We've all wished we could outsource some of our day-to-day responsibilities. Whether it's food prep and cooking or having someone to wash, fold, and put away the laundry, there are definitely tasks we'd rather not have to do. One busy Silicon Valley family decided to do just that and hire a household manager to handle all the daily minutiae involved in running a household and having a family.
At first glance, the requirements in the now-viral job listing seems...extensive. The job responsibilities include everything from shopping and meal prep to playing sports with the two 10-year-old twins to organizing vacations and extra-curricular activities for the kids. It's over 1000 words long and covers pretty much every single aspect of life with kids. The mom who wrote the list, a Silicon Valley CEO, needs some help and she's not ashamed to ask for it.
While we may not all have a staff including a gardener, housekeeper, and au pair, it seems the responsibilities of moms don't change that much when the tax brackets are higher. More than a few of her bullet points are things moms do every single day. She writes, "Research and review recipes in books and online and create simple menus." Yup, moms do that. And "be creative about researching and recommending and booking good activities and schedules for vacations and can make our vacations more active and fun." Yup, moms do that, too.
The post continues to explain that the "family eats organic and is allergic to cow and goat dairy, chicken eggs, green beans and watermelon. Can eat duck eggs. Must be able to produce simple, delicious meals with consistency and accuracy meeting our allergy requirements." All the decisions that go into making a meal, from quantity to buy to how to prepare, knowing what's on hand and what we need to purchase? Yeah, moms do that too.
The CEO mom also wants the person who cares for her family to be active and healthy. "Strong swimmer and lifeguard. Can supervise kids in the pool and understands basic dangers and rescues. Can swim in the ocean and bodysurf. Likes river swimming. Can throw balls and play simple basketball, volleyball, soccer and football with 10-year olds? (learn if not already familiar). Can do calisthenics with kids (sit-ups, lunges, squats, pushups) and generally play and rough house with kids." Ok, the river swimming thing is a little precise, but hey, she knows what her kids enjoy, and if that's swimming in rivers, why wouldn't she want someone who can swim in rivers?
This mom is getting a lot of flack about her job description, with people calling it insane and ridiculous, but it's really just a list of all the things moms do in the course of being a mom. Working moms, stay-at-home-moms, CEO moms, all moms, regardless of income, we all take care of the logistics of having a family. In an anonymous interview with Slate, the woman who posted the job ad explained her reasoning. "I’m having to spend hours of my time, like late at night, trying to figure out summer camp and get them signed up for sports and all that. [I’m a single parent,] but if I had a two-parent household, I would assume that the other parent would at least be doing some of that, one would hope. Although, again, most women tell me that they have to do it all. So I think that people related to the post because it’s absolutely true. If you’re a working woman, you need a wife."
Kudos to this mom for recognizing the need for help and acting on it. Granted we can't all afford to pay someone to help manage our households, and in a perfect world we wouldn't have to. In a perfect world, moms would have the help and support they need and deserve. This job listing is a testament to all the unseen things that go into taking care of our families. For us, for moms, it's our life, but for others, it's a full-time job in itself.
And really, when one of the line items is "Has room in their heart to love the kids and the mom; has a high capacity to be loved deeply by them," how can you not want her to find exaclty what she's looking for?