Partnerships in the family: not always equality and not everyone can do it
In the comments on the test “I am the sun” and many articles on marital relations, you can often hear: “Domostroy does not suit me, there must be partnerships in the family!” But does everyone know what it is: partnerships? For our Russian culture this phenomenon is quite new, for some it is very like, but for someone it causes serious protests. The purpose of this article is to talk about partnerships in more detail, describe their pros and cons, and discuss who they are suitable for and who are not.
The essence of partnerships in family relations is that partners cast aside their prejudices about “how it should be in the family in general” and decide all specific issues themselves, agree on everything on an equal and free way.
There is a man, he has his own vision of possible relationships and his own interests. There is a woman, she has her own views on relationships and her plans. These free people sit down and agree on how they want to live together. And then they live by these arrangements …
What is opposed to partnerships? If you do not consider completely problematic options, then the traditional family confronts partnerships, where the spouses consult with each other, but the husband makes the final decision on the main issues of life. The traditional family has a power vertical; it is a family with one-man management. But in a family with partnerships, there is no power vertical; here, relations are fundamentally “on equal terms.” A synonym for family partnerships is democracy, sometimes this design is called a horizontal family or the I + I family, in contrast to the WE family.
Relations “on equal terms” – it sounds beautiful, but the reality is more complicated. If the partners behave honestly, the negotiations here last a long time: until the spouses agree, quarrel or get tired. It is difficult to agree from an equal footing.
“If I don’t interrupt you, then you don’t interrupt me either.” If I remove emotions in a discussion, then you remove …
Is everyone ready to build their relationship like that? Of course not. Partnerships can only be built by civilized people who are ready to talk by the rules and live by agreement. And this implies the ability to control your emotions, live with the mind, and not just feelings, a high internal discipline.
Now let’s imagine a jealous man and a woman with PMS alongside: how real partnerships are for them?
What determines whether there will be partnerships in a particular family – or not? First of all, from the ability and desire of the spouses to build such a relationship. If a girl is used to being offended instead of agreeing, there will be no partnerships next to her. If the husband is used to yelling rather than listening to in case of disagreement, there is no need to talk about any partnership. If the spouses respect each other, then in partnerships they will always listen carefully to each other and conduct discussion on an equal footing. In a family with partnerships, parents try to conduct the same style of conversation even with small children, emphasizing that the child’s opinion is very important for them.
However, more often it is more like a game of partnerships than a real partnership. Partnership begins with negotiations, with the ability to formulate one’s position, defend one’s conditions and indicate one’s obligations. Are our children aged 5-7 able to do this? Unique – yes, normal – no. Ordinary children can talk well about what they want, but few of the children know how to independently implement the agreement. One way or another, in most reasonable families, the desire of the child, as long as it is not supported by contributions from him and his responsibility, “weighs” less than the word of an adult.
Partnerships are also unequal
Partnerships really “stand” on equal negotiations, however, it is not true to say that partnerships in the family are always equal relations. It is enough for a family of husband, wife and children to be high in the mountains with heavy backpacks and in a dangerous situation, as all equality in any partnership disappears: adults take their children in their arms or hold their hands, the wife obeys the husband, and the husband carries the hardest backpacks and is responsible for everyone. However, in the kitchen, the situation can turn upside down, and with any partnership, the wife will command the kitchen. Also, if the husband and wife go to the market and the husband understands purchases a little, the decisive vote will be with the wife. They are in partnership, they respect each other and the husband will take into account the husband’s desire, but his main business is to carry heavy bags, and his wife’s business is to choose the right products. Indeed, in families with partnerships, it is often the case that the husband and wife share responsibility zones, and in some zone the decisive word is with the husband, and in the other zone with the wife. It is the particulars of the situation that often determine whose word in this situation will be decisive.
However, in many families where relations are generally partnerships, the preponderance of rights between spouses is determined not by the situation, but by their personal characteristics and personal situation between them.