Gender equality - Walk the talk
This article just made me think of my own family. Even before I knew what the term "gender equality" meant, I was seeing it in practice at home. My father would do all kinds of jobs around the house. I assumed it was natural that my father helped around the house, considering we never had a domestic servant for a number of years in the house. At an earlier age we also started helping around the house (when time permitted). Again whatever little work we did around the house, was mostly split between me and my brother. If I picked up the morsels of food after dinner, he had to clean with the cloth. During the holidays, if I swept and mopped one room, it was his duty to take care of the other room. Boy...I was such a task master....on the rare days that my father tried to cut slack for my brother, I would become a tiger and make sure he finished his half of the work !! I won't say we worked around the house a lot (we did shirk and lazed around !) but we always knew that work was to be shared and not dumped on one person because of the gender. My brother and me were brought up as two equal beings with equal opportunities.
My mother used to say that when she entered my grandparents' house as a newly wed bride, she was pleasantly surprised to see that my grandfather used to help my grandmother, by chopping vegetables at super speed every day. So I guess that's what - my father saw growing up, my brother saw growing up and ofcourse he does help around in his house now with the domestic chores !
Coming to my own house now, Sathish has no qualms about helping me with any domestic chores that I request. He has certain tasks at home which he attends to on an everyday basis. He can cook if need be, just that errr....I prefer eating my own cooked food to his and kids agree to that :-). I drive the scooter better than he does (I think he is too slow !) and I am trying to beat him to the car too ! He has a better artistic sense than me and I consult him for the kids projects involving art and drawings. He has a knack for picking wonderful children's books and the kids benefit a lot from it. I do a lot of other things too, which some people may consider " a man's domain" . I think the "male female" stereotyping is crap. We all have our own individual abilities and in a family, while the mundane work has to be shared, the rest can be spilt based on our own abilities.
Finally I think the basis of gender equality is kindness, compassion, empathy and fairness. At home, if a man lends a helping hand to his wife, not because the society demands that he also pitch in and not because that's what all feminists are talking about, but because she is a human being who is burdened with so many tasks, then we can expect real changes to happen.We can extend the same theory to the office environment too, where a person is rewarded for his/her work rather than their gender.