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  1. This is what my parents did, when I was a junior in hs. It was my credit card, but my parents were joint owners. My limit was lower, though, $500. It was convenient, especially because my parents could pay it off from their own account - in high school I only used it for things they would pay for. It became a bit of a problem when I was out on my own and my being late with a payment dinged my parents' credit. My parents took themselves off my younger sister's accounts (started when she was a child, like mine) when she was on her own, but by the time we realized the problem I was out of state and thus not able to go in in person to take care of it (with my permission, my parents tried to take themselves off my account without me, but they weren't allowed to - it took all the joint owners being present to do it). It wasn't a huge deal, since I did have a local account and another cc by that point, but it's something to think about.
  2. Interestingly, a blogger I read had this post today:
  3. I'm kind of both/and. I don't think the ages/stages thing is really a feature of classical education as such - I think grammar, logic, and rhetoric are first and foremost *subjects*, albeit subjects that also need to be taught in a classical manner - but I have come to see the ages/stages concept as a helpful rule of thumb. First get a good intuitive understanding of the basic facts of the subject along with their formal definitions (bearing in mind that the "grammar of a subject" isn't rote memorization of facts divorced from their context, but is the facts joined to their animating idea); fundamentally, first learn what a thing is - learn to know it intuitively and to be able to call it by name. Then, learn to explain what things are and why they are like that. Learn to put that intuitive understanding into words, learn to *use* those names and definitions to explain what things are to others. Learn to use what you know to *prove* your intuitions, instead of just assert them. And then, learn to explain things *well*, to explain them *convincingly*, to apply your knowledge of "how to explain what you know" to your knowledge of "how people are", "how life is". I do think that it's important to not divorce your understanding of the ages/stages from the nature and purpose of the subjects themselves. I actually came to appreciate how the ages/stages model accurately described what I saw in my kids and their progression once I had a better understanding of the role of grammar and logic. In classical education, grammar and logic are meant to help you better study and understand *reality*. Grammar study is about learning to use words and phrases and sentences to accurately describe *reality*; all those fine grammar distinctions exist because people noticed fine distinctions in reality and wanted to be able accurately describe them. Learning grammar helps you *see* the world with greater precision. And logic is about taking one's ability to describe reality with fine accuracy and delving deeper into the nature of reality, learning how to explain *why* things are, learning how to deduce new true things from the true things you already know. So there's philosophy inherently baked into grammar and logic study. How you describe reality, and how you think words connect to reality, and how you think logic connects to reality - that all affects how you teach grammar and logic. And how you connect your grammar and logic study to everything else you are doing. I think a lot of people teach grammar and logic to kids the way you'd teach grammar and logic to computers: rules divorced from context. Rules that don't depend on what a statement means, rules that you can use and apply in a rote manner to generate correct output from correct input, without having to consider what either the input or output means. It's like a grammar game or a logic game: internally consistent, but with no connection to anything outside itself. Computers need that because they don't understand what things are, what they mean. They rely on their programmers to give them meaningful input, and they apply their rules by rote to transform the input into (hopefully) meaningful output, without ever understanding *what* any of it means or *why* any of it matters. But classical education is supposed to teach *human* grammar, *human* logic. It relies on the quintessential human ability of knowing *what* a thing is. A four year old child can look at a chair and say "chair", but that is an intensely hard task for a computer. Grammar study - both as a subject and as a stage - is rooted in that ability to *know* what a thing is. Grammar study teaches us how to accurately describe our intuitive sense of what a thing *is*; logic study teaches us how to accurately prove the truth of what we know; rhetoric study teaches us how to effectively communicate what we know. Classical education is rooted in the belief that humans can know true things about the world. ETA: I think that age/stages isn't classical itself, although it can be helpful in classically educating.
  4. I was a natural speller. My kids are not natural spellers. I've had to recalibrate my spelling expectations so much. FWIW, for my middle, a spell-to-read approach was great for learning to read, but only so-so for learning to spell. Middle dd's first time through the primer in a spell-to-read way got her reading well, but not successfully spelling much more than CVC words in the wild (I was surprised, honestly). Middle dd's second time through the primer - in a learn-cursive-via-a-spell-to-read way - got her to the point of solid spelling-by-sound, but failing at picking the *right* phonetically legit spelling in the wild. (Given the huge bug-a-boo that is learning to spell by sound in this family, I'll take it. But it did surprise me - I'd thought we'd have better in-the-wild retention.) She was 8.5yo when we finished the first round, and 10yo when we just finished round two. From what I've seen, solid one-syllable spelling-by-sound abilities are the pre-requisite for most of the older kid remedial spelling programs, at least the ones I've looked at. So it's a key milestone. (Our "older kid remedial spelling program" is Spelling Through Morphographs, which I plan to start with her next year.) FWIW, my oldest had a jump in ability when she learned how to blend sounds together and break sounds apart, particularly wrt learning to perceive blends as two separate sounds (which came through her learn-cursive-via-a-spell-to-read trip through the phonics primer). This was around age 10. She had another jump with learning to break apart and blend syllables together, along with learning to think about spelling long words syllable-by-syllable, around age 11. And she had a third this year, around age 12, that might just be maturity. She now only misspells an average of one word per page in the wild, which is an amazing improvement.
  5. I didn't understand the rules myself until working through our phonics primer with my kids in an SWR fashion. The primer (Let's read: A Linguistic Approach) is arranged by pattern, with pretty much every possible one syllable word for each primary pattern, and the rules didn't make sense to me until I'd internalized the patterns that they are describing by working through the umpteen examples. I'm the same way with grammar rules, too - I need to have an intuitive sense of what's going on before the rule really makes *sense* to me. My oldest is that way, too - rules are meaningless to her if she doesn't already have an intuitive sense of what the rule is describing. FWIW, with the ability to hear all the sounds and pick a phonetically legit phonogram (even if it's not the correct phonetically legit phonogram), your ds has over half the spelling battle licked 🙂. I haven't used it, but my understanding is that Apples and Pears is particularly good for kids who can spell by ear just fine, but have problems remembering *which* phonetically-legit phonogram to use. My oldest dd had problems learning to pay attention to the individual letters/phonograms in words, and the Spelling You See color-coded system was really good for teaching her to pay attention. For a year I had her mark all her copywork and did all dictation as studied dictation, with her copying and marking the text first. SYS isn't pattern-based, but it is an open-and-go copywork/dictation approach that has a lot of repetition of common words. I found placing dd to be a bit hard, because she had such a gulf between her reading ability and her writing/spelling ability and the placement advice assumed they were a lot more closely linked together. I ended up placing her on the upper end of her spelling/writing ability, in Level C, which is the first level that assumes you have spelling-by-sound down, and focuses on visual spelling memory. (Dd did not have spelling by sound down, but SYS wouldn't have been enough to remediate that for her anyway. So we used SYS to bolster her visual spelling attention and memory, while using other things to remediate her non-existent spelling-by-sound ability.)
  6. When I lived in the south, I lived in my sandals. I only wore closed-toe shoes for hiking. (I've had the same pair of hiking boots since college.) When I lived up north, I got the most use out of my sandals and my nice snow boots. Except for church, I always wore one or the other. (I actually accidentally wore my nice snow boots to church once and it was fine - they were black and sleek and unobtrusive.) Now that I'm back in the south, I still use just my sandals and my nice snow boots. (I had no idea that my snow boots would be so useful here.) So that's my answer: a good pair of wear-all-day sandals and a good pair of wear-all-day boots (that can handle snow, if you are in a snowy climate), in a neutral color that goes with everything (mine are both black). My sandals are Tevas, which are comfortable and wear well. (My boots are a serendipitous yard sale find - I have no idea what they are.) ETA: I suppose if you really just want one shoe, boots are more versatile in a 4-season climate. But I can't live without my sandals - they were my year-round shoe in the south when I was younger - and I wore them at least half the year up north. (I know it's a fashion faux-pas, but I'd wear them with dark socks in the fall and spring - pretty much any time it was above freezing and dry.) I only use my boots when it's too cold to wear sandals.
  7. I'm pretty sure my oldest's "awesome reading but poor spelling" was stealth dyslexia. Despite me teaching her with pure phonics, she ended up reading primarily by sight. Turned out that was because she didn't have the underlying phonemic processing skills to learn to read by phonics. (In 2nd grade, after she was reading fluently, I gave her the Barton pre-screening, and she failed both the syllable section and the distinguishing phonemes section. That was when I realized that her big leap that allowed her to finally learn to read wasn't her brain finally making the phonics connection, like I'd thought, but was her brain making the connections that allowed her to learn to read from phonics teaching *without* having the phonics connection. <sigh>) But by all appearances she was reading well - she was a sight reading "success story", in that she really could successfully decipher words she hadn't learned. She used her excellent pattern matching skills and her good visual memory to make up for her horrible phonemic processing, inattention to detail, and general difficulty with putting things into linear order. But she could only successfully *pronounce* new words that were in her speaking vocabulary; words she'd only encountered in print she would mangle horribly. But she was in 2nd grade with a huge vocabulary - no one expects a 2nd grader to successfully tackle unfamiliar multi-syllable words. But the fact that she was unable to perceive the middle of words either aurally or visually led to her truly atrocious spelling ("inrteuering" for "interrupting") - she was spelling (and reading) off the first and last syllable plus her hazy memory of the word's outline. I did a *lot* of things to work on her spelling (and, covertly, her reading). The only words she could spell were the only words in which she could perceive all the individual letters and sounds: CVC words. Before I realized the extent of the problem, I tried and abandoned several things in 3rd grade. But the following is what worked, starting the summer between 3rd and 4th. To help her learn to pay attention to the visual details of words, I did several weeks of Spelling You See (enough for it to click) and then had her use the SYS color-coded marking system on all her copywork (in WWE2) for a year. At the same time, to help her phonemic processing, and to force her to learn to blend, I did covert blending practice disguised as cursive practice. Learning cursive was hard for her. I've read that you have to read/spell by syllables in order to write in cursive, and well, she could do neither, so I tried to teach her how to do both through custom blending/cursive practice. After she'd learned all the cursive letters and practiced the common phonograms in cursive (in the latter half of 3rd), I had her work through the first 2,000 words in our phonics primer, Let's Read: A Linguistic Approach (starting in 4th). I wrote up all the words using the super-spiffy sound pictures from Dekodiphukan (Decode-if-you-can) and printed them out. (She'd already learned the sound pictures from playing with the Dekodiphukan apps.) Then, she'd have to sound out the word from the sound pictures (forcing her to practice blending because she didn't know the sound picture words by sight), write the word in cursive (I coded the pictures to indicate spelling), and then read the cursive word back. She did 20 words a day, repeating when things got tough (notably when starting blends, which were very hard for her to hear), and took about a year to finish through most all one-syllable words. (When she had problems blending the sound pictures together, I'd have her do the Phonics Pathways train blending activity, using homemade magnetic sound picture tiles; I was teaching my middle to read at this point, and used a *lot* of the same materials and techniques with both of them, since they both needed to learn to blend.) I started her on cursive copywork at that point. At the same time (4th) I did REWARDS with her, which was helpful overall, but suffered a bit from being both too hard in some areas and too easy in others. Her ability to tackle unfamiliar multi-syllable words went up, but she was still shaky on blending syllables together - I think learning to visually break up words bolstered her still-weak ability to break up words by sound. My goal between the intense one syllable word blending practice, and learning to blend syllables together into words, was that between the two she'd learn to read & spell any given syllable and learn to read (in REWARDS) & spell (in Spelling through Morphographs, discussed below) any given long word by syllables, and then would have the tools to tackle most any word. One thing with her was that she needed a ton of practice before she could generalize her phonics skills to words she hadn't seen before, so we worked through a *ton* of one syllable words, hitting all the syllable patterns. At this point her spelling improved to "garden variety bad speller", which was an immense improvement. After finished REWARDS, I started Spelling Through Morphographs during 5th (which takes a similar focus-on-syllables approach as REWARDS, only with a spelling focus instead of reading focus), and we've been slowly working through it. Something clicked one-third of the way through (beginning of 6th), and she's a much better speller now - there are a few patterns that still trip her up, but she can spell most things, certainly more than enough for spell-check, and she can usually catch her mistake when she re-reads what she wrote. (I think StM's approach has helped with her linear order problem.) I've also started typing this year (7th), using Touch, Type, Read, and Spell, which takes an OG approach (so yet another covert pass through phonics and spelling). She struggled hard through the first module - something about typing was hard for her - but then things clicked and she's done fine since.
  8. I agree with you that, many times, when people feel overwhelmed by too much to do and not enough resources to do it, there's room to cut helpful-but-not-needful and needful-but-not-mission-critical stuff. I'm not sure it's always a perfectionist issue - where the problem is being unwilling to lower standards anywhere. Sometimes I think it's more of a broader prioritization issue: willing to cut the fat, but they've cut all the fat they can see. So another pair of eyes can help, along with the usual suggestions on how to look at things differently. But recently I've had conversations with women where it becomes clear they really *have* already cut all the fat. They've long since gotten the low-hanging fruit, they've done all the standard things, they've done in-depth research on the non-standard things - all the obvious things and most of the non-obvious things have been tried long ago. They have a clear-eyed view and they've done the analysis, and there is just too much that needs to be done and not enough resources. Their situation just sucks, really. There's no good solutions and the women themselves have a much better idea of the costs and trade-offs of the various not-good solutions than anyone coming in cold. I don't really blame them for getting a bit shirty when they hear the umpteenth suggestion to just "let the non-essentials slide" - they did that two years ago. They aren't wrong that everything left is mission-critical. I have a relentless drive to find a solution, to refuse to admit defeat, to refuse to admit that life could suck like that. But I think that sometimes life *does* just suck like that. And that I can cause more harm than good by refusing to admit that it could - that it's better to acknowledge that an overwhelming reality really *is* inherently overwhelming than to keep stubbornly insisting that it *is* solvable if only you keep trying. Insisting that an overwhelming-but-solvable problem is indeed solvable is offering genuine hope - especially when you can help solve it - but insisting that an unsolvable problem is actually solvable is offering false hope, telling an immensely cruel lie. It's why I pray so much more now - I have a much clearer sense of the huge number of unsolvable problems - and it has highlighted for me how even the existence of solvable problems is a supernatural gift from God.
  9. I completely agree with your overall point here. WRT the bolded: I'm coming more and more to think that the important things shouldn't be taken as given. That the important givens only *stay* important and given by being constantly and explicitly stated, over and over again. There's a saying in my corner of confessional Lutheranism: justification assumed is justification denied. If you aren't constantly and deliberately *affirming* the important things, then you are de facto contributing to their decline. Channelling Alastor Moody, it takes CONSTANT VIGILANCE to keep the important things important.
  10. I agree that it's easier to let things go when you don't care about them. But that's not the same as those things intrinsically not deserving to be cared about. Often I think women - or whoever the party is who thinks a given thing deserves to be done - care more because they understand more. AKA they are *right* to care, because those things *actually do matter*, because those things *actually make a positive difference*, because not doing those things really does lower the quality of life. It's kind of a corollary to the mental load being necessary but non-obvious to the unskilled: how a given task relates to the bigger goals and ends of life is not obvious to all. And it's easy to not care about a task when you don't understand how it contributes to the big picture. But just because you don't understand doesn't mean there's nothing to understand. AKA your failure to understand why something matters could very well be *your* failure of imagination, instead of being a sign of the task's intrinsic unimportance. Just because one party finds it easier to slough off a bunch of expectations doesn't necessarily mean that party is *right* to be doing so. "Easier" doesn't mean "better". It's kind of like the idea that if you have no idea why a law was passed - you have no idea what the point was - then you actually have no business trying to repeal that law. The fact that you can't imagine why anyone could ever have thought it was a good idea isn't a good argument for getting rid of the law, but rather is a sign you need to *better understand the reason for the law* before you start deciding what to do about it. (Else you are on track for discovering the reason for the law the hard way.) Before letting things go, it's worthwhile to consider the costs as well as the benefits. If you can't think of a single good reason why someone would do something, it's a strong indication you have very little understanding of it. (Likewise if you can't think of a single good reason why someone would *not* do something.) On average, women tend to have a greater focus on building and maintaining relationships than men. So it's not surprising that women, on average, would have greater expectations around things that build and maintain relationships (such as remembering birthdays) than men - because they understand more of the value of relationships and the work that goes into building and maintaining relationships. (My understanding is that binding families and communities together was traditionally considered one of the central contributions of women to the common good.) IDK, I don't want to discount the pernicious effect of media on men and women's expectations, or how the binding impetus of doing what others in your community are doing can just as easily be a force for evil instead a force for good. One of the many reasons to re-examine why we do what we do is *because* what we are doing isn't working. But just because a thing isn't worth the effort in our current situation doesn't mean the thing isn't worth the effort, period, or that cutting out the thing doesn't involve a genuine loss, even as we anticipate a net gain. But the whole "if others don't value your expectations then your expectations aren't valuable" assumption - especially in the context of men not valuing the traditional concerns of women - it does seem far too related to dismissing the inherent value of the traditional concerns of women. That in the conflict over how men often don't personally understand the intricacies of women's concerns (and so are prone to dismiss those concerns as unwarranted or unnecessary), there's this implicit assumption that men are *right* in their judgment that traditional women's concerns are indeed unnecessary. Which I reject entirely. Both on the general grounds that it's wrongheaded to judge things you don't understand and on the specific grounds that traditional women's concerns *are* inherently valuable. ~*~ FWIW, I'm coming at this as someone who, in my teens and 20s, *didn't* understand people or relationships and who didn't value traditional women's concerns or traditional female ways of relating. I cheerfully sloughed off every expectation that didn't make sense to me. But in my 30s, I've come to better understand people and relationships, enough so that all those expectations and habits that I dismissed as so much unnecessary effort - I now understand something of their value. After years of being the sort of non-conforming woman who didn't have a lot of respect for traditional female ways of being and acting, I'm now starting to understand the sense and purpose and wisdom of so many of the things I used to unthinkingly reject. ~*~ IDK, it sort of feels like, in this thread, that there's this all-or-nothing assumption about who gets to decide if a given expectation is valuable. Or, more accurately, that a lot of people are assuming that *the opposing side* has an all-or-nothing assumption. It's like both sides are trying to argue that *both* men and women's concerns are of equal value, but they each assume that the other side is coming from a place of valuing one over the other. So when side A argues that a given concern of sex B is sometimes invalid, side B assumes that side A is *comprehensively and universally* dismissing the concerns of sex B in favor of sex A. And likewise, when side B argues that a given concern of sex A is sometimes invalid, side A assumes that side B is *comprehensively and universally* dismissing the concerns of sex A in favor of sex B. When, actually, I think both sides are coming from a position of "both men and women's concerns are of equal value". The difference, I think, is that different sides see different sexes as the underdog. Side A is primed to think sex A needs defending, while side B is primed to think that sex B needs defending. And so side A sees B's defense of sex B as defending the stronger side against the weaker side, while side B sees A's defense of sex A as likewise defending the stronger side against the weaker side. Both sides respond by championing their perceived underdog all the more.
  11. Well, I grew up with an open concept house with a cathedral ceiling, and I've measured every house I've looked at since by that standard. I feel closed in with standard 8' ceilings in the living areas. And I like the living areas all open to each other. Our current house is just about perfect: it's semi-open, with the living areas arranged in a U-shape, and the ceiling peaks in the middle at about 11' (versus my parents', which peaked at 14'). (There's 9-10' ceilings in the master bedroom, which I love, too.) There's a wall between the living room and kitchen, so you can't see the kitchen from the front door or anywhere in the living room, really. I have a little standing desk in the dining room that allows me to see almost all the living areas, plus down the hallway. Most parts of the dining room can see most of the kitchen and living room. The main downside is the comparative lack of bookshelf walls, but we managed to fit our 20 shelves in anyway ;).
  12. Dh's car was flooded once, and the insurance company totaled it. We "bought it back", they cut us a check (probably for whatever the settlement value was minus the salvage value), and then it was on a salvage title, which meant there was no resale value. Also it meant that insurance was liability only. But we used the money to fix the car and drove it for 3-4 more years, until my parents gave us their old car, and then we donated it.
  13. This is part of what reduced my sympathy for the author: there was no acknowledgement that her husband does invisible work, too. As far as the article was concerned, his invisible work was as unnoticed and unappreciated by her as she felt hers was by him. Her detailing all the ways he doesn't think of anything outside himself while she was exclusively focusing on her own problems with nary a hint of acknowledgement wrt the good things he does do: it undercut her point with me. She wasn't acting as she wanted her spouse to act. ~*~ WRT the larger question of, given that so much of what people do is invisible to others, especially others unskilled in that area, how should we live in light of that. Especially since failures are so much more noticeable than successes in those areas. On a small note, if I'm pointing out a failure, I try to bear in mind that there might be a ton of successes I missed. I mean, you only notice the tote that *wasn't* put away, not all the totes that *were* put away. So I try not to go down the "you *never* pick up the tote"/"you *always* leave out the tote" route. One, because it's probably not even true - as I tell my middle, always/never are very strong words and not usually warranted - really think about if they're deserved before using them. And two, because it makes the whole interaction start off negatively and guarantees it will be unpleasant for all concerned. I try to use CM habit-training language - it's both low-key and free of negative emotions plus it hopefully is reinforcing the habit of paying attention to how things should be instead of the habit of only do things when mom points it out. I don't really think of it as "me having to use a special tone of voice" so much as me forcing myself to be polite and keep my anger under control - it's about me regulating my emotions because it's a good work, not because "people won't listen" otherwise. (Usually when I start yelling that no one pays any attention to what I say till I yell, it says at least as much about my refusal to get off my butt and do something effective as it says about those not listening.) Also, I *do* try to pay attention and say thank you when I notice a good job. And I appreciate when people do that with me. Not as a "quid pro quo" accounting sort of thing, but to be kind. To show I noticed and appreciated what they did. (And it ups the positive work-related interactions, to hopefully help offset the occasional negative ones, so that our work-related conversations are a net positive, not a net negative.) And just in general, I try to be aware that, just as so much of what I do is invisible, likewise there's a ton of stuff dh does that I don't see. So I try to assume its presence, just as I hope he assumes the presence of the stuff I do that he doesn't see. As a practical point, to avoid reminders turning into nagging, I do try to make sure that we are all in theoretical agreement about what needs to be done. That way, if I notice something's undone and remind the responsible party, I'm just helping them do the job they already agreed to, not nagging them into doing a job they otherwise wouldn't agree to do. Since I notice more and remember better, it's not a huge deal for me to take on extra mental load there, so long as the person I'm reminding is indeed on board with doing the thing - they just need help remembering, not "help" being annoyed into getting off their butt. (If they start treating my reminders as nagging, I point it out and tell them to cut it out - they agreed this was a thing worth doing, so they need to act like it. We're partners in getting it done, not one person annoying the other person into doing it.)
  14. I agree that the mental load is real. I've really appreciated the cartoon I saw that first made the concept explicit for me. And since mental load is invisible, it *does* go largely unnoticed and thus unappreciated by those who don't know what goes into it. (I think that's true of a lot of jobs, actually. In Harry Potter, our family has discussed Ludo Bagman and the Quidditch World Cup - I mean, *there's* a man who has no idea the mental load that goes into planning it and doesn't seem to think any of it's even necessary - he definitely wasn't appreciating all the hard-but-invisible-to-him work that his staff was having to do. We actually discussed if being his assistant would be perfect or hellish for Percy Weasley. On the one hand, since Bagman handwaves all the details, you'd have free rein to organize however you'd like, and you'd have the satisfaction of knowing you are *very* needed. But on the other, you'd have to be able to live with little praise for doing a good job, since Bagman has zero idea what goes into a good job and basically assumes good jobs happen by magic. And I think that stereotype - of bosses who don't appreciate all their employees do because they have no idea what the mental load is - exists for a reason.) Honestly, I think what I'm reacting to in the article (which seems to be an excerpt from a book, Fed Up: Emotional Labor, Women, and the Way Forward, by Gemma Hartley) isn't the frustration of bearing a disproportionate share of an invisible-thus-unappreciated load. Because I totally agree that it *is* frustrating. I don't mind overmuch hitting the details others in the house miss - because it's a strength of mine, it's a gift I can give to my family plus a sensible division of labor. The problem is that others miss them because they are largely invisible to others, and so while they all enjoy the results of it being done and feel the lack of it going undone, they have no idea that anything *was* done. It's frustrating having one's labor be invisible. What I'm reacting to is *how* the author deals with that very legitimate frustration. It's not that she finds it frustrating - I find it frustrating - but that there's this sense, not just that she shouldn't have to live with that frustration (that it's legit for her to take steps to change it) but that it's unfair that the frustrating situation exists in the first place. That it's unfair that *she's* the one who has to take steps to change it. I especially see that when the the author is discussing her kids, and how she's stuck doing stuff for them because she can't face dealing with their whining and refusal to listen. She says it like it's not part of parenting to deal with kids not wanting to do what they are told. That's my issue, I guess - not her frustration, not her assumption that it's unjust that she's suffering the problem, but her assumption that, since it's unjust that she's suffering in this way, it's unjust that she has to be involved in seeking a solution. It may well be unjust, but, idk, I don't respect how she's responding to that injustice. She seems more focused on blaming others than in relieving the problem. I mean, I think you can use the mental load concept and raise awareness of the impact and effects of the mental load without needing to apportion blame.
  15. Talking about the issue in general - "women don't tend to tell their husbands they need HELP! with this sort of thing in the home until they really, really need it" - not the article in particular. I agree that's a very common scenario, and I tend to see it coupled with "letting it go is *not* an option". And it makes for a really rough situation: the women has nothing extra to give, which means she has no extra energy to teach the task or to turn over the mental load in stages. She's at the point where her only option is to turn the whole thing over to an complete beginner in a "sink-or-swim" way. But even a spouse with the best intentions and effort is probably going to screw it up the first few times - and, really, that's how you learn a lot of the mental load, realizing what's needed through the failures that result from not doing it. Couple that with an absolute unwillingness to let things fall apart, even a little - which is totally understandable behavior in a stressed person - and there's a no-win situation. There's no extra energy to teach others how to do it well, and no willingness to just allow the inevitable initial failures of a sink-or-swim method to do the teaching. I have a lot of sympathy for the woman here - I have totally been there - too stressed to keep doing it but too stressed to do an orderly hand-over and too stressed to handle even the temporary chaos of an abrupt turn-over. But it's an impossible situation for one's family, too - expected to suddenly do a new job perfectly and with no help. Which is why it's a really bad idea here, as in most things, to let the problem hit red-alert status before saying something. But since you can't go back in time to tell your spouse earlier, when you had the energy to deal with the handoff, everyone is just stuck with the current breaking point problem. Which probably means that something has to give, at least temporarily. ETA: I think my point is that, yes, at this red-alert point one really needs help and one's spouse ought to help them. But I think it's unrealistic, and maybe unfair, to expect absolutely nothing at all to change except who's doing the job. The help one's spouse gives ought to be helpful, but not necessarily by doing the exact same job in the exact same way as the original spouse did it. A *comparable* job, yes, but not necessarily an identical job, kwim? I mean, spouse A did it in a way that suited her time and talents; it's not fair to expect spouse B to do it in the way that suited spouse A's time and talents, but instead spouse B ought to be able to do it in a way that suits *his* time and talents.
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