Does a homemaker really have it that easy?
There was once a time, even till a few decades ago, when women could not have been commonly thought of as “working”. Yes, they received education in more homes than not, but were still brought up with the belief instilled into them that they will be married off as soon as they complete a basic level of education, and that is what they are destined to- to prove to be a good wife, daughter-in-law and mother. Women too grew up with dreams that fit into this social construct – to run a home, do all the domestic chores, do wonders with her culinary skills and so on. But today, it’s a different story altogether. Women have evolved, and so have our mindsets and perspectives. Almost every other woman these days do not study simply to qualify as a good bride, but to find her own calling and carve out a niche for herself.
But does that necessarily mean that housewives are to be belittled in any way? Women today take pride in the fact that they are no longer confined to the walls of the home, and have stepped beyond to tread on unknown paths, to initiate new journeys and set their own goals and aspirations, which they tirelessly strive to accomplish. But it also does not make housewives “losers” in any way. Their times were different; they had limited opportunities and liberties at their disposal, and were nurtured on completely different set of ideals, values and beliefs. Our priorities, needs and ethos have undergone a sea change ever since; today a woman does not simply want to excel in the kitchen but in boardrooms, she does not simply want to give her kids a good upbringing, but want her sales figures to rise, she does not simply want to don an apron but a business suit, she does not simply want to deal with the daily vendors or maid, but with her clients and corporate colleagues. This transition has taken place over a sustainable period of time, but that does not entitle us, the “empowered” women to undermine the housewives or look down upon them with condescension.
Leave alone men, if women themselves start pitying or sneering at their own gender, then where will they expect respect from? Why is it that being a housewife is viewed in such a negative light, as if it is really a pitiable position to be in? Why is it that women who are not considered to be worthy or competent enough are said to pass off as good housewives, as if they are the last resort for women who are good for nothing. They do not really have it easy, for it is no child’s play to be a playmate to a child, not is it a cakewalk to bake a cake for your husband other family members while being at home. That is what they consider their duty to be, and if they find pleasure, content and fulfilment there, then mocking at it in any way is simply very unsporting. It is no-less than a full-time job, and women who do justice to their homemaking roles, deserve as much acknowledgement and credit.
The onus is primarily upon women to discard this misconception that being a housewife is a terrible thing. Choices and priorities differ, and of course hats off to women who balance their personal and professional lives for nothing can be more praiseworthy, but the ones that only choose to run a home is not a doormat. They work without perks, salaries, incentives, vacations and perhaps even some heartfelt appreciation. Let’s raise a toast to those that make homes out of houses, and give us the impetus to walk out of home everyday to confront the world outside, as well as the joy of coming back to the warmth and care at the end of the day.