No matter how you slice it, being a parent isn’t easy. While a lot of couples divide up tasks to attempt to make the parenting load equal, in a lot of straight couples the woman ends up doing the lion’s share. In part, this is because of deeply imbedded societal expectations, but also, mothers who breastfeed have obvious forces drawing them towards more baby duties.
Since some frustrations are best summed up in poem form, the exhausted mother Caroline Olling Andersen wrote a detailed rhyme dedicated to her sleeping husband. Due to its relatable nature, it quickly went viral.
Caroline Olling Andersen is one creative mama.
While most of us express our frustration at being the parent who gets up at night by screaming into our pillow or ranting to our loved ones, Caroline had the grace and good humour to turn hers into a poem …
Putting a creative spin on a hot button issue!
After what was obviously a very long night awake with her baby while her husband slept soundly, Caroline (who was up at 4am the next day) took to Facebook with poetic flourish.
My latest 4am poem titled “Daddy’s Asleep”
I love your daddy, I really do,
After all, without daddy, I wouldn’t have you.
But from midnight till sunrise, it’s just you and I.
And as each hour passes, I’m not gonna lie:
Mommy’s love slowly fades, becomes angry and weak,
Because no matter what, your dad is f***ing asleep!
It all starts out lovely. We kiss each other goodnight.
We look lovingly down at you dear, such a beautiful sight.
An hour later, mommy wakes with a start.
You’re twisting and turning, you’re starting to fart.
You’re gesturing for food. Mommy is there
with a bottle or breast
Daddy is snoring away, the way he knows best.
Mommy burps you, and holds you and rocks you with care.
You spew foul-smelling yoghurt on mommy’s freshly washed hair.
As mommy changes her shirt, and mops vomit off the floor.
Your daddy farts, rolls over and continues to snore.
Mommy’s maternal alarm goes off, it’s not even three!
You’re stirring again, you’re hungry and staring at me!
“I think she is hungry” your daddy offers, pulls duvet over his head,
Mommy sends him a death stare and rolls out of bed.
Mommy comes back, tired and drained and what is this I see?
Your daddy has taken over my side, doesn’t give a f*** about me!
Mommy kicks him and pushes him angrily away.
“What’s up love?” He moans in a lovingly way.
Your daddy has no clue he is under attack.
He wraps his arms around me and kisses my back.
And just as my love for daddy is back on the rise,
You start to coo in your crib and open your eyes.
And daddy gently nudges me to attend to your need.
I give him the finger as I prepare for a feed.
But as the sun starts rising, the slate is wiped clear.
I’m back to full love for your daddy and for you my dear.
I forget that daddy sleeps while you cry and you poo.
It’s back to kissing and hugging and doting on you.
Soon you’ll grow up and be daddy’s little girl.
You’ll not remember me cleaning up shit and vomit hurl.
Whilst you sit on his lap and he sings you a song,
You’ll love him and think daddy could do nothing wrong.
But my sweet love, here is a poem for you to keep,
So you know that all those long nights, dad was f***ing asleep!
Since the poem went viral, Olling Andersen has received equal parts support and backlash, with some claiming she comes across too angry and others shaming her husband.
A bit unfair on dads, some say
But not everyone is a fan. With many claiming Caroline is having an unfair dig at a father’s contribution #babylyfe.
Rather than engaging in an argumentative manner, Olling Andersen made a gracious post in response to the criticisms, where she apologized for her past judgments on other parents.
At the very least this puts a lovely new spin of how to talk things out in some tense, sleep-deprived times.
Maybe all our conversations with our partners should be written in poetry?