The Feminist Times
Indian homemakers & The Pandemic
Now more than ever, I see my mom working in the kitchen. With the increasing positive
cases in the country, the appetite of the people in Indian homes is also increasing. What was initially a desire to cook and bake and to try new things is a burden now on Indian
homemakers, most of whom are women. Now that we can't go outside to eat our favorite
dishes or order them in, we will ask our mothers to cook them for us. She will happily oblige all the time. Indian moms are so burdened by patriarchy that they see it as a loving gesture to cook for their entire family and feed them constantly. To go out of their ways to learn to make all these exotic dishes first on youtube and then make it for the family while slogging long hours in the kitchen, sweating and hurting by standing for so long.
The kids and other family members rarely help in the process of making the dishes, but enjoy it the most and give backhanded compliments such as, 'its better than what we have outside' , 'its safer than what we have outside' , 'we know whose cooking it' , 'we know whats going in it' and many more of such 'compliments'. Earlier when I use to ask my mom that why do you do everything at home on your own, she said ' Papa bahar ka karte hai main ghar ka' But now Papa is at home. Papa sits all day in front of the tv. Papa uses his phone all day long. Papa asks you to make tea at least 7 times a day. Papa asks you to make different eatables everyday. Then one sunday he does the chopping, he shows his blackened thumb from chopping for the whole coming week. Boasting in front of the clan howhe helped in the 'HOUSEHOLD'chores, of his own house. And my grandma, goes all 'haye, mujhe bula leta main kar deti tune kyu kiya ?' The same pattern continues for the rest of the week.
Being a daughter in India is also not easy during this pandemic because 'I am supposed to help my mother' in the household chores while my brother whiles away his time playing pubg.
I am frowned upon if I don't fill the water bottles back. How do I not know whats happening in the kitchen ? How can I not be on serving duty ? Why is it that whenever its about work my mom calls out my name and not my brother's? Why is it that I am supposed to help my mother and not anyone else ? Why do I have to cut fruits for my elder brother? Why are women supposed to coddle and nurture all the damn men in their life all through their life? Yeah so um, bruh help your wife! And simply all women of the house. Share the burden. After all, you also contribute in imposing it.
- Sanjana Sachdeva