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“Just ask nicer”

Reader,

My post addressing Weaponized Incompetence and the Invisible Workload continues to spark conversation and debate. Clearly, this was a triggering topic.

And I’m shocked (not shocked) that much of the feedback centered around manipulating the man into handling more tasks/taking on more workload by flattering him or “asking nicely.”

Many women have not one, not two, but three full-time jobs: raising kids, having a career outside the home, and handling the invisible workload.

Now we need to add more things to our mile-long to-do list by managing our spouse’s emotions?

That’s a HARD PASS, y’all.

A lot of the feedback I received suggested that women should coddle their partner, teach them how to do a task “properly,” or help them to feel confident enough that their version of whatever the task is will be just fine.

There was plenty of feedback around becoming a household manager – asking and delegating the workload, and effectively managing the problem instead of removing it altogether.

And, of course, I got the comments that we should “just be grateful to be married” or “lower our expectations” or “just give them sex!”

So let me get this straight.

The “solution” to easing the invisible workload is to… add another task to the list and do all the emotional heavy lifting to make sure your spouse feels cozy?

The “solution” includes the woman lowering her expectations, directing the household and delegating, managing our tone, becoming a sex doll, and being happier with less?

HELL NO.

Let’s be done with the asking. The only option is for your partner to step in and DO IT.

Instead of saying: “Honey, please can you do this for me?” – make these phrases a part of our vocabulary:

“You can handle this.”
“You can figure that out on your own.”
“I trust you to make the right decision. You don’t need to consult me.”

And credit to a member of our community, Danielle Hicks, for this awesome phrase:

“When I have to treat you and speak to you like a child, I respect you a little less.”

There’s a famous quote that boils my blood: “The man is the head of the family and the woman is the neck.” This quote has a lot of interpretations, but they all boil down to the woman serving as the “support system” for the household.

It puts us in the submissive position to have to “ask for help” and “handle all the things” and “keep track of it all.”

The more you stop taking on the invisible workload and put a hard boundary on your partner’s weaponized incompetence – the more power you take back.

You’ll feel better. Have more vitality. More capacity. More of everything you want.

And if you have children, you’ll set an incredible example by opting out of this patriarchal structure.

The next time a woman is working to help you gain more equity, check your feedback.

Are you responding from an empowered space?

Or keeping the same outdated, misogynistic systems in place?

xo.
Susan

xoxo, Susan

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