Why Women Don’t Have The Gift of Time?

Do you have the gift of time?


Always on the run.


That would be my tagline should I ever need one. Not because it’s something I like. Trust me. This is just how things are with me. In fact, with moms like me and with women in general.


Now, argue, as you might but the scale has been perpetually titled favourably towards men when it comes to not having to be on the run always. Home to work, work to home and sometimes to places in between; managing children, work and home at the same time, are not really things men have to juggle every single day. Okay, every single working day. Things are changing, you could say but at a snail’s pace. Not something to be particularly jolly about. If you are a woman then this is what broadly categorises your day, doesn’t it? Running from one task to the other till you close your eyes for the day.


One day last month I happened to stay back late at work not because I had work left but just to make up my average hours (a story for another day). With my parents in town, this was something I could think about for a change. They picked M from her daycare while I stayed back. While I was waiting for the clock to tick, I noticed the brightly lit badminton court at our office. Standing there watching a badminton game, I realised how socially conditioned we have become for a woman to have no time for anything at all after a certain point in her life. A game of badminton at 7 in the evening, hardly ever!  


True to that there were hardly any women in the court. The few there were extremely young so no responsibilities in terms of cooking or kids. Men, however, were in huge numbers because married or not, they have no reason to rush from work, do they? In the midst of all the people in the court, I noticed a middle-aged man dressed in yellow tracks giving his all to badminton. And it’s great that he was doing that. We all need to be active, don’t we? But I found myself thinking about his wife. She would probably be the one worrying about the kids, the family’s dinner and their household chores even if she was working, even if she had cooks and maids at her disposal. Fair? I think not.  


If you are a woman then this is what broadly categorises your day, doesn’t it? Running from one task to the other till you close your eyes for the day.


Now, you would perhaps say that maybe he was not married at all. Or, even better, if he was and if indeed his wife was taking care of everything then it must have been an arrangement they had agreed upon. So, who am I to judge? But that’s where you are wrong. Don’t you see that most of the married men there never once looked at their watches or were even the least bit concerned about what the time was? They could stay back and do whatever they had to do or wanted to do. Their existence isn’t timeboxed like it is for us women. And that’s what I have a problem with.  


I have seen women, mother’s or wives, having working lunches to finish their work on time because they had homes and children to rush to. How many men have you seen do the same? So, yes, that man in the yellow tracks was representative of everything I hate about this society which makes women do so much thankless and unpaid work. He was representative of men who can dare to have a career and advance in it as well after becoming a parent while women always, always have to make some trade-offs. He reminded me that women still can’t have it all while he simply could as he moved around in that badminton court.  


So, you see, how easy it is for men to have the gift of time. In fact, the moment their gender is decided they are given this gift. Yes, these days couples share their loads at home, the chores. But seriously, how many or how few are these couples? What about the vast majority who don’t even stop to think that this is a problem that needs to be addressed?  


Women still can't have it all because we missed out on the gift of time. True? #FeministMondays Click To Tweet


I don’t know about you but I’m hell-bent on teaching my daughter that her time is as precious as that of the boys in her daycare. Yes, so that when and if she decides to settle down sometime in the future, she doesn’t choose someone like the man in the yellow tracks.  


There, I said it.  


Tell me, women, what are you doing to give greater value to your time and yourselves?


Men, tell me, do you realise what I’m talking about without going defensive?


Why women don't have the gift of time? Why are working moms and moms in general rushing from one chore to the other while the dads get it easy? Why don't we women have the gift of time? #parenting #momlife #women #feministmondays #feminism #workingwomen #workingmom










This post is part of the #FeministMondays series (previously called #IAmAFeminist series) on the blog. Inspired by a TEDx talk by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie – We Should All Be Feminists, I intend to talk about the need for feminism through my posts, posts on my experience and observation as a female. I intend to talk about issues concerning women.  



Join me and let’s work towards a world of gender parity. Remember, each voice counts. Tell me your story.


28 thoughts on “Why Women Don’t Have The Gift of Time?”

  1. What you wrote is true but it is an unfortunate aspect of our society to see hardly any values that help in the long run are taught to a son. The gender-neutral upbringing is what I would like to see the change in my lifetime:)
    Rahul Bhatia recently posted…Many Faces of KindnessMy Profile

  2. This post is an example of all the good ingredients that are required for an awesome blog. Thanks.

  3. I definitely relate to this post – it is hard to find time for so much these days.
    This post is so well written and thought out, and I enjoyed reading it immensely.

  4. What am I doing to assert my time being important is saying no to husband and D many a times with their whims when I am deep into my writing a post or am in the middle of a chapter I am reading. If they can do it themselves, it is good. If not then they wait. What irks me constantly is they always settle upon waiting so that whenever I get up, I can address their requirements. I hate it. I often lose all hope of raising D capable of feeling comfortable around doing house chores himself.
    Anamika Agnihotri recently posted…Family Dynamics – Who loves whom? #MondayMusingsMy Profile

  5. Oh yeah, it always seems like I’m running out of time. Busy days can be crazy! I feel like I’m always doing something.

  6. I totally agree with your post. Women juggle between many tasks, and are always busy. Thanks for sharing this insightful post.

  7. What an interesting perspective! I need to give that TEDtalk a listen, it sounds like a fascinating topic.

  8. I wouldn’t say that in the modern world men have more time to do whatever they want than women. I think it’s everybody’s choice and if a woman wants free time, she should demand it from her husband, especially of there are children involved. I have a friend whom when she wants to see a movie for example, she would leave the kids in her husband’s care and just go to the cinema.

  9. We ladies have to make time for us. That may mean having the husband taking care of things so you can have that time.

  10. I think nowadays, everybody is very busy and always running around although women are under more pressure to do everything at once – work, family, chores, etc. So then they have less time for themselves. So educating on sharing chores will give them more time.

  11. I’m a stay at home Dad and do all the domestic chores and work part time too. I agree it is hard to find time but the 1st step is to accept the feeling of guilt and just do it. Without time to yourself you can’t be the parent or person your family needs

  12. I am not a mom yet, but I think the concept of women not having time comes from women giving birth and giving all of her time to her newborn and now it spills over into other aspect of her lives. No we deserve our own time too, men dont have to worry about not having time for them…thats why the Self-Care movement is so important.

  13. I feel like no one has the gift of time these days. Especially in Western society we are all rushing. That’s why I do yoga. I find it helps me feel more grounded.

  14. Unfortunately, I can agree that most women don’t have the gift of time. But then again, one can make time or rather, do things you love with the little time you got Above all , have time for yourself.

  15. Time for yourself is something that is important for everyone. I don’t necessarily agree with everything in this post for a couple of reasons – 1. I am not a mother, so I can’t relate to that impacting my time. 2. My father worked his tail off for years but still managed to make sure to spend quality time with all of us. He and my mom truly worked as a team to take care of things. Maybe what they did wasn’t the norm but what they did worked for the family. For that I am grateful.

  16. As long as we have stereotypes of what a woman should be and do, this will always be the case. Fortunately times are changing and I see quite a few families pitching in on the housework and chores and making the women feel special and appreciated. Also, I think it is time for women to stand up for themselves. I hope you get more slack time, Naba! It is easy to feel overwhelmed 🙂 But it is important not to stay overwhelmed!
    Vidya recently posted…My Top 5 Favorite Must-Watch Crime Fiction Shows On TVMy Profile

  17. You are right in saying that times are changing but at a snails pace. I also think that the women have become so much socially conditioned that some of them actually take pride in being the image personified where a woman stands with eight hands around her holding symbols of different aspects of the roles she plays.

    I am lucky to have a set-up (read a joint family) where on a blue moon day, I can take the liberty to drop everything and just vanish for an hour or two to just myself.
    anupriya recently posted…Take this #10YearChallenge with a TwistMy Profile

  18. This is an interesting post with many good talking points. I once read a quote that resonated with me. “Successful people make time.” I can speak for myself, but I believe often, we create the habitual routines that leave us feeling overwhelmed and defeated when all we need to do is modify the outcome/behavior/or views of our family household and set new routines that have everyone doing their part. We can’t expect change or improvement if we don’t ask, delegate or stay true to new rules or routines we set. I also have to add that I know quite a few men who do their fair share around the house and with watching the kids. Times are changing, but ultimately, we are in command of our lives, fate and time.

  19. I am raising my sons to do a lot of chores at home. My husband also does quite a bit over the weekend. Not only is it the man who needs to change but the woman too. You wouldn’t believe how many of my friends don’t like their husbands to step into the kitchen or clean because they are so particular. So the problem is multi dimensional. Every woman must set aside time every week for herself. And then enjoy it guilt free. Also discuss with your spouse if something is really bothering you. You never know how that can change circumstances.

  20. This problem persists and as much as I scream my lungs out trying to tell people around that there is this imbalance, not many seriously take note. I am not a working mother, bt I still need to constantly look at the clock trying to balance my role at home, getting the meals ready, the kids ready and then work out my personal time to blog.

    It surely is a gift of time for me to be able to find my personal time to pursue a passion of reading and writing.

  21. It is true indeed. Even if we have house help, we still need to manage a lot of other tasks at hand as well. Watching a movie without a break or going for a walk also becomes a debatable issue and most of the times, the thought of finishing off the pending work wins over the thought of indulging. Nicely penned.

  22. I agree with some of your points but I believe that we are in-control of our life and time. It is up to up if we allow others to steal those time. I manage my own and enjoy every bits of it.

  23. This breaks my heart because I know it is true. Over the past six months I’ve been so rushed at work that I barely have any time for myself or even some of the household chores,. As a result, I cannot cook on a regular basis and this leaves me riddled with guilt! Even if I want to take some time out and just peace out, its comes with a share of guilt. My husband does his share, but still no matter what the responsibility of running a home always lies on me, unsaid. It hurts terribly at time and can get easily overwhelming.

    For now, I have learnt to let go and only do what I can. My time is precious too and if something has to be left undone, so be it. Sometimes being selfish really helps. You need that for your own sanity.
    Soumya recently posted…SparkedMy Profile

Comments are closed.