Before you start reading this post just want to tell you that this might sound like a rant post, well, because I had it enough and this is my way of conveying my thoughts to everyone.
I have worked in a corporate world for more than a decade and now I am a stay at home mom for almost 2 years. No matter how much we preach to bring women empowerment unless we agree to take our partner as an equal there is nothing that will change. These are the statement that I have heard from an educated bunch of ignorant (from both the genders)
- “I go to the office and work from Monday to Friday while she stays at home, am I suppose to take care of a kid on weekends now? I thought I married a housewife!”
- “You will teach household chores to my boy? are you trying to train him to be a housewife?”
- “Now you don’t go to the office but you still have house help, why?? “
I never understood the term or definition of a housewife. I am a wife but what’s the term housewife?? Sounds like I am married to a house (pun intended). This stupid thought made me do a google search and this is what the definition of a housewife is “a married woman whose main occupation is caring for her family, managing household affairs, and doing housework.” Okay, so doing housework is a mandate if I want to be qualified of being called a “Housewife”
I spoke to a dear friend and she said well there are house-husbands as well. There is a term called house-husband and here is the definition as per google search “a man who lives with a partner and carries out household duties traditionally done by a housewife rather than going out to work.” I swear, this made me chuckle. “Lives with a partner” (not married?), “Household duties” (not caring?), “rather than going out to work” (not doing housework?)…..seriously???
Okay, I might be overanalyzing the definitions but seriously, am I the only one who thinks this sounds just a tad bit unfair. Before you start printing feminist board to be pasted on this post, I want to tell you a conversation that sparked this thought in my head. Although feminism is one of the most misunderstood terms nowadays, if you understand its true meaning or essence then I am definitely a feminist.
I got a call from an old colleague of mine, with whom I worked in an office set up for some years before I willingly and happily owned a tag of a housewife or a stay at home mom. To give you the gist of the conversation, “friend” called in to check how my life has changed post I decided to “sacrifice” my career and sit at home to be with my kid. I would not have written this down had I not witnessed this situation before as well. I am going to try burst few myth bubbles of all the men or women who need a little “Gyaan” on how society decides life for me:
Housework is mandatory to be qualified to be a housewife
I hate or absolutely detest mopping, sweeping, cleaning utensils, scrubbing toilets, doing laundry or anything else on the same line and yet I am a housewife. What is defined as a housework in my house and who would do it is my decision, please take your nose back, it was found in my personal matter.
Your Husband has spoiled you
Going by these people’s imagination, I lie down on a sofa and eat exquisite quality of grapes while my house help gives me a foot massage and my toddler sings a melodious song for me. POP! There goes your bubble, welcome to reality. I have a toddler at home who is currently mom-obsessed and it is impossible to get time to pee in peace. I have a house help and no, I don’t think my husband has spoiled me. (Seriously? That’s your definition of spoiling a woman then I feel pity for your loved ones)
Cooking food for your family is your job
I love cooking when I don’t have to do it every day and it is not a mandate. I cook meals as and when I want to or my family wants me to. Whether the food served on a plate is cooked with my pious hand every day or not is again is not something “you” should be worried about.
What do you do all day
No, I don’t go to the office but it doesn’t mean I sit at home all day long. I am not going to list the things I do all day long because guess what, there is no need for it. What do I do all day is a question that you shouldn’t be asking anyone because you are not entitled to it unless you are not earning and feeding me, so to say.
Working in the office from Monday to Friday is challenging I agree, but so is managing the house. As much as you are entitled to a weekend break, so is your partner. The only way you can be equal is when you believe in it and genuinely work for it. This is what feminism is all about, giving equal importance to both the genders.