So I Married a Cat Herder-er

Hi R,

I’d like to offer an obligatory disclaimer about how Moe Tkacik is the best thing that ever happened to the internet and since she left lo these many years ago I kind of only glimpse at Jezebel to be reminded simultaneously of the worst outcomes of identity politics, you know, don’t shamesnark me! and the dire need for the community and protective cover they provide, you know, straight up bigotry.

But this feminist analysis of this article is tops! Rundown in list format for those of us with undiagnosed ADHD:

  1. adult adhd causes problems in marriages even when the adult adhd haver has kind of gotten their shit together in job-like-areas
  2. but all that adhd type behavior codes dude! so a guy who is like suck it family meal, I want to play Gears of War II is a sitcom punchline and probably doesn’t spend to much time hating himself for it and a lady who exhibits same behavior is probably a bad human with bad human children. So guess whose problem this New Serious Problem is?  It’s ladies’! (Not that reductive understandings of masculinity are not super-damaging to the man-humans. But I am going to go out on a limb here and say that up to 75% more ladies feel bad about their necks compromised relational capabilities.)

This is on my mind because I’m both married and insane. I’d like to suggest an even broader structural analysis! I think it’s a super-interesting and under-examined claim/piece of data that there are these undiagnosed individuals who have apparently compensated in the professional arena – selecting jobs that meet their capabilities, I’d assume, or getting help where they need it, or just squeaking by and being stressed out. And yet there’s not a corresponding need to scramble to create some functioning structure in the family, nor is the problem even conceived of as one that impacts presence with one’s family. So the area where you somehow squeak by no matter what is WORK, WORK FOR MEN. If you don’t you’ll starve/not be a real human. And the area that’s just supposed to sort of… work out once you have work worked out is the home/family/interpersonal. Which, look, if you don’t think those spaces are gendered you’ve been reading too much Ben Stein.

We gotta remember that it’s The Derek Zoolander Center for Kids Who Can’t Read Good and Wanna Learn to Do Other Stuff Good Too. I think our socio-econo-humano-legal perspectives on disability can take a lesson from that. I am really conflicted about how clearly to draw lines between our personal and professional selves, and how those lines should or should not be drawn differently at various levels (individual, interpersonal, institutional, inter-institutional, legal/policy, OUTER SPACE). I can talk until I’m blue in the face about the strengths and weaknesses of a Reasonable Accommodation framework and Medicaid funding and whatever, but boy the law sucks at intervening where suffering is worst. I mean, that’s what structural sexism is, I guess. Not that I want to have video-game-playing parity legislation. Just sayin’. Is my executive function disorder showing?

-VGB

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