By Esther Zoza
HAVANA TIMES – Somebody passed away in my community this week… a 57-year-old woman after her blood pressure shot way up. Many questions inevitably come to mind. Did stress, overcrowding and domestic violence play a key role in this unfortunate event?
It’s a well-known fact that shortages of basic products and food now mean that Cuban women are fighting an almost daily battle to get a hold of them. It’s also a well-known fact that lines, these huge and tangled up living organisms, have become a social phenomenon that generate stress and violence.
However, has anybody asked themselves what happens when these heroines go home? Is there recognition for all their hard work? Do they sit down to rest, or do they have to take care of not only children, but also the rest of the family in smaller and smaller spaces?
The current pandemic situation has made the burden upon women’s shoulders even heavier. Making sure that their children don’t leave the house, keeping them entertained, preventing conflicts between family members and working to death, both in and outside the house, in surroundings that become more and more shameful, adds to a stress that never goes away. Being aware of the harm this situation has on health should be a family concern.
Strategies need to be desperately revised so that every family member is helping out. It’s unbelievable that while women cook, wash, iron, mop, clean, take care of children and come back from standing in line under the sun for hours, the rest of the family are sitting in front of computers, TVs or are hooked on Facebook.
There is no doubt that thinking about yourself is important, loving ourselves, even treating ourselves, but what kind of person are we if our enjoyment comes at the price of another’s mental and physical wellbeing?