The story of what happens when a mom goes on strike hit the Today show, highlighting the length that Calgary, Alberta, mother Jessica Stilwell went to teach her children some responsibility.
Her decision was spurred by a weekend spent with her children, 12-year-old twin girls, a 10-year-old daughter and a foster baby she was caring for temporarily. After the house became trashed over the weekend, the mom quickly realized that none of the mess belonged to her, so she sought to teach her kids a lesson.
Stilwell did the essential things, like cooking, packing lunches, and sorting laundry, but stopped doing her children’s chores.
As Today reported, when mom goes on strike, things stop in the home:
“As the days went on, the house got messier and the family ran out of clean dishes (except for mom, who washed a single plate, glass and set of utensils for her own use). Meals were being served on paper Christmas plates and juice sipped from red Silo cups”
The mom strike wasn’t meant as a punishment but instead a lesson, Stillwell wrote on her blog:
“I have GREAT kids. I mean, they are really cool little people and I am very proud of them for a multitude of reasons. And kinda proud of myself that I built them… I want to give them the world. But as I rush around everyday working with other parents and other families [in her job as a social worker], I realized I was doing my own children a dis-service. I was setting them up for failure. I fear we are raising a generation of young people whose attitudes will be ‘What are you going to do for me?'”
The decision for mom to go on strike didn’t come with a big proclamation, The Huffington Post noted. Instead Stilwell just walked off the job, telling only her husband. Her daughters noticed by the second day, she said.
“Today she [daughter Peyton] sat down for dinner and looked at the soggy cereal in her spot and exclaimed ‘EWWWWW, what is THAT??’ As she pushed the bowl towards me, I simply said, ‘Why that looks like your breakfast my love” and I walked away.”
The mom goes on strike decision lasted six days, Stilwell wrote. Her daughters began blaming one another for the mess so mom gave in and told them about the strike. They had mixed reactions, one finding it hilarious and another getting angry, but they all thanked her for the work she did around the house.
Have you ever considered a “mom goes on strike” movement in your house?