An idea occurred to me the other day, as ideas might do randomly that the reason we have the gig economy we have today is because gender roles in relationships have been degraded so that now we have to rely on the economy as a substitute for our lack of interdependence on others.
Dependence < independence < interdependence
Interdependence is the highest of the 3 relational services. When we are being raised by our family we are brought in to being by way of depending on our family to raise us. We depend on them for food, direction, and personality formation among other things. What we then later learn is how to be independent. Much of our childhood we fight for independence only to quickly realize it isn't as sought after or desired as we initially would like. As we transition to adulthood we find that independence is actually quite difficult and that we look back with nostalgia on the good old times of when we didn't have to face the world. However, as we learn naturally or unnaturally for some, the true way of the human race to survival is by being dependent on one another and independently adding value to the collective by our skills. This is the true virtue to integrating into society. When we experience depression, our emotions are telling us that we have lost interdependence, and more so we have lost the ability to contribute to the collective.
The Gig Economy
What we have today is a economy being grown from the likes of Uber, Grubhub, Postmates, Amazon Fleet, and many others. We rent out our cars to each other, we rent out our homes to one another, because we are disconnected from each other. If we were to be truly interdependent, we would have people who trust us to partake in such services without a hefty price tag attached to it. This is great for someone on their hustle and trying to make money on the side, but we are not teaching interdependence in our society. We have baby sitters because our nieghbors no longer are willing to help. We have lawn mowers because we can't rely on our children or neighbors' children to help us out. There is money to be made, but at what cost?
Interdependence and the Gig Economy
What has happened in our society today is that we have failed to teach interdependence. Please refer to "The 7 habits of highly successful people" for more information on interdependence. What we have now is the receipts of our lost interdependence. This is not something to be celebrated. Those nights where no one is able to pick us up so we have to call on Uber are not to be celebrated. Those nights where no one is there to go with us to get food for us is not to be celebrated. Those times where we have to hire a baby sitter, because we trust no one to do it for us are not to be celebrated.
We need to strive for the lack of a gig economy, because our community supports us. This is where gender roles come in. While we are still a stable society and there is much to be grateful for, traditional gender roles had many benefits. Interdependence in this context would mean a mother being able to rely on a father to bring in resources to be dispursed evenly to the family. The mother can do much in the way of nurturing her family, while the father is the protector. The sacrifice we have made is that we cannot trust anyone to do a simple favor such as be DD for the night or get some food from jack in the box. This is where the gig economy has found its opportunity. The gig economy has brought those services to the people that don't have the family or friends to support them. We sacrifice money for community and with that we limit ourselves to only independence and not interdependence.
Continue to think differently.