Normally I write these posts based on prompts, but this time I just have something I want to say!
Actually, I have something I want to rant about. Click the back button on your browser if you aren’t interested. 😉
So. In the last week or so, between Twitter and Instagram, I have seen at least five examples of men saying some variation of, “Women should be making sandwiches for us.”
For example, a pastor said that the Apostle Paul intended for the women to be making the sandwiches, though he did allow that “there are times when a man fends for himself and makes quite a decent sandwich.”
(The heroism! Future children will read about this man in their history books.)
And multiple theology guys on Twitter, when discussing a book a woman wrote, said something along the lines of, “I hope her husband told her to get back in the kitchen and make him a sandwich.”
I find this type of rhetoric to be insulting to women (obviously), but I sometimes wonder that the men themselves don’t see that this is insulting to them as well.
Like, a sandwich??
Why are these types of men so obsessed with being served sandwiches?
Of all the foods to prepare, sandwiches are some of the easiest to make. Even a preschooler (of any gender!) can make a sandwich.
If they said something like, “Paul intends for women to make the Buche de Noel.” or, “Paul intends for women to make Beef Wellington.”, I still would disagree, but it would at least make more sense.
Another thing that peeves me about this: a defense frequently offered to people like me is, “Well, yes, but the man is the one who has to go fight off intruders.”, as if that’s something that happens every day. Or even every week.
How is that the same at all?
“Here, wives. You do every domestic duty so that your husband has to do nothing at home. But the payoff is that in the extremely unlikely event that the family is physically threatened, your husband will go take care of it.”
This reminds me of how some men say, “I would die defending my family.”, but then they can’t be bothered to change a diaper.
Seriously, stop with the heroism stuff and do some everyday practical stuff instead. Like…making your own sandwich. Or perhaps making one for yourself AND the rest of the family.
Now I’ve gotten this off of my chest. Thanks for listening to my rant!
P.S. My dad saw the quote from the first pastor and he said, “I like to make my own sandwiches, because then I can put whatever I want on them.” Heh.
P.P.S. People often defend these types of sandwich remarks by saying, “Oh, you took this out of context. That’s not really what they meant.” But I remain convinced there is no way this many instances of the sandwich-making-as-insult thing could be all misinterpretations.
P.P.P.S. I think it’s great if people in a marriage want to serve each other. There is nothing wrong with a wife happily making a sandwich for her husband, and vice-versa. I just think it’s stupid to act like the Bible stipulates who is supposed to make sandwiches.
Jody S. says
My son told me last week that I was going to burn in sandwich hell for suggesting a taco is a kind of sandwich, so I won’t let him see this post (with regard to quesadillas) lest you be likewise damned. 😉
I support Biblical patriarchy/headship, but I’m thinking this sandwich patriarchy of which you speak doesn’t sound Biblically sound. (I’ve not been exposed to these sandwich-like ideas.) My husband is definitely the head of our household, but he has changed many a diaper and made many a meal (like my omelette at breakfast today).
Beth B. says
I haven’t heard these sandwich remarks on Twitter or Instagram, thankfully. I don’t know any man who can’t make a sandwich. How ridiculous to insinuate that women have to be the ones to make food for a man. My boyfriend feels bad if I try to “serve him” a meal. He always tells me, “I can do that.” I lucked out with a great guy!
I agree wholeheartedly. I happen to be the main cook in our family because I love to cook. It’s a stress release for me. I have friends who are not cooks. The kitchen is their husband’s domain. It’s It’s just a job period
I have never commented before, but this post moved me to do so. First, I agree with you 100%. Second, you made me laugh so hard. Your comments are funny, but also the whole tone is out of your usual style and made me laugh. You are fired up! I love it. Sometimes I feel like we have not evolved at all in 2000 years. “Martha’s mad that Mary is listening to Jesus – she should be making sandwiches.”
Haha, yes, this is my rant voice. It doesn’t come out very often on my main blog!
I’m sad to see that sandwich patriarchy (Thank you, Jody S.) has been taken on by the Christian community. I always thought that kind of sexism belonged to… others? And in an aside (and not wishing to start any theological debate), during my nursing training I heard a lecture from a (male) pastoral counsellor, employed in a psychiatric facility, who assured us that nothing has done more for female empowerment than the birth and life of Jesus. He is not a sexist!
Yeah, it’s interesting that the whole sandwich thing is not limited to Christendom; I see it out there in secular corners of the internet as well.
I wish it didn’t exist anywhere!
Patti Peres says
Haha, Kristen, I love this rant. If my dad ever told my mom to “make me a sandwich”, she would look at him and say, “zap, you’re a sandwich!” My folks were partners. Both worked, both cooked (my dad was better), and they both raised and watched after us. My mom used to get so ticked if she invited a friend to lunch and the friend would have to ask her husband to “babysit. That was mom mom’s rant- “A father does not BABYSIT his own kids!”.
This is one of my husband’s biggest pet peeves also! He is the dad, not the entertainer. Maybe he feels more strongly about it since he was a stay at home dad for a few years.
lol, I love this post and every comment.
I have to add that I don’t believe in stereotypical gender roles but that’s the way my household works, as in that happens to be the way it functions best, so fine. We could each do the other’s stuff if we had to (speaking of myself and my husband here) but we would not really enjoy it all and we would have to ask each other a ton of questions. I would like the mechanicking but not so much the livestock stuff. He would not mind the cooking but he would do a terrible job of washing and combing the girls’ hair. Also neither of us like to clean the bathroom, so there’s that issue also.
I also have to add a second thing which is that Jesus did plenty of loaf-and-fish-feeding so phooey on ridiculous pastors.
Good thing Jesus didn’t think to put the loaves and fishes together to make sandwiches. 😉
🤣🤣🤣🤣 Too funny!
Very good message! Still laughing at “Paul intends for women to make the Buche de Noel.” Also impressed with how you use humor to make your serious point here.
But I did wonder about that part of your post. Are (all? Some?) women more capable of making “fancier” food? Why? Am I misunderstanding?
My parents, back in the 1970s, would loftily inform me that the best chefs in the world were men. This is when I complained that my dad only knew how to make Western omelets. I snapped back, “And they expect glory for it. Meanwhile, the women of the world do 99% of the world’s cooking and no one appreciates it.” My mother was an incredible cook and I was lucky to learn from her.
Haha, I just made a comment about male chefs and then I got to yours. Great minds think alike.
No, no, I was just saying that this whole schtick would be slightly less odd if they chose something other than a sandwich. Like…why in the world does a grown adult need someone else to make him a sandwich? Sandwiches aren’t even hard!
I firmly believe that both men and women are equally capable of making food, no matter how complicated. I mean, many of the world’s most famous chefs are men. I fail to see how cooking (or sandwich-making, which is not even really cooking) is something that is women’s work.
I am late to the game on this one but here’s my two cents:
I think there’s an additional dig at women by using something like a sandwich…it’s basically saying: ‘as a woman, your place/worth/value is based on serving me’ and then even further: ‘what you contribute isn’t even all that great.’ It’s dismissive (and intentionally so) on several levels.
Jenny Young says
If we really live to serve each other we won’t be measuring who does what for whom anyway…we would just see something that needs done & do it. We would see our spouse needing help & help them….with no thoughts of anything we’ve already done.
Honestly I did not think there were any well known leaders who still taught this idea.
There is quite a lot of sexism taught in churches. Most under the guise of women submit to your husband. It’s quite unfortunate because Jesus had female backers who supported him financially.
I whole-heartedly agree with this rant!
Ooooh. Yes! I agree with this rant 100% and I thank you for writing it with fire and humour.
Through the years of marriage, we finally worked out what each of us were good at, bad at, liked to do, or disliked. This happened through confusion and struggles at times! In our case, it did kind of turn out mostly along traditional lines of me doing most housework, cooking, shopping; he did more of outdoor stuff, maintenance and repairs, money-earning. But if felt important to both of us to know how to do ALL the chores, and be able and willing to be flexible. Whiskers or the female equivalent are not needed for sandwich-making, diaper-changing, vacuuming, or gardening, child care, car repair, or anything else, right?
kristin @ going country says
Not that it matters, but I have a theory on why it’s always a sandwich: Precisely because it’s an everyday thing. I have noticed that men (in general) are the “special occasion” cooks, in that they have a few dishes they make irregularly, with great fanfare and expecting praise for it. Whereas women (in general) are the every day line cooks, churning out the food that may not be exciting, but reliably shows up as needed. Like sandwiches. So saying women should be “making sandwiches” for men is just another way of saying they should be the constant caretakers of EVERYONE in their orbit.
I don’t agree with that, as it happens, but that’s my theory on the language used.
Incidentally, when my husband is in charge of the kitchen, he almost always falls back on either actual sandwiches (peanut butter and jelly or grilled cheese) or an omelet. Which is, of course, basically an egg and cheese sandwich, minus the bread. 🙂
kristin @ going country says
I should also note that when he doesn’t make a form of sandwich, he makes what my children term “man food,” which is basically meat and potatoes fried together in a skillet. Or a stew involving pigs feet and tripe. So my children are relieved when it’s just sandwiches.
The standards for women are so different than for men for basic chores!
My husband needs to have one kid with to hear “you’re such a good dad!” I have to have all 4 with me!
Realistically, and opinions aside, I’m sure that it is just a comment about being of service, also. We should just all be of service to one another.
Here’s some epic trolling from a 16 y.o. who was told to make [him] a sandwich:
Great post! You made your point with gentle humour.
Thank you so much for this post! I laughed… a lot. How can men hint to “save the family” while not having even the smallest survival skills?
Because they are, drumroll: being able to cook a meal from scratch with what yo have, maintaining themselves and a household or wherever you stay by; cleaning, washing, keeping things in order and thus save.
So, I do the main cooking, but if needed, my husband learned to cook a meal that not only him, but I will eat too.
In all good relationships I know of, theres no man who is not able or willing to cook.
Think about it, and better: tell any young females to test this abilities before even considering a relationship. Wifes are not mom`s house. Down with the prince`s prerogative!
Sexism is sexism. It has nothing to do with religion. (and I`m agnostic, so I don’t get what you are refering to, anyways). How do we still live, in 2022, in a society in which some men beleive that a women should be making them sandwichs on the basis of gender?? Noooooooo!