A while back a friend of mine brought to my attention that the media posted a photo of Serena Williams playing a tennis match while her hubby was in the stands holding Alexis, their baby girl. A newspaper labeled the photo saying that he was “babysitting” their daughter.
The internet lost it’s mind.
My girlfriend also was pretty turnt up about it.
I too, as I have done for many years found myself wondering WTAF is up with the husband spending time with their kids being labeled as “babysitting”???
I know I’m super late to this party blogging about it only now, but with all the things I’ve had going on, I actually forgot it happened until I heard a woman tell her girlfriend yesterday in a line at the market that; “my husband is off work today so he’s babysitting the kids so I could come to the grocery store on my own.”
While her girlfriend nodded in understanding.
I was immediately snapped back to the Serena media blunder and the amazement that not only the outside world, but even some women consider that their husband/partner’s role in child raising is a part time gig. Something that they only do when they have the time. Or that in some way the father’s role is less significant, and it isn’t only women who speak like this, men, plenty of men do as well. I was fortunate in my relationship with Yannick, that even though we were nineteen when we had Brianna, from the get go he was the one who insisted on it not being called babysitting when he was alone with her, or our other two daughters. In fact, it was him who took exception to this, as if his part in creating them and raising them was somehow less important to their development as a whole than mine was.
Which obviously anybody who has had parents, or who are parents themselves, know that both parents are equally important and responsible in the development of their child(ren). This is even true of single parenting households, you don’t have to live with one another in order to understand that you both play key roles in the healthy development of your offspring that you made together.
The only time this isn’t true, is if you have a parenting situation like my mom had with my father which is he didn’t want to parent us. He, sadly, couldn’t have cared less about being a parent. Which looking back, while going through it totally sucked, and felt like we were abandoned, but now as an adult I can see that we were way better off to have one totally committed, healthy, loving parent guiding us through life rather than one half assed one making a mess of everything.
But, no matter what you’re living/parenting situation is, if a father is actively living with the family, and is invested in the well being of the children they helped create then that is not a babysitting gig. That is a fathering gig which began at conception. I don’t care that her husband is Alexis whatever who is the CEO/owner/creator of Reddit, which I still don’t even know what the hell that is. To me he is, and always will be the extremely fortunate partner of the most amazing, formidable tennis player, multi-millionaire, rock star athletic Goddess, and he is the father of their daughter. Which judging by the sheer joy in his face in every single photo I’ve ever seen of the man couldn’t be more obvious that he feels this way about her, how about the media honour that with their headlines??
Hmmm, hmmm, hmmm.