Thursday, October 12, 2023

Cinderella Vs The Stepmother's Daughter

 I remember when I was young a friend of mine used to tease me. She'd phone early in the morning during school vacations and if I was still in bed she'd tell me that only the Stepmother's daughter would be up so late. My friend had to do a lot of housework growing up. I still had to help at home, of course, but less than her, you see.

When I started working I was still living with my parents. I had to give a part of my income to my mother to pay for the costs of living. I used gas, electricity and water, plus there were taxes to pay and we as a family had a common budget for food. I think it was not more than fair.

How many girls nowadays are doing this? How many parents require it? Boys, too, btw. What I witness quite often, is mothers getting back to work to provide adult children living at home with money for benzine, clothes and luxury vacations while also doing most of the housework. Later, they will complain that nobody wants her spoiled prince/princess.

This is purely a Western phenomenon. Last year when I was dealing with aftermath of Covid I spent lots of time watching movies online and somehow found a channel with Pakistani TV series. I got a real cultural shock when I watched some of them. It showed mothers just nicely sitting around while their daughters ( we are talking here about college students, not small children) were serving them, bringing tea, cooking dinner and doing housework in general. One girl was shown as lazy and of poor character and she didn't do much at home citing her studies as an excuse and her mother (it was a single mom, lol) was complaining what a horrible daughter she had.

Here it's the norm, unfortunately. It wasn't always like this. For instance, my mother-in-law while still living at home had to knit socks for everyone, while her sister had to cook and feed breakfast to other kids. My mother-in-law was the 2nd oldest of 7. She and her elder brother had to do family laundry every week before going to school. That's how women of that generation managed to raise big families. They simply didn't wait on their children hand and foot, like modern moms do too often. They also didn't usually babysit their grandkids, that was the mother's job; and neither did they keep on financially supporting their adult children living separately well into their 40s and 50s. 

Somehow we all forgot that it's Cinderella which we should aspire to, not the obnoxious, lazy and entitled Stepmother's daughter. It's Cinderella that the Prince Charming chose and not some spoiled foreign princess, either:) Somewhere there is a lesson in this story...

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