A woman’s role in society has dramatically evolved over the past few decades from being a daughter, sister, wife, daughter-in-law, to a professional, a trailblazing employee, to a breadwinner, a woman’s role has transformed significantly. Women have come a long way in contributing to the country’s socio-economic development while deftly managing work, family, social obligations and self-care. While this progress brings us pride, it’s time that men experience a role reversal. A complete man is the one who not only supports his family financially but one who ensures the physical, emotional and mental wellbeing of his family. A caring husband, father, son or partner is instrumental in empowering a woman and ensuring her wellbeing.
However, the need for us to touch-based on a topic like this throws light on the sudden increase in cases of domestic violence against women since the lockdown has begun. Various instances can lead to disturbed mental balance in women, hence leading to various health concerns, including depression, gut-related problems, fertility issues due to increased stress, and more.
Listed below are some tips by Dr Sonal Kumta, Senior Consultant-Obstetrician & Gynecologist, Fortis Hospital, Mulund as to how men can care for women in his relationships for a healthy family life and camaraderie:
Men for their daughters
Fathers impact the lives of their young daughters in many ways. An excellent father-daughter relationship influences her academic performance, mental growth and emotional stability, therefore impacting her career, success and financial wellbeing as well as her health. During the daughter’s adolescent years, a father needs to be more sensitive towards her. He must be aware of her needs in reference to her menstrual cycle, pre-menstrual syndrome, have knowledge about sanitary napkins, menstrual hygiene and should be further empowered to speak about menstruation with his daughter.
Men for their wives
Today, as our society has evolved to become gender-equal, men take responsibility of buying groceries, cooking, domestic work, looking after the elderly and kids, etc. They also help their wives in planning meals for the family, manage household chores, especially during the days when she is hardpressed or physically unable to manage it all. He continues to shoulder responsibility during her pregnancy, accompanying her for antenatal check-ups as well as taking on huge responsibility after childbirth. During his paternity leaves, he shoulders wider responsibility and helps his wife in caring for the newborn. Some men opt to work-from-home to support their wife when she needs to focus on her work and career.
Men for mothers
A mother plays a significant role in nurturing her kids and raising responsible citizens. Responsible men take special care of their mother’s mental, physical and emotional wellbeing. Today, we see a lot of men caring for their mothers and helping them enjoy their golden years to the fullest; they ensure that their years ahead are joyful and healthy.
Men for themselves
We live in a patriarchal society that is gradually seeing turn of the wheels of change. Gender equality comes in when men and women both stand by each other, while being independent they are inter-dependent too. Just like men come forward to support women, it is the duty of women to support men in their lives. Tell them that is it OK to be emotional and vulnerable. Men need to take care of themselves too so that they can take care of their families better.
So while the wheels of change are turning for the good, there’s scope for more. However, during this progression, we must also shoulder the responsibility of engaging their mental and emotional wellbeing.
With inputs from Dr Sonal Kumta, Senior Consultant-Obstetrician & Gynecologist, Fortis Hospital, Mulund
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