My husband leaves the toilet seat up, I don't. He knows how to park a car, I don't. I can cry in public for no reason, he can't. He can pee standing up- I can't (unless I want to shell out on dry cleaning my Ugg boots)
My husband and I have different brains, different organs and different hormones surging through our bodies and with all this in mind, it's no wonder that we approach parenting in completely different ways.
As a woman, I have a natural instinct for motherhood- it's thrown in as part of the package deal (alongside the boobs and the vagina). But my husband has no such natural instinct. He has had to work that bit harder to learn the ropes of parenting as he doesn't have motherly instinct on his side.
Note the following typical scenarios and how his approach differs from mine:
SCENARIO 1: GETTING CHILDREN DRESSED.
Me: I place clean outfits for each child on the dresser the night before school so that they are ready for the morning. When morning comes, I dress them, wash their faces and brush their hair so they are ready to start the day.
My husband: Waits til ten minutes before he has to leave the house to ransack the joint looking for socks, tops and trousers and grabs anything he can find from the tumble dryer. He huffs, he puffs and almost blows the house down (as well as the lid off his bald head)
On days when my husband has dropped our toddler at nursery, I arrive to pick him up and he often comes out dressed like one of the orphans from the cast of 'Annie'. He is wearing trousers that are two sizes too small (taken from the charity bag in the hall way) and is sporting a stripey top with a 'matching' stripey stained jacket.
He usually has spal bol from yesterday's dinner wedged in the folds under his chin and his hair is stuck together in clumps resembling dreadlocks. If I look close enough, I may even see little birds nesting in it.
SCENARIO 2: DINNER TIME
Me: I lift a homemade meal from the freezer in the morning before I leave for work so that it can defrost at room temperature. It is then reheated and served with vegetables at 5.30 sharp. The kids sit at the table, lift their cutlery and eat their dinner.
My husband: Feeds the kids sweets and treats directly after school and then realises at 5.30 sharp and that it is dinner time. He lifts a homemade meal from the freezer and begins to defrost it in our prehistoric microwave. Dinner is eventually served at 6.15pm and the sugared-up kids refuse to eat it- unless of course they are bribed with more treats to do so.
On these nights they have Shepherd's Pie served with a side of Star Mix and an episode Bubble Guppies for distraction....and all of it is spoonfed to them by my husband's trembling hands.
SCENARIO 3. TODDLER DOES A POO.
Me: Lifts toddler onto table and changes nappy.
My husband: Wrestles toddler onto floor yelling ',Oh naw!!! He's done a POO!! Oh God, oh GAWD!!!!'. He gags as he takes ALL of the toddler's clothes off and holds both of his tiny legs up in the air with one hand as he frantically rips baby wipes from the dispenser. He is disgusted and appalled. TRAUMATISED.
He uses 3 wipes for a wee, 8 for an average sized poo and near on a whole packet for a gargantuan effort.
SCENARIO 4: GETTING CHILDREN READY FOR BED.
Me: I bath the children, put their PJ's on, give them some milk and read them a bedtime story in a hushed gentle voice. Then I put them to bed. They fall asleep.
My husband: Baths the children, puts their PJ's on, gives them milk and then decides to play an impromptu game of indoor football. Football is followed by a quick game of chase and then 'Zombie Attack'. He is just trying to 'wear them out', he says. Once the hysteria has subsided and the 'zombies' have been caught, the kid's pumping heartbeats finally settle and they go to bed...an hour later than planned.
My husband's parenting style is certainly more exhausting than mine and it's no wonder that he passes out on the sofa at 9pm every night (losing the ability to stay conscious through a whole episode of House Of Cards). I am just so thankful for my pre-installed 'natural instinct'...and for my boobs and my vagina.
It's certainly much easier being a woman although every once and a while I do wish that I could pee standing up.