In Nepal, we often see ladies having double duties, both outside and inside their homes, while males are involved in fieldwork only. This gender-based work arenas have been followed since ages and has imbibed in its culture. Recently, many blogs and articles on the choice or freedom of work between males and females have been taking tolls.
As before marriage, I had all the choices of working outside or inside the home, after marriage, I have been expected to carry all household chores and having to choose to work outside was optional.
I started wondering if I really want to get gripped in these gender-based roles defined by society or do I really want to stand up against it. Later, I started to analyze various society roles performed by the females and males in a household, and has several questions popped:
In metro cities, males and females are being given equal education, except for household education. Why? Why are boys still being raised to depend on females for cooked food and cleaned clothes and neat house?
Girls are given equal opportunity to study and interestingly they even score better grades. Then why don’t they all work after marriage and depend on the husband’s income? What is the point of educating a girl an inexpensive school then?
Even if a female is working after marriage, why does she expect her husband to bear all the financial burden of the family? Is it because she is carrying out all household chores by herself?
Taking the gender-based roles as a solution to the conflict over work typology, still, a male is to work for particular office hours, where females get engaged in household chores for at-least 18 hours a day. Then why don’t they have any weekend/off? P.S. females have less physical strength than males, yet do more physical labor.
Even if married couples are mutually working out various roles, then why other people do ask for ‘what is cooked by bhauju’ or ‘where is bhinaju taking you this summer’? Are such gender-roles imbibed into our minds unconsciously?
And why there will never be any female leader/personality picture on the currency notes?
However, this list is not exhaustive. Without being a feminist or male chauvinist, I acknowledge one thing that every human must be self-sufficient and not dependent on another gender for money or household chores. This dependency may translate into pity conflicts at some points.
Thus, one should rather seek abilities of married partners to carry out various roles in the family, with choices and not compulsion. If a husband would want to carry household chores, then he should be welcomed. If a girl wants to balance the priorities between office and house, she should be supported. Henceforth, married partners shall give enough space to divide various roles as per their abilities, and should not be poked by society or even in-laws.
Role ‘compulsions’ may not work out in marriage but ‘mutual sorting’ of roles may build a more healthy relationship.