Spit and Spirits

Men, Get the F##k Off the Couch and Do Some Housework

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The majority of guys are lazy, sooky, mummy’s boys. Don’t believe me? Have a conversation with any woman in a relationship with a dude and you can bet pretty much most of them will say their man does absolutely nothing around the house. And they mean nothing. As in doesn’t lift a God-damn finger, nothing.

How does this happen? How do two people get to the point where it seems totally normal for one to do every piece of housework while the other doesn’t do any? To me, it sounds like utter insanity.

I had a look at some psych research on the whole ‘mummy’s boy’ thing, and they say that it’s a form of negative reciprocity. This can happen from the boy/man in question having grown up with parents who are unhappy in their relationship and learns that trading insult for insult is a normal practice. Not only does this lead to men acting selfishly to the detriment of others – especially to others of the opposite sex in a family setting – but they don’t see it as they’re doing anything wrong. To them it’s completely normal to have a slave that picks up their skid-marked gym underwear off the floor and cooks their steak to perfection before kissing their feet until they go sleepy byes on the couch.

But it’s 2014 people. How does this still happen?! Women should be sharpening the carving knife while pulling down these sooky-la-la’s panties and making them get off the couch and contribute. Right? Right??

Nope.

The women I’ve spoken to about this don’t seem to want try and change their lazy partners. When I’ve said those exact words to them, that they should make their partners contribute, they usually say something like, ‘Oh, you know, it’s just how he was brought up.’ Or, ‘I just know he’ll do a bad job of it, so I’d rather not bother.’ Jesus, call me a freaking waambulance. Is that any way to look at the situation? The guy is being lazy. End of story.

The easiest way to stop someone from trying to do something is say they’re doing a bad job at it. Treat them like a 5 year old and give some positive reinforcement. Also, most of these couples have children. Their kids are going to grow up with that exact same attitude. Boys will treat every woman they have a relationship with like they’re a servant, and girls will be house hold submissives who think it’s their duty to meet a man’s every wish. Surely that’s not how they want their children to grow up.

'But I don't wanna put my dirty socks in the hamper, they're icky-poo-poo!'

‘But I don’t wanna put my dirty socks in the hamper, they’re icky-poo-poo!’

And guys can’t get away with the whole, ‘But I bring home the money. I work so hard every day because I’m a man and I get tired walking from my desk to the lunch room to unwrap my sandwich and little piece of banana bread that my wife made for me.’ It doesn’t cut it, whiners. All of the women I’ve spoken to have full time jobs. Not only do they work 9 hours a day they organise every meal, do all the housework, feed and dress and entertain the children, do all the shopping, and probably wipe their man’s bot-botts and kiss their knees after they had a boo-boo too.

It’s like everyone’s amazed when a guy says they do things around the house. I mention that I love to cook, or I vacuumed the floor, and women are blown away. ‘Wow,’ they usually say. ‘I wish my husband would do something like that!’ What, vacuum the floor? I live in the house. I contribute to its dirtiness. Doesn’t it just make sense that I’d contribute to its cleanliness too? And what do these guys do with all their spare time? Play Xbox? Play golf? Research fantasy football statistics? Go on 7 hour road bike rides with their mates and drink lattes afterwards? It all sounds pretty bloody narcissistic to me. How about they actually do something that benefits someone else, like their wife or children.

Being in a relationship is about working as partners. And being an adult means you know you have responsibilities but still take time out to have fun. If one person is having all the fun and the other is working their arses off then you’ll never have time to have fun together. That’s not a life. That’s serfdom. And serfdom went out of fashion during the 15th century – other than in our homes of course.

I guess it angers me so much to hear about all these men slobbing their way through life because I grew up in a household where it was an equal partnership. And now, in my married life, I continue that. I pretty much do all the cooking, and do the laundry and dishes and vacuum and mop. Also the obligatory man things like spraying the neighbourhood cats with a bottle of water when they’re fighting, yard work and washing the car – which I don’t really get to drive seeing as I’m such a fan of the scooter life. Everything my wife and I do we do as equals. And once we hopefully have children you can bet I’ll be even more keen to keep that happening. The last thing I’d want is our children growing up seeing me behaving like I’m some kind of douche-bag King dealing with negative reciprocity issues.

I’m not saying I want some kind of medal, or I’m some kind of household Superman, although you can spread that around if you want, I guess I’m confused and frustrated how men, in this day of information sharing and modern ideals, can still be acting like such little shits and get away with it.

All you need to do to be respected as a man is act like a man.

So men, get the fuck off the couch, you have no excuses. And ladies, don’t stand by and let your partner continue sitting on the couch, you’re only solidifying unequal relationships for generations to come.

(If you want to read about what jobs us men should be doing you can find an earlier post here: Pink Jobs, Blue Jobs.)

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