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What Do I Do All Day Long? How Do Housewives Answer This Question Convincingly?

Discussion in 'Friends & Neighbours' started by nayidulhan, Jul 30, 2021.

  1. nayidulhan

    nayidulhan Bronze IL'ite

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    What do I do all day long? How do housewives answer this question convincingly?


    I am a homemaker and a SAHM. I am on a sabbatical now. All my friends, family members, neighbours, etc. have known me as a 24*7 busy person who would always run on toes to manage professional and personal aspects of my life.

    Of late, after taking a sabbatical in this pandemic, I realize that I am doubly busy. With no assistance with the household chores, online schooling and spouse WFH most of the time, I am at their beck and call at all times. My parents and parents in law are senior citizens and need my assistance with all their e-work like with zoom/ google meet/ sending emails and WA formal communication, etc. Also, I have to manage procuring essentials, etc for them as I don’t want them to venture out unnecessarily.

    Friends/ family members seek my help constantly with writing/ editing their own work, Math and Science problems that their kids can’t work out, with scheduling and organizing online / off line events and appointments for them and their families, etc etc etc. Basically, I am the woman Friday for almost everyone around. And I love doing all that I do. When I lie down on the bed at night, the body ache I have actually reminds me of the satisfaction I am feeling deep in my mind for having been of use to people around. But of late, when old friends/ acquaintances come to know that I am at home- not working to earn money- they ask me the pertinent, inevitable question… what do you do all day long? You must be having loads of time on your hands to pursue your personal interests and you never call up to chat or even read the messages on the WA groups and engage in casual, friendly conversations!

    I fumble to answer that question and silently worry within for I don’t even have the time for self care at the end of the day. How do I answer that question then?
     
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  2. Thyagarajan

    Thyagarajan IL Hall of Fame

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    This post reminds me of a DH who wrote in his mother tongue a missive as below:

    Me Dear beautiful wife
    You are my life dude

    I get up late from bed in the morning
    whereas you that moment play with hearth in kitchen

    As I brush my teeth & wash
    You are cleaning & washing dishes anew

    I gather news from paper & magazines
    Whereas you broom and gather dust from floor

    I clean and bathe myself
    Whereas you gather soiled clothes for wash

    I eat leisurely to heart’s content
    You gather water in vessels from Munucipality tap

    Whereas you dress our kids in uniform
    and escort to their school

    I set out to office before which
    You gather my dress and keep lunch box ready

    As I step out and kick two wheeler to life
    You never forget to send me that flying kiss

    You are always there at doorstep with kids to receive
    When I return home late evening

    I slump into sofa fatigued
    You offer refreshments and drink

    While I surf channels
    You have time to play with & educate kids

    I go to bed
    But you are still on inspection rounds

    Safety security concerns
    Propels you to check lights fans and padlocks

    You check and tuck blankets over sleeping kids
    And reach me when next day has commenced

    Every Sunday holiday for me
    Every festival busy day for you

    I enjoy resting on holiday
    But you enjoy doing more special for us

    You represent me in functions of our kin’s & kith
    You represent me in our kid school parents meet

    You answer their question on my behalf
    Your represent me in temples

    With all this close to my heart
    Is it not bit odd and akward

    For me to claim that am employed?
    And you are only

    SAHM
    Stay at home mom

    Entire day passed
    But you were busy throughout

    As home-maker you plan our food,
    You organise home,

    Always you have Few more chores many tasks
    Yet you remain aplomb

    Ever waiting looking forward
    To do more for kids and me

    “Madam. Are you employed?”
    Asks at door step

    A government official.
    He was collecting statistics at our doorstep.

    You answered him,
    “ No-No. I am Stay At Home Mom
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2021
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  3. nayidulhan

    nayidulhan Bronze IL'ite

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    Thank you. You seem to acknowledge the plight of the SAHMs. :)

    I really wish people could "see" and "gauge" the contribution made by the lady of the house to the family's or friends' success. How difficult it would have been if one had to do all the background work oneself while working/ studying, etc.

    Just sharing here a funny WA forward I read a while ago... When a lady cooks and serves hot, healthy, fresh and tasty meals and gets asked, "why this dish today? why not something else? "or "This dish is lacking in taste. Something is not right", she responds to the husband..."you too work hard all day long then why aren't we too rich like the Ambanis?":laughing:
     
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  4. anika987

    anika987 Finest Post Winner

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    I got all the comments that you have got:)

    People will never understand others situations and reasons.

    They are just asking out of curiosity or just for the heck of it.Many make too many judgements and say this and that.

    We need to accept no matter what you say is not going to convince them coz they have already made up their mind:)

    The question is already judgmental coz they question means they believe people don’t have nothing to do all day.

    Just accept them as passing clouds.How many people can you answer.


    I just say I do what I have to do that day.Nothing more.

    let them keep guessing and think what they want.I just smile.Coz it’s your life and your decision:)

    Also,these days I live well and really well and happy.

    Infact recently a lady asked me “oh! I wish I could have a relaxed life and free”.

    I just said “True.I would rather not live such a hectic life”.


    I was working before and even then people made random comments.

    I just feel we should not give importance to these people.


    Plus I try these days not to care or look good in others eyes.It’s okay if they think I am this and that coz we know our truth and we know why and what we are. Just don’t try to seek approval.Develop your self worth.

    Show them your attitude by feeling good.Infact the more stronger you feel,you can handle things better.You will still get ripped apart but you will be fine.

    it’s okay.We cannot control stereotypes and mental conditioning.

    More we accept,more we are peaceful.We can only control our thoughts.

    Good luck dear.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2021
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  5. Needtobestrong

    Needtobestrong Platinum IL'ite

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    I find this question quite insulting...I too noticed that ever since I became a home maker I noticed more pressure and expectations of others from me for cooking, household chores..”why this dish ? I’m not in a mood to eat it..why not XYZ dish .”
    Or “ I’ll eat later, not hungry now “. Or “ food cools down, why do you make and keep in casseroles? Make and keep Hot hot during meal time.”.” Why didn’t you add such and such ingredient? The dish hasn’t come well..”..” make ABC dish for me, I’m bored of usual menu “..”why do you buy this powder or masala readymade? Prepare at home you have plenty of time” “ when I was your age , as a housewife I used to prepare much more items than you did “.

    These dialogues Ive heard too often..
    Cooking can be done if ther is help for other chores...
    But during pandemic when workload is more and no domestic help and we need to manage cleaning and home maintenance too ourselves, it’s damn irritating to be at beck and call of everyone..especially if elders are there at home. Spouse, kids are generally easier to manage than elders, is what most ladies tell me.

    When I was working I was too busy and used to do basic cooking of simple dishes and rush for work..Was hardly available for unwanted remarks or unwanted tasks.

    “What other work do you have? As a housewife can’t you do all the work why do you need help from anyone ?” “ why are you in hurry to complete your chores, as if you need to step out for work”..many times in laws have taunted like this..
    They will take my help for online shopping and purchase, zoom meetings, social networking, mails, banking online etc but not appreciate my time or knowledge applied.

    It’s always better to be employed and busy else we are taken for granted.
    Whether pandemic is there or not, ladies are always taken for granted if they’re at home and “available” and not employed.

    Sorry for sounding bitter, my personal experience..
     
  6. nayidulhan

    nayidulhan Bronze IL'ite

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    @anika987, yes, you nailed it. The question in itself is judgmental and also accusatory in nature. I will try to develop the poise you are suggesting. The thing is I have my hands so full of chores and my mind so full of thoughts/plans, etc. that I have even stopped thinking rationally, I feel. I must relearn the art of non-attachment to other people’s opinions. Thanks for pointing that out to me.
     
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  7. nayidulhan

    nayidulhan Bronze IL'ite

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    @Needtobestrong, thanks a lot for your clarity. “I’ll eat later, not hungry now” is very common in my house too. This is a complete disregard to our time. The speaker of this sentence is thinking that he/ she is only delaying the meal but in spite of repeated reminders fails to understand that there is an array of chores to complete after the meal like dealing with the left overs, cleaning the dining table, counter tops, etc.

    “why are you in hurry to complete your chores, as if you need to step out for work”. OMG, this is one innuendo I hear almost every day. And as if salt on the wound, “She’s just not interested in household work/ cooking. She just rushes through everything.” To anyone who will hear to even in the air, to an imagined person in the room! L

    Yes, when someone asks for assistance with e-work or with creative writing, etc they should realize that the world is fast changing and that we too need to polish our skills constantly.

    I agree with you about better being employed than otherwise. Now that everyone is so used to having me at their disposal 24*7, when I talk about resuming work, I get talked to about “Opportunity costs”. These same people will try to convince me how the presence of the mother around the house is influential in formation of good character of the off spring!
     
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  8. shravs3

    shravs3 IL Hall of Fame

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    Ask them to come and stay with you for few days to spend some time so that they will see how free/busy you are!
     
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  9. Needtobestrong

    Needtobestrong Platinum IL'ite

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    Exactly...you understood my issue so well..
    Only we ladies face this..working or homemaker..but home maker is more affected as she is taken for granted..
    In nuclear families atleast workload is less, and husband and wife can have some understanding like if the husband wants to eat a little late, he may volunteer to wash and clean up after he eats..but in laws usually don’t adjust much and just want to eat and sleep comfortably while DIL slogs..for ladies living jointly with in-laws during this pandemic, they need to have super human patience and tolerance to deal with this situation.
    If it wasn’t for this pandemic I would have been employed somewhere and wouldn’t have faced such issues...
     
  10. anika987

    anika987 Finest Post Winner

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    It is not about being SAHM or women who work outside.Problem is we think if we are employed magically people will start respecting and things will be fine.

    True..there will be escape from home when you are living with toxic family members but office politics is another deal altogether in many cases.Trying to deal politics both in office and work front will bring more health and emotional issues.It does not get better for everyone.Some are lucky that’s all.

    Apart from that,even if you are a NASA scientist it is not like people are going to fall at your feet and respect.They will try to find different faults.


    When I was working,I had people who ripped me apart also.Trying to put me down in different ways.

    As a homemaker it is different kind of ripping apart.

    People are not going to change.


    It is all the mind set.First we need to feel good about ourselves and take care.Then start doing whatever makes us feel right in our life.
     
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