I'm not ashamed to pay for a date or even go 50/50 with the bill when I'm with my boyfriend. Some people will occasionally give me a weird look when I grab the check at a restaurant when I'm out to eat with my boyfriend. In my opinion, relationships should be a 50/50 effort for everything. If my boyfriend buys dinner then I buy us dessert. Or, we take turns paying when we go out to eat. I don't feel comfortable with my boyfriend only taking care of me because even if he hates to admit it, he likes to be treated just as much as a woman does.

Ditching the gender "norms" is something I feel comfortable doing in our everyday life. The stereotype that all women must be serving their man in the kitchen is absolutely not going to fly with me. Yes, I will be more than happy to provide for a family one day. However, my future husband must be up for the challenge as well. I feel uncomfortable with having all the expectations lying solely on my lap. Running a household takes TWO capable individuals who are up to fulfilling any task. This means there isn't going to be any gender-specific roles in the household.

I will be more than happy to learn how to do yard work and maintain things around the house. And I hope my future husband will also be devoted to hopping in the kitchen and cooking a meal if needed and helping me fold laundry at the end of the night. We shouldn't expect our spouse to do anything because "he's the man of the house" or because "she's the woman." Expectations can cause issues later down the line. I am making it clear from the beginning that I believe in a 50/50 conscious effort to keep the household running smoothly. If this means my husband has to drop the kids off to soccer practice sometimes; then so be it. If that means I have to lace up my work boots and get the work done myself; then so be it.

I completely despise the idea that women need a man to take care of them and vice versa. As adults, we should be able to take care of ourselves. Yes, it's nice to have someone there to take care of me occasionally but I will never rely on someone to do everything. My household will learn that no matter your gender, you will learn all the basic needs to become a functioning adult in society. You better believe my daughter will learn to change a tire and my son will know how to iron his shirt.

It all comes down to the gender roles that society pushes down our throat. Don't be afraid to say "no" to something because of your gender. And next time you're out to eat, don't be afraid to snatch the check and pay for the meal. Don't dismiss your abilities because you get told you can't do something because of your gender. Some things that are considered normal aren't what works for every relationship or every individual. Gender roles won't stop me, and I hope they never limit you from being who you want to be either.