Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Woman's Job?

My husband and I attend a couples group every Monday. Even though we've been together for a while, it has actually helped our relationship. You can never stop learning about the person you're with because you are both constantly changing. It's nice to converse with other couples and meet new people.

Yesterday was our fourth time going to this group and I have noticed a pattern. All of the women in the group complain that their husbands don't help them around the house. Not one of the women in the group is a stay at home mom. These are all women who have jobs and careers. One woman even leaves home earlier than she has to in the morning to take her husband to work. She also picks him up at the end of the day.

I am the lone wolf in the group. I believe that if we both work it is OUR responsibility to keep our house in order. Who says it a woman's job to maintain a household that she shares with her husband? If I bring home some of the bacon, shouldn't he fry it up in the pan sometimes too? How is he "helping" her if they live together and are raising the same children? Why is it the woman's responsibility to cook and clean? Do they not eat the same food and sleep in the same bed?

Now, I have done a little soul searching and I know that part of the reason I am so adamant about shared responsibility is, over the years, I watched my mother cater to men who didn't deserve her. They took advantage of her warm nature and, for lack of a better word, used her. If they tried it now, there's no telling what weapon she might use to end their life. I'll put it this way, being taken advantage of has not warmed her heart to the men of the world. It makes me sad.

Watching this, I vowed never to let a man take advantage of me. I met my husband when I was 15 years old and always kept this in mind. I would do things for him, but never wait on him hand and foot. It took me years to realize I may have gone too far. He once told me that I didn't do the little things for him that other women did for their man. When we went to parties, I would never fix his plate. In my mind I knew he had two hands just like me and could make his own damned plate.

I was so busy making sure I was the opposite of how my mother use to be that I went too far. It took me a long time to realize that the little things matter. There's nothing wrong with making your man's plate or bringing him his dinner. It's okay to let your guard down sometimes.

With that all being said, I still don't get how men "babysit" their own kids, or "help" their wives clean the home they live in. It's not her job. If it was, she would be getting paid. What's wrong with shared responsibilty?


Stacye said...

Nothing at all! I too think that it should be shared responsibility. Now, if the woman is a stay at home wife and/or mother, the house should always be clean. Tammy, I understand about letting your guard down...it's not easy, but when you do the rewards are gradifying knowing that you have made your life's partner happy...just for the little things.

A Free Spirit Butterfly said...

I'm willing to let my guard down when my prince comes along. I'll fix his plate if he runs my bath. I'll rub his back if he washes my car... But I'm sorry, I only do my own laundry (lol)

Strongblkwmn said...

@ Stacye - I've definitely learned that the little things matter. My husband's not Mr. Romantic but he does little things for me that I really appreciate. After keeping my guard up to protect myself, I finally let it down a few years ago.

@Butterfly - That's exactly what I mean. We do for each other.

The Fitness Diva said...

I have always felt the same way that responsibility should be shared. Why should you get special privileges just for having a penis? I don't get it.

But, yes, I do enjoy doing the little things for someone that I know appreciates it, doesn't expect it, and doesn't see it as something due them.

The saying "a woman's work is never done" needs to evolve just a bit, don't you think? ;)

Strongblkwmn said...

@ Diva - I've always hated that saying. What the hell is "a woman's work." anyway?

SLC said...

Where my boys at?!?!?
I agree with everybody. And not because we have four children. A female co-worker once asked me, "How do y'all do it?" The only answer I could give was, "together". My wife will tell you she's an OCD neat freak so I will never measure up in that area, but I've improved though the years.
Men don't baby sit their own kids and couples help each other get the job done. It wouldn't be fair for a man to come to bed horny with the energy he stored up while she was cooking and cleaning after they both had a hard days work.
As for me, because of this posting, I'll be sure to do a load of laundry tonight or cook dinner (like I did Saturday and Sunday). I'm not there yet but I'm trying.

OK fellas where ya at?

Keith said...

Not a thing at all...Me and Mrs.Keith share all of the responsibilities, from bill paying to cooking, to cleaning and dealing with the kids. That's probably why we've been together for 19 years and counting.-lolol.