Thursday, March 19, 2009

Legitimate question

A few weeks ago my husband had to go to a retreat put on by the men's ministry at our church. They were meeting on the campus Friday evening, Sat morning and Sunday afternoon/evening (I think). As the time approached for him to leave I asked if the church was providing child care for the event. Legitimate question I thought. Nathan just kind of smirked and then moved on like my question was a joke.

It got me thinking...
If there is a woman's retreat, MOPS, Refresher or any other female oriented activity taking place at the church, there is always child care provided. But not so when the guys have something. This realization made me angry. I know my husband isn't a single dad or anything but there are some out there. Why is there an expectation of the wives to watch the kids while the men meet and not an expectation for the men to watch the kids while the girls meet?

Its the little things like that that irk me. You can say all you want that society is not gender biased anymore but I think details like this prove that we are still a long way off. Especially the church.


Gary Langley said...

There's a fine line, sometimes, between gender bias and gender differentiation. It's the same when guys stay home and call it "babysitting" instead of fathering. LOL

Danielle said...

I agree completely. In a society where we are supposed to be going towards gender equality, that needs to include men taking charge for their share of parenting and housework, and not just women doing twice as much by working and taking care of everything at home.

Nathan said...

I did NOT smirk and move on!! I said that it was a great question!

Amanda said...

Agh! Seriously!

I would be curious to know how many fathers or families would have taken advantage of the child care.

And, I hope that the speakers reminded the men at the conference to go home and spend time with their wives, giving them a big thank you and possibly a break. I hate, hate, hate when John is gone for a weekend. It makes things so hard. And before I know it, it's Monday and my week begins all over again without a single break.

I hope your weekend (okay, well, like all your weekends!) was okay, and that you, somehow, were encouraged. I know you weren't complaining, by the way. Just stating a simple fact. Ugh. Motherhood is way harder than I thought it would be!

Disgruntled Male said...

I write this at the risk of being labeled an "anti-female rights activist" but hear me out. I agree that there should be equal childcare opportunities for men and women with children. I think everyone will agree that the church does a pretty good job of providing childcare for activities that couples may attend: services, conferences, etc. The reason that it may seem that childcare is provided for more "female events" than "male events" is that many MOPS activities occur during the day when the husband may be working. There is childcare available during times when the church has a variety of activities for all members of the church. At our church, there is never childcare for MOPS or exclusivly female events outside of regular work hours. The men watch the kids. There may be a lack of special childcare opportunities for single parents but that isn't what we're writing about here. The real bias is that there is no FOPS program offered. Sign me up!

Brandi said...

Actually, our church does it like "Disgruntled Male" said. We offer childcare for the adult events, but not for girls' nights out and things like that. . .just girls stuff that happens during the day. . and we don't ever offer childcare for retreats b/c it would be way too costly for us.

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