Nita's post 'Women at Work', made me ponder on women working in India - how equal are we?
Women have been working for ages in India - as domestic helps or doing manual labour. How do we classify this? Are these women not forced to work in order to earn a living? When we talk about feminism - where do these women figure? Are they liberated or are they being used?
I used to have a maid servant who had a husband who used to turn up just once in a while to beat her up and take any money that he could lay his hands on.. It used to make my heart break to listen to her. Despite all that, she was determind to try and get her daughter and son educated - so that at least they have a chance at a better life!
Even in case, of educated working women, how many of us have husbands who help us out at home? Even if they do - the main responsibility seems to lie on the women. Why is it, that true equality is just not happening? It is assumed that everything related to 'home' is the women's responsibility - so what if she has an equally , if not more challenging job outside! There was one time, when my own husband - who is extremely lazy, was lying in bed when I got back from work - and I had just sat down, to take a breather - when he said - ' You are sitting down? - can't you see, I am hungry!' That made me see RED!!! I was like, 'oh really? Well I am certainly not cooking anymore- If you are hungry make something yourself!' Anyways, that resulted in my husband getting hold of a cook the very next day- which certainly made our lives much easier - but the unfairness of it still irks me - and I have still not stopped reminding him:)
So is 'working women' in any form - a liberation? I would think so in a lot of ways , and again in a lot of ways, the true liberation is to be able to decide when you want to work and when you want to stay at home. To be fair to my husband - he has always been supportive of me in my decisions to work or not to work. When I was working - he was always supportive, and when after 8 yrs of working , when I wanted to be a stay at home mum to my 1.5 yr old - he was equally supportive. To think of it, I do feel liberated that I have the choice - unlike so many of our fellow women - who have to work, whether they like it or not.