Every morning my husband gets up at 4.30am to go to work. After he leaves the house, I get our two young children up, give them breakfast, get them dressed and get myself ready for work. My husband rushes back in the door at 9am after his morning shift, then looks after the children for the day while I go to work. When I get home at 6pm, he leaves to do an evening shift while I do the bedtime routine and cook dinner.
We are officially ‘tag-team parents.’ The term was coined by the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, to talk about parents who work different hours from each other in order to manage childcare.
When we first started working like this, it seemed like a great idea. We could avoid the extortionate childcare costs of long daycare (often around $140 a day where we live), and both get to spend quality time with our children, who are two and five. And in many ways it IS great; our children spend most of their day with one of us, they know their dad is as hands-on as their mum, and see that both parents need and want to work.
But it’s certainly not easy. Family time is limited, and it means both of us solo parent for most of the time we’re with our children. That means little down-time, and minimal couple time. I can’t remember the last time my husband and I went on a date or even had more than a few minutes snuggled up on the sofa together.
Side note… what’s the sexiest thing in the world? Sharing the mental load, of course. Post continues after video.