It is all about respect. The respect you accord to another and their work space. As I see it the homemakers get zilch of the due respect. Have you noticed how in home after home after home, her work, her work environment among other things are not accorded any particular thought by other members of the household?
Imagine your employer plays loud music at your office disturbing everyone else. Or, how about if your co-worker decides he/she wants to play music loudly or watch YouTube videos at full volume because it is their time to relax, and to hell with the fact that others like you are trying to get work done. It doesn’t work that way, right?
And yet, homemakers go through this scenario every single day of their lives. No one ever asks them what sort of work environment THEY prefer. Do they mind if the television is on while they work? Does the loud music disturb them? They are supposed to bear with every sound that comes their way. Their preferences be damned.
True, some people aren’t particular, even welcome the background noise a television provides. In fact it might seem comforting to them. Not so, me. It disturbs, very much. It prevents me from being able to function efficiently. It drives me crazy. The feeling is of not being able to listen even to my own thoughts. Things are liable to go wrong in such circumstances.
With retirement, the L&M had ample time on his hands. Whenever boredom loomed, the television came on in our home, whether there was something worth watching or not it didn’t matter. That’s what set me thinking. Why does no one ever give thought to a homemaker’s work environment? Why the hell is it assumed that she can (and should) work under any and all circumstances? Not the spouse, not the children, not the parents/in-laws, not the visitors. Not one of them ever, EVER spare a thought.
I had to use all my persuasive powers, and finally put my foot down with an outright ‘no’ to get some welcome silence while going about my housework. Not that I get silence all the time even now, but I have learnt to coincide my work-time with the times the television is not likely to be on. It works on some days, on other days I grin not, but bear it stoically.
What I wonder is: I cannot be unique in this respect. I am sure there are others like me who are particular about their work environment at home. Has anyone ever thought of working towards giving it to them? If not, why haven’t they/you?
©Shail Mohan 2017