Tired mom documents cleaning strike on Twitter and her experience is so relatable

March 26, 2021

What happens when a mom gets so frustrated with cleaning up everyone’s mess that she decides to go on strike? A mom on Twitter who goes by the name Miss Potkin has decided to find out. The mom has gone viral for a series of hilarious and relatable tweets tracking the events unfolding in her house after she decided to go on strike from cleaning, and other moms are cheering her on.

“Two days ago, I decided to stop doing the dishes,” the mom writes. “I make all the dinners, and I am tired of having to do all the cleaning too. Since then, this pile has appeared, and at some point they are going to run out of spoons and cups and plates. Who will blink first? Not me.”

The mom has kept her cleaning strike going over several days, and posted updates on the new struggles her family faces as they adjust to life without Mom doing everything. Instead of washing dishes, for instance, one of her family members resorted to making tea with a baby spoon.

There’s also a sausage rotting in a pan on the stove. “It’s been there for two days,” she writes in one update. “I can’t look at it because it’s turned the color of the man that washes up in 'Cast Away.’”

As the strike continues, the mom has also added other chores to her “not to do” list. She refuses to replace the empty toilet paper roll left in the bathroom or throw away the empty shampoo bottles in the shower. She’s also decided she won’t be the one to tackle the ever-growing piles of laundry.

The mom’s frustration is endlessly relatable for other mothers who are sick and tired of being the de facto managers of their households. In response to her tweets, others are sharing tales of their family’s unfolded laundry, dirty dishes and forgotten empty toothpaste tubes. Some even say they’ve carried out chore strikes of their own.

“I salute you,” one mom writes. “Later on I will send you a photograph of our odd sock mountain. I stopped pairing them months ago and, well, you can imagine the carnage…”

“I have three boys and my husband in the house with me,” another mom adds. “Some years ago when they were teenagers, I told them I was doing a test on them but wasn't going to tell them what it was. 10 toilet roll innards in the bathroom later, it clicked what that test was.”

Chore strikes may be an effective way to get the message across for some, but the issue remains that far too many people expect moms to bear the brunt of child care and household duties. A 2020 Gallup poll finds working moms are more likely than working dads to do almost all of the caregiving and household chores, except for yard work and car care. 

Even a global pandemic that’s forced people to stay home hasn’t led to a more equitable division of household labor. During a January 2021 Pew Research survey, 59% of women reported doing more chores than their male partners. The burden of pandemic childcare and learning has also fallen disproportionately on moms. A May 2020 survey by the nonprofit ParentsTogether found that of 1500 parents surveyed, 78 percent of moms with a male co-parent said they are managing the majority of their kids’ school-related tasks.

Ultimately, it took three full days for this Twitter mom’s partner to get the hint and take care of the growing mess in their home. 

Despite her snarky tweets, the mom says she isn’t mad that it took so long for someone to help out. Instead, she finds the whole saga funny, and she hopes her strike drives home an important point about the importance of sharing household work and appreciating moms.

“We keep our homes tidy because love,” she writes. “We cook food and set tables and fill the air with scents of roses and fresh laundry because love … You’re gonna have good days, bad days, and a lot of f**k it days, but people don’t like being taken for granted, especially by the ones they love the most. Period.

Tips and stories from parents and caregivers who’ve been there.

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