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Dangerous resentment levels started to build - lockdown burnout forced me to finally ask my husband for help around the house

Working from home, keeping the house ticking over, and home-schooling my children became too much. So I finally asked my husband to help — and we’ve found a new, more equal way to parent

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Emma Murray, with her husband Sam and daughters Ava (10) and Anya (8), at home in London. Photo: Jonathan Goldberg

Emma Murray, with her husband Sam and daughters Ava (10) and Anya (8), at home in London. Photo: Jonathan Goldberg

Emma Murray, with her husband Sam and daughters Ava (10) and Anya (8), at home in London. Photo: Jonathan Goldberg

As mums, most of us are used to the daily juggling act — the school run, the laundry, the dinner, the shopping, the homework, the dreaded class WhatsApp group, and that’s just for starters. Centuries of women as the primary carer in the home has instilled a sense of duty and expectation which puts the pressure on us to cover all the bases. And although women have made great strides in the workplace over the years, for many of us work is just yet another addition to our endless list of domestic responsibilities.

I hadn’t given any of this too much thought until lockdown happened earlier this year. I was used to working during school hours, balancing my job with all the domestic chores. I’ve been working from home for many years, so it was easy to run downstairs and switch on the washing machine, or throw something together for dinner during my work break. I was lucky — I had a lifestyle where I could juggle everything, managing to keep all the balls in the air for the most part. It was probably the best juggling act anyone could possibly hope for under the circumstances.


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