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Even Superwoman needs a Sidekick

Since the beginning of the modern era, women were subliminally shuffled into a place in society where their place was the home or the kitchen. Consumerism encouraged companies to endorse the image of the stay-at-home mom and persuade women into domestic lifestyles. Family dynamics held men as the breadwinners and women began pushing back, making headway with the right to vote.

The household chores women were expected to handle went beyond cooking dinner but keeping the house clean, the kids afloat and the husband happy which was never as easy as they made it seem on television.

Now, we live in an era where women can enjoy the luxuries of a housekeeper or nanny. However, the image of the struggling woman is so ingrained in society, women have a hard time believing they deserve the extra help. Normalizing women having a helping hand is not only crucial toward breaking the stereotype but also changing the narrative around a woman’s place in the world.

The late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg fought the hardest out of any other elected official to help women earn a seat at tables they so deserve especially in the male-dominated fields outside of the home. As women began entering the work field, they are expected to provide complete dedication to their work while also balancing their personal life or role as a mother. A Pew Research study on social trends found a trait society values most in women is ability to multitask.

In another Pew Research study, they reported millennial women believe men have it easier these days. Though they’ve always “had it easy” considering the class pyramid, it is notable that as far as women have come regarding equality, there is still more work to be done. Women feel the pressure of having to lead by example to break the glass ceilings of male dominated fields.

Women of color and Black women especially suffer under the trope of strength projected onto them creating an expectancy for them to be able to handle many responsibilities at once. At some point, being considered “Superwoman” is more damaging than a compliment.

As a result, women are considered lazy or incapable once they hire someone to help them balance everything. Even celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Beyonce were scolded by social media users for their use of nannies to take care of their kids while working full-time jobs. Hiring people to do simple tasks like laundry and cleaning the bathroom is often met with the question, “Why not do it yourself?” Then the hard work women do put in is overshadowed by the impression of scrupulous spending. They are expected to sacrifice what they can including time to themselves or a moment to breathe in order to do what’s necessary for the family.

Featured Image by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels

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