Over the last few days the word ‘mancession’ keeps popping up in the Irish Times. You may think, when you read the word for the first time, that it means there is a lack of men in our society, but it doesn’t.
Around 2009, after the global-recession had really found it’s stride and was taking down business with gusto, the term ‘mancession’ was coined to describe the disproportionate amount of men who lost their jobs compared to women.
You could argue that this is mainly down to the decrease of construction related jobs and that there were already fewer women in the workforce, however, somehow, if you read between the lines, it sounds as if men were just hit harder by the downturn.
Now I do understand that losing your job can effect the way you feel about yourself and that low self-worth can lead to more severe psychological problems. But when I read that men are finding it hard to reinvent their position in the household and struggle to find fulfillment in being a stay-at-home dad, it does make me a little bit angry. After all haven’t women been always been doing this because they had to?
I am not married, nor do I have kids but I would expect the modern man to be able to allow their partners to be the main breadwinner and be man enough to rear kids if they have to. But seemingly many Irish men don’t see it that way and excuse it by saying that it is due to the traditional role identification models.
I can understand that maybe traditionally men use to work and bring home the bacon while the woman became super-mammy and domestic-goddess in one. But surely life has changed since the sixties enough for people not to expect this to be true anymore, after all half a century has passed and brought a lot of change with it.
Whatever you think about ‘mancesion’ and what it means, maybe it is just another way of saying that some men just haven’t gone with the times and that no matter how emancipated we think women are in the heads of some men we should still be wearing aprons.
Few are untouched by the ‘mancession – Irish Times 7th October 2013