It's time for the readers of this column to have the last word.
A Knoxville, Tenn., reader echoed many irate men after a recent column about the eternal housework battle between working couples.
"I made it clear to my wife-to-be before we ever got married that I expected the same consideration that my mother gave my father, but now she reads articles like yours and talks to her girlfriends at work, then comes home and grouses to me about her hard lot in life."
And a Macon, Ga., man wrote, "I work hard -- hard enough to bring in 75 percent of our income. You expect me to come home and change diapers and cook supper and wait on my wife? Get real, Niki. Get real!"
Finally, a Madison, Ala., reader wrote: "Male-bashing is male-bashing! Stereotypes are stereotypes! Broad negative comments [such as the ones in your article] do not produce positive results!
"A lot of my male friends and I do housework chores and parenting. Give us some credit!"
But a woman in Kansas City, Mo., wrote: "Why can't I get my husband to understand that it's not the work that I resent, but the basic unfairness of an arrangement in which we both work full-time, but I do all the housework and parenting -- and that this unfairness eats away at my warm, loving feelings towards him?"
A Richmond, Va., woman set the rules early, on the other hand. "Before I married my husband, I told him, 'Either we're equal partners, or I don't need you. If I'd wanted a child, I'd have adopted one and raised him or her by myself.
" 'But I don't want a child; I want a partner and lover and best friend -- and lovers and partners and best friends don't sit around waiting for their lovers and partners and best friends to wait on them.' "
And a Woodstock, Conn., legal secretary wrote, "It's not the harassment I endured for six years that still upsets me, 15 years later.
"What still upsets me is that like Professor Hill, I didn't have the nerve to take the case to EEOC -- and unlike her, I still don't have the courage to blow the whistle on this small-town jerk."