When it comes to being childless, whether by choice or not, women are frequently criticized while men face little to no repercussions. From well-intentioned remarks to snide comments from family, friends or strangers, women are often told that motherhood is somehow our duty, and by deciding not to participate means we’re incomplete. Now, shaming those females who have opted out of parenthood is apparently an actual government duty — via fairytale.
The Singaporean government has begun a campaign to encourage women to procreate while reminding them that their biological clocks are always ticking. With birth rates low for the country, the government decided to circulate information and tell its 21- to 30-year-old population to get on the baby train, even sponsoring speed dating events and handing out fliers on how to flirt.
Naturally, they couldn’t educate women about reproduction by, say, giving them proper information and allowing them to decide for themselves what to do with that knowledge. No, women are obviously complete morons, so they get — ready for it — fairytales. Nursery rhymes and fairytales for adult women about why they need to have a baby or seven. The above screenshot, for example, is attached to the following little ditty:
Mirror, mirror, on the wall,
Who in this land is the richest of them all?
Snow-White, beyond the mountains with her seven children
Who learn, play and give her kisses every day.
Snow-White is the richest of them all.
Yeah, because that is totally what the fairytale was about: having seven kids and hanging out with them behind a mountain while your evil stepmother fumes about not having children. Granted, many fairytales and nursery rhymes are sexist in themselves, but that’s a whole other argument.
The project was done by four final-year university students. Project manager Chan Luo Er said, “”Fairytales are very accessible, as almost everyone grew up with a fairytale or two – our little poem on a woman’s declining fertility as she ages ties in quite nicely with the Golden Goose.”
Does it? Does it tie in “quite nicely”? Because all I can see are patronizing rhymes about how women should stop and think about having kids, no matter what they’re doing with their lives, while none of the same criticism is directed towards men here.
Picture via The Singaporean Fairytale.