The importance of autonomy

I do believe that we humans should help and support each other. I also believe that we are all part of an interwoven web. What I object to is the singling out of a subset of people as more needy than others. The exception here would be children, who are tended to until they are ready to be on their own.

There are some awesome retirement communities out there. I support this idea mainly because elders can relate to other elders very well and are better understanding of each other’s needs. A retirement community should exist with the same interwoven, web-like characteristics of the surrounding supportive society, and not exist in isolation. A decent retirement community would help elders stay out of nursing homes, in other words, it supports autonomy.

I like the idea of the family unit also. I don’t see that communal families are at all better for kids. I do like the idea of “neighborhood,” a place where kids can meet other kids and play together. Kids should have parks and playgrounds, outdoor spaces where they can enjoy themselves.

Among the adults, autonomy can be upheld no matter which of the adults work outside the home. Whoever does the housework, if it’s not shared, should be compensated in some way. If the other partner pays the mortgage and the at-home partner does not contribute, that’s a form of compensation. Housing in exchange for housework. However, this can quickly turn into a setup if the relationship isn’t strong, leading to power inequity and even dependency.

In a partnership that works, likely the two partners come to an agreement:

This is my space.
This is your space.
This is our together space.

How much overlap? This is up to the partners themselves. I think much of the reason for relationships breaking up is that the two cannot agree on how much will be shared space and how much will be independent.

In some situations, both partners work, but one of the partners works in a field such as the arts which doesn’t bring in adequate income. This means the other partner contributes more. I can see that this might lead to conflict if income distribution not totally clear between both parties.

I believe a person should strive for autonomy. This means staying away from government assistance if at all possible. Government assistance creates a power struggle because those who are helped lose power by being in a position of dependency. If you do not have enough money to live on, of course you are then forced to accept assistance. People exist on whatever path they’re on. Which direction are you headed in? For now, even if you are financially dependent, be free in your mind. Make your own decisions and realize you are also responsible for those decisions. The more responsibility you take on, the more you have control over your life.

Feedback and comments welcome!