Thursday, 14 February 2013

Why I Should Have Been Born A Man


Sometimes, I wonder if I should have been born a man. Not in body, you understand. But regardless of the positive progression made towards equality in recent years, there's no denying that, to some degree, we women are still expected to be something of domestic goddesses. Yes, men may do their bit with the washing or cook dinner a couple of nights a week nowadays, but it still seems to me that we are somehow supposed to possess those same qualities, whether or not they are put to constant use. We are supposed to want to keep our houses spick and span at all times, to have dinner on the table in the evenings. And to enjoy stacking the dishwasher and tidying up after our loved ones or housemates. It's assumed that, no matter how much we complain about having to do all of these things, that actually, we secretly take delight from doing them, and from the overwhelming sense of satisfaction it generates within us. And most of all, all of this is expected to come naturally to us. We see a crumb on the floor, and can't help but pull out the vacuum cleaner. We've already cleaned the toilet once that day, but we just have to do it one more time, just to make sure every last speck of bacteria has been exterminated.

Well, guess what? I'm not a domestic goddess. I leave my clothes lying around all over the place. I don't always remember to hang out the washing after it's been through a cycle in the machine, so I often have to do it again. I absolutely hate, with a passion, sweeping and mopping tiled or laminate flooring. And cleaning the bathroom makes my skin crawl.

There, I said it.


Now, don't get me wrong - my house is not a complete pigsty, and I do wash my dishes and make an effort to keep things clean and tidy. But frankly, cooking aside, I detest household chores. It's not even the actual doing them that bothers me the most. It's the fact that you can spend a whole day trying to get your house looking picture perfect, but a day later, it's as if you had never lifted a finger. Where's the satisfaction in that!?

Recently, my sister was having a discussion with her boyfriend about the virtues of shower mats and curtains, and when they couldn't agree on where the post-shower drying should take place, she called upon the people of Facebook to hopefully prove her right. The question in, well, question, was whether one should dry themselves in the shower before climbing out onto the mat or whether the mat was actually the point at which the towel should come out. Immediately, I whole-heartedly jumped on the second option bandwagon, only to check back later and see that lots of people had agreed with me. With a smug smile on my face, I scanned the remaining comments, only to find that a) my sister's opinion had been the first, not the second, and b) everyone who had agreed with me was male.
These things just don't come naturally to me. I always forget to hang my towel up to dry after a shower, while my husband vigilantly does so every time. I fail to notice when there is a scattering of crumbs or hair on the floor, and even when I do, my first thought is to clean it up 'later', which of course, never really comes until it's time to give the whole house a good going over from top to bottom anyway.

I must point out, I am in no way saying that it's preferential to think like a man, although I do believe that it must be quite stressful to feel the need to be on top of every little aspect of home life at all times. Actually, I find it quite worrying that I don't seem to have come equipped with such natural instincts, and it terrifies me when I think of perhaps one day having children. If it's not in my nature to do all of these things, then how can I ever expect looking after a child to be instinctive? Can I really expect a switch to suddenly flick, and to instantly become that afore-mentioned domestic goddess?
I do wish my house was in a more organised state of affairs, and I do try to keep it so, but fail so miserably. It's not for want of trying, but for want of instinct.

So tell me, am I the only woman alive to leave dirty socks on the floor, and to not whip out my feather duster at the smallest whiff of an opportunity?

This could be awkward....

Mel x


  1. Loved this post! Household chores are the work of satan I believe and are best left alone ;) I am like you to the extent that I don't have everything sparkling and clean at all times. I might go days without hoovering or mopping the floor, but I make sure I do the basics. Any way there are far more important matters to attend to, like reading great new blogs! (Mind you I can't stand it when the hubs leaves wet towels draped all over the bed lol)

    1. Haha, oh dear, I have to admit that I am terrible for leaving towels in the wrong place...oops. See - man!!xx