‘On the couch’ with Jasminda


DEAR Jasminda,

Last night my son asked me why there wasn’t an International Men’s Day.

What should my reaction have been?

Mrs Olivia T.

Aaaargh. Olivia. Did you wallop him over the head with the white school shirt you’d just ironed so he looked the part at the school you are forking out thousands of dollars for him to attend so he is equipped to fulfil his role as a privileged male?

Perhaps you could have asked him to pause, mid-mouthful of chicken curry that you’d just lovingly put in front of him, to reflect on the fact that despite the incredible achievements of women, they are still underrepresented in senior positions, still likely to earn less than their male counterparts, still likely to do the bulk of unpaid labour, and still far more likely to be the victim of sexual assault.

As you drove Little Lord Fauntleroy to rugby training, did you mention that if you were to be involved in an accident, it would be more likely that you’d be injured because car safety features are designed for men?

These could have been some of your reactions, Olivia.

You could have also alerted him to the fact that there is an International Men’s Day on 19 November, something he could have looked up for himself, but he knew you’d be onto it because you are a proactive woman.

I’m feeling a little incensed, Olivia, so I’m heading off for a power walk with Helen Reddy blasting in my ears, happy in the knowledge that at least we win in the life expectancy stakes.

Carpe diem, Jasminda

Leave a Reply