Column: What can she do without him? Everything.

Linda Sturesson, Arts Editor

“What are you going to do without me?” said my American crush as I told him it was over.

Linda SturessonHe referred to all the meals he had paid for, the rides he’d given me when my only option was to walk and how he carried my things when I was too weak to do so myself.

He was right; I had become dependent on him. A situation I had never been in when I used to date back in Sweden.

What woman would break up with a man who treats her like royalty, just because he has a girlfriend on the side?

Well hopefully, any woman with some self-respect. That might just be my outlook, it obviously wasn’t his. After almost two years in this country, my fair share of dating has led me to believe it’s not a majority of women’s either.

I believe gender equality in America has a long way to go. I grew up in the country ranked fourth in the world in terms of gender equality.

According to the Global Gender Gap Report of 2012, the U.S is ranked 22. It would be odd for me to think otherwise.

My question is; are American women contributing to a more equal society or subconsciously working against it?

In an article published for Fox News on Feb. 5, 2013 called: “To be happy, we must admit women and men aren’t ‘equal,’” by Suzan Venker, she states that “the battle of the sexes is over” and “no one won.”

She thinks we should all go back and accept our original gender roles, where men bring in the cash and women cook their meals.

Man, that sucks. I love to work, I’m a terrible cook and I hate doing the dishes.

Venker wrote: “Prior to the 1970s, people viewed gender roles as equally valuable. Many would argue women had the better end of the deal!”

“It’s hard to claim women were oppressed in a nation in which men were expected to stand up when a lady enters the room or to lay down their lives to spare women life.”

Thank you Suzan, for suggesting society should go back to a time where women were patronized, paid less, beaten by their husbands, ignored and denied the right to vote.

But hey, at least men stood up when a woman walked into a room. That’s truly remarkable.

In Venker’s dream scenario, where women aren’t expected to do anything but produce life and serve a household, we’d grow passive. And as we’d get comfortable having a man support us, we’d sincerely believe we’re the weaker sex.

I have to admit I’ve been affected by the American culture to the point where I expect to be paid for, taken care of and put on a pedestal by men. In America, it’s called being a gentleman. It’s a mindset I used to think of as bizarre, and now have a love-hate relationship with.

However, what these actions suggest is that we’re not capable of earning our own money or land a high positioned job, which in reality is hard for a lot of women, since the labor market is heavily biased towards men.

How are we supposed to be independent if we rely on men to solve our problems?

When we let them, does it automatically mean they are superior and have the right to act however they like, even if it’s hurtful and immorally wrong? More importantly, does it mean they will continuously be prioritized in working life?

If so, I’d be happy to pay for my own meals in the future.