Position Vacant – Parents Required

21 Mar

I seem to spend a disproportionate ammount of my time trying to convince people that stay at home parenting constitutes work and warrants being called a job. There are any number of comments thrown in the general direction of SAHP’s that, whether deliberate or not, belittle the role. These range from the sublime “when do you think you’ll go back to work?” to the ridiculous “I see you’ve got the day off today”. It’s the sort of nonsense I might have innocently said before I got a taste of the real thing #bloodyhypocrite
It got me wondering what a parenting job advert might look like if ‘they’ were to advertise. And so on my lunch break I thought I’d have a go.

Position Vacant – Parent Required

An exciting opportunity exists for suitably loving and responsible adults to join the ranks of parents. You do not need to have any experience and on the job training will be provided by your Mother in Law. We are looking for self starters with a can do attitude that are not afraid of hard work and have proven leadership qualities.

Duration – This is an ongoing position, it will be going on until you kick the bucket

Hours – Full time 24/7 – even when you’re meant to be sleeping. Expect to work overtime in the winter months when for all intents and purposes I will be 99% mucous.

Salary – Sweet FA! This is a voluntary position in fact you will spend all your disposable income on me. You mostly won’t be thanked for your efforts, however a few well placed smiles and hugs will make sure you keep clocking on each day
Duties Include – protecting, teaching, nursing, cooking, cleaning (of bottoms), entertaining, chauffeuring, counselling, storytelling, loving and whatever else I decide to throw your way at any given moment……parenting basically!

How to Apply – Successfully submit your application with another interested party. You will not hear from us for 9 months after a successful application you will hear from nothing but us for the remainder of your tenure

Key Selection Criteria

(1) Please provide an example of a previous role which required you to successfully manage multiple workloads to meet crucial deadlines under testing conditions and long hours

(2) Please provide an example of a previous role which required you to work within a small team often sacrificing your own wishes for the greater good

(3) Please provide an example of a previous role which required you to utilise your leadership skills to develop and nurture those that were less experienced than you

(4) Please provide an example of a previous role which allowed you to spend your working day in the company of someone you love unconditionally, watching them grow and shaping their future

2012-09-09 18.29.24
Flogging my blog with a potentially hungover Grace at With Some Grace


45 Responses to “Position Vacant – Parents Required”

  1. notjustamumblog March 21, 2013 at 4:38 am #

    Love this, I’m a mum who works full time but has nothing but admiration for those who choose to stay at home and raise their children. I’m about to do the same with bub no 2 arriving in the next few weeks. I am scared at the thought of being the primary carer for my almost 4 yr old, not because of her but because I have relied on the many people who have helped me raise her to this point. That being said I can’t wait to be the one she runs to with all her needs on and learns from.

    • daddownunder March 21, 2013 at 5:12 am #

      It absolutely is scary to change roles but you’ll hit your groove soon enough and once your in you’ll wonder why you were scared. You’ll get to know your children better than anyone else and what works for them and makes them tick. You’ll do great! Thanks for commenting

  2. Julie March 21, 2013 at 5:54 am #

    My least favorite response when I tell people I am a stay at home parent “oh is that all you do”.

    • daddownunder March 21, 2013 at 6:29 am #

      Have people really said that to you? I hope you shot them a death stare

  3. Wendy March 21, 2013 at 6:29 am #

    Great post – I wonder how much you feel being a teacher in your previous life affects your parenting style…

    • daddownunder March 21, 2013 at 7:18 am #

      I think I learnt one or two things whilst I was teaching about what children need – consistency stands out. I refer back to my own upbringing too and think about what my dad did well with me. And then I think my own nature and personality fills in the gaps. Thanks for always commenting Wendy

  4. kellie March 21, 2013 at 8:37 am #

    I was told by a tradie yesterday how lucky I am that my husband earns enough money to ‘keep me’ and that I can stay home drinking coffee and watching telly!! Hmmm. 3 girls between 1 and 6 – one that is severely intellectually and physically disabled….the school run, the early intervention, the ongoing appoints at children’s hospital, the having 3 children bit….yep, all about the coffee and the telly….so lucky to be ‘kept’!!!

    • daddownunder March 21, 2013 at 11:21 am #

      What a clown, he was probably trying to impress his mates. Hats off to you Kellie I have one boy and I find that fairly demanding, keep up the amazing work and good luck to you

  5. Kassey March 21, 2013 at 9:09 am #

    I got a very dark look and was snapped at by a close SAHP friend when I said (on having a baby) that I was really looking forward to the time off work.
    She was very shirty but my intent wasn’t to say being at home was the easy way but rather work was burning me out and I needed to not do it for a while.
    9 months into my maternity leave and I stand by it!
    Yeah it’s hard, and only gets tougher as they become more mobile and independent but it’s nothing like being at work.
    A different kind of exhaustion. One that comes with lots of cuddles.

    • daddownunder March 21, 2013 at 11:24 am #

      That’s fair enough Kassey, its awesome that your enjoying it. I certainly wouldn’t change a thing. Thanks for commenting

  6. Emily March 21, 2013 at 9:17 am #

    Haha, you had me at the MIL line. Love it.

    ‘When do you think you’ll go back to work?’ and ‘Don’t you think should go to care to learn how to socialise?’ are the two questions that annoy me the most! But, like you, I’m pretty sure I said them pre-kids, so I just try to inhale, smile, and redirect.

    • daddownunder March 21, 2013 at 11:27 am #

      The childcare one about socialising is an odd one, kids socialise on a daily basis at the park, shops, library, etc. generally childcare is to fit in around the parent, which is absolutely fine. Thanks for the comment Emily

  7. Karen Reid March 21, 2013 at 9:22 am #

    No, I don’t think I want the job. Oh crap too late already have it

    • daddownunder March 21, 2013 at 11:28 am #

      Yeah sorry Karen your application has already been accepted ; )

  8. mumabulous March 21, 2013 at 10:31 am #

    Wouldn’t it be good if there was an interview screening process before people became parents?

    • daddownunder March 21, 2013 at 11:29 am #

      In lots of cases yes ; ) at the very least some disciplinary action

  9. Casey Wilson March 21, 2013 at 11:02 am #

    I am a stay at home mum with 3 kids, 2 boys and a girl. My eldest son is 12 and just started year 8. He has Asperger’s, ODD (oppositional defience disorder) and ADHD. My middle child is my second son who is 4 and has just started Prep (and now knows everything!) and then my daughter who just turned 3 and she is my princess. I get comments all the time, especially if my eldest has a melt down in public. I just turn around and ask people if I can swap lives with them for a day so I can have a break and they learn that us stay at home parents are constantly busy. I would like to go back to work, but realistically I can’t. My eldest is too old for before and after school care and because of his extra needs, I cannot let him stay at home on his own. I love being able to watch my kids grow and learn new things each day and to pick my boys up from school and hear about the new things they have been taught, especially my preppy with learning new sounds and words. I love my job, and I wouldn’t give it up for anything.

    • daddownunder March 21, 2013 at 11:13 am #

      Hats off to you Casey I have one little boy who everyone tells me is a breeze and I find that hard enough. Your doing a great job! Thanks for saying hi

  10. snowingindoors March 21, 2013 at 11:08 am #

    The last person I told I was a SAHM to said, ‘it’s alright for some, the rest of us have to work for a living’. I turned my heel and walked off to stop from smacking her one!!
    I’m sure my childless friends think I spend all day with the kids in front of the telly while I drink tea and read.

    • daddownunder March 21, 2013 at 11:33 am #

      I don’t know why but I would expect more from another woman? Thanks for commenting and keep up the great work

  11. Tania March 21, 2013 at 12:02 pm #

    GREAT post. I’m not sure I would have applied if I had actually seen that job description and understood just how relentless this gig really is! And yet… two boys and nearly 8 years later… I’m still pitching for that Employee of the Week badge 😉 Keep up the good work Dad x

    • daddownunder March 21, 2013 at 12:20 pm #

      Thanks Tania, its fairly accurate isn’t it? I’m sure you’ve got a few employee of the week awards tucked away already ; )

  12. Cat March 21, 2013 at 12:28 pm #

    Thanks. Loved reading this. Hats off to anyone (including me. hahaha) who stays at home with their children. It’s bloody hard work but I wouldn’t change it for anything. We both agreed that, as long as we could afford to do so, I would stay at home with our children at least until they start school, however, I am trying to come up with something I can do from home so that I can be there before & after school too, when the time comes. With my second son diagnosed with ASD last year, I am so thankful that I am at home. Fortunately, I have not really experienced any negative comments about being at home.

    • daddownunder March 25, 2013 at 3:52 am #

      Hats off to you indeed Cat! Hard work but wouldn’t change it for a thing

  13. Melissa Scheuber March 21, 2013 at 12:31 pm #

    Oh I loved this so much! I’m a first time reader of your blog (found you via “mums lounge” on facebook) and I think I’m going to have to read some more! That was so well put and had me in fits of giggles. I have a 2yr 5mth old boy and a 5mth old boy (2 yrs 1 week difference), thankfully noone has dared ask “what I do all day” but for some reason the favourite line from strangers is “you have your hands full!!”..if I had a dollar for every time someone said that to me I would be getting paid very well for a SAHM 🙂 I don’t really understand this comment as it’s usually made when both my boys are sound asleep in the pram, yep, they’re a real handful lol. Don’t get me wrong, it is hard work, but I wouldn’t want to be doing anything else..even if it is a 24 hour a day 7 day a week job. BTW I think people forgot that we did have jobs before and know exactly what it is like to work full time. I tell you what, working full time would seem like a holiday in comparison to being a SAHP! Thanks for a great read!!

    • daddownunder March 25, 2013 at 3:54 am #

      I’m with you Emily, having done both it definitely takes a lot more energy to be Dad. Thanks for stopping by

  14. Tracey March 21, 2013 at 1:47 pm #

    Hello, loved this item, very well written, I also found you via Mum’s Lounge on FB. I will be back.
    I have been lucky not to really receive any negative or hurtful comments, I think people generally appreciate it is our choice. It doesnt suit everyone, but I love being available to my little girl.

    • daddownunder March 25, 2013 at 3:56 am #

      Glad you found me Tracey, thanks for commenting

  15. Richard Farrar March 21, 2013 at 2:37 pm #

    Matthew, you, Josh and Laura had a brilliant stay at home parent in your Mum. Jan and I also decided that one of us would stay at home until the children were old enough to walk to school on their own and then we would look at whether the SAHP could take up a part-time job that would fit in with the needs of the children. We got much the same comments and reactions as you have had; we both had a stint as the SAHP. You are absolutely spot on with the ad. The main thing I would add is that if the going rate for each job that you do as a SAHP was applied you’d be earning over £100,000 per year so be prepared to be poorer.
    the other thing that I would add is that your children will grow to be sane, rational, well educated (not schooled), well-balanced, creative, successful and valuable member of society. They are less likely to have neuroses, anxieties, special needs (e.g. ADHD/ADD etc) or be a pain for the rest of us in society.
    Good for you. May I have your permission to ‘nick’ your advertisement to send out at some time to the stupid politicians who decry those of us who put our kids first?

  16. Steve Adams March 21, 2013 at 8:04 pm #

    I completely relate to this post not only because I’m a SAHP but I am also a 50 year old dad. This adds another dimension to the job description…”Lovely Grand kids you have their.”

    • daddownunder March 25, 2013 at 3:57 am #

      A two fingered salute should put pay to anymore of that nonsense Steve ; )

  17. Niomi March 21, 2013 at 9:56 pm #

    Thank you for the post. I am a SAHP of two, 3 & 18 months and you know what….it’s hard.
    What gets me the most about the attitudes towards SAHPs is that most of it comes from people that have their children in child care centres. It is considered a profession for the people that work in the child care centres yet us that choose to do the same job at home with our own children 24/7 it’s not.

    • daddownunder March 25, 2013 at 3:59 am #

      Good point Niomi, I never thought of it like that. Thanks for saying hi

  18. rhian @melbs March 21, 2013 at 10:15 pm #

    I filled in an application the other day and under the occupation there was no box for SAHM or anything along those lines, the lady saw me pausing and asked what my job was, I told her I was a mum and she said ‘oh right in that case you’d better leave it blank’. AS IF – I was so annoyed I wrote FULL TIME MUM in massive letters. Like you I only have 1 he is ‘easy’ but it is still hard.

    • daddownunder March 25, 2013 at 3:59 am #

      Love your work Rhian, mental note “don’t mess with Rhian”

  19. Kim March 22, 2013 at 1:51 am #

    Nice one. Can I apply for the role part-time? Or as a job-share? I’m currently feeling massively overworked and I’m looking to reduce my hours. And how about support from management? If I’m honest, all I really want is a BONUS. A reward, goddammit!!! 🙂

    • Rachel March 22, 2013 at 5:48 am #

      Oh didn’t you read the fine print on your contract? The reward is when they grow up and blame you for all their faults ;P That’s the parenting equivalent of being promoted to VP of everything!

    • daddownunder March 25, 2013 at 4:00 am #

      Your puns are much better than mine Kim, we should have wrote a team post

  20. Kylez @ A Study in Contradictions March 22, 2013 at 4:17 am #

    Selection criteria number 4. That’s what does it for me!

  21. Rachel March 22, 2013 at 5:46 am #

    Oh yeah you’ve nailed it! The hours are long, the pay is crappy but the rewards are great 🙂 You also nailed it with the 99% mucous content in winter though – and that part i could have seriously done without!

    • daddownunder March 25, 2013 at 4:02 am #

      Winter is on its way Rachel, best stock up on some nasal spray

  22. Cam @ notunimportant March 22, 2013 at 1:59 pm #

    Some really nice thoughts in this post. I don’t often run into a problem considering the stay-at-home role as work, but I do have pretty big blinkers and may just be good at filtering reality. I much prefer your job description to Michaela’s, although I expect there’d be a lot of overlap in the “other duties as required” category. Keep up the good work.

    • daddownunder March 25, 2013 at 4:03 am #

      Cheers Cam thanks for your ongoing kind words. Filtering reality might be quite a nice quality to have at times

  23. Ai Sakura March 25, 2013 at 6:12 am #

    Love this! Indeed, I would have asked “innocent” questions {or so I thought} to SAHP like “when are you going back to work?” before until I became a parent myself. A parent’s job never ends whether you are a SAHP, WAHP or FTWP. Everyone is a full-time parent and deserves to be treated so.

    Ai @ Sakura Haruka

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