Equal in Love

6 Jul

You take out the trash, I’ll do the dishes. You carry that heavy plant outside, I’ll DVR your latest episode of The Office. At some point in relationship rule creation, someone decided things should be equal. This all works out fine until its something bigger, like “You bring in the money while I raise the kids.”

Equality is overrated, though society has taught us to seek it constantly, especially in modern relationships. In spite of our best intentions to “keep no record” and give more than we receive, it’s hard to resist. The issue shows it ugly face particularly when one person has more time on their hands than the other—such as one works nine to five and the other is unemployed, or if there is otherwise an imbalance of time. The “free” person is expected, subconsciously, to pick up more of the slack. That includes the chore slack, the cooking slack, and sometimes even the emotional slack, serving as the stable one while the other is stressed.

Maybe the new working relationship is not an equal relationship in the sense that at any one time, both people are contributing equally. Instead, maybe the equality is evened out over a course of years—I’ll work while you finish school, and then ten years later, you work while I pursue an art career, for example. In the end, equality prevails if both people have an equal state of mind, rather than literally equal actions at any one given time.

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One Response to “Equal in Love”

  1. JF July 6, 2011 at 12:48 PM #

    Wow, this is a powerful and insightful observation about equality in a relationship. Quite possibly the years do actually equal out any inequality. Have you ever though of writing a book? Love your work!

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