It is that time, folks. Time to reflect on the year that is coming to a close, and set goals, intentions, or even resolutions for the coming year.
Not too long ago, I came across an article that got me thinking about the things I should maybe be doing on a daily basis. The article’s author, Tara Carr, lays out some very specific things she thinks I, as a woman, should be doing. In the intro to her article Carr seems to praise the ladies depicted in the movie Mona Lisa Smile, who went to college not for a degree but to find a man, “get married as soon as possible and put those Home Ec skills to good use!” She mentions that now it is ok to have a career, and your own mind, and “what not,” but encourages women to do at least some things the “old fashioned” way.
I disagree with pretty much everything she says. But, make no mistake, I don’t necessarily disagree with Carr’s “shoulds” as much as I disagree with the WHYs behind them.
Carr’s first SHOULD is to cook, because “you need to know how to make two or three meals for your man that he will love.”
Instead, I encourage you to cook so you can eat. Your partner, if you have one, should likewise cook so he/she can eat. If you enjoy cooking, yay! If your partner enjoys cooking, yay! And although we sometimes have to do things we don’t love, you should never feel like you HAVE to cook because you were born with a vagina. You can always order take out.
Carr’s next SHOULD: clean. Because, “while your husband/boyfriend should be able to pick up after himself, as the woman of the house, you should be able to maintain a clean house.”
Um, no. Cleaning kills germs that make us sick. Keeping yourself, and the household, healthy is the responsibility of the entire household. We are all in this together, folks.
Also, it is an antiquated (and damaging) notion that our homes are in any way a reflection of our worth. We are supposed to live there, make memories there, and share there. Our homes are not meant to make us look good. No matter what Pinterest says. If you and your family are comfortable and healthy, you win!
(You can’t use this as an excuse to be yucky and hoard-y. Stay on the healthy side, mmk?)
The third SHOULD that Tara Carr presents to us is to fix your man’s plate, because it is a sign of honor and respect, especially when in public. She encourages women to have a “servant’s heart,” noting that when you honor and respect him, he should return the favor.
C’mon guys. We fix plates for children and elderly family members that maybe can’t stand in the buffet line for very long.
Now, there may be exceptions to this. Like when you want to keep extra bodies out of your tiny kitchen. Or when you want to encourage some portion control. But, don’t get it twisted. Acting like a servant is not a sign of respect.
Carr’s fourth SHOULD for women is to watch their mouths because cursing is “just not attractive.” She does make a valid (and obvious) point that cursing should be avoided in certain places, like church, school, and in front of *his* new boss.
Cursing has been around forever, and as my mom says, sometimes it’s not a ‘poop’ its a SH**. Curse words are still just words, and we use words to express ourselves everyday. Society deems it as inappropriate in some environments, as Carr mentioned. (I would obviously add that you should probably not cuss in front of *your* boss either, BTdubs). But again, you should not be made to feel like you can’t say what you want to say because it’s “not attractive.”
Part Two: Dishing out compliments, keeping yourself up, wearing things so others like how you look, and anticipating your partner’s needs.