No HouseWork Day

There are something’s akinned to Chinese torture.. Endless… repetitive and monotonous one of them is house work. The clean becomes soiled, the soiled is cleaned over and over again, dust-bunnies seem to invade the minute you take a shut eye. It is kind of like growing up never finished.

April 7th is that utopia day of #NoHouseworkDay, I put in the twitter status and went right back to making breakfast, maybe I should have called few friends and we should gone out for coffee, well instead, I am serving left-overs and finishing my outdoor work.

This holiday was created by Thomas and Ruth Roy, at Wellcat.com; you are permitted to do anything this day except doing house work. It feels good when the reason not do house work is legit.  Initially it was the National No Housework Day at Uncle Sam’s Land, now it has gone worldwide.

I was wondering how I could celebrate it

Maybe trade places, I lie in bed and get MrD to do all the housework…maybe book a slot at Relooking for a head massage. Maybe head to this club with a wonderful library and great coffee and camp for the day… no still better I plan to ignore the sunken sink, the grimy floor, and damp laundry, at the end of the day, if the item does not multiply, smell, catch fire or block the refrigerator door, turn a blind eye, apparently no one else cares, so why should you?

Happy No HouseWork day…

Who does the laundry?

Bring up Bachelors…

‘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!’

#ShareTheLoad the conversations quotes above have never happened in my house. be at my parents or at my in-laws, that was their parenting style.

There is a huge attitudinal issue though, when my husband helps his mother he is being a good son, but if helps me he is being henpecked. These are meant to be casual funny jokes but they talk of social system.

Ariel and BlogAdda decides not shift this prejuidice to the next generation. Rest assured the we are not going to. If I go by the issues that come up during counselling, the greatest issue that kids today face when they go out in the world is that there is no magic elf who comes in the evening and tides up the house they have to do it themselves. Specially in the Urban areas today, getting a domestic help is quite maddening. It is so lurcrative that we have online websites that offer to provide domestic help.

How do we ensure that the prejudice is not transferred to the next generation. Lf we were deal with this as a social pathology, we are looking at the causative factors,

  • Inherited social work delegations.
  • The emotional connect to the act, of house work-
  • The economic transaction for the act.
  • Finally redefining the roles in the family structure.

Girls  are weighed down by restriction, boys with demands both are equally harmful disciplines. The change has slowly begun To quote Gloria Steinem, we have begun to raise our daughters more like sons, but few have the courage to raise our sons more like daughters.

When we look at inherent social work delegations the hunter- provider and nurturer- home maker pictures begin to merge, this is consistently re-enforced by the media presentation.  Lets,start with the media addressing the actual problem that we have to face in day to day life of contemporary India.

If the serial could look at this “laundry has to be,”àI do not have the time to do it à what is the solution that might be more proactive in changing a mindset.

  1. Husband do the laundry – will not
  2. Get a washing machine, — mother in law does not permit.
  3. Outsource it to a laundry.

Do we  see that in the serials?  Still better how about having the young couple discussing that they need to contribute equally, so they decide to buy a washing machine?

somehow we limit ourselves to washing the clothes but laundry involves,  more it involves–drying it, then ironing it and placing it in its designated place. Now the real issue emerges.how about showing a serial where each person takes the responsibility managing their clothes? While we grew up it was very simple we washed out clothes when took bath and dried out, since I am lazy I picked it off the line the next day.

Helping in the house work may not yet be a part of the Indian man’s psyche maybe we can start off, with requesting him to load the washing machine, do it for 21 days it takes 21 days for a new habit to be created. The son sees the father and learns so does the daughter by the way.

If the mother is a multitasking superwoman, the daughter feels compelled to be so, the power equation immediately comes to play.

Since right now we are working from a point of view that the woman is oppressed, it is for her to take stalk, is she really what is the pay off, and how will she get out of it.

I am joining the Ariel #ShareTheLoad campaign at BlogAdda and blogging about the prejudice related to household chores being passed on to the next generation.

 

Lets Wash The Dirty Linen.

#ShareTheLoad

“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 BeauvoirThe 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,

  1. 2 out of every 3 children think that laundry is mom’s job.
  2. 78% of the girls agree they need to learn to do laundry as they have to do it later.
  3. 81% married men in India agree daughters must learn house hold chores.
  4. 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.

I am joining the Ariel #ShareTheLoad campaign at BlogAdda and blogging about the prejudice related to household chores being passed on to the next generation.