I go to social media because it shows us reflections of our society, so I keep checking out one platform to another to see what’s cooking? And not surprisingly I chance upon this tweet:

“When your kids come back from school and the boy throws his uniform on the couch, don’t ask his sister to go get them. When he’s done eating, don’t ask his sister to go drop the plates in the sink. If he messes up the house, don’t ask his sister to sweep and clean it up. Raise your male child to be responsible and able to take care of himself without a sense of entitlement towards his sister to do stuff for him. You see these chauvinistic men in the society? They started like that…Family upbringing plays a great role.” Perfectly sensible tweet don’t you agree? This was a tweet by a woman I presume, but look at the response that this tweet generated.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Why do male members of a family feel entitled to order around the female members, if this is not entitlement then what is?
  • There is nothing wrong in serving water, tea or food to your loved ones provided it’s not just male members that are being served.
  • When you do something out of your free will it’s fine. It’s not fine when someone feels entitled just because he is a male or when someone forces this on a girl because she is well – a girl!
  • Girls happily help around the house but it’s imperative for parents to tell both boys and girls to do their own chores.

“Let me see how many girls on my timeline agree with this. Not that they are forced to, but girls in my family would happily bring water for me, arrange my messed up room etc. This isn’t chauvinism, this is motherly love. Sisters are future mothers, they have this in their genes.” This response is by a man ofcourse. What do you say to this? Entitled? Well as far as I am concerned he is a true blue ‘chauvinistic’ that we see all around us. This mentality is rather sickening to say the least.

I would like to ask this person, what does he do for his sisters in return? And don’t give me the carp that you protect them, are by their side when they go out etc. etc.? Have heard that enough. I want to know do you give your sister a glass of water when she comes from somewhere outside maybe from college or office. Do you make her a cup of coffee or tea? Oh you don’t know how to make a cuppa do you? A woman rightly responded saying “Let’s put it in this perspective, if girls in your family didn’t serve water etc. one day, does a male member step in and do the task? Women don’t clean up after others due to ‘motherly love’, it’s coz they know that nobody else is going to do it.” Please answer Mr Chauvinistic.

Also read: Myths About Feminism That Are Just Not True

Let me assure you there is nothing wrong in serving water, tea or food to your loved ones provided it’s not just male members that are being served and that they feel entitled to sit and order you around.

“There’s little difference between force and assumed responsibility. Yes girls happily do this but it’s imperative for parents to tell both boys and girls to do their own chores. Love shouldn’t be taken for granted & that’s where problem arises.”

Now let’s look at some other responses to this guy’s tweet. One woman says “The sense of entitlement is sickening… Not much far from trads.” Another said “This would have been funny if it wasn’t so patronizing.” While another said, “there’s little difference between force & assumed responsibility. Yes girls happily do this but it’s imperative for parents to tell both boys & girls to do their own chores. Love shouldn’t be taken for granted & that’s where problem arises.” I personally feel she is so right. When you do something out of your free will it’s fine, it’s not fine when someone feels entitled just because he is a male or when someone forces this on a girl because she is well – a girl!

Oh, but some women have supported him saying “Ladkiya Pani laa deti hai toh ladke bhi toh dhaniya pudina laa kar dete hai bazaar se.” (If girls fetch water for boys, then don’t boys fetch coriander and mint from the market for them?) Do you think this is funny? I don’t.

And what’s this ‘sisters are future mothers’ business? If they do become mothers so what? Does it mean they should be trained for motherhood by serving entitled brothers? A woman rightly wrote, “Sisters are future mothers?? Brothers are future fathers so?..With ever-changing roles in society where women are also working household chores will be outsourced or equally distributed..There is no way it can work otherwise n still be fair. Also self sufficiency is a thing.

Let me explain why I find it wrong on so many levels. So, first, the girls in a family will serve their brothers, fathers and uncles in the name of ‘sisterly love’ and ‘daughterly love’. Then they are married off at ‘appropriate age’ which differs by the way in each family. And after marriage what have you, they are expected to serve the whole in-law clan along with the husband. Whether the daughter-in-law is working or not working doesn’t matter. And in the future they will go on to serve their sons (and not their daughters mind you because she will be told to serve her father and brother) as well because isn’t that ‘motherly love’?  And so the circle is complete and the cycle will move on to the next generation.

Have we ever thought why doesn’t a girl, a sister, daughter, wife or a mother deserve to be served by other members of their family? What makes the men think that they can depend on the female members of their family for these innocuous chores? Which in reality are not innocuous chores but which send out a strong message that this is your ‘duty’ as a woman.

“The clip on which you have commented is appreciable whereas what you have said is not only chauvinism but is downright despicable.”

So, is all lost? No, I would say, it’s heartening to read some more replies. A woman replied “Everyone should learn to do their own thing … Clean their own mess … boys should be taught to cook and clean too.” “You were born with hands and legs for a reason, use them.” wrote another. A man said “The clip on which you have commented is appreciable whereas what you have said is not only chauvinism but is downright despicable.”  While a young man wrote “So far I have failed to teach that to my Dad. My mom has been working in the kitchen like a machine for last 43 years at the least. I take great pride in me to have changed that rule with my wife though.” Did someone say ‘child is the father of man’?

Anybody could ask me why am going on and on about this issue, well I say when you see something wrong being projected and accepted I am afraid that might be taken as a normal. And that it needs to be called out. Hope you’re on the same page as me on this.

Also read: Patriarchy Ensures That Women Feel Small For Prioritising Themselves

The views expressed are the writer’s own.

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