willing to quit his job, about 30% of our family management stress would stop immediately. AND, I wouldn't expect him to become the cleaning lady, either. In direct juxtasposition to Leslie's comments from this morning about her spouse, I keep trying to entice mine to quit by suggesting how much more time he'd have for golf, LOL.

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | June 18, 2007 4:42 PM

I'd be willing to support my husband and children, but only if my expectations of what he would be doing all day were respected.

Posted by: Jen S. | June 18, 2007 04:41 PM

Sort of like a master/slave relationship?

Posted by: devils advocate | June 18, 2007 4:50 PM

I had a client who took 3 weeks off when his daughter was born. The second day he was back he flew to a conference. The first night at the hotel, a baby in the next room started crying.

My client, 3/4 asleep, woke up, said "I'll take care of it" and promptly walked into a wall, cutting his chin.

:-)

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:53 PM

It was a 12 year old daughter's discussion with her Dad .....

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 03:36 PM

Then why is he posting it on a blog? I'm fairly certain a young girl having this conversation with her dad would want it kept CONFIDENTIAL

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:53 PM

Then why is he posting it on a blog? I'm fairly certain a young girl having this conversation with her dad would want it kept CONFIDENTIAL

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 04:53 PM

Neither her nor her father's name is given, so confidentiality is preserved.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:55 PM

sometimes it's master/slave nad sometimes it's lascivious strumpet/ virtuous knight. It's a complicated relationship. It's a marriage.

Posted by: Jen S. | June 18, 2007 4:56 PM

"Then why is he posting it on a blog? I'm fairly certain a young girl having this conversation with her dad would want it kept CONFIDENTIAL"

It isn't like you know who they are. He was relating a conversation he had with his daughter - she brought it up. Maybe he was putting it out as a bit of levity. Maybe as a warning to other dad's that daughters know about this stuff and to be prepared.

Posted by: KLB SS MD | June 18, 2007 4:56 PM

I'd be willing to support my husband and children, but only if my expectations of what he would be doing all day were respected.

Posted by: Jen S. | June 18, 2007 04:41 PM

Sort of like a master/slave relationship?

YES, they want the little (wo)man at home cleaning,cooking and parenting to their expectations and waiting with a back rub and how was your day dear? That is a feminist dream

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 4:57 PM

"Neither her nor her father's name is given, so confidentiality is preserved."

No, there have been enough details blabbed over the past 15 months to figure out the identities.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:58 PM

when an adult male goes on an anonymous forum and discusses a young girls genitals, there is something wrong with this adult male

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 4:58 PM

No, there have been enough details blabbed over the past 15 months to figure out the identities.

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 04:58 PM

Only if you're a stalker.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:01 PM

Addition to my previous posting:
Now that fathers are so much more involved in their children's lives there may be more of these discussions going on in homes across America.
This was something that would never have been talked about when I was a kid but things are changing - for the better I believe. I would hope that parents would prefer their children talk with them about this type of issue rather than either have questions or get misinformation from friends, etc.

Posted by: KLB SS MD | June 18, 2007 5:01 PM

"I'm fairly certain a young girl having this conversation with her dad would want it kept CONFIDENTIAL""

What, the fact that hymens can be broken by horseback riding, along with many other activities? Sounds to me like she was telling him a fact that she learned, not some big secret. Good grief.

And pATRICK, my guess is that you have no idea what the dreams of an actual feminist (as opposed to the imaginary one you love to revile) would be.

Posted by: Megan | June 18, 2007 5:01 PM

Neither her nor her father's name is given, so confidentiality is preserved.

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 04:55 PM

Well, yeah, that's obvious.

My point is that she certainly expected that he wouldn't discuss it with other people OR use it as an interesting anecdote to amuse fellow bloggers.

She trusted him, and he betrayed that trust.

Doesn't matter whether anyone knows specifically who she is. He broke confidence.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:01 PM

thank you 4:53pm for a good laugh - I think we needed one

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:02 PM

"Doesn't matter whether anyone knows specifically who she is. He broke confidence."

How do you know that? He never said she asked him to keep it a secret.

Posted by: KLB SS MD | June 18, 2007 5:03 PM

"when an adult male goes on an anonymous forum and discusses a young girls genitals, there is something wrong with this adult male"

Absolutely.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:05 PM

Doesn't matter whether anyone knows specifically who she is. He broke confidence.

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 05:01 PM

How's she gonna find out?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:05 PM

My point is that she certainly expected that he wouldn't discuss it with other people OR use it as an interesting anecdote to amuse fellow bloggers.

She trusted him, and he betrayed that trust.

Doesn't matter whether anyone knows specifically who she is. He broke confidence.

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 05:01 PM

And you know this how?

Maybe she has a sense of humor like her dad and said it just to bust his chops.

Posted by: devils advocate | June 18, 2007 5:06 PM

"Maybe she has a sense of humor like her dad and said it just to bust his chops. "

Not when he passed it on to pATRICK.

That was pervy.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:08 PM

"Maybe she has a sense of humor like her dad and said it just to bust his chops."

Exactly! Or maybe she just found it interesting to learn that the old obsession with an intact hymen as a symbol of virginity is inaccurate, as they can be torn in plenty of other ways. Why is this such an embarrasing idea or subject for people? I remember learning this in junior high and talking about it then too (without the expectation that it would be guarded like a state secret).

Posted by: Megan | June 18, 2007 5:09 PM

It seems to me as if Fo4's daughter was telling him something she had just learned and he shared that tidbit.

It's not as if she told him that this had happened to her and he broke that confidence. Or that he wrote that it had happened to his daughter, just that he heard it from her.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:10 PM


"And pATRICK, my guess is that you have no idea what the dreams of an actual feminist (as opposed to the imaginary one you love to revile) would be."


"I'd be willing to support my husband and children, but only if my expectations of what he would be doing all day were respected."

This was a very telling post. No mention of what his expectations would be. You would raise holy hell if a man posted this about all his expectations of what his wife should be doing while he was at work.


Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 5:11 PM

"Or that he wrote that it had happened to his daughter, just that he heard it from her. "

And directed it to a strange man on the internet? Doesn't that seem strange/odd/

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:12 PM

Yes, but I probably would, and I thought the post was weird too, frankly. But I wouldn't use it as a pretext to slam all conservative white males, the way you used it as a pretext to criticize all feminists.

Posted by: Megan | June 18, 2007 5:13 PM

Maybe, I skipped the most of the conversation.

Going back, it did seem to come out of the blue. I assumed that it was just a poorly worded joke. (I don't automatically assume men are pervs)

Posted by: devils advocate | June 18, 2007 5:14 PM

pATRICK, I DID mention my husband's expectations! I specifically said that he didn't state any-- probably because he didn't have any actual experience as a stay at home parent so he wisely kept his mouth shut!

however, since I DO have actual experience, I feel I am entitled to state what my expectations would be since I have actual background and context about what is apropriate. Why didn't you read my WHOLE post? Or maybe you did but that part was just too boring? tough audience . . .

Posted by: Jen S. | June 18, 2007 5:16 PM

Okay, I just need to add to the chorus that mothers DO get blamed when the father is abusive. Every single day. Women are blamed for not protecting their children. Abused women who try to leave are often killed by their husbands, and if they retaliate, even in clear self-defense, they are often sent to prison.

Rusty Yates should shoulder some of the blame for what happened to his children. Try this: imagine if he hired one mental unstable babysitter to homeschool and care for his five children. He discovered she was suicidal and homicidal, and he still left his five young children with her every day while he went to work. He would be blamed for neglect, at the very least. So try to imagine this scenario if you took out "wife and mother" and substituted "childcare giver". Goes to show how unfair our expectations are of mothers -- we expect them to be near-saints, performing herculean tasks we'd never expect of men. There is no way Andrea Yates was capable of caring for her children, and her husband was probably the one who knew this more certainly than any other adult involved.

Posted by: The Lascivious Strumpet | June 18, 2007 5:16 PM

pATRICK

Please run Father of 4's comments today past your wife.

Does he pass her radar? Would you ever leave your kids alone with this guy?

Posted by: JUne | June 18, 2007 5:17 PM

YES, they want the little (wo)man at home cleaning,cooking and parenting to their expectations and waiting with a back rub and how was your day dear? That is a feminist dream

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 04:57 PM

uhhh, pATRICK, this feminist's dream is for her spouse to be able to relax, parent, and do all the household remodeling and play all the rounds of golf he'd like to play. No cooking or cleaning required. Surprisingly - NOT - every feminist is different.

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | June 18, 2007 5:17 PM

MEGAN, I called out a hypocrisy.
It was said in a blog that is about balance. What does race have to do with anything?

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 5:19 PM

Yes, but I probably would, and I thought the post was weird too, frankly. But I wouldn't use it as a pretext to slam all conservative white males, the way you used it as a pretext to criticize all feminists.

Posted by: Megan | June 18, 2007 05:13 PM

Maybe you wouldn't, but I bet many of the people on this blog would have. (See Rusty Yates discussion above)

Those are ugly words, no matter who they come from.

Posted by: devils advocate | June 18, 2007 5:19 PM

Who needs a SAHP when we have fairies and elves? (Just a little levity folks).

Posted by: KLB SS MD | June 18, 2007 5:19 PM

She trusted him, and he betrayed that trust.

Doesn't matter whether anyone knows specifically who she is. He broke confidence.

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 05:01 PM

This is just so bogus. Of course it matters whether anyone knows who she is. Posting something anonymously on a blog isn't breaking a confidence. You really need to get out more.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:19 PM

"This is just so bogus. Of course it matters whether anyone knows who she is. Posting something anonymously on a blog isn't breaking a confidence. You really need to get out more."

You really need to know how easy it is to preserve and spread words from the Net, especially when someone blabs so many details of one's life!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:24 PM

pATRICK wrote: "No mention of what his expectations would be. You would raise holy hell if a man posted this about all his expectations of what his wife should be doing while he was at work."

I think the situation might be more highly nuanced. When DH and I made a decision for me to stay home for a while, we discussed jointly -- i.e., not one person giving the other one orders, but more like a negotiation! -- what my non-monetary contributions to the household would be, in terms of additional chores, less eating out, less spending on clothing and dry-cleaning (since I wouldn't be needing new office-wear, e.g.), more raising and preserving of food from the garden, and many other considerations.

pATRICK, let's discuss it over flan sometime, OK?

Posted by: catlady | June 18, 2007 5:25 PM

pATRICK, are you calling me a hypocrite? why? As I've stated REPEATEDLY now, my expectations are based on my actual expereince as a stay at home parent. He had no stated expectation-- he had no basis for them. YMMV but I really don't see how this makes me a hypocrite! (PS this is a way, way worse insult in my book than strumpet, lascivious or otherwise! DEEPLY insulting.)

Posted by: Jen S. | June 18, 2007 5:26 PM

You really need to know how easy it is to preserve and spread words from the Net, especially when someone blabs so many details of one's life!

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 05:24 PM

If you think you are serving an educational purpose, you're not. Good luck with that plan to identify a blind, Catholic guy who loves his wife, has 4 kids and lives in the DC metropolitan area. We don't scare that easy.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:29 PM

Father of 4 did NOT violate his daughter's privacy because his identification here is anonymous, therefore so is hers. The person who has a problem with it is nothing but a seriously disturbed troll. Get professional help, quickly.

Posted by: catlady | June 18, 2007 5:29 PM

"Jen S -- That high school boyfriend, much as I adored him, had a thing for every other girl in our school and perhaps all of DC so if your paths crossed it could be that he called you a Lascivious Strumpet as well. Although he used to call me "THE Lascivious Strumpet," so I'm not sure. And it was a pretty apt descriptor, I have to say -- maybe of both you and me!"

Posted by: Leslie | June 18, 2007 04:33 PM

What kind of high school is this, where the students crib their insults from a 1598 Ben Jonson play instead of from a broadcast by Don Imus or a rap by 50 Cent? "Out, lascivious strumpet!" is how the musician, Deliro, dismisses his wife, Fallace, after he walks in and finds her kissing the courtier, Fastidious Brisk, in Jonson's play, "Every Man Out of His Humour."

Posted by: Matt in Aberdeen | June 18, 2007 5:30 PM

Whenever I see guys at the playground with their kids, I generally say hello or make some passing comment in case they actually want to talk to someone but are nervous about getting a bad reaction if they make the opening move. Some of the men actually spend more time playing with their kids and paying attention to them than the moms and nannies do.

Posted by: gdtrfb | June 18, 2007 5:31 PM

"MEGAN, I called out a hypocrisy.
It was said in a blog that is about balance. What does race have to do with anything?"

pATRICK, you did not call out an hypocrisy. You took one statement from one woman, and made a distorted statement about what all feminists supposedly want.

It's the difference between saying, "that sounds really weird and controlling, how would you feel if your husband said that to you" and saying, "all feminists want X extreme situation." Do you really not see the difference?

And race has nothing to do with it, it's just that "conservative white male" is a stereotype that is often referred to and it's what came to mind.

Posted by: Megan | June 18, 2007 5:39 PM

"What kind of high school is this, where the students crib their insults from a 1598 Ben Jonson play instead of from a broadcast by Don Imus or a rap by 50 Cent? "Out, lascivious strumpet!" is how the musician, Deliro, dismisses his wife, Fallace, after he walks in and finds her kissing the courtier, Fastidious Brisk, in Jonson's play, "Every Man Out of His Humour.""

LOL Matt, I think we all get that you are well-read. No need to flaunt it, unless, of course, it satisfies something in you that your back in the 50s lifestyle does not fill. What's wrong? Not enough loving adulation from the missus and children? Maybe you need a good loyal dog.

Posted by: Emily | June 18, 2007 5:39 PM

Maybe Matt looked it up in Wikipedia.

Posted by: To Emily | June 18, 2007 5:41 PM

Maybe, but my guess, from reading other things he has posted, is that he knew this already. He tends to collect a lot of interesting, useless bits of information. Maybe Jeopardy is his game.

Posted by: Emily | June 18, 2007 5:43 PM

I thought Matt's comment was funny - and since humor on this blog is a relatively new thing for him - I propose that we encourage it. Else, he could return to the old 4 paragraphs of history form.

Signed
One who Intends to Use Lascivious Strumpet as my new favorite insult - sure beats, "Moron," for style

Posted by: Megan's Neighbor | June 18, 2007 5:43 PM

"Out, lascivious strumpet!" is how the musician, Deliro, dismisses his wife, Fallace, after he walks in and finds her kissing the courtier, Fastidious Brisk, in Jonson's play, "Every Man Out of His Humour."

LOL Matt, I think we all get that you are well-read.

Posted by: Emily | June 18, 2007 05:39 PM

Wrong guess, Emily. I never heard of Jonson's play, let alone read it. I grew up reading Donald Duck and Uncle Scrooge comic books, not English plays.

Ever hear of the "Alta Vista" search engine? Type the phrase, "lascivious strumpet," into the little window, hit "Search," and see what you get.

Posted by: Matt in Aberdeen | June 18, 2007 5:44 PM

Alta Vista is classier than Wiki.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:46 PM

I did think it was funny too, in an annoying, name dropping kind of way.

I have an Irish friend who has great insults for people. I think they are pretty commonplace insults where she comes from, but transplanted to America, they seem so original. My favorite is the "peasant" insult. She says it with such disdain.

Posted by: Emily | June 18, 2007 5:47 PM

I'm a Googler.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 5:48 PM

"Goes to show how unfair our expectations are of mothers -- we expect them to be near-saints, performing herculean tasks we'd never expect of men."

Mostly, we expect them not to kill their children. Can't say that I find that unreasonable.

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 5:48 PM

lascivious strumpet
clue by four

The things I learn on this blog..!!!

Posted by: dotted | June 18, 2007 5:49 PM

"Ever hear of the "Alta Vista" search engine? Type the phrase, "lascivious strumpet," into the little window, hit "Search," and see what you get."

Oh my god!! Is that where you get all that (sometimes interesting but usually boring) information that you post? I find that even more amusing. All this time, I had thought you were some kind of weird genius, and now I realize you are just a poser. I will never be that naive again.


Posted by: Emily | June 18, 2007 5:50 PM

"All this time, I had thought you were some kind of weird genius, and now I realize you are just a poser. I will never be that naive again."

LOL, Emily. When I was in law school one of our (very eccentric) professors first year would always ask the class these totally random questions about everything from chicken sexing to greek mythology to the bacteria that live on squid...there was one girl who sat up front who often came up with answers and would say them in that sort of haughty, "doesn't everyone know this?" kind of voice. One day I sat behind her and saw that she had her laptop plugged in and was googling all the questions.

Posted by: Megan | June 18, 2007 5:59 PM

I will never be that naive again.

Posted by: Emily | June 18, 2007 05:50 PM

Oh, sure you will, LOL, but never on any topic that actually matters.

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 5:59 PM

p.s. for those few who care, an I'm not saying they should, it's "poseur".

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 6:01 PM

Is there any caselaw on chicken sexing? LOL!

Posted by: To Megan | June 18, 2007 6:02 PM

MN, you're cracking me up again

Posted by: dotted | June 18, 2007 6:03 PM

And naïve.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 6:03 PM

LOL, not that I know of, but you'd be amazed at how relevant chicken sexing turns out to be to contract law!

Posted by: Megan | June 18, 2007 6:05 PM

Is that a chicken joke?

Posted by: Joanne Worley | June 18, 2007 6:07 PM

dotted, my son told last week's camp counselor that, "don't tell my mother", he really enjoyed lacrosse camp. The camp counselor repeated it to DH, who told me, but now I'm sworn not to disclose that I know he had fun. Cross your fingers that I remember that I don't know what I'm not supposed to know. All this because my son doesn't want me to know he enjoys the camps I pick out, LOL. At least he's attempting to torture me over something trivial.

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 6:09 PM

Now you've gone and violated your son's confidentiality. Bad mother, bad bad mother!

Posted by: To MN | June 18, 2007 6:13 PM

Matt -- I am so impressed that my high school boyfriend had read Ben Johnson. Absolutely amazing. Thanks for enlightening us all.

Posted by: Leslie | June 18, 2007 6:15 PM

The guilt is killing me. Let me make it easy for you, look for a boy in the Triangle who took a summer camp including lacrosse during the week ending June 15. With everything else you know about us, you'll be down to approximatily 2700 kids.

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 6:16 PM

MN, did you son attend the Duke lacrosse camp last week? I have a friend whose son said it was awesome!

ummm...good, good mother

read the headline about Duke settling with the lacrosse boys?

Posted by: dotted | June 18, 2007 6:17 PM

Thank you, MN. Poseur it is. That "u" really makes the word, doesn't it. A poseur sounds so much for fake than a poser.

Posted by: Emily | June 18, 2007 6:17 PM

With everything else you know about us, you'll be down to approximatily 2700 kids.

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 06:16 PM

Our resident stalker should be undaunted.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 6:18 PM

No, dotted, he didn't. Duke's camps are logistically out of the question unless they are sleepover camps, and my son is a homebody. He's done sleepaway camp and, all things considered, he'd rather we save our money, LOL.

I did not. I read the N&O somewhere between 10 p.m. and 1 a.m. every day so that it's really, really stale news. It's my bedtime reading, believe it or not. I'm curious what the claims could have been against the Duke unless Duke yanked scholarship money.

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 6:20 PM

Our resident stalker should be undaunted.

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 06:18 PM

Our resident stalker has nothing better to do with his or her time.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 6:21 PM

MN,
You're a woman after my own heart. I do the puzzles as bedtime reading....

it is in all the news. I can't claim to understand why Duke was liable.

Posted by: dotted | June 18, 2007 6:23 PM

Emily,
I will not call you a lascivious strumpet. That would be too nice. You are a ball busting barracuda.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 6:24 PM

Wow, Emily, you get all the good ones, LOL!

Regarding Duke, they did cancel the rest of the season didn't they? Maybe it's the theory that the official reaction fanned the flames - some sort of very attenuated defamation/slander?

Posted by: Megan | June 18, 2007 6:27 PM

Emily, Yeah - I love that word, and the extra vowel somehow gives it the "peasant" effect. You can imagine it being uttered be a disdainful Duke.

In truth, the reason I know how to spell it is that there used to be a bar in Georgetown by that name -- on the corner - the mannequin on the 2nd or 3rd floor may still be in the window for all I know. It was my best friend's (at the time) favorite bar. Ah memories of the Cure when they were, well, like all of us, younger.

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 6:30 PM

JEN S, I did not mean to insult you but frankly that post sucked. I found it demeaning and inflammatory. Chances are that you did not mean it that way but that is how it came across.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 6:31 PM

"ball busting barracuda"

It has an alliterative ring to it, doesn't it? Entirely innacurate, it's true, but you don't really care about that, do you, Gutless?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 6:33 PM

To Megan and MN: Maybe their theory is that Duke's cancellation of the rest of its lacrosse season was a deprivation of the player's 14th Amendment liberty interest in being on the team, since they couldn't leave to join any other college's team.

Posted by: catlady | June 18, 2007 6:34 PM

That should be "players'"

Posted by: catlady | June 18, 2007 6:35 PM

Father of 4, no offense but hymen talk strikes you off my babysitter list. ;).
MN, now you are the real deal on balance.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 6:36 PM

pATRICK, how about we go get some flan now?

Posted by: catlady | June 18, 2007 6:38 PM

Flan at my place. With whipped cream on top, the way the Spanish do it.

Can you just feel your arteries hardening?

Posted by: Emily | June 18, 2007 6:40 PM

CATLADY, you always know just when to hit the flan button. Again, JEN S, No I was not calling YOU a hypocrite. The words to me exposed some hypocrisy in the feminist posts I have seen here though.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 6:41 PM

Thanks, pATRICK. I suspect you now know a feminist or two who don't fit your prior model, LOL. I agreed with you about Jen's post, but to each his own.

catlady, Duke's a private entity, so the 14th amendment does not apply, e.g., the 14th Amendment only requires the states and state governments to provide equal protection. That's why I'm curious. Under what claim could they have prevailed against Duke? Unless Duke settled just to get this behind it, which considering the size of its endowment, might be the best use of funds.

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 6:42 PM

"Can you just feel your arteries hardening?"

That's why you need the pitcher of sangria, then you won't notice that so much!

Posted by: Megan | June 18, 2007 6:42 PM

Si, señora!

Posted by: catlady | June 18, 2007 6:43 PM

I could just see all of us eating flan at EMILY'S. One of those scenes from the wild west where everyone has to hand over their weapons and people have like 8 guns and ten knives on them.

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 6:46 PM

Megan,
Now you are making me crave paella with squid ink also. The flan, the sangria, and the paella remind me of a certain trip to Barcelona. I want to go back.

Posted by: Emily | June 18, 2007 6:46 PM

To MN: My bad on private universities -- guess that's what you'll get from the product of CSSs -- although OTOH Duke does receive prodigious Federal research grants and other Federal funds.

Posted by: catlady | June 18, 2007 6:46 PM

Emily, I've never been but I'd sure like to go!! Mmmm...paella....

Posted by: Megan | June 18, 2007 6:57 PM

I am having a boy!

What is up with all the father of 4 bashing going on here? He made an off the wall comment, let it go.

You know there have been worse things discussed on here.

Posted by: scarry | June 18, 2007 7:12 PM

Congratulations, SCARRY! It was a train wreck here(as usual). By the way Patrick is a fine name for a boy. hahahhah. Congrats!

Posted by: pATRICK | June 18, 2007 7:15 PM

Thanks pATRICK. I am thinking of it for a middle name. What else would an Irish girl do?

Posted by: scarry | June 18, 2007 7:24 PM

Scarry,
Congratulations on the little boy. You must be 20 weeks or so by now? I am so happy for you.

Have a great evening.

Posted by: Emily | June 18, 2007 7:24 PM

I have always loved the name Liam. But I could never use it in my family. The clash with the very spanish sounding last name would be ridiculous. But you can have it if you want it.

Posted by: Emily | June 18, 2007 7:25 PM

I've always liked Lachlan myself

Congrats to you Scarry and to Mr Scarry too!

Posted by: dotted | June 18, 2007 7:50 PM

I love both those names, but we are going with a family name. I don't want to say it on the blog though. (stalkers)

I'll tell you all in an email though.

Posted by: scarry | June 18, 2007 8:02 PM

Congratulations and best wishes, Scarry!

Posted by: catlady | June 18, 2007 8:05 PM

scarry - how exciting! congrats on having picked a name. It's so much more fun once you can talk about Aidan McGonnagal Scarry and not "he" or, God forbid, "it".

and pATRICK, your wild west imagery was spot on, LOL.

Posted by: MN | June 18, 2007 8:17 PM

"Father of 4, no offense but hymen talk strikes you off my babysitter list. ;)."

Good!

Never leave your kids with a strange man, I believe you prescribe to this principal too.

Actually, since your "save the hymen ball" post, I tried to derail Leslie's hijacking of her own blog when she drop the Andrea Yates bomb by introducing something that is useful to me, like, how much involvement should a father have in their kids' sex education? I thought you might have something to say about it, or at least apply your sense of humor to the context and further the conversation with something more meaningful to our common interests.

Sorry, it went out of bounds. My bad. Shame on me.

Posted by: Father of 4 | June 18, 2007 8:28 PM

I spent 5 1/2 - 6 weeks home after each of my kids were born. Would not trade that time for anything. It was an amazing bonding time with my bous and with my wife. I did everything she did except nurse and often times -- especially with number 1-- I was up in the middle of the night helping with that too. The only bad thing was that i had to use all of my own leave each time as the Federal Govt does not offer any paid paternity leave. I hope to see that change someday. I can ay that the time away had no effect on my career though. In fact everyone in my office was more than supportive and covered things while I was gone.

Posted by: HappyDad | June 18, 2007 9:23 PM

>We don't scare that easy.

You should. He's very easy to find, and you're not doing him any favors by issuing challenges. Proof? His middle initial also leads the third word of his workplace.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 10:24 PM

Right, and the wet bird flies at midnight.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 18, 2007 11:05 PM

He's very easy to find, and you're not doing him any favors by issuing challenges. Proof? His middle initial also leads the third word of his workplace.

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 10:24 PM

You're not doing yourself any favors by perusing a blog at 10:24 at night for the purpose of threatening to "out" a participant. Grow up, Dude.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 19, 2007 10:23 AM

He's very easy to find, and you're not doing him any favors by issuing challenges. Proof? His middle initial also leads the third word of his workplace.

Posted by: | June 18, 2007 10:24 PM

What a freak.

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