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Female exhaustion syndrome: when fatigue is a signal

Female exhaustion syndrome: when fatigue is a signal

July 23, 2024

For many decades now, the movements for equality and in favor of the liberation of women have taken their toll on the Western countries.

Thanks to them, Women are less and less forced to stay at home and to sacrifice themselves for a family life in which, years ago, they were supposed to invest all their strength. However, total equality has not yet come to fruition, and gender roles continue to require a double responsibility for women: work to earn money and take care of the house and family. Thus the call is born female exhaustion syndrome .

What is the syndrome of female exhaustion?

The first thing that must be taken into account to understand this concept is that it is not a disease. As you can read in this article about the difference between a syndrome, a disorder and a disease, the first is simply a set of symptoms and signs that often occur together . That means that in the syndrome of female exhaustion there does not have to be a biological cause that makes the whole body of the person malfunction.

In fact, it is most likely that this syndrome is not produced by something that happens in the woman's body, but rather in the opposite: what is around . Specifically, a cultural model that makes many women become exhausted by having to devote their time away from work to most household tasks.

In other words, what generates the syndrome of female exhaustion is the way in which the woman and her environment are related (including in this the people who inhabit it).

The cause of female exhaustion syndrome

One of the factors that makes the female exhaustion syndrome so persistent is that its causes have been culturally normalized . This means that, because of the way of thinking we tend to for the simple fact of belonging to a culture that for centuries has strongly defended the segregation of roles depending on gender, many of the customs that make up the society seem normal and "expected". female exhaustion syndrome.

A clear example of this is found in family dinners, where, at the end, the women automatically get up to pick up the dishes and cutlery, wash the dishes and clean the table while the men rest or remain seated at the table.

Another classic example is the cleaning of the home . This type of activities are still carried out mostly by women, something that is significant considering that a single floor has many parts that can be cleaned. Doing this activity is not just a mop: you also have to vacuum, put in the washing machine, tend and iron, remove dust, etc.

A wider problem

Examples like these are only small plots of the same reality: Domestic tasks remain a responsibility mainly associated with women , whereas the professional scope that was previously reserved for men now is also a sphere of tasks that women have to address. Taking into account that the labor market is increasingly competitive, this translates into a strong exhaustion.

Thus, the syndrome of female exhaustion is born as a consequence of this crossing of responsibilities on the part of the woman: she is still required to take care of the home, and now she also needs to dedicate several hours a day to compete in the labor market.

An economic problem and high demands

Thus, the syndrome of female exhaustion is, in part, a social and economic problem . Before, life was not so expensive, and with the remunerated work of a single person could maintain a home. However, if now the woman also develops professional tasks it is not only because a pro-equality movement has been promoted: it is because now both husbands and wives are forced to work for money. However, this scenario of equality has not reached the household chores, which are still something that women are expected to fulfill.

The other facet of the problem is psychological: the woman is prone to make her self-esteem and her self-image as a mother or wife depend on satisfactorily completing all the tasks that are required, without realizing that in many cases she must work more hours that the husband. That is why psychology must adapt to this new reality and offer solutions.

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