Monday, August 31, 2009

This Woman's Work

During my lunch break today I was reading this article in the Metro and it got me thinking about why it is that women are stuck doing so much more work than men.

"Reports from Statistics Canada show that while men are doing more household chores and women are doing more paid work, men still spend only 1.4 hours per day on housework compared to the 2.4 hours on average done by women.The result is that while women have continued to break down barriers in the workplace, they still face the challenge of having to do more work at home than men as well as a double-standard of being seen as innately overstretched by their responsibilities."

The article goes on to cite the controversy surrounding MPP Lisa MacLeod’s testimony in a recent court case as an example of how society views the multi-tasking woman. Society (and Ontario Superior Court Justice Douglas Cunningham) apparently view a busy mother, employee and woman as incapable of "doing it all" properly. But that is flawed logic, since apparently we are already doing it all, and quite successfully. After all:

  • Women in the U.S. spend more than $3.3 trillion annually (demonstrating amazing levels of purchasing power)
  • Women business owners employ 35% more people than all Fortune 500 companies combined
  • 95% of family financial decisions are made by women
  • Women in business will invest $44.5 billion in high tech products this year
  • 65% of women in senior management positions have children
    (Source: Women and Diversity, WOW Facts 2001)

So here we are, highly functioning members of society and the workplace. Many of us have good educations, work hard outside the home, raise children, do the housework and also manage the household finances. Why aren't men raising the bar on their lives? Why don't they want to do more as a gender? How come men have not adjusted to this new reality? Don't they want more responsibility?

I got to thinking that the answer was pretty simple. If for hundreds of years your role in society was to make money, and come home to be taken care of, would you want that to change? It sounds pretty good, to be honest. I'll take being the breadwinner if I can have a hot housewife.

Why would you, if in that position, be in any rush to take on more of the household responsibilities? What women have taken on is freedom - freedom to earn, both cash and respect. Freedom to control their lives and world to an extent never experienced before. It is no wonder we are thrilled to adapt to this new world full of opportunity.

To ask a man who has had this wonderful freedom in his life to change is a difficult request. Ask him to take on more cleaning, more babysitting, more planning, and so on. It is really no wonder they resist giving up the freedoms they once had to take on more life responsibility. It is really no wonder a woman finds herself nagging her husband to "do his share".

Who wants to do the dirty work?

To be honest, if I could work outside of the home and make enough money to go it alone, I would. If I could have a house-wife or husband (or hired help) that would be swell; someone to do the bulk of raising my kids for me, cooking for me and cleaning for me would be more than welcomed.

Is it any wonder," are quite supportive of women in the workforce but they generally have not, with the same level of tenacity, said "I want to be a part of the home life."?

A woman's work is fucking hard. And does not include 1 hour lunches at Baton Rouge.

1 comment:

Fancy Cotton said...

I'll be your hot housewife