A few days back when my dad’s friend and his son came to discuss some business with my dad. I and my sister were in our bedroom with our mother when my dad asked my brother who was sitting with them, to bring some water from the kitchen, and that’s when my mother said ” help kardo, usse nhi ho payega.”
I went and served three glasses of water. I counted the steps from the kitchen to the sofa, not more than 8 steps. Weight of the tray? 2kgs max. That’s when I thought “Kya nahi ho payega? “
1. Serving water to the guests?
2. Working in the kitchen?
3. Doing something which is supposed to be a woman’s chore?
How difficult can it be for my 18 year old brother to serve water? Something that I’m doing since I was 12-13? Household chores should be normal for everyone in the house.
These are some stereotypes we offer on a plate to our boys. Sons addressing the door and daughters serving the water. Dividing household chores in a gendered way too is something that’s deep-rooted in our day to day lifestyle which we often ignore over some fancier issues like the gender wage gap.
I always thought that such responsibilities came on my shoulder because I’m the eldest, but soon I realised when my sister was learning basic things like ironing and cooking during Lockdown whereas my brother just bought milk from the market and played PUBG. He didn’t care if housemaids are coming or not. Surely, some people are learning household work and becoming independent in the household chores as well, yet, there are men who never cooked, cleaned utensils or even held a dusting cloth in their hands.
We girls are taught to clean a little better, to care a little extra, to be sweet a little more just to fit in the society. Whereas guys are told not to do these household chores as it may put a question on their masculinity. Since these things are always categorised as girl’s duty. It’s time for us to rethink how simple things at home undermine us and worse how they build into so many stereotypes our boys imbibe.
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