Taylor’s Hari Raya Film Redefines Modern Parenthood and Family Roles

Taylor’s University unveils its latest Hari Raya festive film, ‘Suami Mithali’. The film showcases the institution’s dedication to thought-provoking storytelling, this time delving into yet another unexplored modern issues.

‘Suami Mithali’ boldly challenges cultural expectations by portraying the unconventional dynamics of a modern family. In this narrative, the husband Fauzan, traditionally viewed as the breadwinner, now takes on the role of caregiver while his wife Lyla focuses on her career.

This shift is evident from the opening scene, where Fauzan prepares food for Hari Raya Aidilfitri in the kitchen. As Lyla serves the food to the guests and later returns to the kitchen to assist her husband, the guests’ murmurs escalate into audible gossip.

They question Fauzan’s role and employment status, contrasting it with Lyla’s career as the family’s breadwinner. The atmosphere becomes thick with judgement and traditional expectations, with one relative lamenting, “It should be a man’s responsibility to provide for the family.”

This bias is prevalent, as highlighted by an Ipsos survey cited from business consulting and services agency LeadWomen, revealing that 22% of respondents in Malaysia believed that stay-at-home fathers were less manly, underscoring a stigma against men taking on traditional caregiving roles.

On the other hand, the film also sheds light on the challenges women face in balancing household responsibilities with professional ambitions. A flashback scene reveals Lyla being offered a promotion, and despite her husband’s enthusiastic support, Lyla hesitates, fearing that it could jeopardise her ability to balance work and family life. She also expresses concern about potential judgement if her husband is the one to give up his career.

At its core, the film reveals a larger issue. In a society that is quick to judge, families face significant challenges in pursuing what is best for them. As outsiders looking in, the judgments often lack basis.

As the story unfolds, Fauzan steps in to explain that he operates a home-based business while pursuing his goal of furthering his studies. Fauzan emphasises that he contributes to the household in other meaningful ways, so Lyla can focus on her career. He concludes with a reminder that while providing for the family has been viewed as the primary responsibility of men, their role extends beyond mere financial provision.

‘Suami Mithali’ encourages audience to reflect on family roles, emphasising compassion, sacrifice, and embracing unique paths.

“We believe that as an education institution, our responsibility goes beyond imparting knowledge and skills. It is also about inspiring empathy and understanding in society. Through our festive films, we address prevalent societal issues to empower everyone to make a positive difference in the world, not just for ourselves but for those around us,” said Ben Foo, Taylor’s Group Chief Marketing Officer.

To watch ‘Suami Mithali’, please visit https://bit.ly/TaylorsSuamiMithali.

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