A woman is undoubtedly the most powerful creature of God. Most of the time, a woman herself remains unaware of the potential she has. She can do much more than she thinks she can. Her potential is infinite.
There is not a single profession where women have not shown their worth. In fact in some of the areas they excel over men. A woman is capable of managing and balancing both her professional and personal life in most efficient way. A woman possess super managerial skills and is best in balancing everything.
A woman has shown her worth everywhere. But, even today, Whenever it comes to doing household chores, in most of the Indian households the task still falls on the womenfolks.
Even in the families of well educated people with conservative mindset, the family members believe that doing household chores is the duty of a daughter-in-law and they put the load of never ending expectations on her. And when she fails to match their expectation, it leads to marital discord and mental stress.
Studies have shown that men do not share household chores even when a women is in better economic position than man. In most of the Indian families, the mentality is that the basic household chores is the responsibility of the women of the house; men’s participation in such “mundane tasks” is considered to be a taboo. There are even beliefs like ,if men touched the broom, Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, would vanish from home. This sounds funny but this is the reality in most of the Indian houses.
Men are considered to be the breadwinner of the family and this gives them the privilege to escape from all the basic household responsibilities. Men’s work is restricted to monetary tasks and earning money for the family. On the other hand, even if the woman of the family is an earning member, they are merely associated with the term “Breadwinner”. Rather she is given the tag of contributor and this downplays the importance of her work.
These things are being continued since ages and still in 21st century, things have not changed. Women equality, Women Empowerment , Women Health etc., are the big terms to talk about but these terms will never become successful at the ground level when each one of us, both men and women, will not understand the need to share and distribute the responsibilities.
If each individual in the family does their basic part, and looks after themselves, women too will have better lives. In most of the households, the men are not even taught to keep their unclean dishes in the sink, to get a glass of water for themselves, to make a cup of tea for themselves, to keep their things at place, to pack their own travel bags etc. Handling these little things, is also a responsibility of the woman in the house, either mother, sister or wife.
Even when a baby is born in a house, managing and handling all baby tasks comes in the plate of mother. Most of the things are being looked after by mother. When a couple becomes parent, everybody talks about the motherhood, but what about the fatherhood? Father should equally contribute in managing all father duties. There is nothing a father can’t do for a baby (except breastfeeding off course).
All these things are very infuriating. What values we will convey to our upcoming generations when we ourselves are not balanced and taught well. Children learn equally from a mother and a father. They learn what they see. By default, they see their mother doing all the chores at home, and they develop the mentality that it is her duty to do so. On the other hand, if they get to see that both mother and father sharing the household chores, they will also understand that everybody in the house has certain responsibilities and should never hesitate or escape from doing their duties.
Change indeed begins at home and one step towards that is to involve the entire household in chores and treat house work like everyone’s responsibility. Each one in the house should contribute and do their bits. When a house belongs to all, the house responsibilities also belong to all. Why only the women of the house should work day and night towards fulfilling the needs of the family, to maintain the hygiene and cleanliness at home. The man of the house should set an example for their kids, by equally contributing in household chores. These should not be considered as the matter of shame and inferiority. Also this is not something to feel proud of. Doing household chores is the life skill and everyone should be able to do it. Children should be taught to take pride in domestic work and not treat it like a burden.
Without any gender bias, we should teach our girls, as well as our boys, all the chores like cleaning, dusting, cooking etc. Cooking and cleaning is the basic life skill and not a gender role. We should groom our kids in such a way, that when they grow up, they are capable enough to take care of themselves, their needs and necessities, without depending on anyone else and thus forms a better living environment. Sharing the workload at home is important because we all should be able to take care of ourselves and the people we care about. There should be equal distribution of the chores at home and divide the work between all, including kids of the family (of course based on their capability and age). We should groom our children to become good and responsible human beings.
A home is the fulcrum of our lives and a peaceful place where we create memories and weave dreams together. It should be balanced with the efforts of each one living in the house.
So its high time, to start the conversation, and extend a helping hand and set the right examples for society at large. A good partnership and shared load at home leads to productive completion of domestic tasks, good sleep, better physical and mental health, and a fulfilling career, because at the back of our mind, we know that we have each-other’s equal support on domestic functioning when we are back home. A single person don’t have to worry about wholesome responsibility. And in this way, our house truly becomes a happy and peaceful place to live in.
Hope you find this article thoughtful and worth reading.
Thank You for your time!