#Opinion

How Do Supportive Husbands Help Working Women In The Current Changing World?

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I met a man recently who surprised me! When my mother-in-law fell gravely ill and was fighting a severe bacterial infection, doctors prescribed her antibiotics which were to be administered intravenously. Upon the doctor’s instructions, we hired a nursing staff who would come home and administer the injection instead of admitting her to a hospital. Luckily, we found a male nursing staff named Jagannath Sahu who agreed to come home.

On his second day, he brought along his six-year-old daughter with him. I asked him about his wife, he told me that she was in another town working as a teacher. She had recently been offered this government job through an exam. He added he asked her to take up the offer while he takes care of their daughter so that her school life isn’t disrupted mid-session. I was amazed!

How many husbands are this supportive of their wife’s decision to join the workforce? And to top it all how many agree to look after their kids? Jagannath told me he cooks for her, packs her lunch box, helps her bathe, drops her and picks her up from school, washes her clothes, keeps the house clean, buys vegetables, gets her to do homework and does every other household chore along with his regular work as a nurse. So, some might say, he’s doing what men should be doing in any case, they are right but seriously how many men would agree to such an arrangement?

Isn’t it amazing that there are such men who support their wife’s ambitions? Actually, I wouldn’t have been amazed if he’d said “you’re a mother and so your first priority is to look after the kids”, “I cannot do household chores, forget your job, be home to carry out your responsibilities” or “go if you want to but take the kid along also, I don’t know if I can look after her”. Yes, this is the general reaction of men. And it’s refreshing to find one who doesn’t think on the above lines.

Supportive Husbands in these changing times

Not all husbands are conservative supporters of the patriarchal mindset. There are men who have come to respect their wives for who they are and what they do, and not just for their roles as a wife, mother, and daughter-in-law. As more and more women get back to the workforce after a career break or start their career only after having children, in any case, unconditional support from their husbands is their main driving force.

Home and family are shared responsibility

For time immemorial women have supported their men. She took charge of the entire house, allowing him to chart his career growth. While hers was an unpaid and endless job, he earned his salary and also time off from work. But the men now have to keep up with the times. Because now women have aspirations beyond the home and opportunities are opening up for them. She looks to her husband for the same support. After all, the home and family are a shared responsibility.


Suggested Reading: Five Hindi Films On Supportive Husbands That You Cannot Miss


Why should men support their wives?

Because sometimes a career or a job isn’t just about making money for women. Sometimes a career is about being fulfilled and doing things you love. Most women are educated too and have opportunities so why should she sit at home and do just household chores (am not saying that homemakers who choose to stay at home are in any way less), but women who want to do more than just look after their homes are okay too.

Financial independence is important for women

Sometimes women don’t want to ask for money to indulge or give an account for the money she spends on the things she wants. They seek to be financially independent too. In most homes, men’s expenditures are treated fine, but when roles are reversed, it always calls for an explanation. Among the many reasons why a woman wants to have a job even if her husband can support her is that she wants to support herself.

It is not up to the husband or anyone else to say that she should be happy that he can make enough money to support her and that she should just stay home and look after him, their kids and sometimes even his parents. Women will take on added responsibility in any case if they choose to work outside their homes (which is again a stereotypical mindset at play).

So, I am amazed that Jagannath realises all of this. There is still hope.

Views expressed by author are their own.