Jay Cutler and Kristin Cavallari. Photo by Jeff Schear/Getty Images
Here’s one to file under “stars are just like us”: NFL celeb and father of two Jay Cutler had a childcare freak-out — via text — during wife Kristin Cavallari’s out-of-town trip recently.
“Need u home asap. All hell has broken loose. Jax is in his crib. Cam refuses to eat. I’m about to leave,” was the S.O.S. message sent by Cutler, quarterback for the Chicago Bears, to his actress wife, who posted it on Instagram for all to chuckle over on Saturday. It seems the dad had reached his alone-time limit with his two little ones — Jaxon, 8 months, and Camden, 2 — in a way that’s amusingly familiar to any parent going solo after being lucky enough to have grown accustomed to a partner in crime.
The Instagram post.
“Contrary to what many people think, we don’t have a thousand nannies. So with that being said, when I got home from LA 2 days ago this is what I landed to. Pretty hilarious,” Cavallari wrote along with the text screenshot she posted on Instagram, which has already been liked nearly 42,000 times. “Ladies, u want your man to appreciate u? Leave them alone with the kids to see what we deal with!”
But another celebrity dad, actor Ryan Reynolds, put a more accepting spin on the job recently, telling People how happy he was to share parenting duties with his wife Blake Lively. “I gotta jump in and do all those sorts of things,” Reynolds said Saturday at the Sundance Film Festival regarding his month-old daughter. He joked that he’s “even tried breastfeeding” before noting, “it’s amazing that you can be that exhausted and that happy at the same time.” (No word on whether he’s yet been left alone with his infant overnight, however.)
Hearing more and more about fathers’ perspectives isn’t surprising either way, as recent data out of the Pew Research Center shows the roles of mothers and fathers converging. While dads are still more likely than moms to say that they work full-time, an almost equal amount — 56 percent of working moms and 50 percent of working dads — say they find it very or somewhat difficult to balance the demands of work and home life. And fathers have nearly tripled their time with children since 1965, the survey found.
Pop culture is reflecting the shift more as well, particularly through images of fathers in advertising, according to Jim Lin, creator of the Busy Dad Blog, who spoke with Yahoo Parenting recently about a new Dove commercial celebrating the “caring roles” of men. “The spot is emblematic of a shift in the media portrayal of fathers,” Lin pointed out. “For so long we’ve seen what I call the ‘bumbling, well-intentioned dad.’ He wants to be good with his kids but doesn’t know how to get anything done. The reality is that today, the bumbling dad isn’t the case anymore. Fathers, by choice and situation, have taken more hands-on roles and are more involved than they used to be.”
That might be why at least one Instagram commenter took umbrage to Cavallari calling out her husband’s panic attack. “I find this dad shaming very humiliating,” he noted. “It’s a share [sic] you publicly shame him for trying. As a SAHD [stay-at-home dad] myself it’s not all men…it’s never right to publicly humiliate you parenting partner. Shame on You!”
Still, it all seemed in good fun — especially considering the props Cavallari gave her hubby just last year in an Us Weekly interview. “Jay is a great dad,” she said. “He’s incredibly hands-on, and he has been since day one. It’s so sweet seeing him with Camden and Jax, and there’s nothing sexier than seeing your husband as a great dad. I couldn’t ask for a better partner in this situation.”