Dear Boom (may I call you “Boom”?),
When I was a girl, I thought you were so fancy and handsome with your ultra-blonde feathered hair, your barely there mustache and your nifty Bengals uniform. I actually told someone in a note folded like Origami that I passed in ninth grade Latin class that you were my favorite football player (true story).
No offense to your quarterbacking skills, but it was pretty much because I thought you were cute.
At that time in my life I didn’t know jack crap about football. But now, I’m 37, the mother of two children (one of whom I birthed traumatically by c-section) and the wife of a retired professional football player.
So today, I think you’re a complete ass hat even though your hair is still so blonde (seriously…what’s that about?) And since I have a blog read by approximately 19 people, I will take the opportunity to tell you why you are a completely insensitive talk radio clown.
I would like to give you a few reasons for why your opinion on the matter of an MLB player taking 3 days (DAYS, dude, not YEARS) of paternity leave is utterly stupid and ass-y. I’m into making up words today because I’m so annoyed. So, yes, ass-y it is.
Number one: when was the last time you had a tiny person ripped from your abdomen? Oh, never? Yeah I was pretty sure the answer was NEVER. What’s that you say…? You’ve had shoulder surgery or ankle surgery or knee surgery…? That’s tragic. But major abdominal surgery involving an actual human (whom you just so happened to GROW in your body) being cut from your womb trumps sports injuries ALL. DAY. LONG. So that fact makes your flip suggestion that Mrs. Murphy could have had an elective c-section before the season started for the convenience of ticket holders, teammates or love of the game is at the same time ludicrous, selfish and irresponsible. C’Mon Man…(get it?)
Number two: Shame on you Boomer, as a former professional athlete, for not understanding the basic principle that athletes are actual PEOPLE. I have said this before and I’m sure I’ll say it again. Professional athletes aren’t just characters. You know that. These guys are sons, brothers, husbands and fathers FIRST. They play a sport for their JOB. It’s an awesome job, no doubt. It’s a high paying job for sure. But it’s not different, in principle, than being a mail man, an attorney or a doctor. And if these athletes have their heads on straight, they realize their priorities. This guy will be a baseball player for only so long. He will be a father forever. He’ll be able to say with all honesty that his child comes before his job. And I think he’s a pretty bomb-ass husband for having his wife’s back (and front) like that. He put his family first when given the choice. For those things, I applaud him.
So how is it different for Daniel Murphy to take the opportunity to be with his wife and new baby after childbirth than, say, the guy who picks up your trash or does your taxes? Right. It’s not. Which brings me to…
Number three: You tried to make the point that baseball is how Mr. Murphy makes his living, earns money and will be able to afford his child an education and a life of certain privilege. And that, my tow-headed pal, is true. But guess what. He is legally entitled to those three days (plus many more if you want to get technical about it) and his job is not in jeopardy. Which means neither is his family’s livelihood. And correct me if I’m wrong…but isn’t that also true for every other working father in the entire world, ever? I happen to know someone who is highly educated with a specialized (and I would argue “important”) job in the financial world who just went back to work after a four week paternity leave following the birth of his first child. I won’t share the specifics of that situation with you because, well frankly, it is none of your freaking business. Oh wait…neither is the decision made by Daniel Murphy, you Judgey McSelfishness. And this takes me right to the next thing I want to tell you…
Number four: Please tell your talk radio co-hort with the scratchy voice something important. He knows what they say about making ASSumptions, right? Yes, siree. He’s an ass too. He was using assumptions about the good health of the mother and baby on which to base his arbitrary judgement of the amount of days HE deemed appropriate to take off work in the event one’s wife experiences the miracle that is childbirth.
Get your head out of your badonk, my friend. You have absolutely NO EFFING CLUE what their medical situation was or even what their emotional situation was. Labor and delivery ain’t no kinda joke. And let’s, just for shits and giggles, pretend that everything did go according to plan and everyone was indeed “healthy”. Have you never heard of HORMONES? I will neither confirm or deny that this rage infested post has anything to do with the current level of hormones over here (not pregnancy ones, just to be clear), but in case you don’t know, hormones are a bitch on wheels. And postpartum hormones???? Fuhgettaboutit. That’s a level of irrationality that is simply unparalleled.
She might have just needed his support. His hand to hold. His shoulder to cry on. His face to punch. (Just kidding). And if that woman, a brand new mom in the first overwhelming hours of the hardest job she will EVER do, so much as needed her husband to push her IV stand to the bathroom while she changed her bloodied and crooked disposable mesh underwear (GAWD…I’m having flashbacks about those underwear and the icy pads that go in them) then by God, he should be granted the time to do that for her.
Not to mention that this fella may have just..gee, I don’t know…wanted to spend some time with his first born child and his bad-ass wife/baby vessel on this child’s first days on earth (call him crazy). Not one person should judge him for making the choice to do so.
Boomer, I want to give you the benefit of the doubt here, what with you being a father yourself and all. But you really screwed the pooch when you opened your mouth today.
I hear a lot of talk about deadbeat dad athletes and now you’re bashing a guy who makes a decision to be–what I think most rational people would consider–a responsible dad and supportive husband? In light of this, I would like to offer you some of my Visa reward points to get yourself a hotel room for when the woman who birthed YOUR children kicks your teeth into the back of your head, keys your fancy car and throws your suitcase on the lawn tonight.
That is, if you’re still married to her.
Good luck with all that mess.
All the Mothers
(**Post-script: I feel the need to clarify something. Fortunately, my husband was present at the birth of both of our daughters. The first one was born in the sweet spot of the off-season. For the second one, though, he did take a day off work. However, it wasn’t a game day. And in truth, I can’t tell you what choice we would have made had it been a game day. Maybe with the emergent and unexpected circumstances of her birth, he would have sat out a game but I don’t know the answer to that. The fact is, being an athlete comes with responsibilities and privileges alike. And not all athletes are present at the births of their children. That certainly doesn’t make them deadbeats. I respect the choice of athletes to do what is right for their personal situation. I wouldn’t judge a player for missing his child’s birth on a game day any more than I judge Daniel Murphy for taking advantage of his paternity leave. My point is that the public and media do not know people’s behind-the-scenes personal circumstances. Therefore, if a guy wants to be with his wife when she has a baby, that’s his right. Just as it is to make the decision to play a game the day after child birth).