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Invisible Work

(Apologies if this double-posts. Kinja is trying to eat it. BAD KINJA! NO COOKIE!)

For the first six years of WeePiglet's life, I was a full-time mom-ninja. When I was still working, What's-His-Name and I sat down and hashed out the various domestic responsibilities and assigned them to the appropriate person. Since he was doing ALL of the money-making, it was only fair that I took on most of the household chores.

Fast-forward 6 years and now I am slightly employed. My time at home is not as copious as it once was, and so some of the domestic shit isn't getting done because I no longer have time to do it. Or, I DO have time to do it, but that means I have no time to do other things, and my mental health requires that I have a certain amount of time each day to just... fuck around on the internet, more or less.


This past week, with the holidays and whatnot, What's-His-Name was home a lot more than he normally is. And he finally got to see just what it is, exactly, that I do all day.

"I thought you were exaggerating," he said. While I am a huge fan of hyperbole and exaggeration in nearly all other aspects of life, when it comes to What I Do All Day, I'm rounding DOWN more often than not.

"I had no idea that you had to do all of these things." <—This was in relation to me knowing when the dentist appointments are, when the doctor appointments are, when the dogs go to the vet or the groomer, and the hundreds of other bits of household trivia that SOMEONE needs to take care of in order for the house to run.

Most of the time, this arrangement is satisfactory. I don't want to have to get a "real" job, doing something I hate, working for a bunch of stupid people. The job I have is one that I created almost from scratch and if I can parlay that into a full-time gig, that would be ideal for me.


What's-His-Name doesn't want to do the domestic shit, so it works out for him. But while he was home, I tasked him with some of the WeePiglet-centered activities and I think I might have broken his brain. He was genuinely surprised at the number of things one must remember to have/do/be/get when you're supervising the kid's life. And she's 7! It was way worse when she was a baby and we had to take bags of gear with us everywhere!

So that got me thinking: who does the "invisible work" in your house? Especially if you are partnered-up and parenting: who does all this stuff? Was it a deliberate division of labor (as we did with the physical chores) or did it end up getting done by someone as a default? Is there anything that you are "in charge" of at your house that you would rather pass on to your partner-person?

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