Boy deigns to do housework and it's news because the patriarchy is real
Former 16 and Pregnant star Nikkole Paulun is raising her 6-year-old son Lyle to do traditionally feminine household chores and the internet is losing their damn minds over it. In a now-viral Facebook post from Oct. 6, Paulun, now 23, explains the reason why her son cooks, cleans and does laundry. Apparently, even in 2016, these things need an exhaustive — and exhaustively gendered — explanation.
"Because household work isn't just for women," she wrote. "Because one day he might be a single man, living on his own, who will actually know how to do laundry and not eat takeout every night. Because one day he might want to impress a significant other with a meal cooked by his own hands. Because one day when he has kids and a spouse, he's going to need to do his fair share around the home."
Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. These are all extremely valid justifications for not letting your son grow up to be a veritable man child, a worthy cause indeed. But for god's sake, is it news?
ABC News thought so, as did Inside Edition and CBS News, all of which reached out to Paulun for more on this mythical creature of which she wrote, the helpful male. In an interview with CBS, Paulun said of Lyle, "He doesn't argue with me. He knows, 'I have to do this,' and he does it."
Paulun explained that she requires Lyle to clean his room and make his bed every day. According to CBS, for every additional chore he completes, he gets a "small allowance" — and apparently a photoshoot, a viral Facebook post and the unflagging praise of mothers across the country who commented on Paulun's status such things like, "The woman he brings home one day will thank you for how you raised him!!" and "Glad he has you to help him become a real man! "
While it'd definitely be great to live in a world where men pull their weight when it comes to housework (and studies show we're on our way — thanks, man detergent!) it'd be even better to live in a world where men don't get a standing ovation for making a grilled cheese.
Because truly, when was the last time you read a news story about a woman loading the dishwasher?