Sir: Recently, I have been getting into debates and discussions about a man’s responsibilities in the house. As we move away from patriarchal definitions of what our relationships look like we are seeing a lot more empowerment all around. For those who don’t know, this isn’t just about women reclaiming spaces but also about men finding their freedom. Some couples that I know are now splitting finances really well. They have moved away from the “a man must pay” narrative that haunted the generations before them. However, the one thing that I have been noting is that the transaction is still an unequal one. By fixating so much on just the economics of a relationship, we seem to have forgotten what equality was about in the first place. I have seen many relationships where the couple splits their finances equally but the man continues to play the role of the person wearing the metaphoric pants in the family. When it comes to household chores, either they do not know what to do or they want to do nothing. A common statement that I have heard amongst friends is that they are babysitting their own children. This is such rubbish because you cannot babysit your own child. Cleaning the house, doing the dishes, or even cooking, are tasks that men often feel are beneath them. There are men who say that the task is not the issue but it is their skills — or lack thereof — that pose a problem. To these men, I have to ask, what happens to you in all other arenas of life? Men, often brilliantly, take on any role, skill or responsibility thrown their way, so long as it is set in the box created for them by patriarchy. However, try to break that mold and you find that you have no ground to stand on. Therefore, they are “good” at what is typically required, and they become “bad” at things they would rather not learn. It is just that simple. I would urge women to hold their finances back from the household unless there is true equality being practiced. Otherwise, this pseudo equality only puts burden on them, while robbing of their own hard-earned money. KAMIL HASSAAN Lahore Published in Daily Times, July 10th 2018.