In modern society, men and women have opportunities to be equals. Women no longer have to choose between staying at home with their parents or getting married and having children. A woman has virtually every option a man has as a member of society. This means that men no longer have the same authority over women they date and marry.
Many women make the same amount or even more money than their partners and husbands. It is not unusual for a woman to continue working even if she has children. But when the couple is home, they often find that the parental duties will be taken up by the woman. If one parent stays home to raise the children, it is usually the wife.
In households with a strong cultural background, men and women tend to have very traditional gender roles. The relationship will often mirror that of their own parents. The woman may even stay home and cook and clean as the husband works. The man will often have a dominant personality and take on a role as a leader and provider.
It is not unusual for men to become stay-at-home fathers if they lose their job. Two working partners in the relationship means it is possible for a family to recover and make it through with the loss of a job. However, it is still not widely accepted for a man to stay at home and raise children. It is not hard to believe that a woman would be better at raising children than a man. Equipped with maternal instincts and a need to nurture, a woman is a natural mother.
So many disagree, however. Others would argue that a man and a woman have roles that can and will be reversed easily to meet the needs of their family. A woman who is stuck in the gender role of a “wife” will be submissive and unable to make her own decisions. A man who is expected to be a “real man” will be crushed if he loses his job and his wife has to work while he raises the children.
Roles are important in any relationship, whether it is between lovers or friends. Roles are what make it possible for two people to know what to expect from one another. Traditional gender roles still have their place in the modern relationship. We still know that women are woman and men are men, no matter who holds a job. Every couple has their own way of communicating and adjusting to build a life together.
Men and women have their strengths and weaknesses. When they work together, they can build a strong household. It does not really matter how traditional they are or how equally they split their responsibilities. A reliable sense of identity will allow a couple to know what they need to do to hold up their side of the relationship.
Woman and men will never be equal. They are not the same. But they both deserve the chance to reach their potential as the spouse they want to be, whether it is traditional or modern. The only rule that is universal for any relationship is that each partner must take on an identity and do their part.