Think fast: you’re standing in the kitchen with your kids and your toddler needs someone to help her get her shoes on. You have two daughters and a son who are standing right next to her. Who do you ask to help?
If you’re me, you probably ask one of your girls. And if you’re me, you’re probably also horrified when you realize that you’re guilty of asking your daughters — instead of your son — for help 99 percent of the time.
I grew up watching my brother get out of household chores by protesting that he “didn’t know how” to do them. Even back then, I remember thinking his excuses were a bunch of crap. Women are not naturally “better” at household chores, helping small children put on shoes, being responsible, or doing the 8,571 other little things I’m guilty of asking my daughters, instead of my son, to do.
But as women, we do these things because we are expected to. And because we are expected, we learn. Eventually, it becomes easier to just do things ourselves than ask for help or instruct someone else on how. And you know what that means? The males in our family get to skip over these parts of life completely.
I’m not sure why I automatically rely on my girls to help me, but I do. Maybe it’s because they are older at 7 and 9 years old. Or maybe it’s because they always so willing to pitch in and help, unlike my 5-year-old son who tends to do that limp noodle thing and collapse on the floor whenever I ask him for something.
But in all seriousness, it has dawned on me that the majority of the time, if I need someone to help get a little person’s shoe on, set the table, or pass out chicken nuggets to the back seat of the minivan, I ask one of my daughters.
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