Emotional labour has become a hot-button issue at the moment—and for good reason. For decades, women have been doing the lion’s share of emotional and mental labour in heterosexual relationships. Women already do 2.8 times more unpaid labour than men, according to the United Nations, including chores, household management, childcare, and daily organisation. Then on top of it there’s the emotional side of things. And it’s work.
Women are taught from a young age by society that dealing with other people’s emotions is their responsibility—we’re meant to be soft and empathetic, while men are allowed to focus on their own needs, rather than taking on the burden of others.