“Our families are not empowered enough to handle a working woman.” A sad reality in India that pulls down the ambitions of working women.
Women are nowadays as educated or maybe more educated than men. They are equally competent in every field and deserve equal opportunities. The problem is with the families and mostly the mothers-in-law of these working women. They find it extremely difficult to handle working women.
In a room full of educated people, we are sure to hear everyone favor women empowerment and equality, but the same men and ladies might not be okay if their wife earns more than them, or if their daughter-in-law does not know anything about household. A women’s salary is always considered ‘additional income’ and never a part of the basic income for the family.
If the wife needs to go on a business trip every month, eyebrows are raised, but it is definitely okay for the man to go on business trips every week. Her plans need to be made in accordance with the plans of other family members, her due dates/important meetings/ urgent orders are all kept on a back foot. Our society supports working women, but does not take their work as seriously as a man’s.
Families need to understand that their continuous nagging and unwanted comments about the ambitious woman’s lifestyle, not only discourages her, but also creates an unpleasant air between her and her husband.
If only the daughter-in-law was treated with the same respect as the son, given the same care and considered equally important, probably the family would be more successful.
I once heard an educated old woman complain, “Nowadays marriages don’t survive because the man and woman both consider themselves equal, and they both want to work. If the wife does not take care of the husband’s needs once he comes back home, how does she expect him to continue loving her?”
My only answer to her is, “The man chooses to stay a child, which is not the wife’s fault”.
I know of a lot of successful households where both the husband and wife are working. The other common factors in all those households were, a mother-in-law who understands that her son is now married, a husband who keeps her wife’s job at the same priority as his, and a woman ambitious enough to take the said path.
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