I’m doing everything I can and it’s not enough.

People I invite into my home know. There’s yesterday’s mac and cheese still stuck to the chair. There are clothes that still need to be folded. There’s something on the floor—there always is—and the house smells a bit like a 3-year-old being potty trained.

But I can’t clean it yet because I need to nurse a baby, help my first grader with his schoolwork, make dinner, feed and walk the dog, paint the cabinets, etc., etc., etc.

I’m stretched so thin I could break.

But I don’t.

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You know why? Because I’m the mom, and I’m holding this pirate ship together.

I don’t have help from family, I don’t have money, and what I get is largely judgment.

I don’t need a class on how to organize or clean or parent.

I don’t need more work and responsibility.

I don’t need a lecture.

I don’t need criticism.

I don’t need that—at all.

I need help.

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If you come over and the chairs are sticky, you can wipe them down for me.

If the kids are whiny, you can feed them snacks or play a game.

If the dog jumps up on you, throw him a stick.

If the laundry is covering my bed, you can help me fold it.

If you want to help paint the pantry, you can!

If you want to bring me a meal, I will let you.

If you can drive the kids to practice, all the better.

And if there’s tension between me and my husband, you can babysit the kids.

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There are so many things you can do to help, but criticizing, judging, complaining, or exercising any type of unempathetic behavior is not it.

I need help, not judgment.

You would not believe how hard I work to keep this house and family together.

So, if you want to say you did it better, great. Roll up your sleeves and show me how great you were at parenting and cleaning and making money and homemade bread for the neighbors and all that other crap we have on our plates.

I promise you can be there for me without judging.

Originally published on the author’s Facebook page

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