My entire life, I’ve been criticized for being what I like to call “not domestically inclined”. The truth is that I absolutely detest household chores – the mere thought of cleaning, doing laundry etc. makes me want to run screaming for the hills. So yes, that makes me a slob. Whatever.
It all started with my mother’s archaic gender role beliefs. As a child I was the elder sister with a brother 3 years younger than I. This often meant that I was supposed to take care of him and do my chores around the house. Growing up in a single parent struggling household meant that the chores ranged from scrubbing toilets to hand washing and ironing clothes. It was beyond rough.
But what made it even worst was my mother’s insistence that it was responsibility to do all the cleaning because it was ‘girl work’ and my brother was allowed to pretty much roam free. While I was stuck inside scrubbing my hands raw – let’s just say that Cinderella’s sufferings were no worst than mine.
Now my circumstances coupled with my active seeking mind and stubborn personality meant that I did not have a happy childhood; to the point that the chores became the least of my problems. But that’s a story for another day.
Anyway, is it any wonder that I hate chores. I am convinced that I was predisposed to hating them and my mother’s beliefs only heightened my disdain. As a child I was baffled about the difference between myself and my brother. This meant that I complained bitterly, which led to even more chores as punishment; after my whipping by whatever implement of pain was closest to my mother’s hand (belt, stick, board, shoes, pots, or her fists) again story for another day.
Today, whenever I clean I feel as if I’m being punished and is it any big surprise that I detest it. In fact, the only chore I find any tolerance for is cooking – what can I say I love eating. Now I’m not one to bare my soul to others so how could I communicate to others that I’m a slob because cleaning makes me feel like I’m being punished; without going into detail about my horrid childhood. Is that even a valid explanation anyway and shouldn’t I have found a way to get over it and clean more frequently? I mean other people do it, even though they don’t like it.
Instead, my explanation have been – I’m a bit of a germaphobe (which I am) and I’m simply not domestically inclined. Then of course, I get accused of having a princess complex, being lazy (which I admit I am) and being just plain nasty. Surprisingly, the harshest criticisms come from other females. Additionally, why are men allowed to be slobs and women are not?
Which makes me wonder, why do a lot of women still cling to the gender stereotypes of women as housekeepers?