While playing “house” with her friends, a little girl set the dining table with cups and plates. As her fake husband enters the house, with a briefcase in his hand, she serves him tea and he tells her how hectic work was.
Growing up, she looks at her mother working all day long at home. From cooking in the kitchen to making sure that they don’t run of out of shampoo, she takes care of everything possible.
Every day after dinner, her dad would crouch in front of the TV while her mom would still be completing her routinely chores.
“Mom never takes a break!”, she realized.
Years later when her dad visits her, he gives his daughter a warm hug as she came home from the office. While his son-in-law cheers for his favorite cricket team, his daughter is busy setting up the table for dinner and looking after their mischievous son.
And then it strikes him.
He never helped his wife with laundry, cleaning or cooking. He hardly ever participated in household chores. This is what his daughter learned all her life. This is what sons learned everywhere.
Created by Indian detergent company Ariel, a video campaign called #ShareTheLoad highlights how traditional gender roles are passed down from generation to generation in households around the world.
Wouldn’t we love to see how this conversation is taken further?
Sharing the load is not just limited to laundry but to all the household chores attributed to women.
While some people feel that men, on the face of it, believe in the gender equality, but somewhere at a sub-conscious level, the age-old inequality still exists. People are generally not open to change, and thus, this tradition is passed down to generations.
On the other hand, some feel that the ad is regressive. An educated woman in a metro city would just ask her husband to get up and put his shirt in the washing machine. In another scenario, household maids are appointed to do most of the chores, while men and women divide their responsibilities equally.
With the increasing percentage of working women in India, it wouldn’t be wrong to state that the trends are changing, for the better.
Then why does this stereotype still exist?
Is it just in the small towns? Or in modern orthodox families too?
Or, is everyone too comfortable with the idea of women handling the household chores?