My roles and responsibilities of dating
Then there was Kim Brooks’ “Portrait of the Artist as a Young Mom,” on magazine’s The Cut, in which she argues that there may be something fundamentally at odds between art and family, specifically that “the point of art is to unsettle, to question, to disturb what is comfortable and safe. They’re always with me, even when they’re not.’ I think she’s going to say something like ‘It won’t be like this forever,’ something stoic and accepting.And that shouldn’t be anyone’s goal as a parent.” So much in this piece rang true for me that I started shaking as I read it. But instead, she says in a voice that is pure anguish, ‘There are moments when I feel like I’m dying a little more every day.In his inability to do things, he is excused from labor.
He is not making a statement with his actions, saying, “Here, wife, pick up after me.” Instead, I think that on some level he believes that he lives in an enchanted castle where the broom comes to life and sweeps, and the teapot pours itself.
The interview was old, from 2001, but keep in mind: Jodi Fucking Picoult had already written seven novels at that point. I tried to imagine the family of a similarly successful male writer making him stay up to work after he has put the children to bed and I just couldn’t. You can bet his wife would be whisper-screaming at the children to stay the hell away from daddy’s office and go play in the yard.
And here is her schedule: wake up at 5 in the morning, exercise, get kids to school, write for three hours, wrangle kids all afternoon, make dinner, put kids to bed, write after everyone goes to bed. Your father, this imaginary wife would say, is Jodi FUCKING Picoult.
My job when I am with my children is to have as few needs as possible so that I can meet theirs.
It is my job to let my three-year-old dawdle on the potty of a Starbucks until he is sure he is done, even if I think I might shit my pants. I often feel that the work I do around the house is the work of an invisible person.