Housekeeping Paraphernalia

by Tracee Sioux

Mommy, can I have that Kid’s Washer & Dryer by Little Colorado for Christmas?

No way. You don’t need to pretend to do laundry. If you want to do laundry, you can do it for real. I promise there will be plenty of opportunities for laundry when you grow up.

I don’t know if I’m right about this or not. It’s just gut instinct, but these toys piss me off.

On one hand, I can’t get over how much my life looks exactly like my mother’s life did. I don’t know what I was thinking, but I absurdly expected feminism to do away with the drudgery of housework. Now I realize it’s not feminism that will banish housework from my life – it’s money to pay the housekeeper. Duh.

Sometimes – usually while I’m doing the perpetually defeating job of cleaning the house – I come to the realization that housekeeping really was a full time job in the first place. It was a falacy that housewives did nothing all day. All the feminist revolution got me was more work. Too much work. More work than I can do.

I’m pissed off about these toys and the expectation that my daughter will grow up to be a housewife or a housekeeper. But, why shouldn’t she?

I do want motherhood for her. I don’t necessarily want her to miss out on being home with her children for several years.

There’s also a big part of me that believes these toys should be marketed to BOYS for a few decades to see if we can even out the housework load still being heavily born by women. To be fair, several of the commercials and ads are inclusive of boys this Christmas season.

I realize that my life might have been easier, better organized and cleaner, had I accepted that keeping house was going to be an inevitable part of it. Especially while raising young children.

But, still my gut instinct is to ignore requests for these kinds of toys and steer her in less stereotypical “housewife” direction.

Why does she want cleaning supplies as toys anyway?

What is your stance on housekeeping paraphernalia as play?

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