Today at CorporetteMoms we’re talking about the recent article from The Atlantic, which theorized that all of the extra childcare and household tasks will fall disproportionately on women and set back feminism significantly — please come join the discussion if you want! For those of you not concerned with childcare, though, let’s discuss here —
- if you’re partnered, do you feel at all like the extra household tasks, like the huge pile of dirty dishes, are disproportionately falling on you? (SO. MANY. DISHES.)
- If you’re an extrovert, how are you coping with the lack of people — particularly if you live alone?
- If you’re in a tiny apartment, are you going stir crazy?
- What ways are you finding to connect with family, friends and neighbors that you don’t normally do? Italy famously had neighborhood sing-alongs, and Lifehacker just suggested ideas for social-distancing scavenger hunts; on a smaller level, I saw one interesting threadjack here about how people had set up virtual game night using Jackbox, and another on how people are having Netflix parties. What else have you found?
- In general, how’s quarantine going?
My quarantine is going well. I am super busy and stressed but realize I have it easier than most. No kids at home, a secure job, good savings, pets to keep me company.
Question on the new leave law:
Can employers just lay people off now to avoid having to pay them leave come 4/1? If someone is already out on leave before 4/1, I understand the law is not retroactive but will they still be protected from 4/1 forward?
Honestly…fine. I (luckily) live alone. I haven’t gone crazy being cooped up in a studio apartment (yet). Mostly I’m just incredibly grateful that I have a job I can do from anywhere and I will continue getting paid. My area of work has picked up immensely, so that security helps immensely.
Mine’s going fine. I’m naturally super introverted, so the lack of having to be “on” for work has been nice. I’ve got enough work to keep me busy, and I’m the person who’s friend group is having virtual gamenights on Jackbox. It’s my husband’s weekly game group that they’ve invited spouses to, and we’ve expanded from weekly to two nights a week. I had lots of plans for my yard this spring anyway, so I’m mostly doing yard work on the weekends. I’ve lost a couple of pounds doing at-home HIIT workouts (BodyBoss, if anyone’s interested). I miss my horse and riding terribly. I am exceptionally glad I don’t have kids to try to entertain while WFH at the moment and feel for all of you who do.
Clients having drama. I worked until 1am. Got up at 6am. Glass half full: not getting fired. Glass half empty: and I have to home school for the rest of the school year.
I am really feeling second shift – responsible for all cooking (and meal planning), cleaning, and laundry. DH is doing some of the homeschooling, which is great. Still trying to keep up at work but the struggle is real!
I am really mad at my parents (who are over 70) right now. They are running errands, taking food to people, going to Costco (Eating those “samples”!), etc. I find this behavior to be really disrespectful of what everyone else is doing to slow the spread of the virus and protect at-risk people like them.
Costco is definitely not giving out samples and hasn’t for at least a couple of weeks now.
I’m sure grocery stores are not serving samples right now. Going to the store and running errands is kind of essential to life, no? And you can bring food to a friend while obeying social distancing guidelines. Maybe they are being “disrespectful” but what you’ve listed isn’t really disrespectful.
I feel confident my job and my husband’s will stick, which is a huge relief. I’m worried about exactly one relative not obeying the stay-home orders in their state. We have enough food. Supply chain to our town has been surprisingly consistent. My life is secure, and yet I still feel this low-level unrest that will.not.stop.
My husband’s job slowed down more than mine, and he got bored quickly, so he’s doing stuff around the house.
It’s going remarkably well considering I have a two year old. I’m lucky to have a very supportive partner who is more than pulling his weight when it comes to childcare and chores. And I’m “lucky” in that pre-pandemic I received a soft layoff notice for this summer due to a re-org. So while I’m working on time sensitive projects to keep things moving along and not burn bridges, I don’t feel any pressure to impress anyone or put in a full 40 hours. I’m obviously anxious about being unemployed and job-searching in a recession (depression?), but we are fortunate that we can live comfortably on my husband’s salary and since there’s not really anything I can do about my job at the moment, I’m trying to put it out of my mind for now and just be grateful that my day-to-day job is not demanding.
I’m also very grateful that my child is only 2. While it’s challenging from a childcare perspective at times (even with a screen she really can’t entertain herself for long periods of time), she’s absolutely thrilled about being home with her mom and dad and not sad or anxious about this situation at all. And she won’t even remember it when she’s older. So that’s a big relief to me.
I swing wildly between extremes. Either I feel like I’m handling everything well and am in a chipper, positive mood — or I’m filled with anxiety and have to slow down to cope. My life is as secure and stable as it can be, but several of my loved ones are not so lucky. I worry a lot about them and my community as a whole.
Report from Seattle
My quarantine is going pretty well. I am single and live alone. I have a job that can accommodate WFH and a bank account with 30 months of mortgage and tax payments in reserve. I bought some extra cleaning supplies and medicine the day after the news broke about the Kirkland nursing home hosting multiple COVID cases. I have slowly filled my freezer. I will need a few things like coffee in 2 weeks, but no big shopping necessary for a month.
I live in a quiet neighborhood with a small local market. I haven’t seen any shortage of supplies there, including thermometers, bleach, etc. It is surreal to read about people reporting bare shelves across the country – I think the big box stores cater to a certain type of customer that is probably more prone to stockpiling and other selfish tendencies. I have a new appreciation for living in a quiet area with respectful and reasonable neighbors.
Last weekend I become a foster parent to a 2 year old dog. I’ve always wanted a dog, and figured this was the perfect time. He is a lot of work, but we have fun and the distraction is fantastic for my mental health. We have a goal to take 10,000 steps per day.
This is how I’m doing:
Doing okay most days. As an extrovert, it’s really tough for me not to be around people (besides my husband). And I just found out I’m pregnant so that’s quite a wrench (and no it’s not a “quarantine baby”…been trying for years so I’m already not looking forward to those jokes…).
Congratulations on your pregnancy! Fellow extrovert here, I’ve found that FaceTime helps some but I hear you on the isolation being really hard.
My life hasn’t changed much except that I love grocery shopping and now it makes me anxious. My workload is as heavy as ever which I know I should be grateful for (plenty of client demand, getting a paycheck!, not on the front lines) but I’m so tired and a bit jealous of everyone whining about wfh boredom.
Quarantine is ok for us. Our kids are grown so DH has the study because he needs to be plugged into VOIP and I don’t. I have the kitchen table with wireless laptop, which I like because extra daylight and get to watch TV on low. I also have the desk in our son’s old room which I use for conference calls and extra thinking time when DH gets off work at 3. I bought a great stand-up desk for $36 from amazon last week that is fabulous, but DH has a terrible back problem, so I have a temporary standing desk set up (cardboard boxes) in my son’s room. I don’t have second shift problems because it’s just us. I am immuno-compromised so we are definitely staying home.
Seriously, how are there So Many Dishes!?!
I live with my boyfriend and dog (no kids). While it’s been nice not to be totally alone, this has been a huge strain on our relationship. We both very extroverted, but I usually have 10+ social engagements a week while he plays video games with friends 30 hours a week, so his social life hasn’t changed a lot but mine has drastically. That dynamic has been hard, plus we’re both generally feeling cranky and anxious right now.
On the work front, I’m worried I look like a slacker because even though we’re “encouraged” to work from home everyone else on my team is still going into the office daily (they’re men who don’t want to be home with their wives and kids).
This has also been a strain on our relationship. My husband and I are both working remotely, and are privileged to be able to do so, but he’s absolutely miserable at his job of 4 months, and it feels like there’s no end in sight (worst possible time to be job hunting). We’re also both cranky and anxious about what’s going on in the world, and his situation is making him really frustrated and angry. Now that there’s little separation between work and home, we’re feeling that acutely :(
We are doing just fine. I got laid off from my job last Friday but I have savings to last me a good long while, and I am eligible for unemployment. My also-unemployed partner had already been doing all the meal planning and most of the cooking because I’d told him I was tired of it (about a month ago) and he continues doing so as well as doing most of the laundry. I feel slightly guilty for not doing as much as he’s doing, but I’ll manage.
We are mostly staying home with outings on sunny days to parks for a little exercise. We have lots of books and DVDs to entertain us and we’re both introverts so we don’t miss other people too much.
Not bad, but I do miss “normal.” We were going to try to get pregnant and that’s been delayed at least a month or so until I can get back into the doctor, but I’m finding myself a bit glad we don’t yet have kids because I don’t know how I’d have them home and work (my co-workers with small children are going crazy). We did just move into a much larger house which has been great for our wfh situation, and this has allowed us a bit more time to unpack – just can’t move forward with some other projects. Both the husband and I feel pretty secure in our jobs at least and have savings. I’m channeling most of my anxiety to selling our old house – it normal times it should’ve sold instantly but it’s been on the market for a week.
Normally we split food chores a bit more, but for some reason I’ve been doing most of the cooking and dishes (so many!), though he has done a bit more lately.
I love quarantine. I work for a great company and like my coworkers, but I have never been really OK with being in an office all day. It just sucks the life out of me (the setting, the chaos and stress, the noise, the constant mixing with people, people looking for me for their neverending questions). I hate business attire, period. I hate the bullshit with handbags and style and keeping up and being on trend. Outside of work, I don’t even have to think about dragging myself to things I don’t want to go to – no lame evening meetings, no church!!!!. This is the best thing that has happened to me in a long time in terms of giving me a break from the exhaustion of being with other people, and the drag of life choices I could do without (and now WILL do without).
Working from home would be fine but for the expectation that I also need to be providing school for a kindergartener. I can’t just have him watch t.v. all day, and since it’s “spring break” (even though school has been closed for 2 weeks) he doesn’t have anything to do except for what my husband or I coordinate for / with him. Absent the kiddo I would be working 16 hours a day because my work is critical right now (trying to coordinate paid leave options include the new federal leave for a 50,000 person workforce) but its impossible for me devote that much time to work and everything is delayed because I can’t be as responsive as I want and need to be. My husband is in litigation and no deadlines have been waived / suspended so he’s going as crazy as I am. I don’t know how we’re going to manage if this goes on for months.
I’m the only person at my level with small kids and it wasn’t an issue until I lost childcare. Now important decisions are being made without me and I can already see how this looks on the other side – she wasn’t available, not a team player, didn’t make the sacrifices we all did, etc. etc.