So in an educated Pakistani environment if a guy claims to be a modern man, you would usually hear him say:
I believe in woman having her own career, perusing her job and earning money.
Does allowing a woman to work is really granting independence?
Yes, it is independence. Why?
Because working in a professional field, like any other human being, helps a woman to reach near self-actualization, in simple words to explore her maximum potential.
But allowing a woman to work is not a sign of modernism or granting independence , why?
Because you are giving a woman her right. It is good in comparison to those men who have snubbed it but it is not a favor you are doing at the cost of your own well-being, you are just actually giving somebody what was theirs all along.
Pakistani men allowing women to work is toxic manipulation and here is how I am seeing it!
So modern Pakistani men are allowing women to work, therefore they let them to earn. But that does not necessarily mean women are financially independent. In many cases, I have personally seen where men force women to either completely give their earnings to their husbands or fathers or they have joint accounts. Or in some cases, considering themselves nice, many men claim we are not exploiters to take our wife’s money but since life is getting expensive so there are certain expenses the wife has to bear because she is giving home time to her job.
So if woman does her job, obviously, the home time is missed. So aren’t these men right to say that women should bear expenses.
Things are getting expensive and both partners should contribute, definitely true! but why in our scenario this is turning into exploitation.
With modernization men do understand that life is getting expensive and that women should/have to work but what they are not getting is that it is not the home time a woman is giving to her work rather she is extending her home responsibilities at the cost of her choice to peruse her career, she is doubling her chores and therefore doubling societal pressure.
Most of the women who work in Pakistan single handedly take care of house, raise kids, cook food, manage husband’s life and relatives, so the problem is that men are not giving women independence, they are just labeling a new way of women exploitation in the name of modernism.
What is the solution?
Truly modern man would not only understand his wife’s choice of pursuing a career but help her in handling family’ affairs, managing their house and collectively raising kids. In that scenario both husband and wife should contribute to their family financially because they are working like a team on all fronts.
True independence of women is still a very far away dream.
Modern working women are conditioned to this concept of juggling between work and home and ensuring efficiency at both spheres, which is unfair and unjust And like I always say no body can change this condition but women themselves.
Again perhaps most of the men don’t do it intentionally but the structure of our society shapes people’ minds into behaving and accepting exploitative ways.