Journal Entry 30: Expectations & shared responsibilities

Photo by Mike B on

I’m not on tiktok as often as I used to be. The app is great, providing short snippets of entertainment, however, it’s quite disturbing seeing people use their children as commodities. We already see it on YouTube but I find it increasingly frustrating. For instance, I saw someone on tiktok say their mixed-race baby was a ‘flex’. It’s disgusting behaviour like this which I find infuriating since babies aren’t commodities.. they are human beings!

I’ve been thinking about how often our high expectations let us down. Before entering into this job, I was so excited. I literally jumped up and down in my sisters room filled with so much hope when I was offered the job. I even cried. It was my first real, full-time job in my sector. Although I don’t regret the experience, I do still feel a little bit disappointed in myself for not remaining more grounded and realistic. I’m ultimately happy with my decision to leave the job since I believe protecting my mental health above everything else is important. Despite the financial predicament it creates, I believe it’s the best decision I could’ve made. Talking to my therapist and having someone else validate that my anxiety and depression levels are much more severe than they were prior to joining this job only reassured me that I made the right choice.

Financially, it’s not sustainable for me to be without a job. So much has occurred just within the past few weeks/months which make me realise I really do need a job. I feel confused about what I want to do with my life since I know I’d love to change sectors however, majority of the time this change can only be made with further studies. I feel so burnt out and exhausted. I’ve made some applications to different universities but the predicament isn’t necessarily about being accepted or rejected, my predicament lies on if I actually have enough time to pursue further studies.

I met up with my ex-colleagues last night. We ate Indian food at a decent restaurant and finally had a nice catch up after not seeing each other for literally over 2 years. It was so nice to see how all my colleagues have grown and matured over the past few years.

My piece of sh*t car broke down in the middle of nowhere and my sister and I had to have our car towed. It’s certainly time for a new car soon..

In relationships, women are still doing much more unpaid labour then men. Shared responsibilities seems like a bit of a joke at this point. My colleague who recently found out she’s pregnant was venting in the lunch room a few weeks ago, essentially expressing her resentment towards her partner for not bearing the responsibility of pregnancy or childbirth. Although she did commend him for at least being their whilst she threw up, it made me realise that men don’t actually have much responsibility during pregnancy. Their only responsibility is to literally show up or maybe financially contribute. Are men in essence always just sperm donors? Maybe they are just temporary therapists? Chauffeurs even? Uber Eats delivery drivers?

Basically, shared responsibilities seems like a bit of a fallacy when you look at the data. If women are doing more unpaid labour in the household and generally bearing the brunt of pregnancy, surely men become essentially useless? That’s not a partnership at all. I believe what my colleague said obviously came from a point of resentment and possibly even fear. However, much of what she said is true. Doing multiple blood tests or having illnesses induced by pregnancy isn’t experienced by men themselves, but rather, men become bystanders watching the process unfold. I do think perhaps I was being a bit reductive by suggesting men are just ‘temporary therapists,’ in saying this, men being supporters is a wonderful thing.. considering so many bail when they find out they got someone knocked up. At the same time, it would be great if science could progress much more quickly to allow men to experience even a tenth of the physical demands of pregnancy.

We make the same mistakes again and again expecting the outcome to be different. Maybe this time we are actually different and things have changed. Maybe not.


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