“Few tasks are more like the torture of Sisyphus than housework, with its endless repetition: the clean becomes soiled, the soiled is made clean, over and over, day after day. The housewife wears herself out marking time: she makes nothing, simply perpetuates the present … Eating, sleeping, cleaning – the years no longer rise up towards heaven, they lie spread out ahead, gray and identical. The battle against dust and dirt is never won.”
― Simone de Beauvoir, The Second Sex
I definitely agree with Simone on this one, but the question is Are we passing on the prejudice of household 1nequality to the next generation?
YES and this comes more from the advertisements on television and the television serials. The hoarding on the street, our refusal to respect men who help their wives, yet we admire the same man when he does the laundry for his mother.
Why do 2 out of every 3 children think laundry is only a mother’s job? — Again because time and again it being reinforced by the media through the media of advertisement. See the detergent advertisement, Biwi se bolo to surf lagana.
Mom! Where are my fresh socks?’
‘Didi! Why didn’t you scrub my shirt’s collar? It’s still grimy!’
‘Dad! If you see mom ask her to keep my football uniform ready, I need it tomorrow!’
Coming to the three general “realities” that the prompt shares, well they are not reality that I have accosted in the 50yrs, that I walked the earth. My daughters did ask me where their socks were, until they learnt to pick and sort their laundry. My brother didn’t dare ask me to scrub his shirt collar, my parents would have taken him to task. My brother would never delegate a task to my dad, and neither do my kids, they might ask my husband for help to keep their uniform ready but ask to ask me.. they will ask me directly or if I am not there they will ask my husband. But ask my husband to ask me that is a NO-NO.
the research then gives me some statistics and asks me my take on it,
- 2 out of every 3 children think that laundry is mom’s job.
- 78% of the girls agree they need to learn to do laundry as they have to do it later.
- 81% married men in India agree daughters must learn house hold chores.
- 76% men not helping the house work are role models for children.
I would say, there is hope, that one child realizes that laundry need not be only mom’s job, 19% of the men do agree that daughters must learn household chores, 24% of men help in the house.
What worries me is 78% of the girls agree that they need to learn to do laundry as they have to do it later, it should be 100% every one should know how to do their laundry. At least their inner wear, it is absolute indecency to dump the inner for someone else to wash, it is like asking someone else to wash your Butt after a crap job.
Listening to this statistics I have a few doubts, were the women asked, opinion? Were the women asked what they taught their daughters more important what did they teach their son?
You might find that mothers don’t let their sons do the laundry. It would be really interesting to see how the mothers responding to the son-in-law doing the laundry, would she feel that her daughter is not doing her duty? Would she feel that she is judged that she has not trained the daughter in house work? I really wonder.
Its time we stopped making excuses … they have eyes! They can see that something needs to changed, the wastebasket is full it needs to be trashed out, we have run out of tea powder and we drink tea, tea powder is sold in the grocery store at the basement! This is because the men have trained themselves not to notice things, because the less they notice the more we’ll take care of it for them. they say you should have told me I quite agree, also agree it is quite okay to bring the Puri from the restaurant when you have 15 people for dinner.
You might find that wives do not ask their husbands to do the laundry; maybe if they did the husbands would do it. it might have just not occur to them that it was something that needs to be attended to.
By the way lot younger men do help their wives out with
The plan of action is very simple
- Have an advertisement with Amitabh Bacchan and Shahrukh Khan doing laundry.
- Have serials where women who go out to work are treated on par with men who go out to work.
- Breaking the stereotypes begin with pictures on normal families, and not made up fashion plates who are bitches if they are trendy or Ms.Goodytwoshoes if they are dowdy.
Finally with two people earning it might be a good idea to delegate, or still better outsource a boring work like laundry to the nearest laundry you save power, water and physical effort of course you land up paying the laundry guy.
Not only does that share the load, it also gives the couple sometime to themselves.