April 25, 2012
I. Self as Female The female gender role is not one that most people in American culture desire. American societies often value the role of males more than that of females. The productive works that males typically do are more acknowledged then the reproductive works that females do. For example, a woman can clean a toilet every day with it going unnoticed. When a male fixes a broken toilet he is praised. The idea that females are obligated to do reproductive work, and males are obligated to do productive work, are the primary gender roles that society influences.
My current boyfriend of two years calls himself “old fashioned” because he believes my primary responsibility in life is to take care of the home while he works and provides for the family. My main concern with becoming a house wife is that I would lose my sense of independence and identity. I am worried that if I quit working I will become 100% dependent on his financial decisions. I am a very independent person, and I fear letting go of any control I have in my life. If at any time I become unhappy with our situation then it will be difficult for me to return to the workforce after being out of a job for an extended period of time. He may consider himself to be old-fashioned, but I like to point out the fact that society has changed drastically in recent years. Many people still believe that women belong in the home, but many people also encourage women to enter roles once occupied by males.
Although I am still resistant to the idea of becoming a full time house-wife, I am starting to see the positive sides to it. Financial concerns are one of the main reasons why both partners in a relationship work. Fortunately, I have the privilege of being taken care of by someone who is financially well-off. My boyfriend is also very supportive when he reminds me that it is my choice whether I continue to work. He reasoning is that he doesn’t want me to have the burden of worrying about money. When both partners have their primary focus on work the household and family can get neglected. Providing financially as well as maintaining a household and raising children are both full time jobs. If I were to take on the role as a housewife I could spend time with my children, maintain a clean household, and focus on more family centralized things such as dinner. These were all aspects that were more difficult in my house growing up due to the fact that both of my parents worked. Never-the-less if I do take on the classic female gender role of becoming a housewife it is important to me that I maintain my sense of identity and for the most part independence.
Overall I am happy with my role as female. One particular expectation I enjoy conforming to is looking pretty. I love to go shopping, wear makeup, and get my hair done. The expectation for females to look good stems from all factors within society. Men and women both judge females by their appearance. It took me awhile into my relationship to be comfortable around my boyfriend without makeup. I am constantly at the gym exercising, or getting ready so I can look my best for him. That way his attention will stay on me and no other girls. Women who have boyfriends occasionally feel threatened by me causing them to act pretentious in my presence. Women are constantly being judged by the way they present themselves, their physical features, and their roles within society.
II. Self as Sexual
When I first entered puberty around the age of twelve I began to have desires that I did not understand yet. I remember thinking that it would feel good to have someone lick my vagina, but I quickly dismissed the thought by telling myself people don’t do that. I felt dirty for thinking these thoughts. My first experiences of being aroused came to me in a series of dreams. In one dream that I can still remember I had the fantasy of being tied up on a wooden wheel with many men standing in line to give me