Special

Home Maker?

December 5, 2018

Recently when I was browsing through, I came across a wonderful article discussing about the study that was conducted by The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in 2011 which said that the average Indian woman spent nearly six hours a day doing unpaid house work. Economists believed that though it is unpaid, the household work done by homemakers constitutes economic activity and should be included in the national income. By ignoring it, we were underestimating women’s contribution to the economy.

Having completed college my very next thought was to get into a job, unlike others I did not want any break and my only goal was to be employed. Looking back, I realize probably my urgency to get into work was not for the joy of working but to avoid being labelled Unemployed by the society.

I am sure most of us have gone through this phase and for women it’s a bigger challenge since they have many milestones that they need to fight in order to be employed. Even today some of the families are not willing to accept a working women and simple term it to be a man’s job and for women it is considered to be a hobby which needs to pursued at one’s convenience.

My topic for today is slightly different and I want to focus on those ladies who whole heartedly choose to stay at home and become a home maker despite of having competent degrees and educational qualification. Our society is shifting paradigm and there was a time when working women where considered taboo but today, we have come to the state where when a woman chooses to stay at home, she is considered to be lazy and one without a goal.

My thoughts regarding this entire concept were not very clear and I was constantly baffled by innumerable contradicting arguments. Having been bought up in a family where my mother was a working woman, I realized how wonderfully a woman can manage work and home without giving a reason for complaint. After marriage I was again with two ladies, my mother in law and sister in law who despite being married and in good positions at work managed work and household meticulously. Somewhere in my mind I had made a decision that its better to be a working woman then to stay at home.

But life they say has a different way of throwing things at your feet and attimes you are forced to step on it without any option. The same happened to me, after 6 long years of successful career as a Lecturer and then as a HR there came a point where I had to quit and stay at home for a few months due to a personal issue. I was not sure, I was in a dilemma. The fear of being financially dependent scared me, the boredom and the anxiety of loosing my identity filled my mind. I had no option half-heartedly I decided to quit my job and stay at home.

There were a lot of raised eyebrows, many people suggested that I could juggle work and home and I had taken a coward decision. Some went on to say that I was lazy and I did not want to work and so stayed at home to lead a luxurious life. All that said and done when I stayed at home that is when I realized how much work a housewife does. From cooking, cleaning, laundry, doing dishes to grocery shopping everything is expected from a home maker. She is expected to do everything and ask nothing for in return. This phase of my life answered all the questions in my mind and I begun to understand a home maker also uses her skills like any working professional, the only difference being that working women may extensively use one skill whereas a home maker uses numerous skills. The most important aspect is appreciation and recognition, most of the cases a working woman at least receives recognition in form of monetary return but in all the cases a homemaker’s work is neither recognised nor monetarily rewarded.

A few years ago, the Women and Child Development minister Krishna Tirath had suggested that the invisible labor performed by homemakers should be quantified and that they should be paid the amount by their husbands. This was the value suggested by him. Cooking Rs 6,000, Housekeeping Rs 3,000, Accounting Rs 4,000, taking care of kids Rs 12,000 etc. Though this bill was never passed but it clearly gives an insight that the work done by women is so valuable and staying at home never makes a woman less competitive or lazy. In fact, a woman who stays at home works from morning and ends her working only at night.

I started realizing how much sacrifice a woman who stays at home makes. Most of the women who stay at home may not like to do so, but the situation and realities of life force them to do so and yet they accept their role so lovingly without cribbing and complaining. In recent studies its been suggested that many women who stay at home suffer from insecurity and depression not because they are not occupied but because they are made to feel low by the people around failing to understand the true value of their work. Most of the Indian houses still follow the stereotypical approach that anything happens in the family then it is women’s responsibility to stay at home and take care whereas a man will continue his career. In such a scenario probably, we must definitely salute all those ladies who do not think twice and give up their career, dreams and passions just for the betterment of their spouses and family.

It is revealed in studies that even though house work may seem routine but it involves a lot of mental and emotional stress and women tend to spend considerable amounts of time not just working but planning and executing like any professional working for an organization. After staying at home, I started realizing no job was easy and every state of living a woman chooses to follow involves lot of hard work.

Having played both the roles I equally look up to those working ladies who work in double shift. Every working lady finishes one shift at her work place and then returns home to continue her second shift at home without a moment of rest. If staying at home and taking care of the house is a tedious job well then working and taking care is also equally challenging and a big salute to all those women who play this dual role with perfection and ease.

On an ending note I realised that staying at home was not a crime. The misconception and prejudice in my mind vanished and I realized that whether I am working or chose to continue to stay at home and take care of the family my value will never be defined by it. My value will be based on the work I do, the happiness I spread and the value I add to the society.

Today after a break of few months I have returned back to my work but with a difference. If tomorrow there arises a need for me to quit my job and stay at home for any reason I would do so boldly and proudly without fearing my value or worth. May be its time to let the women around us take their decisions, if a woman chooses to stay at home and dedicate her time for family and kids then appreciate her and if another woman chooses to work and take care of the family then support her but never judge her actions and tag her where she does not belong.

Let us as a society learn to respect the decisions taken by those around us, irrespective of the gender. Maybe it is time for us to break the prejudice and dive deep and retrospect the reason behind decisions those around us take and appreciate them for the little sacrifices they do without the knowledge of many.


Information Source - www.economictimes.indiatimes.com

By Sonal Lobo
Sonal Lobo, born and bought up in Bengaluru, is a post graduate in commerce from Christ University, Bengaluru. She has been writing from the age of 10. Her writings have been published in in a number of publications of repute. She has published two books 'Thoughts Sublime' and 'Whistling Words' both collection of poems and also contributed in various anthologies. Currently she is working as an HR counsellor in Bengaluru. You can reach her at sonal_chocolate@yahoo.co.in
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Comment on this article

  • Jeevan Dsouza, Mangalore

    Thu, Dec 13 2018

    Hey Sonal I have read couple of articles from your end its mind-blowing always you are giving good message to everyone I guess everyone should read these articles and should support you.

    Agree

  • Kavya TR, Bangalore

    Mon, Dec 10 2018

    Very much related to all the gals, as this generation think being home maker is degraded but, it is not.
    This article should be like a motivaton for everyone who thinks as above, happy that I'm also the one who choose to be homemaker very boldly 🙂
    Happy to see such inspiring person like you😊
    Very good luck to you mam.👍

    Agree [1]

  • Annie, Moodbidri

    Mon, Dec 10 2018

    A practical heartfelt article.... Felt all the dilemaa's you went through as you had to move from work domain to home domain to again work domain.......

    Change is the only constant in Life.... Says Proakis, I think...

    I think we women need to be "ready" to face any change in our circumstances ... then every decision will be clear and easy.... It will be more easy if we are financially independent and can take the decision to work or not without worry about the future.

    Writing for myself, I find it house work non-stimulating and too routine and too demanding. And very thankless too. Its just not recognized as a hard job, which it truly is. I miss my maid the most if she's away for even a day. We are both sisters in sharing our daily routine burdens... Same at office too. We share our daily joys and troubles over a cup of tea in tea break and get to know the strategies used by those ahead of years in experience, esp how they overcame their domestic troubles in spite of being working. I hope you too enjoy your job and home fronts.


    All the best for the future, Follow your heart... Love your articles.... Keep writing....

    Agree [2]

  • Somna, Dubai

    Sun, Dec 9 2018

    I am a homemaker after getting kids.We should not care the society about our decision of life.
    Most of the people put us down when we are highly qualified and not working.

    Most of highly qualified women are homemakers now.so that they can lead a peaceful family life.

    Both husband and wife are working makes family life upset in todays world.

    Agree [3]

  • Nitika, Dubai

    Sun, Dec 9 2018

    Sonal I really like the way you articulate your writing. I have noticed in all your articles you mention an instance related to you and later on go to relate it to general scenarios. Being a reader one understands the writer on facing the same issue as been emphathetic enough to highlight and thereby instantly connect to the reader. Kudos to you. Well coming to this article, I loved it. I am a homemaker my choice and not force or situation, I don't expect anything in return but yes appreciation makes a huge difference. Somewhere society as forgotten to consider the efforts of homemakers and I feel they need to start doing so.

    Agree [3]

  • Chandana, Bangalore

    Sat, Dec 8 2018

    Hi mam wonderfull article all men should read it compulsory

    Agree [4]

  • Apoorva, Bangalore

    Fri, Dec 7 2018

    Very Inspiring 👍

    Agree [5]

  • Vidhya, Bangalore

    Fri, Dec 7 2018

    Nicely articulated, Sonu. A lot of us are so immersed in pride that we work in offices that we forget homemakers also work. Even I realised how difficult and stressful it is to manage the house only when I actually did it. There is a lot of stress on the mind and the body. Moreover, there is no weekend break or any fixed timing for the work still it remains a thankless job! My mother is a homemaker and I have seen she works much more than what we do at office!

    Agree [4]

  • FLOSSY DSOUZA, MANGALORE

    Fri, Dec 7 2018

    Dear Sonal,

    Beautiful article. Keep it up Sonal.

    Agree [4]

  • Ivan & Lydwin, Mangalore/Canada

    Fri, Dec 7 2018

    A thought provoking and inspirational article Sonal. Very well written, slowly and steadily you seem to become a crusader for the cause of Women and their lives. Keep it up. We love you Sonu.

    Agree [5]

  • Sindhu, Bengaluru

    Fri, Dec 7 2018

    Amazing write up.. not just my thoughts but a whole lot of women out there think and feel the same and you have penned down the exact thing.. hope it makes an impact.. Sonal u are like a revolution.. 😊

    Agree [3]

  • ashwini, Bangalore

    Thu, Dec 6 2018

    Sonal, one of the most touched article of all. An article to read when your low and certainly it will lift you up instantly. To all the women out there here is your energising pill from sonal... I can vouch that she will be a writer to be remembered. Never to miss, proud another time..

    Agree [5]

  • Lynette Rodrigues, Qatar

    Thu, Dec 6 2018

    Hey Sonu, Very well written. You are an inspiration​ to all women. Proud of you

    Agree [5]

  • Keerthana, Bangalore

    Thu, Dec 6 2018

    Very beautifully written Sonal. I remembered my mother when I read your post, most of us ignored the efforts of our mothers and felt that they did nothing at home other than cooking. After being married I realized how much efforts a woman puts in whether she is working or not. You added a new dimension to this thought process. Thank you for all your lovely articles.

    Agree [3]

  • Rajni Rajesh, Bangalore

    Thu, Dec 6 2018

    Sonal very well said !! Most of them go through this , even they fear of being judge, they end up doing things they don’t intend to do.. you have beautiful articulated which is exceptionally motivates each and every one!! So proud of you dear.

    Agree [5]

  • Srividhya, Bangalore

    Wed, Dec 5 2018

    Good one maa'm😊 very inspiring writeup

    Agree [4]

  • deepika baskaran, Bangalore

    Wed, Dec 5 2018

    Wonderful Sonal . I am sure this is going to make many women feel better and inspired. Well done babe:)

    Agree [5]

  • Krish, Bangalore

    Wed, Dec 5 2018

    Nicely written and I’m sure it resonates with many women. Working or otherwise

    Agree [6]

  • Santhosh, Bangalore

    Wed, Dec 5 2018

    Good one sonal. Well written

    Agree [4]

  • Nikhila George Jebby, Bangalore

    Wed, Dec 5 2018

    Hi Sonal,
    This article of yours will be an inspiration for many :) Kudos (Y) and keep writing.

    Agree [5]

  • Pooja Nitin, Bangalore

    Wed, Dec 5 2018

    Hey son, this write up of yours has motivated me. Thank you 🥰

    Agree [4]

  • Alina, Bangalore

    Wed, Dec 5 2018

    Sonal it seems to me like you have penned what's in my heart. These thoughts were running in my mind when I quit my high paying job to take care of my kids. I knew I wanted to be with my kids but the fear of what others may think lead me to a lot of stress. Today I am a homemaker by choice and loving every moment of it . Reading your article made me prouder of my choice and happy. Thank you for such thought provoking articles. In your write up I find a lot of practicality hidden. Kudos to you. Keep writing..

    Agree [4]

  • Verina, BOMBAY

    Wed, Dec 5 2018

    Nice!...something every woman can relate too...a topic that will be debated for centuries n still there will a certain part of society who will still not budge to understand the dilemma of a woman.

    Agree [5]

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