Writing is an adventure. To begin with, it is a toy and an amusement. Then it becomes a mistress, then it becomes a master, then it becomes a tyrant. The last phase is that just as you are about to be reconciled to your servitude, you kill the monster and fling him to the public.

— Winston Churchill

Parenting Ends Chivalry

I realize early feminism delivered a kick-in-the-balls to traditional chivalry, but my husband and I have managed to hang on to a few old-style pleasantries throughout the years. I do understand our search for equality and independence have sometimes confused men and they’re unsure if offering to lug a tote or open a door will be met with angst or acceptance, but I never anticipated parenting would actually be the catalyst for ending certain indulgences I’ve rather enjoyed.

My son and I returned home last night from a two-day excursion to see friends and when I pulled into the garage my husband stepped out of the house smiling. He was obviously eager to welcome us home and his eyes sparked at the sight of us.

His expression changed abruptly when he noticed Aaron was in the midst of an emotional break down in the back seat. Kim spotted Aaron’s little sobbing face before I could even shut down the car’s engine, and he went right into daddy mode.

He opened the car’s back door and quickly unfastened the clips of Aaron’s booster seat

“What’s wrong?” asked my husband

“Daddy, I’m really, really missing my star,” explained Aaron through his four-year-old sobs and crocodile tears.

For the last 30 minutes of our road trip, Aaron’s eyes had been glued to one specific star in the sky, but when we turned into our neighborhood he lost track of the shining orb. It was the last straw for my exhausted little guy and he simply fell apart.

Kim gathered Aaron into his arms and began promising future star-gazing adventures. He didn’t even glance back at me as he carried Aaron into the house and closed the door behind him. I was left sitting in the car, seatbelt still fastened. There was no hello, no welcome-home kiss for this wife, no offer to help reclaim a suitcase from the trunk, and certainly no chivalrous opening of the door while I dragged our bags back to their rightful spots.

No, dear friends, it’s not professional endeavors, finance or even attitude that has apparently ended chivalry in my home, it’s parenting.

Disclaimer: Since my husband reads my blog, I’m forced to admit it’s only fair I divulge that he did have a delicious meal waiting for us.

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15 comments to Parenting Ends Chivalry

  • I try to be polite with other people, and my wife. But the other day, after a wee little beer, you know, I belched. Maybe a few times. She hates it. I should have been more chivalrous and walked the dog and aired it out.
    BUT anyway, my father would have kicked my a$$ quite literally if I did not call people mister or sir or opened doors and all the rest, and I’ll tell you, it is very deeply ingrained in me. Plus he would probably still try to kick my a$$ if he saw me act rude.

    garys last blog post.."Bush’s Final Approval Rating: 22 Percent", NY Times CBS poll

  • Amy

    What can I say, I am sure that my husband has taken back seat to the kids many times — I tend to do that! What shall we do!!

  • He just got sidetracked. You should have sat in your car, belted in with the seat belt, and cried until he came for you. He would have eventually realized you were missing.

    Midlife Slicess last blog post..He Asked and I Answered

  • Kim

    Tricia will not let me forget this… it is written!!!

    I am glad to have my little family back.


  • On the up side, there are fathers that cannot handle a child’s melt down and might have shut the door on both of you…except I heard these guys go missing occasionally.

    phhhsts last blog post..Hope and Change

  • Tricia

    Gary: Ah, hah. Good thing your dad your dad wasn’t there for a wee little beer.

    Amy: Shush. Don’t let him off the hook.

    Midlife Slices: Now, that’s an idea. Alternatively, he’d have rejoiced to have me out of the house for a bit longer, and he would have locked the door!

    Kim: That list of things I’ll never let you forget does seem to keep growing. We’re glad to be back too :o )

    phhhst: Are you suggesting I embrace that ‘grateful thing’, but it wouldn’t make for good blog fodder.

  • HA HA! With my kids, when my guy is home, I am chopped liver….to both the kids and my guy. Seriously. I nearly don’t exist sometimes because they are so absorbed in being together. I can break in, but sometimes I use it to my advantage and go take a loooooong shower. Or make dinner in peace. Next time, I may just go take a nap and see if they notice. Ha ha.

    movin’ down the roads last blog post..I’m talking about boobs again

  • I really feel like I was born into the wrong time period. I love chivalry. I really just want to be taken care of if the truth be known. Then I could blog, read blogs and make peach pie all day. Ahhh, the life. Well… long as I could still rule the world, that is. *wink*

    He did leave you in the car without so much as a nod but he did give that glorious smile and he did deal with the melt-down so that you didn’t have to. Points? And if I came home to a meal already prepared, all would be forgiven.

    Smart Mouth Broads last blog post..THE MAKING OF A BIKER CHICK – Mount Rushmore

  • LOL I love Janie’s suggestion…but what a nice daddy…serious points for that. Too many daddy’s would have not understood how important it is when you lose sight of your star :(

    thistles last blog post..Manic Monday #151

  • I’m always happy when my husband deals with the melting-down child. I might have just backed up and driven away after he’d taken Aaron inside.

    patoiss last blog post..The Walking Wounded

  • Poor Tricia! I hope that Kim realized what he did. But, going into Daddy-mode was a good thing, even if it left you holding the bags.

    WickedStepMoms last blog post..What If

  • Ummm, yeah. Chivalry. My husband’s manners got lost somewhere along the way too. Interesting….

  • I once climbed into the backseat of the car after Mark had opened the door (I thought he was opening the door for me… silly me) when him and I were out with friends and before I knew it he climbed into the back and shut the car door without thinking… on my head. I had a bruise on my forehead for over a week.
    Chivalry is dead and hurts like a bugger.

    Sammanthias last blog post..Free Fallin’

  • Looking at what these nice ladies say about chilvary, I see that I should double my efforts at home, nay, TRIPLE my chivalric efforts. What men need to realize is that even after the dating and the honeymoon is over (may I speak frankly here?)
    that the more gentlemanly you are, the more ravenous she is for hot nookie. I am sure there is a mathematical formula of some kind:
    gentlemanly + romatique = lotsa hot nookie

    garys last blog post..fulsome manner=grab a$$

  • Poor Kim.. he’ll never live it down.

    I love that your little guy kept his sight on his star. That’s just so sweet.

    Hilarys last blog post..The Depths of Winter

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