Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

Often times I catch myself in real life or on social media seeing men being praised for the bare minimum. Showing up on time, treating his family well, cleaning, not cheating on you and most surprisingly, not being a misogynistic homophobic racist. Why do we praise men for things that are just basic human decency and do not represent how “amazing” they are? Do these men want a pat on the back for not making a sexist comment? Great job you are actually just being a decent human! 

One topic that infuriates me is fathers being praised for “helping out” with the children and doing chores around the house. Fathers should not be applauded for spending time with their own children and taking care of their house when these are their responsibilities too. Mothers are expected to do this, even if they are working in paid labour. 

This showcases the idea that it does not matter if women have entered the workforce or not, they are still expected to cook, clean and care for their children more than their partner should. It is the same idea as to when single dads are admired for taking care of their children on their own, yet single moms do this every day and don’t receive the same adoration. When a man does it, it’s a miracle- when a woman does it, it’s because she is “supposed to”. 

Believing that men are special and over-the-top for doing basic things can become extremely harmful. As women, we need to stop believing that lowering our standards and accepting the bare minimum is okay. Staying with someone because we think they are “special” for being a decent human and thinking we will never find that again is genuinely sad and speaks volumes to the world we live in today. To think that so many women have had such negative experiences with men that when a man does something that any partner should do, it is seen as straying from the norm. 

Our societal norms haven’t adapted to truly be gender-equal and this consequence sets the standards for men on the floor. The very present patriarchal system and underlying misogyny aides in glorifying men for doing things atypical of their gender identity. A man is not great because he cooks, cleans, tells you you’re beautiful or texts you during the day. These are all things women constantly do and never get praised for. 

All of society needs to start holding men accountable and expecting more than basic human decency. Stop using the explanation that “boys will be boys” to undermine and justify harmful behaviours they are showing and start condemning their actions. Excusing behaviours for men is just one way that creates an even lower standard and can lead to toxic behaviour being ignored. 

So, ladies, please stop settling for men that do the bare minimum and raise that bar. You deserve more than that and should expect more; there are truly good men out there so do not settle if you are only receiving the minimum effort from your partner. Men…just be better, having soap in your bathroom and complimenting your partners shouldn’t make you proud. Everyone should always strive to be the best partner, parent or friend they can be and expect the same from those around you! 

Alexandra DiVincenzo

Wilfrid Laurier '23

Alexandra is a third-year Psychology student with a minor in Sociology. She loves to write and in her spare time you can find her cozying up with a book or spending time with her friends and family!
Similar Reads👯‍♀️