The key to the happiness of women in Spain is still men and romanticism, above the health, the family or their own self-esteem, so much so that 20% of women of all ages say they are trapped in a relationship that they could leave but do not. This is shown by a study prepared by the analyst and expert in big data Laura Sagnier titled Women today about how they are, what they think and how Spanish women feel. For this report, it was surveyed, between the end of 2015 and the beginning of 2016, 2,403 women of legal age who answered more than a hundred questions. The sample represents almost 15 million Spanish.
The resulting profile is that of a critical and demanding woman with herself, who tries to have a healthy and balanced diet and considers herself very organized. Women imprisoned in female stereotypes that have not evolved with the times, to the point that one in five ends up tied to a relationship that does not satisfy her. A model based on socially imposed beauty and media and in a self-demand to resemble what their environment expects of them: family, work, social and virtual. Guidelines sustained in the belief that love is or should be everything beyond the difficulties of a couple.
The ideal of romantic love "It means that I am going to grow emotionally and personally through another, that is to say, that I am supposed to lack things that someone else has to complete," says feminist expert Rosa Collado. Women, she explains, look for couples "what they should look for themselves and in themselves, facing the limitations, but getting more autonomous, more independent." Romantic love educates women "to deliver everything emotional, care, understanding, support, and to them to contribute the material: money, work, ideas, movement ".
In Spain, in the third quarter of 2018, 21,762 couples ended their marriage, according to the latest data from the General Council of the Judiciary. What keeps others in a routine relationship? "I could have done the pine, followed by a double somersault with fuchsia hair and she would not have noticed, we did not talk or do anything together or collaborate on one thing in the house," says Lucía Valverde, who was married for 16 years. "I felt the need that I had to put up with it until the marriage worked, because I had been married for something," she explains.
"Women are required not to fail and cover all kinds of needs" for the relationship to work, says Rosa Collado. They are educated not only to "deliver everything," but "how to be to be loved" is taught. "For this, they have to be more and more perfect: lovers, mothers, couples … " When everything fails they also blame themselves. "They wonder what happened if they were fulfilling what was required of them: they were successful at work, they took care of their own, they made an effort to be beautiful …". What has happened, continues Collado, is that "he continues to believe in gender roles in which there are many differences between men and women ".
Laura Sagnier (Barcelona, 1966) concludes in her study that, finally, when the couple is shelved, the old saying is confirmed: better alone than badly accompanied. "A couple that makes them unhappy affects the rest of their life much more negatively than having no partner."
The psychologist Marisol Rojas, an expert in sexist violence, agrees with this assessment and explains why it is difficult to get out of this "role pre-assigned by society". "We are educated for others and to them for themselves. " Care is the key in this hitch: "We are told from the beginning that we have to always take care of the couple, the family, the children. In the end, we are trapped by this created obligation. "An empathy that, taken to the extreme, also explains the difficulty of victims of gender violence to get out of that loop: "You have to stop being mothers to be couples. Because the love of a mother is unconditional and turning the love of a couple into that unconditional love is a mistake and a death trap ".
That reality created to fit into a patriarchal society is still there, according to the psychologist Timanfaya Hernández, who specializes in victims of gender violence: "There is a double message today. Women are demanding and every time we demand and fight moreYes, but the residue of the past persists, which dictates that you have to find a half orange to be complete and that you have to be a strong man to provide and protect. " The The only solution that Hernández sees is a change of values in education From the beginning: "Because women have been sold something that is not, and it is impossible to comply with what they sold us." Account that serves in consultation to many women who come to tell you that they have a partner, home, children, work … And they are not happy. "We have to work a lot with that distorted thinking, because we are exhausted by fulfilling everything we are supposed to be, doing and having and we do not even give ourselves permission to be ourselves. That is not the cocktail of happiness"
The clash between reality and expectations was what happened to Pilar Acevedo almost a decade ago. And he got divorced. But he admits that "without wanting to" he continues trying to fulfill what the rest of his world expects him to do: he gets up at 06.00 and sits down to rest when it is past 23.00, he is autonomous and takes care of his establishment, his parents and of their two children: irons, washing machines, meals and organizing iron for day to day, every day. "It's my job," he says. "Or at least I feel it as such, I feel responsible." Acevedo is also part of the portrait of another aspect of the study, that of a woman who she has practically no time for her when he has children, with paid work (six out of ten have it), but also with a lot of the unpaid, since they spend more than half of the time they are at home awake to perform household tasks and care and that they feel a certain pleasure for the tasks of the house.
The data of the document speak of it: "The results say that women spend more than half of the time they are at home awake (55% on average) to perform domestic tasks that derive from the house in which they live and the care and education of children, if they have them. " The author of the study, Laura Sagnier, says that they support almost triple the work of their partners (74% compared to 26%) and this proportion remains almost identical whether the woman works outside the home or not and worsens when They have children. It happened to Pilar Acevedo throughout the childhood and adolescence of her children: "I had the feeling that I was missing hours and hands all the time. There was always something that was left undone, everything was urgent … When I was married, it was worse, because the work was not reduced but it was growing. "Sagnier warns at this point that the prospect of change will not be rapid, although already it is noted: "At the rate that the involvement of the father evolves in the care of the children, or if there are no children in the housework, we will take between two and three generations to match it." According to the document, " in the recent past 19% of men collaborated, nowadays 27% do it ".