I wish a good day to all our readers, as I look out of the window and smell the nice fragrance of mud wetted by the rain. It soothes my mind and makes me think. I think about those women and men who are right now, at this moment, stuck in a traffic jam or are packed in stuffy trains and buses or are rushing to reach their offices on time. Oh! What a rush it is in the morning! Isn’t this the case with most cities in the world? And how fortunate am I that I can sit peacefully, sipping tea and enjoying this moment!
Today, men and women are working on par with each other. Gone are the days when women were expected to take care of the homes while the men worked and earned money. Now, women not only work at home, but also rush to work and slog at the office. They return home, again cook in the hot kitchen, and serve dinners to their husbands. And the husbands only work in the office and feel how inefficient the wife is!!! It is a big price we have paid for being such feminists. No doubt we women are very capable, but trying to assert our position as equals has put an added burden on our delicate heads. Now we not only have to work hard to prove ourselves at work, but also have to slog at home; and still we are labeled useless and inefficient by our ‘bosses’—both in office as well as at home.
On the contrary, in the earlier age the women depended on the men to earn and get the daily bread, while they took care of the house and the children. Their roles were well defined and they stuck to it. Because the women were completely dependent on the men, the men were forced to work hard and provide for the family. In turn, the women took care of everything else at home so that the man was always peaceful. Some old- school people will say that in today’s society the roles of husband and wife have been mixed up, and that’s the reason for so many conflicts in married life. If each one stuck to his/her duties and did that perfectly, there won’t be any problems.
So, is it that women who are qualified and intelligent shouldn’t work? Today more and more women are opting for ambitious careers over family life. Lot of compromises is being made at the home front. Maybe that is the need of the hour; to have a good standard of living, both husband and wife have to work. So perhaps role reversals are inevitable in today’s society. But psychologically we see how it affects each party. Husband feels always threatened if the wife is earning more than him and wife feels why she should take all the responsibilities alone. Obviously there will be conflicts and quarrels, as both are trying to take the position of the boss.
Factually, however, there can only be one Boss! Let me explain. In my case, we both are professionals. I am a doctor and he is an engineer. We have tried to stick to our roles. I have cut down on my clinic days to twice a week, that too only when the kids are at school. Rest of the time I am at home, looking into household matters. We cooperate with each other, and when I have to go for some work he is with the children. But above all, what has helped us through all this is spirituality. Our guru Radhanath Swami teaches us with the example of ripples in water. When we throw stones at the same spot in a lake, we see ripples created in the water that never conflict with each other and move harmoniously in concentric circles. Why? Because they have a common centre. And that common centre in our lives should be GOD. If we keep God in the centre of our relationship, there will be minimum conflicts. So, even though in this day and age, both have to work, earn money and have hectic lifestyles, we can strike a balance by following spirituality and accepting only one BOSS at home—and that is God!!!
– Dr. Sandhya Subramanian
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