Is Hiring Domestic Help Too “Uppity” for Black Folks?

3 Comments
September 11, 2013 ‐ By CAP

When it comes to hiring help around the house, I am very much so about that life! Working 50 hour weeks can make for a messy bathroom and disheveled bedroom. IMO, me and my husband are in need of someone to pick up our slack when it comes to cleaning, but we still have yet pull the trigger. My husband finds it unsettling to hire someone to do what we can do ourselves, especially ordinary housework. It seems as though he harbors a since of guilt imagining someone scrubbing our toilets and mopping our floors when we are two able-bodied folks that can do this work ourselves.

As of late, I have been wearing him down. I think when it comes to this subject, black people who can afford to hire help may shy away from the idea as an attempt to avoid feeling like the slave drivers that forced our ancestors to do harsh and menial chores. But the major difference between our ancestors and folks we hire to de-grime our households is cash flow.

According to the The New York Times, some specialty domestic laborers can make upwards of $100,000! So your hired help could actually be making more money than yo. And there is no shame in that!

I also understand that when we get our “fancy” jobs we hope to remain humble and hiring help doesn’t seem the least bit modest. Wrapping our minds around this concept may take some getting used to, but hiring a person eager to assist is actually a win-win situation. You are providing a person with gainful employment and reducing your own stress and workload. In some cases hiring help can save you money by allowing you to free up time to focus on other business endeavors.

The way I see it, there’s little difference between hiring a maid and paying someone to prepare your food at a restaurant, paying a gardener, or hiring movers. These are all tasks that you could do yourself, but when you don’t feel like it, you call on a professional for their assistance. Hiring someone to clean is no different.

In addition, if you can afford the additional cost, you shouldn’t feel like you’re trying to imitate the Trumps. Most cleaning services can be affordable and, according to Angie’s List, the costs can be broken down by hour, per visit, or room size.

All of your qualms may be completely unwarranted. So don’t let the thought of hiring help increase your stress, when it is meant to reduce it.

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  • Yvonne Watkins

    If you were required to clean up as one of your chores when you were a child, then you know the values it can give. If you have children old enough, they should be the ones doing the cleaning. Never having to clean up after themselves makes for some selfish, entitled brats. YOU clean your personal space though. A little bit every day goes a long way. However, if you are all adults, hire someone to come in a couple times a week. It’s a win, win situation.

    • MsLadyE

      I totally agree. Giving your children chores teaches them responsibility and a good work ethic. BOTH boys and girls should learn how to cook, clean, do laundry, and iron. It bothers me when children don’t clean up after themselves because they assume that Momma will do it for them. NEWSFLASH–Momma’s not going to be around to clean up after your lazy butts for the rest of your life.

  • FashionBaby

    I am a divorced mother with 2 small children and a full time job and building a business at home with a debilitating disease. I don’t have a problem at all with hiring someone to help clean up. I make sure I give tips and bake cookies. Always being humble and gracious. And letting them know I appreciate their help.