For reasons that I can’t even being to imagine, Amy Alkon, the Advice Goddess, has today decided to take the following “question” for her weekly advice column:
Women complain about how hard it is being a stay-at-home mom. After getting divorced, I discovered I could clean the entire house in a few hours — accomplishing way more than my wife ever did — and have all afternoon to do nothing. Men work long hours to support their families, only to be told they aren’t doing enough around the house. I think being a mom is important and value stay-at-home moms, but let’s talk turkey about who really has the hard job, okay?
Now, I’m not sure of what real advice this gentleman was looking for in this question, but, he, it’s Ms. Alkon’s column, so I guess she can choose to publish what she wants (and, FWIW, I have no real dispute with her “answer”). The issue I have is that whenever this issue comes up, people have to attack it from a societal standpoint, and act as if we, as a whole, are somehow responsible because one family cannot agree on how to divide the work required in their own home.
This is not a societal problem; it is a family problem! Maybe it was a societal problem back in the time that women had very limited career options and men could not make the decision to stay home, but things have changed. Now, if you don’t like the division of labor in your home, it is up to you to discuss it with your spouse and figure out how to change it. If you are a woman, and married someone who doesn’t believe that men should do any housework, well, why did you marry him? If you are a man, and wanted a stay at home woman, why did you not ask about that before you popped the question? Let’s stop pretending that all families are the same, and that the same things should work for all of them. Let each family work out their own issues, and, assuming no starving kids, leave society the hell out of it.