A family dinner is a family dinner. By definition, it’s a shared experience that transcends gender roles and responsibilities. In a healthy environment, everyone contributes to creating a warm and inclusive evening.
But when Reddit user Objective_Set4644 and other women from her family asked the men to help, they chose to watch the game instead. So, in an effort to teach them a lesson, the ladies kicked them out.
Now, since she was the one who came up with the idea, Objective_Set4644 is facing backlash from the guys, so she made a post on the subreddit ‘Am I the [Jerk]?‘ asking if she might’ve actually gone too far.
Family dinners can serve as foundations for strong bonds that last a lifetime
Image credits: Craig Adderley (not the actual photo)
So, this woman was sad that the men from hers refused to help prepare them
Image credits: artemp3 (not the actual photo)
Image credits: u/Objective_Set4644
Gender equality starts with men and women becoming equal at home
This story could be seen as an example of the fact that even though women comprise nearly half of the U.S. workforce, they still fulfill a larger share of household responsibilities.
Married or partnered heterosexual couples in the U.S. continue to divide household chores along largely traditional lines, with the woman in the relationship shouldering primary responsibility for laundry, cleaning, and cooking.
Dr. Anthony Chambers, Chief Academic Officer and Clinical Psychologist, Director of the Center for Applied Psychological and Family Studies at Northwestern University, and Family and Couples Therapist at the Family Institute, thinks that given how busy everyone is, with dual-income families as the norm, becoming middle class or even just surviving requires couples to work together even more and to have much more clarity and communication about their roles.
“Time is no longer people’s friend,” he explained. “You’re always on with work and there’s not as much emotional energy for the kids and the household work. It’s so much more important now to have alignment on this. Family life is difficult in managing all the competing things that are taking people’s time.”
Image credits: On Shot (not the actual photo)
According to Chambers, the two pieces that family meals rely on are connection and cohesion. “It’s an opportunity for everyone in the family to connect, to have accurate temperature readings as to how everyone in the family is doing, which allows for family identity. Family identity and cohesion are important and meals can be the conduit for that. That’s at the heart, for me, of why family meals are important.”
“I would say clinically, I definitely see that the more there is role flexibility, it makes it easier to come to those conversations about cohesion and family identity,” the therapist added. “The more rigid the expectations are, there’s less flexibility when a couple has to negotiate and figure out how to contribute. It’s helpful when people have a more flexible view of what fathers can and should do.”
In interviews researchers David G. Smith and W. Brad Johnson conducted for their book, Good Guys: How Men Can Be Better Allies for Women in the Workplace, women told them that gender equality starts with men becoming equal partners at home. “Real allyship and gender partnership demands that men do their fair share of household chores, childcare, transportation for children’s activities, the emotional labor of planning and tracking activities, and supporting their partner’s career. When men genuinely enact equal partnership at home, it accelerates gender equality at work in three ways,” the authors explained.
So instead of watching the game, the guys in this situation definitely could’ve set an example for the girls and helped the family women with the dinner.