Disclaimer: This content is not based on any statistics. It is just an opinion of one
ordinary chap. There is no intention to offend anyone or hurt anyone’s feelings.
In my opinion back in prehistoric times when a man and woman started being in a formal amicable relationship the distributions of responsibility would have happened as a natural course of events. Everything involving physical strain and ordeal would fall in the half of physically stronger gender i.e Man. Similarly, work requiring organizational skills and
management of resources went to the more patient and emotionally strong gender i.e Woman.
This was a mutually accepted and a logical sharing of responsibilities based on the skill set and abilities. These norms were never formalized or standardized.
Who does what was never supposed to be the focus of the relationship. The focus was being with each other, respecting each other and most importantly sharing the burden of the relationship equally. This however with time, like many things slowly changed. This mutual and cordial sharing of responsibilities became cultural norms. The man became the one who goes out and earns and Women were meant to stay at home and take care of the family as a norm. As the importance of money and physical power increased it was invariably assumed that the one earns is superior.
We are culturally conditioned (globally) to believe that one should earn and others should not. The one that earns is the ‘Boss’ of the home and family. In some setups, it is so deeply rooted that women are trained since birth not to cross their limits and obey as they will have to do so once married. It is pity that something that is supposedly so serene and unadulterated as marriage has been converted into this business contract of sorts. This led to the ballooning of man’s ego resulting in the woman becoming the secondary humans. In cultures like India this ideology, that men are to earn and women are not is so profoundly engraved that even women are convinced that this is how it is supposed to be.
The dominance of money in our life has resulted in the dominance of men in family life. It is/was at a man’s discretion as to how much authority he gives to his ‘better half’ and in-turn woman of the family consciously or sub-consciously adopts the role of a second-class citizen of the family.
On the flip side Man also has to bear the burden of earning sufficiently to meet family’s needs/wants, if not society questions his masculinity. This sort of unwritten rules of the society causes mental agony for both, still, the burden is laden towards women.
However, this scenario is changing. There is this dramatic surge globally for women rights and their equality. However, in my opinion, this revolution is not about fighting who is the superior gender, it is to establish that both genders have skills and flaws making us equal. This has helped many women to shed the old imbalanced values fed into their brains. Hence, slowly women around have started demanding their equal place in the social and professional circuit. As with most things in our society this fight for equality is also many times blown out of proportion. Talking strictly about family life, there are more than several concrete evidence that women are not the only victim. It has been identified that men also face a lot of slack in the domestic scenario. The fight for many women is not for their equality but to teach men a lesson. This approach of (several) women has resulted in this cold war between the genders and yielding nothing but more complications in the relationship of a family.
In my opinion, one can not generalize or stereotype something as personal as marriage. It is up to the two involved to mutually decide their responsibilities and defining roles to balance their relationship. There is nothing wrong with man earning and woman taking care of the home or even vice-a-versa as long as it is amicable. In addition, I also believe this distribution of roles is not set in stone or controlled by any law, hence, should have all the flexibility in it to sustain a content relationship. To add to this, helping one another in their respective responsibilities will only make the bond stronger. Isn’t that the whole purpose of being together, to complete each other, to help each other and lead a happy life?.
The problem starts when one of the two starts considering the other or one’s self as inferior or superior. These opinions drift the two apart and cause a rift in their relationship. It is pointless to be in a relationship where anyone tries to yearn profit, superiority or vengeance. Today in the world men and women both struggle in their respective manner but still, no one wants to focus on equality we are busy trying to either be superior or play the victim. It is funny how a ‘holy matrimony’ is turned on its head as the war of the egos.