Committment is a Two-Way Street

I’m sick of all the stereotyping going on, not only in the media but also in the minds of people and the daily conversations reflecting their perception of reality, or their denial of it.

For example, there’s this image of the woman running after a man who’s in turn running for his life. You know, the girl nagging about wanting to take a relationship to the next level, make it official, get him committed. Now I realize this happens, especially in a society were single men enjoy more liberties that those enjoyed by single women or married men, while married women obtain this imaginary new status that gives them a sense of superiority over those who are still outside this social circle. Yes, I understand that. But I also understand that this image of the girl with pinkish dreams and stars in her eyes is a naive generalization that no longer works.

You see, girls can take commitment seriously too, even to the point of being commitment phobes. Victimizing yourself as a free bird trying not to fall in captivity is quite absurd and senseless. You might think a girl has nothing to worry about because here in our society it all falls on the shoulder of the man, and I agree that they do shoulder a huge burden in that regard which makes them refrain from the whole thing altogether, but that doesn’t mean every girl is the queen of England, just sitting there looking pretty without a care in the world on her mind. Let me give you a few examples of the concerns  a girl could grapple with when being or even considering a serious commitment:

1- Financial burdens: Hello, 2013 to 1910, this is future, apparently men are no longer the only hunter-gatherers in the family, women are busting their spinal cords off working too to put food on the table. Look around you at any middle class family, you’d see men and women working all day to support their families. This friend of mine who, before getting married, didn’t have to worry about leaving her job if she didn’t feel comfortable, she would stay home and get her pocket money from her mother or brothers. But after she got married things were different. Now she can’t afford to leave her job no matter how much she hates it, because she has a house, and a son, and her husband’s salary alone can’t pay all their expenses. So, it’s goodbye to shopping whenever you feel like it, now there are more important things you need to save for, like diapers and milk bottles.

2Social commitments: You think it’s fun to have an entirely new family you need to keep up with? New occasions, weekly visits, events to attend, blab la bla. I mean, sure it could  be fun, those could be nice people but still it’s a new item on you agenda, multiple items.

3- Spousal and household commitments: You know how a man feels that he’s making the ultimate sacrifice by coming home early instead of spending the night puffing argeeleh smoke, arguing about politics and playing cards with his friends. Some sacrifice! You want sacrifice, I’ll give you sacrifice: It’s giving up the liberty to sleep in every morning, waking up and then going out or even going to work without worrying about a house you need to clean or a husband who would sulk if he came home to find that you didn’t have time to cook that day. Seriously, you know sometimes I wake up in the morning and I think of all the things my mother does around the house, which she doesn’t even let me worry about leaving me to my own work, and I think: How would it feel to wake up and realize there is an entire house you need to clean? That your daily mini heart attack. And please don’t get me started on when children enter the picture, any woman would tell you her ambitions would be reduced to going to the bathroom by herself, in peace.

4- Pressure, pressure, pressure: As a woman, you are expected to do all the above, go to work, have children, take care of the house, cook, and magically look your best, not only because your husband believes everything he sees on TV (If Nancy Ajram can do it, then so do you), but also because you would feel like crap if you looked in the mirror and couldn’t recognize yourself behind all that extra weight and disheveled hair. But you know who deserves a kick in the gut? That same man that compares his wife to TV personalities while he sits around the house in a white sleeveless undershirt, because he’s a freaking Casanova who looks charming just as he is! Whatever…

This is by no means an attempt to portray commitment as a mistake that should be avoided at all costs. Not at all. I actually believe it could be a beautiful experience depending on how you choose to deal with it, among other things. What I’m trying to say is: Don’t let yourself fall under the false impression that, as a man, you’re doing something heroic by going into commitment or that you’re the only one making a sacrifice.  She might be making an even bigger sacrifice you know, it’s a two-way street, nobody has it easy.

One response

  1. In all honesty I don`t fathom why women (let`s say the newer generation at least) put up with all the heroic-style thingies we (men) commit. Is it merely because of social norms that chain our choices? I don`t know.

    Not trying to be mr feminist but I really can`t understand it.

    It IS a two way street, in everything, commitment/sacrifices included.

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