So. There's This Book. With the Word "Amalah" On It.
Out Californee Way

Night of the Meatloaf

Last night, I sat alone in a corner booth of a fast-food burrito joint, with black mascara streaks all over my face.

It was awesome, as you can probably imagine.

Jason sent me an email in the afternoon to tell me there was a work happy hour he had to go to, but he wouldn't be too late.

I sent him an email reminding him that, in typical end-of-the-week fashion, we had no food in the house, so could he pick something up before he came home? Burritos from Chipotle would be good, I suggested.

Mmmm, Chipotle, I thought, after hitting send. Chipotle would be very, VERY good.

And so I waited. I fed Noah his dinner, lamented the lack of ANYTHING ELSE EDIBLE in the house, at least anything edible that wouldn't 1) turn my stomach or 2) spoil my appetite for the sure-to-be delicious burrito that would arrive any second now, and then I spent an hour engaged in a completely pointless and circular argument with Noah about exactly what potty-related business was worthy of an M&M, and no, you don't get one for just sitting there, and stared at the clock.

7 pm.


God, I was hungry.

At 8 pm Jason came home. That would be...late, in my mind. I struggled to hoist myself off the bathroom floor and almost blacked out. My blood sugar was crashing through the floor but thank God there was something to eat in this damn place now.

When I got downstairs, Jason was putting groceries away. He'd gone grocery shopping. There was no Chipotle. I asked him what he'd gotten for dinner and he gestured towards the packages of raw meat on the counter. Raw meat that would all need to be cooked.

And never mind the fact that I am eating almost exclusively vegetarian these days, because meat -- the look, texture, taste of all of it, including fish and poultry -- makes my still-delicate stomach flip-flop. I will eat it, usually when we go to some food event that Jason signs us up for, but these nights invariably end with me dry-heaving in a restaurant bathroom. If I am not expressly in the mood for it, I might as well be choking down grubs on Survivor.

Last night, something about the sight of all that raw meat just made me lose. My. Mind.


I stormed around the kitchen, coursing with hunger and hormones. Jason shrugged and told me to uh, get over it, he didn't pick up Chipotle, too fucking bad. Here, have some pita chips, or some cheese. I reminded him that dairy has also been particularly unkind to my digestive tract as well. As for the pita chips, well...I just didn't want any damn pita chips.

"What is your PROBLEM today?" he asked, referring to an email I'd sent him earlier about something completely unrelated, in which I declared that he was Officially Driving Me Crazy About <Unrelated Topic>, Oh My God.

It was your typical male-female fight. He saw the literal issue at hand, which was not a big deal. He went to the grocery store, so just pick something else and eat it.

I saw hours-long abandonment and a refusal to listen to me or take my pregnant needs seriously, even if to him they sound trivial. No matter how many times I've told him about the meat thing and the food cravings thing and the food aversions thing, I still get the sense that he thinks I'm just trying to be difficult. And gee, you know what? I'd like to go to happy hour with adults some time too! But I don't! Because that would inconvenience YOUUUUU and make you leave work early and WE ALL KNOW how much more important YOUR JOB is and I paced and stewed and composed eloquent tirades in my head about why this is about SO MUCH MORE than burritos and going grocery shopping when it's already late and not calling to find out if there was something I needed or wanted at the store and I never ask him for more than a glass of water while he's already up...but instead of saying any of these things I grabbed my car keys and diaper bag and told him I needed to get out of the house for a little bit, just like every hysterical pregnant lady in every movie who grabs her purse and announces she's going home to her mother.

What can I say? I was really, REALLY hungry.

I got in the car and started driving. Within a few minutes I was crying, even though I didn't know why. Well, I did. Narrowing it down to a single reason was what I couldn't do.

I have no idea if this is true for other stay-at-home-moms or women who altered their careers after having children, but even the most innocuous, run-of-the-mill argument can sometimes really drive home the power disparity of our household, and how financially dependent I am on Jason, how the majority of my contributions don't get assigned an hourly rate, and how this has changed our relationship and my opinion of myself in ways I didn't expect.

Money is tight right now. Not "we can't pay the electric bill" tight, but tight. I don't think I can afford to go to Blogher (AGAIN), our savings have never been lower and the list of unavoidable boring expenses looms large in the distance. The deck needs refinishing, the screen door is busted, the car lease is up and preschool deposits are due. A couple months of not watching out for every dollar or properly spacing big expenditures stupidly got us here in the first place; a lack of advertising checks and a huge tax payment have made it hard to climb out of the hole. We'll be fine, of course, but it's uncomfortable. There will be no vacations or anniversary plans or push presents or spoiling of the new baby. Next year looks like it will better. But as for right now, it's not a financial situation either of us enjoy or are really used to.

And it's during times like this that I am painfully aware of how little I contribute to our overall budget, despite feeling tied to the computer for hours a day, deadlines day after day after day, with no sick days or vacation time or retirement account, all so I can watch Noah grow up over the ridge of my laptop screen. But then I did insist on a bi-monthly housecleaning service, which is both an incredible help and an incredible guilt-raiser, especially when one of the cleaners mentioned that she went into labor with her last child while vacuuming a client's house.

Oh, the angst of the modern woman, balance, having it all, the topics of a million self-help books and feminist arguments -- all too much to ponder during a single car ride to the Chipotle down the street.

I knew I was being ridiculous, that I was letting myself blow something small out of proportion just to cover for the zillion other tiny anxieties currently keeping me up at night, along with my pregnant bladder. I felt stupid, so I turned my head away from the other cars at stoplights, just in case anyone was able to see me and my blubbering.

I pulled into one of those expectant mother parking spaces and took a deep breath. See? How nice! This is just what I needed. A guy on a cell phone held the door for me and I ordered my vegetarian burrito with hot salsa and sat down to a leisurely meal.

There was no high chair to juggle, no one demanding bits of my tortilla. The burrito tasted every bit as delicious as I'd hoped, and I sat there for awhile after I finished it, picking stray bits of rice off the foil wrapper and wondering what I could possibly say to Jason when I got back home. Do I just admit that I was acting crazy? Do I just blame pregnancy and be done with it? Do I try to maybe mention that I could use a little bit of extra sensitivity right now? Do I really feel like a night of talking about my pregnant little feeeeeeeelings and that just because everything is magnified times a zillion it doesn't mean I shouldn't ever get taken seriously, even if it really is just a request for a vegetarian burrito that gets answered with prepackaged meatloaf mix?

I thought about killing more time by wandering the aisles of CVS, but decided the evening didn't need to get any more melodramatic or Britney-esque. I got back in the car and that's when realized I'd neglected to check my makeup before and that's probably why I got some weird looks in the restaurant.

I got home around 9:30. I walked in and immediately saw Noah in the living room, wide awake and still dressed. He was watching Cars.

I felt my brain slowly make the switch to FLIP YOUR SHIT again (what, am I REALLY the only one who pays attention to bedtime? must I ALWAYS be the non-fun parent? does no one else here REALIZE what it's like to be trapped all day with a off-his-schedule toddler who is NOT gonna just sleep in tomorrow morning to make up for the lack of sleep?) but NO, I was not to let this night get the better of me again. I wordlessly walked upstairs and filled the bathtub.

I climbed in, along with a three-year-old bath ballistic from LUSH (ever wondered if those things expire? yes. they do, and sigh.) and laid there for awhile in the disappointingly tepid water. (Add hot water heater repairs to the list, and sigh.) I surveyed my fat belly and stretch marks -- I'm getting new ones already, ugly purple ones across my stomach and down my thighs, nothing like the spiderweb of thin white ones  -- that I didn't even get until 38 weeks -- from last time. After 10 minutes I drained the water because I didn't want to look at myself anymore.

Around 10 o'clock I heard Jason put Noah to bed. GAH GAH GAH, my head chanted, as I resisted the urge to remind him to brush our child's teeth. I turned on the TV in our bedroom to watch Lost.

Jason finally came in and asked if I was feeling better. I wasn't, but I shrugged and said I guessed so. I was too exhausted to explain any of it. He wouldn't understand. Hell, I barely understood.

He sat down on the bed and gingerly rubbed my leg and told me to get some sleep. I blurted out that I missed Julie, my friend who moved to California back in February, and started to cry. I could tell he was valiantly and desperately trying to find any connection between this and the thing about burritos. He told me to get some sleep again and retreated downstairs.

I tried to sleep, but the burrito gave me terrible heartburn.

It's 2 pm right now. Noah went down early for a nap, and I'm unshowered and still in my pajamas. It has just  occurred to me that I forgot to eat lunch. Minutes ago, Jason came home early.

He brought me flowers and chocolate ice cream.



it's almost scary that we've all had days similar to this...the flip-your-shit because you're exhausted and can't figure out how your husband just DOESN'T get it. Thankfully, for a lot of us, we're lucky enough to have guys that may not "get it", but they still try to make up for it by coming home early, bringing special treats, or surprising us with a nice back/foot rub. I'm so glad to see your one of the lucky ones.


You are totally my hero for sharing this. It is so so so nice to know that I'm not the only 'nutcase' out there. Sometimes the little things just build up and it takes just one little thing like a forgotten burrito (or in my case, a postpartum burrito with beans, and I HATE BEANS WITH A PASSION) to trigger the 'flip your shit' switch.


Thank you for writing this. Oh my gosh, it's just the little things... it's not about the burrito necessarily, but the DISAPPOINTMENT. It's like when you get fast food, drive all the way home, and then they forgot the fries. AGH! I could really go for some chocolate ice cream...


This has been bugging me, and I wanted to return to apologize for my completely jaded comment earlier. Your post was beautiful, and my own issues were definitely informing my thought, which totally does not apply in your case. I get that the flowers were an extremely sweet gesture. And, you helped me learn a little more about my own screwed up little mind. I hope you're feeling good again soon, and thank you for bravely relating this stuff to us.

aka Alice

Oh yeah...I'd have gone ballistic all over again when I got home and the (in my case) kids were still up and not bathed and not in brushed...and I'm not pregnant...and I've been married for 15 years...and I still work both because I have to and because I'm not brave enough, like you, to not work...and because I worry about every little detail about our finances even when my husband says "it'll be fine..." and I know he doesn't get it...but you do, and I gotta thank you (and everyone else who has posted here today) for that.

Take care and feel better.


I'm sorry you are having a hard time. I have those fights with The Man and I'm not even pregnant.

I'm sorry about your friend, too. Good friends are hard to find and keep and it must be really difficult to have a good friend move away.

Hugs to you.


Since I'm sure the already 100+ commenters have empathized with you and told you how great the post was (which it was) and how they remember feeling some of those same things (which I do,) I'm just going to make a funny observation.

You took your diaper bag to Chipotle - alone - without Noah!


Thank you for writing this. I've been waiting for a good post like this. (Not that the others aren't good) It's refreshing when I can read something I actually go through too even if it is about a fight with your hubby. It makes you real and not some blogger who is funny or popular.
I have had similar fights with my husband and I totally understand the cravings. My husband would do the same thing as Jason did too. Isn't being normal grand?

Jozet at Halushki

Would it make it all go away if I told you how much I adore you?

And my darling, this:

"...referring to an email I'd sent him earlier about something completely unrelated, in which I declared that he was Officially Driving Me Crazy About , Oh My God."

I send one of those at least once a week, and I have nowhere near your excuse.

The BD

So, so many little tiffs that I have had with my husband that echo exactly what you wrote before and after pregnancy. As sweet as the husbands can be, they just don't get the full onslaught of hormones that course through those veins during pregnancy. Chipotle can be a big damn deal! And your blog is the best.

Kimberly C

How is it that you can nail that feeling I get of being worthless for not bringing home a paycheck, even though I stay at home with the kid?

You're an awesome writer, and I don't think you're crazy. Pregnancy means hunger, all the freaking time, and food becomes serious.Also, why don't men realize how much we spoil them because of love?

Val Cox

oh dear, your post made me cry. Feel better soon. Thank you for writing about it.


Oh gah! hugs hugs hugs to you.
Though, I am surprised that he was able to make a decision about what to get at the grocery store--most nights its a constant 'what do you want for dinner' 'i dont know, what do YOU want' blah blah goes on forever and we end up finally pulling it together. But this--c'mon. (I'm disappointed he didn't bring you Chipotle and flowers, it'd be like one of those little romantic comedy things with the silly pregnancy cravings and sweet thoughtful hubby.)


Crazy Pregnant Lady here.

Your post is making me cry. But it's not all bad tears. Normally your posts make me laugh really hard. But the ones that aren't meant to be funny always hit really hard--even when they're about things I can't really identify with. I can totally see why you're in a book.


I don't know what to say, but I coudln't read this and not say anything.

I am not even near your situation (single, university student), but it is so well written and I think everyone knows what it is like when suddenly things just become too much...But it is good when people like you are brave enough to talk about it for everyone!

Sending a hug from Germany to Washington!


I never usually comment but I enjoy your writing and think your a talented woman. This post sings the song of how so many woman must feel, and even though I don't have any children I see myself in it.

Could I offer a back rub?


"even the most innocuous, run-of-the-mill argument can sometimes really drive home the power disparity of our household, and how financially dependent I am on Jason, how the majority of my contributions don't get assigned an hourly rate"



your writing skills speak for themselves here. this post was incredible. thank you for sharing it.


"It was your typical male-female fight. He saw the literal issue at hand, which was not a big deal."

So brilliantly sums up what I have had to deal with for 20 years now. We love each other, but when stuff like that happens it is made so much worse by that fact because I end up looking like an unreasonable mental case...and he ends up resloving in his own mind to stop "spoiling" me or something. That's why this kind of thing never ends in flowers and ice cream at my house. But he will shower me with these things and more when I'm NOT on a rant (and I do a lot for him, too). And that's what ultimately pulls us both through to the other side of that kind of thing: there is a history here of a lot of love (not to mention kids). However...I can tell you that this kind of thing will happen again and again and your whole post was like talking to a very articulate friend who gets it. THANK YOU!!


That sounds very human to me. I hope you're feeling a bit better now xx


god but it does take them a while to catch on! i read this the whole time feeling every single bit of it because hello??? been there. done that! have more certainly FELT THAT. and my daft husband responded just as yours did - all duhhhhh? the flowers and ice cream were a very nice gesture but i call for these guys getting it in the first place. bring home the damn take out the night before and all is well! stop being SO male! have they not been around women long enough to know you just go with the flow on nights like this. it won't make sense to their brains but just GO WITH IT.



So, I'm pregnant and hormonal, and I've read this three times and emailed it to my husband, and every time i get to the end, I get teary eyed.


Thank you so much for writing this post.


Amalah, I think you have just struck a universal chord here. I had a similar situation, though it was about peanuts. 50 cent peanuts. And there was no pregnancy, children or marriage involved. Instead it was me and my boyfriend. I was studying for a really important exam, the most important exam i have ever had to take for med school, and was going through the worst time (everyone says it's the lowest point in med school, and everyone's right). And my boyfriend was studying with me (for something else). I brought peanuts with me so that I could eat them and not have to get up for a meal. I opened the can and shared them with him. When I returned from the bathroom, he had eaten ALL of my peanuts, just shoved them down his mouth, so that he was no longer hungry and I no longer had peanuts, and thus had to spend time finding food. Needless to say I BLEW UP about the peanuts and was so very angry that he did not think it was a priority to replace them. He never understood and was annoyed with me for being pissed about it. Though he did at least understand that I was under an inordinate amount of stress and so kept his annoyance to himself.

Now, one year later, he is the one studying for the boards. He asked me to help him by buying him a sweatshirt because he doesn't have time. I want to because I know that it means so much more than just getting a sweatshirt to keep him warm in the library, it means he will feel supported and loved. But even though I totally get it a part of me doesn't want to because he never did replace those peanuts. It sounds so petty, but I know it's not, and I'm glad to see here that there are plenty of women who know that these things are not petty.


Ok, I've been lurking for a month or so now. This made me cry b/c it hit home. And like many others, I feel the need to comment, because shit, apparently this is a daily occurence. And why the hell not?! I am in total agreement with Kara and all those who agree with her. I appreciate the comments about hanging in there, but what else are you going to do? Of course you hang in there, this is a normal thing, and you don't end it all over a damn burrito incident!

My situation: I am the breadwinner of the home, but I make half of what my husband made in his cushy government job (Jason, engineer). I experience extreme guilt, daily, over the financial strapedness I have induced on our family. He quit his job to move with me across the country to take a job, so that I could finish the last little bit of my training as a psychologist. I am called doctor, I am expected to act like doctor, I work like a doctor, but I get paid like McDonald's manager because I need to earn more supervised hours before I can get licensed and make real money. (10 years of college; 1000s of hours of clinical training don't get me started.) So is my husband a saint for letting me follow my dreams and suporting me? Of course he his. Does he constantly make the same stupid mistakes that apparently all men make? Absofuckinglutely, and I get mad at him for it. And I will not apologize. And godammit, flowers are not good enough. I would prefer that he not make the same mistakes over and over again! We've been together 12 years; I speak clearly my requests (demands?). Listen already!!!

We have a 3 year-old and I am 11 weeks pregnant. 11 weeks-pregnant-with-random-food-aversions-and-I-am-so-tired-because-I-am-pregnant-and-I-work-40+-hours-per-week-and-oh-yeah-my-husband-has-been-unemployed-since-last-October. Our daughter goes to pre-school, 5 days a week when she's not sick with the random crud going around school. He stays home, he cooks (ok, he grills), he does laundry (and has shrunk every wool sweater I own and faded all black pencil skirts),and he cleans. He's wonderful and I love him more than anything, but he will still piss me the fuck off. And after I have spent a day listening to people complain about their pitiful lives that they will make no effort to change, all the while trying to not puke because someone is eating tuna down the hall for the 4th time this week, the last thing I need is to find out that he shrank one of the last remaining things I can wear over my disproportionately huge gut and have him make a comment about how he hasn't see the couch in a month because I fall asleep on it at 8pm every night.

Burritos and the like are simply a catalyst to bigger things. I listen to men bitch about their wives and their "petty" complaints, and I spend a good deal of time trying to help them understand that it's not about X. And that their wives bring up things in the past because (1) we don't forget, and (2) they are still important because they haven't been settled yet, (3) and they continue to replay themselves over and over again. I have a theory that once men go to sleep, they feel that all issues of that day are officially done. Like some sort of testosterone-induced amnesia. Or like Drew Barrymore in that movie, 50 First Dates. They think differently than we do (there's research on that), but you know what, humans can (and they do) learn (there's lots of research on that). You can only explain things so clearly before it becomes their problem. And you, like everyone else in the world, are completely free to feel whatever emotion you feel at a given moment. Pregnant or not; female or not. Emotions don't just happen spontaneously. There's a cause for every response. You are ahead of the intellectual and emotional game because you get that it's not just about a burrito; it's about all the other shit. You can voice it to him - great. Does he truly get it? Probably not, but he listened and hopefully it will sink in bit by bit. Flowers and ice cream are a nice touch and appreciated, and that's what men are socailly conditioned to do, but it doesn't fix the issue at hand. Keep your dialogue open (like you already do), but directly ask him to respond to your clear requests. "Jason, I would like a burrito." Jason gets burrito. (Stimulus - response). The reward is that you don't lose your mind and strangle/kill him. Women want to be heard, above all else - not fed ice cream and given something else to take care of!

I need to shut up now. I feel your plight, and t is not an easy situation. Being a mother and a wife and a contributing (tax-paying) member of society is hard and will fill you full of guilt no matter what you do. Focus on your happiness, your sanity, your balance - guilt free. When #1 is happy, everyone else benefits.


I had the exact argument with my husband two nights ago in reverse. Except it was pizza vs. italian sausage. But what we didn't spend on pizza he got to use to buy books.

I hate it when money is tight, too. Because I don't want to make those choices.


I gushed at the end of that. I so get like that. Cranky. Emotional. Angry. All for no reason, the knowledge of which seems to make it all even worse.

The flowers and ice cream were so sweet.


This was one of the best entries I've read on this site (loyal reader for 3 years!) It sounds like you and Jason have something really solid. I would like to disagree with the sentiment of some of the other comments, though. You weren't getting worked up "over nothing." Those issues you mentioned were very important. As a feminist, I am very glad that so many women bloggers are validating these feelings through writing instead of martyring their way through parenthood on unequal terms with their partners. Now it's time for everyone else to listen to you (mothers) and see what we can do about shifting these burdens!

Undomestic Diva

My husband, Candy Ass, and I are currently not speaking. It's been 4 days. We are in World War 3, fighting over the his, mine and ours.

HE works, so it's always HIS money. I don't work, so I have no money, yet everything that cost too much money in OUR house is MINE. As in, MY FAULT.

The bitch of it is that I want to work. I don't want to stay at home. And somehow, I'm supposed to feel bad about this too.



Four things:
(1) Sucky night, I'm sorry.
(2) Good husband, coming home early with snacks and gifts.
(3) Now I want a burrito (by myself).
(4) I will go click on all of your ads thisveryminute to make your advertising checks bigger.


sometimes, it's just hard. staying at home is such a mix of wants. i have to say, i never get flowers or ice cream. and he knows that flowers and ice cream are my love language.


Oh, Amy...I'm going to reiterate what the above 900 comments have said: baby, we have all been there. And I'm glad Jason tried to make up for his faux-pas. He's a keeper. Also, I am SO using "flip your shit" in a sentence every day for the REST OF MY LIFE. Fabulous.

Really, though. I gave up my $$ making career 10 years ago when my daughter was born. And while I wouldn't trade my time with the kids for anything, I so understand (especially lately) the god-there-is-no-money thing. The I-have-Noggin-on-the-brain thing. The my-contributions-do-not-have-an-hourly-rate thing.

You are awesome. Hang in there!


Just wanted to add that I think what Jason did was really sweet. Of COURSE he's not perfect, and the ideal thing would have been to bring home a burrito the night before (I have low blood sugar, and I'm pregnant; I actually started to feel that panicky crazy hungry as I was reading this post). But I imagine that, for a lot of guys, trying to be sensitive to their wives' emotions and needs is something like trying to drive from Alaska to Brazil without a road map, passport or even a knowledge of the various languages. He's going to get lost, run out of gas, have to stop and ask for directions, and get hung up at customs. The fact that he's trying to learn the language and willing to make course corrections when they're needed should count for something.

I don't always understand my husband, either, and some of the stuff that he gets really worked up about goes completely over my head. I've been insensitive to his guy-brain issues on thousands of occasions. Given Amy's past posts about Jason, I think we can safely give him the benefit of the doubt.


I'm finally delurking to say that you put me in tears. I'm not even pregnant and Jason's attempt to make right the wrongs of the previous evening was very touching. I do have to say that I ate Chipotle just about every day while I was pregnant. It was also the only meat I was able to stomach. There's just something about those darn burritos. Keep the chin up girl!


This hit home so, so hard. I could have written it, if I had any talent and wasn't so afraid/ashamed of saying these things publicly. In a shitty way, this whole thing kind of reassured me -- see, I'm not the only one whose life goes this way! Even smart, successful women I look up to get into ridiculous fights about "power disparity" and "lack of respect" over reall trivial things! And then I went right back to thinking about how much it sucks for you to go through this -- and how much it sucks for me to go through it -- and it was all one big circle of holy-shit.

You're a really awesome woman, Amy, and I'm sorry that the suck is sort of increasing right now. I hope it slows down and stops, soon; I hope things get better for you.


You should add a "y" to that comment. I think you'll see where it goes. ;)

Must Be Motherhood

You are not alone in ANY of this--the wacko pregnancy hormones ampliphying (sp?) all the normal stuff + the spouse who can't understand the all-day-with-a-toddler life and doesn't appreciate that you would give your left toe for a drink at a forced-work cocktail hour that goes too late.

Thanks for voicing all of this. You rock.


Thank You. I seriously cried while reading this. You can add me to the list of "Stay at home mommies" who actually work from home, but get very little pay for the amount of time they spend on the computer. The line about "watching him grow up in front of you from over the top of your laptop" part got me. That's how I feel most days..even now as I type this I have a 5 month old nursing in my arms.
I guess I just wanted to say, I get it. I get that it wasn't just about burritos, and you handled the situation far better than I have in the past. This is seriously why you are my favorite writer..and YES, you are a writer. Can I just tell you I have your blog entries printed out and organized by date so it reads like a book? It's my favorite book ever. :-)


I totally get it. I'm pregnant too and I seriously felt your pain when I read that he came home without a burrito. Seriously?? I would have lost it. And I'm not sure we're that crazy. You asked for a damn burrito and he should have brought you the damn burrito. It's not that damn hard to follow some damn directions. Oh, I just would have lost it.

Kerri Anne

I'm a big fan of arguments that end in chocolate ice-cream.

Hang in there babe. And congratulations! on the book, too.


Love this post. it made me cry. I love how human and honest you are. I've felt all that--so nice to see someone else put it out there so I know I'm not alone.


So many of your readers have voiced my appreciation, I'm here to 100th it! I think there needs to be a general rule that the partner should ALWAYS bring ready to eat food home when there's an inkling of lateness, distress in the works. Seriously, almost all of the fights that lead to the money, respect, or division of labor paths are due to low blood sugar. Unfortunately, when lack of food is blamed for my mood I get irate over the belittling of my feelings.


I think every mom has had those feelings at one (or one thousand) point or another. I get so cranky when my blood sugar drops. You're doing the best you can. Things are uncomfortably tight for so many people these days.

I've gone into hysterics for less when I'm not pregnant.

Am I the only one who notices that the dishwasher needs to be emptied (or filled, or run)? Am I the only one who notices that the toddler has overturned the baskets and bins of toys? AGAIN! What is it with toddlers needing every toy strewn all over the floor? Am I the only one who can distinguish between a musical instrument and a Lego and a plush toy in order to put them away properly?

It will get better, and then it will get worse again, and then it will get better. And then your youngest will go off to college and you'll wonder where the years went and you'll forget all about that night in your first trimester of your second pregnancy.

I hope tomorrow is a better day! For both of us.


Pregnant or not, when I get my mind set on something to eat then THAT IS WHAT I WANT. Period. And "pick something up" at our house means burritos. It has always meant burritos, yet last week a pizza walked into my house. Excuse me! As for the SAHM $ guilt...yep...always. You can't put a price on staying home to raise your child, but you can put a price on other people doing it for you and it isn't cheap.


OH MY GOD is everyone hating their husband this week? I had a similar sort of problem, except mine didn't come home until the next day. Jerk off. So when he got home, I left my daughter with him and spent about a million dollars at the spa and SUGGEST YOU DO THE SAME. You will feel sooo much better. Just don't be like me and expect pajamas and a fed kid when you get back. Or a house that isn't trashed.


Wow. It's nice to know I'm not the only one. Virtually everything you wrote about has happened to me (and really what is it about the bedtime, anyways?) Hang in there.


Hi Amy,

I can absolutely relate to the pain you describe...

But I wanted to say something regarding your financial issue. It looks like you have one of the most popular sites out there. You should be able to capitalize on it. I see that you have added ads, and I don't know if that's working well for you...

But what about a PayPal donation button? Sort of like the one has. (Check at the bottom of his articles.)

Cause people come here and read your writing, and we all enjoy it, and get something out of it, and maybe sometimes we wouldn't mind sending some cents and dollars your way :) Sort of paying for the fun...

Do look into it. You ARE WORKING. I couldn't write so much with such quality if I was paid to do it.

PS: Men don't understand bedtime. Mine keeps my son up till midnight! But of course, he's at work during the day, and I enjoy the results :)


My husband would have come home with the Chipotle in hand. And he would not have been late.

I don't appreciate him nearly enough.

Caroline Gutierrez

It is bad enough that men don't cater to our every whim on a regular basis. Not to do it while we are carrying their spawn is a sin. There must be some sort of petition about this.


My husband keeps me well fed. He knows he risks waking up in the middle of the night with me gnawing on his leg if he does not.


Without sounding stalkerish I think we'd be great friends. Helps that you keep saying the things that my brain and mouth say :D Not sure why they sound so much better when you say them though LOL.

Oh and I have had that same day at least one time during each of my 3 pregnancies...including the chocolate/ice cream ending :)


Delurking, eventhough I totally hate that word, to say I FEEL YOU LADY. BEEN THERE DONE THAT. also. AM NOT PREGNANT. So i'm just crazy in the head. *sigh*


It never fails... just when you feel like they just DON'T GET IT AT ALL, either that or they DON'T CARE, AT ALL... they go and do something completely thoughtful. I'm pretty sure that's the male instince that keeps the species alive.


Thank you for writing this post. It's strange.. it is our/my? choice for me to stay home. And for some reason, because it's a choice, every day should be easy and good and wonderful. And I should be bouncing with joy when he gets home. But I am usually starving and unable to communicate or cook because of that. And we fight over food. But as you described, it's not just about the burrito.


You know what? Sometimes when I'm feeling to terribly misunderstood and unappreciated by my husband, I have thoughts like, "I get Amalah [or fill in numerous examples of other friends, acquaintances or bloggers who are slightly older and at least a few years more experienced at this marriage thing than I] never feels like this."

And then I read stuff like this entry, and it makes me feel all... NORMAL.


Ahhh - it's nice to know that I'm not the only one who acts like a crazy lady. The attention Dooce and other "mommy-bloggers" (I use that term with deep affection and admiration) have gotten over the past few weeks (I live in the same city as Heather Armstrong and she has been on every local channel -- including PBS) drives home the point that you are making, I think. It is hard, hard, hard work to be a mom. It is lonely work. It is physically demanding work and when you add a pregnancy hormone cocktail (or in my case perimenopause) to the mix it can seem nearly impossible. I've been married for 18 years to a really terrific man and we have four great kids, but I still have days like the one you described. They are, thankfully, getting fewer and farther between. Only now I feel like getting getting in the car and driving straight to Mexico instead of just to Chipotles.


I have so been there, Amalah. Especially with the composing eloquent tirades of self-righteous anger in my mind (they never come out the same way) and I have retreated to the shower or bathtib so many times to get my head (and heart) sorted out. I think I took a shower everynight when my husband got home from work after I had my second (of 3 boys!) Hang in there. And find ways to treat yourself - cheap ways (my fave is drive through to get coffee or a donut or twleve and then read or listen to the radio in the parking lot)- and DO them regularly! My husband says it's best for everyone when Mommy is happy - and he's right!



It's hard regardless. If you work the hard issues are about having to work and still do most of the parenting. If you don't work the the hard issues are about not contributing financially and doing most of the parenting. You're damned if you do and damned if you don't.

I'm sorry though. At least he's trying to understand.



I'm crying for you.


Sometimes you have to wonder if the guy would pass the best girlfriend test. Would a best girlfriend leave you hanging if you asked her to pick up something specific for dinner? Show up late without calling? Break the bedtime rules she knows your kids live by? Make you feel like your work was any less valuable if it was work done without a paycheck?

Or, in reverse, would the guy treat his best client the same way that he treats you?

Just a reminder about how to treat the people and things you find worthwhile can help....


IT WAS THE FULL MOON! I'm 7 months along with my first - and since i'm doing it myself - during my bawling irrational meltdown, I went to Home Depot at 7am and bawled to Tony the bbq thing I know, I had my own personal shopper - when I dropped my first load off at home and came back Tony was waiting ("i'm worried about you - I'm not hitting on you') to help me with round 2 and guide me to the coffee. As I told my friend the story last night we looked up at the sky and saw the full we're blaming it on that!


Oh man. Long-time lurker, maybe commented once before? I just have to say, I read Lawnchair's comment about Tony the bbq salesman and that just made my whole day. How adorable. And trust me, you aren't the only one who has cried to a retail store employee...hooo boyyy.

Miss Britt

Oh Amy.

I want to hug you right now for making thousands of women feel not so alone. Not so horrible. Not so damned guilty.

We? Get it.


Oh my goodness, you are so articulate. You just articulated practically all the same sentiments I've been feeling lately...and esp. since yesterday. Even your inflections and vehemence points at all the right places. Groan, it is so difficult being the Mom who by default (b/c of being the Mom) has to deal with, execute, direct, micro-manage, macro-manage just frickin' everything-manage all the time. I'm not pregnant but I do have twin two-year-olds...and, in my case...I do work fulltime but STILL do most all the work and all the directing and all the social-organizing and etc....always ME. Why is it like this? And, fiscally-speaking, I make double the salary (actually, more than double the salary) my husband does but I STILL STILL STILL always end-up having to be the household "director" all the time and by default. I don't mind..really, I don't..being the director at times but why do I have to be the director ALL the time....? Why is by default always me? Is it just because I can't do some of the big heavy-lifting kind of projects we always have going on at our house so thereby I end-up being the baby-watcher/household manager while my husband gets to escape (yes, escape the tough times) to work on his "projects" all weekend? Well, I have projects too. It's just the whole demeanor of expectation that pisses me off and seemingly (yeah, right) befuddles my husband. ARGGH. My biggest pet peeve is when my husband says ti me "Can I help?" after watching me struggle, vent, fume, sweat, and haul the children around as they are both having temper tantrums at the same time....)..."Um, what!!?? Can you help?? Well, what do you think?!!!!

And, the fact is is that my husband really is a good fella but this one thing...this thing about me being the default household "Julie of the Cruise Ship director" just PISSES ME OFF. And, yes, I've spoken to him a zillion times and he just doesn't get it or refuses to get it.

ok, feel better now..thx for the vent opportunity


While I honestly could of cried when reading this, but I was also getting giddy saying "yes! yes! yes!" I'm not the only one!!!

My husband is the typical "nice guy" which is great until you want sympathy from your friends when he's an oaf...I continually hear "oh-dont complain - you've got it so good"

But when my daughter was 3mo I completely "flipped my shit" at a restaurant. All the seats were the tall bar stool chairs - not very convenient with an infant in a carrier and not at all private in case she woke up and I had to nurse. Some of my husbands friends were there though and he didnt want to leave. Me and the baby left and I never told my husband that I spent two hours bawling in my car over the injustice of it all...It wasnt just not being able to spend a night out like we used to, but also feeling like I was the only one who had to CHANGE, while he got to keep the same lifestyle.

I've often wondered if it was hormones that caused it or if the hormones just allowed me to express what I normally might have repressed - telling myself "oh I didn't want to go out anyway..."

Anyway...judging from the zillion comments this IS univeral - guess I'm not so special!


I am SO with you.


Well, stay at home moms are a little trapped. You are in a hostage situation with a kid at home and no food.

You can never predict how the fairy tale is going to go: sometimes your prince doesn't show up with the burrito, and sometimes...he does, only better in the form of flowers and chocolates!


I've been a fan for years, and have rarely commented, but I had to tell you that this post is probably my favorite. It is SO honest and SO articulate and SO eloquent. Just beautiful.
My husband is a prince, and it has always sounded like Jason is too. But even the good ones just don't fucking get it sometimes.


hey Amalah, I haven't commented in a while, but it's entries like this one that remind me what a great writer you are and why I started reading you in the first place. being single and a non-parent, I can't really relate to the exact situation (well, aside from the massive Chipotle craving issue, which I can't even blame on a baby, heh), but the honesty and raw emotion and articulate-ness of your thinking make your posts relatable to anyone.

cheers for you, and congrats on the book coming out! that is great.


Mimicking Jessica, "even the good ones just don't fucking get it sometimes." Entirely true. I have been in that place before (the 'corner booth')un-pregnant but still there and I am sorry that that happened and glad things have improved. Also, congrats on the book!


I just want to email this post every guy I know...


Is there an award for writing the perfect blog post? Because if there is, you should definitely get it for this one.


That is the best story I have ever heard.

You have such a way with words.

And such an honesty. It's great.


oh my god. I cried this weekend because I got home a few minutes before my husband, went to bed b/c I wasn't feeling well, and heard him come home and NOT come look for me for fifteen whole minutes! I eventually came into the living room sobbing about how he doesn't love his 30-weeks pregnant wife enough to figure out where the hell she is in our 850 square foot house (he said he figured I was in the bathroom). Apologies & sweetness all around after that. And then, I showed him a picture of the fabric I picked out to use to make curtains, dust ruffle, bumper, etc., for the baby's room. The same fabric that a swatch of has been sitting in our nursery for months, the same fabric swatch that I gave my aunt, who is already furiously knitting a matching blanket. And he, having no recollection of ever seeing or being told about said fabric, said - "I don't like that at all." WTF boy?!?! If you want the right to an opinion, listen to me when I talk to you! More crying, more heartfelt apologies, but does it have to be so hard sometimes? Gahhh!


ACK. I can't believe Jason had the nerve to say "What is your problem?" Like YOU were the one with the problem.

Were he my Jason, he would have been treated to a very long and VERY SHOUTY explanation. Or maybe I would have kept it short with an Oscar-worthy performance: "Oh, it's just that I'm feeling so lightheaded from hunger... did you enjoy your drinks out with your friends?... Oh dear..." *FAINT* *CRASH*


Is it bad that sometimes I do this and I am not pregnant :)

I can totally relate- esp the part about crying about something that isn't part of the matter at hand.


You have a great way with words. I think I'll print this out and just hand it to my husband the next time i can't put into words what my hormonally-ravaged and non-sensical pregnant self is trying to say through the tears.



NO PUSH PRESENTS?--wtf??!!??!

You need to start soliciting donations from your readers-now. The idea that you won't get a nice push present is just driving me crazy with rage!


Crying a little. So familiar.

But I love that you stormed out and actually got your burrito after all. I would have walked around the neighborhood barefoot getting mosquito bites, dirty feet and strange looks because I would have forgotten the keys and would have been too stubborn to go back in... oh wait. That did happen.

But all of it. Even the missed bedtime, no brushed teeth, attempt to reconcile and understand, and crazy leap to another thing that was making me sad - we've been through all of it. Sucks to be there, but feels better to know others are there sometimes too.


We are in the exact same financial situation right now and my ass gets equally chapped when talking to my husband about money and who earns more of it or when he gets home later or forgets to stop and pick up things like toilet paper. I gave him an heir and a spare. That's PRICELESS. Except I can't take that and buy bread with it and it frustrates me.

All I can say is that you're not alone and I hope that's somehow comforting!


I am going to be 40 this summer, had a hysterectomy two years ago after having four children. I hate to tell you this, but I still have days like the one you just had. We seem to carry the weight of the world- and men just don't seem to "get" that. I am returning to teaching after 11 years of being home. The financial freedom that is giving us is worth it- but I wouldn't take back those 11 years of being with my kids for anything- even vacations. This too shall pass- keep your chin up!


I get it. I really, really do.


Hi! You are not crazy! I would have taken my husband's head off if he had come home with something for ME to cook (at 8pm) while I had expressly asked for a take-out burrito. Pregnant or not (and I am pregnant--he best not even THINK about not picking up that burrito). I'm glad Jason made up for it with flowers and ice cream, but girl, the way you reacted was so not 'crazy'.


I think every woman who is contemplating marriage and/or pregnancy should read this post. It really illuminates the consequences and outcomes that result when women make the choices they feel they have to make in today's world, and too often, women go blindly into these decisions without understanding what the potential emotional outcomes might be. I'm sure the good times can be especially good, but it's also fair for you to point out that the lows can really suck.

I do have to say that if I had been that hungry and in need of something that specific, I'd have probably packed up the kid in the car and gone to Chipotle myself. If hubby had gotten home while I was gone, burritos in hand, then we'd have bonus burritos for the next day. It's just easier and I found it reduces any passive-aggressive behaviour on both our parts in cases like this one.


Amy, thank you for your post. I'm neither a SAHM or pregnant, but man have I felt exactly that way before... In fact just this weekend. Except that is was my husband calling from Italy on a work trip that I was supposed to go on talking about Rome and how wonderful it was; while I got to talk about how gosh I got to mow the (huge!) lawn, clean the house, etc, etc, and now he's too tired to talk for more than a few minutes and it's all about his time seeing the sights?!

So, thank you for making me feel not so alone in my frustrations and aggravations. I'm glad that you and Jason can talk about it - even if it is after a blow up. The flowers and ice cream are nice, but don't mean much if you don't feel heard. Keep on writing! I too am off to click on some advertising. :)

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