30 Mayıs 2020, Cumartesi

Fathers who Give Bath to Their Children

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For the last three weeks, I have written about the place of women and how our misperceptions govern us about women. Exactly at this point, a few famed (!) persons in Turkey gave some statements one after another about what I have been discussing for a while.  One said, ‘The urban woman does not care for the child, she does not even prepare breakfast at home!’. The other said something nonsense ‘The mother takes care of the child, the father does not. The father has other duties, the father does not clean up child shit.’ Why are they stuff and nonsense? Let’s read it!

For the last three weeks, I have written about the place of women and how our misperceptions govern us about the women. Exactly at this point, a few famed (!) person in Turkey gave some statements one after another about what I have been discussing for a while.  One said, ‘The urban woman does not care for the child, she does not even make breakfast at home!’. The other said something nonsense ‘The mother takes care of the child, the father does not. The father has other duties, the father does not clean up child shit.’

The year has been 2019. We are no longer living in before Christ (B.C.) times when men hunt and bring food, and women look at their children and keep in order their caves.

According to Turkish Statistical Institute’s 2018 statistics, the employment rate of women between the ages of 15-64 is 32.9%; and the labor force participation rate of the same group is 58.5%. Although these figures are not satisfactory, we can see the place of women in the labor force. That is, women have been participating in labor life…

The participation of women in working life brought with ‘shared life and shared responsibilities.’ In other words, if both men and women are working, the necessity of sharing responsibilities such as children, household chores and shopping arise over time. It is a natural flow of life that the man is expected to do the work of the woman (or vice versa) which women should do.

We talked about the shared responsibility of working men and women. What if the woman does not work or does not want to work or can not find a job even though she wants to work? Does she have to get up earlier to prepare her husband’s breakfast? If she has a child, does she have to deal with the needs of her child all day long and cook at the same time? When man comes from his work in the evening with feeling tired, is it too much to ask the father to bathe his child? – based on or not based on the idea of shared life –. Just because she does not work, does not that woman have the right to rest, breathe, to spend some time on her own?  Can not that woman be tired, unhappy, and dead beat because of her daily routine? Or can not we perceive the woman’s rush from morning to night like a labor work? Ignoring the physical and psychological labor that the woman has spent for her child and household chores; how accurate is it to say that he’s tired just because he earns money? Let’s make him look tired so that when he comes to home after working, he deserves to get dinner which is already ready. Let’s make him look tired so that he can extend his legs in front of the television and take a rest. He does not clean the table after dinner, he does not hang out the laundry, and keep his crying child in her arms to silence him/her! Because he is working. Let the woman do everything since she does not earn money, she stays at home all day and does nothing (!!!).

As I mentioned earlier, a famed person said that (!) ‘It has become fashionable that the father looks after the child. The mother takes care of the child, the father does not. My father has other duties, the father does not clean up child shit.’ As a psychologist, I claim that the most important task of a father is to establish and develop healthy communication with his child. This starts with the birth of the child and even the mother’s pregnancy period. This communication continues by hugging the child abundantly, looking into the eyes of his child while cleaning up his child’s shit, playing with his child while giving him/her a bath, and reading the tales to his child in the evening with his wife.  Leaving all these works to the working or non-working mother causes the father to be perceived as a breadwinning, distant and cold figure. This in turn leads to a weakening of ties to the father; especially for girls, it can lead to find spouse who are like their fathers, who are far from themselves and who cannot communicate with them. In other words, it can lead them to live with the missing and faulty father figure all their lives.  Naturally, unhappy individuals make up unhappy families; unhappy families make up unhappy society.  You can image what the father’s function other than earning money leads to.

Love…

 

 

Manşet

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