I had to take a break, however, to talk about a post I read recently on The Huffington Post in which Lisa Earle McLeod asks “Why do women begrudge men a nap?”
The short essay seeks to explain why women get so pissed when they see their men taking a nap on a Saturday afternoon. She argues that while men view their homes as a refuge, for most women it’s “the place where the real work gets done.” So we get angry when our men nap because it’s similar to seeing a colleague sleeping on the job.
Here’s an excerpt:
When a woman sees a pile of dirty dishes and laundry strewn about the floor, we don’t just see a mess, we literally feel failure. We could have spent the workday brokering world peace, but if our home isn’t running smoothly, we feel out of whack. It might not make sense, but it’s the way most of us are wired.
I think McLeod means well, but here’s why this post rubs me the wrong way.
Not only is there no discussion of the problematic assumption that women should be in charge of household chores, but when trying to explain to men why they’re a big deal to us she compares them to “the project of your life.” I’m sorry but cleaning my curtains and bathroom rugs ranks nowhere near writing a bestseller. I’m just sayin’…
Don’t get me wrong. I think homemakers and stay-at-home moms are awesome. But posts like these, in my opinion, just foster the stereotype that cooking and cleaning should be our first priority. Sure, there’s nothing wrong with them being top priority if you want them to be, but if they’re not that doesn’t mean you’re less of a woman. Just as my husband isn’t less of a man because he does the laundry and knows how to load a dishwasher every once and a while.
And for the record, we take naps together.