Monday, November 21, 2011

The reversal of roles

I was just wondering, does anyone else find it strange that men today care more about their appearance than women do? Seriously, men can be seen in hair salons, going for facials, waxing and even manicures and pedicures sometimes. The new idea of “the perfect man” is someone who is clean shaven and beautiful; with perfect hair and skin; Then I don’t have to tell you what the new idea of “the perfect woman “is, do I? Well the new idea of what a woman should be like is the ultra-tough woman, who’s either out in the career world asserting her power and status, or driving her kids around in a 4x4, never hesitating to show everyone who’s in charge. Whatever the role is, it doesn’t matter, as long women of today are not soft, petite and feminine.

Now, I know that there are many people who would just want to kill me for even writing this. I remember when I was doing my psychology undergraduate degree. One of the important arguments we used to have was about the socialization of males and females. Our lecturers would argue adamantly that it’s not natural for girls to want to play with dolls and for boys to want to play with cars. Instead, according to them children are socialized into these roles from a very young age based on old traditional values of their parents. I could never agree with this argument 100%, some things were true but as a Muslim I know that Allah has created men and women differently and we are supposed to be living out our natural roles in order for harmony to prevail in society.

Of course this does not mean that one role is better than the other or that our different roles make some of us more superior than the others. No, Allah Almighty has told us that men and women are equal in the sight of Allah and the only thing that differentiates people is their piety. On a social, functional level however, we cannot all play the same role because then we’d just have chaos, which is pretty much what is happening in today’s time, although very few people are actually willing to admit to this.

So what happens when the men in society are over concerned about looking good; when they compete for who is the “sexier man”, and who has the better hairstyle, and whose skin is softer and glows more? It’s a complete reversal of everything and as a woman I am left wondering where that leaves us. I mean honestly, who wants to be around a man who spends more time making himself look good than you do?

And I could even take this discussion further by talking about men’s clothing. I remember a while ago I was walking in a department store and looking at the “men’s” clothing I couldn’t help but think that their clothing looked much prettier than the clothing they had in the women’s section. I’m not even joking here, it’s really true. They had these cotton tops with embroidery on it, for men, and really nice fitting pants, not to mention some of the shirts they sell. It really was weird.

So yeah, I guess that’s just the way things are today, but I like being feminine and soft, I like wearing pretty clothes and I’d really prefer to be the one taking longer to make myself look good. As for men, well in my opinion they should look like men. The “metrosexual male” doesn’t really appeal to me. I’m not saying men shouldn’t be well groomed, clean and neat, after all our beloved Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was always well groomed, clean and neat, but from the descriptions we are given, he (PBUH) actually looked like a man. So I guess it shouldn’t hurt to have facial hair, and the perfect hairstyle is unnecessary, and seriously manicures and pedicures shouldn’t need to feature at all. In any case, this is just all my opinion, I know that there are many people who would differ with me, but you know what, I’m not asking anyone to agree with me, I’m just telling you what I find strange about today’s world and each person is allowed to have their own opinion.

Image from here


  1. thanks for sharing, viw my new bloglet "Greed Is A Terrible Thing" if you have time, feel free to comment/follow, thanks

  2. Salam alikum

    Ugh I am soooo not loving this girly way men are starting to dress and behave! Jeans on men are getting tighter and tighter and often teemed with a pink shirt and cardigan :)

    Call me old fashioned but I want the kind of man who will get rid of the spider in the bathroom, give me his jacket if it's cold and not have to worry about him stealing my eye cream ;)

    You are so right about the women as well, i am often seen as 'weak' for choosing to stay home with my kids and 'wasting' my degree away.

    Take care my lovely sister xxx

  3. I agree with you completely. Men should look like men and act like men. They have their set roles and to be like a woman is not one of those roles.

  4. ireminisces-

    Thanks, will check out your blog if I have some time inshaa-Allah. The title sounds very interesting.


    You are so right, men's jeans are really becoming tighter and tighter, it's actually irritating, there's modesty for men also, and tight jeans doesn't fit with that. And yeah, I agree 100% with the type of man you describe. ;-) would be very strange indeed if your cosmetics start dissapearing.Also, I can relate to what people think about you wasting your degree, people think the same of me because I don't have a high profile job. You know what, people have different values, and I think that what you're doing is amazing. It's easy to go out and work in a high profile job, but it's so much better to be at home with your kids, motherhood is the best job and you taking the time to be with your kids and teach them the values that are important-Inshaa-Allah one day soon you will see the benefits of that, but you will have far more benefits in the hereafter Insha-Allah. Perhaps we are old-fashioned, but in today's world, its better to be that way or else you end up losing yourself.

    Modest Destiny-

    Absolutely well said! ;-)

  5. Very Interesting Zarina. I think the main problem today is that men look more and more like women and women want to be more and more like men. This does not make much sense.
    God has created us different for a reason, but we tend to reject it and this creates more issues than good.
    I agree with Bonnie and to be true I think men are as well looking for women who look well after their children and house and who wear feminine clothes, talk with grace and are kind.

    Thank you for another outstanding post and a great subject to reflect on.
    Stay well and have a beautiful day!

  6. Marie

    Its so nice to find like-minded people, and you are right, in the end men do want feminine women, who can take care of their homes and raise the children. What ends up happening when roles are reversed is that more often than not women are the ones who end up having to play double roles. They have to work during the day and when they come home they still have to see to things in the home. There's no escaping it, and I also think that the reason why so many people get divorced today is because of this role confusion. Men are not allowed to feel like men and women end up with a double burden. Its like you've said, when we go against God's will then problems begin to arise.