FLOORED: What's wrong with this image? Absolutely nothing.
FLOORED: What's wrong with this image? Absolutely nothing. SolStock

Break the cycle of domestic relegation

SOMETIMES women can be their own worst enemy. Take the domestic load at home.

There's been a lot said about the inequality on that front line but not much action. Broadly speaking, women are still the recipients of the raw deal in that imbalance. So why do they put up with it?

This hangover from the dark ages (1950s), where women stayed at home to keep house and the children in order while the man went out and worked for eight hours, is long gone.

According to that old chestnut, when the man came home he got to put his feet up because he'd been working hard all day to earn the money to pay for everything the family needed.

The good lady spent her day doing fun, trivial tasks, like several loads of laundry, scrubbing surfaces, dusting, sweeping, changing bedding, providing child-minding and entertainment and cooking meals. I know, what a breeze!

Then when hubby arrived home she switched her attention from those mindless unpaid chores to tend to her tired man.

This is hardly the case any more as the cost of living and owning a house has become a ridiculous financial juggling act between both partners.

Women also have the freedom to pursue a career beyond a bucket and broom these days.

But despite this, the adage of domestic work being a woman's domain still rings true. Or at least that's the myth men like to perpetuate.

And they can do that fairly easily when the women in their lives continue to enable that.

This enabling ranges from martyr syndrome - "he doesn't clean things properly so I end up doing it'' - to more subtle things like calling other women whose partners pull their weight at home "lucky''.

I'm not sure what constitutes luck in this case but having a male partner who cooks and cleans up, not only after himself but the whole family, shouldn't require an OAM.

Also unhelpful is the way women sometimes gush over men who perform the most basic of duties, prepare a meal or pick their underpants off the floor. This is not only insulting to women, it's insulting to men who are actually hands-on at home.

The broad lack of engagement by men on the domestic front is a result of growing up in a household where their own mothers did everything for them, and now they seem to believe it's their wife's turn.

But the next generation of parents can stop this farce in its tracks.

Both parties need to step up and step back when required so their kids see traditional roles lambasted.

Women, stop falling for male excuses like "you do it better than me'' or "but I mow the lawn'' or "I take the garbage out''. Hand them a toilet brush and some Gumption (literally) and reset their sat nav from the lounge chair to the little room at the end of the hallway.

Let him discover that the porcelain throne he frequents is not some miraculous, self-cleaning vessel that runs on the push of a button.

Drum it in until you don't have to drum any more. Break that cycle, something he will completely relate to once he knows how to operate the washing machine.

And while he's down that end of the house he'll eventually see it's also a good opportunity to change the bedsheets or fold the basket of dry laundry he's been complaining about stubbing on his toe on for the past three days.

Then once he's sorted the kids' excursion money and ensured they have all the right bits and bobs for the trip tomorrow, get him to give you a hand to finish off dinner. You're a team, people. Play fair.



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