This may have existed long before this generation, but I think things have gotten progressively more complex as we've "complicated the narrative" of traditional gender roles. It's something that can really confuse a lot of men as well as women and I think having clarity can really help people understand what's expected of them and why it sometimes feels like they're being pulled in two different directions.
Let's start with ladies first. It's becoming increasingly obvious that two contradicting things that are both general and yet are absolutely true: if you, as a woman, trust in the male gender to take care of you, you will get f*****. If you, as a woman, try to become an independent woman at the expense of all nurturing and domesticity then guys will generally replace you with a more "housewife" type of female. So, you have an increasing amount of financially secure and yet loveless women who are perplexed why they have the benz, the fancy condo, the big job title, and yet they're looking at 40 and have no man.
This is because, at least in part, of a confusion as to what is expected of women in relationships nowadays. Men increasingly expect a woman to have a touch of the masculinity. And, by this I mean, we are increasingly expecting women to provide for themselves, take care of their own emotional needs, and be emotionally stable and fluid enough to break off relationships at a moment's notice despite having good relationships being, at one point, used to be the cornerstone of what it meant to be a woman.
And women are increasingly taking this further and further. Many women forsake relationships for career advancement and security. They're increasingly having difficulty community and articulating their emotions and emotional needs, they're cheating more openly and with far less shame, and they increasingly have "orbiter" guys to step up if their guy decides to break it off quickly and thus ensure their own "emotional invulnerability" at the cost of a sort of vulnerable dependence that I think is inherent in all very serious relationships if there's really going to be trust and love.
We can't blame women for this since we've come to expect it not through verbal demands by by men simply no longer feeling obligated to provide these things for women. When you deny someone something at first they'll be confused and lost, but eventually they will find how to get it for themselves. Now, you have a lot of men crying about it saying they want to give a woman all of that, but actions speak louder than words and they know that the modern young male doesn't feel it's his duty to do this for his lady like his father and grandfather did with their girlfriends and wives.
Let's quickly circle back to men. It's becoming obvious that two contradicting things are true for men as well: that if you are extremely independent to the point of hardly if ever showing your emotions you will eventually get f****** probably in the form of an expensive divorce. Yet, if you put your emotions and sensitivity at the forefront of your life then women will come to respect you less and possibly replace you for a better provider OR pick up the slack themselves and come to resent you in a so profound a way that they themselves only experience it subconsciously.
In this way, men are increasingly expected to have a touch of the feminine. And, by this I mean, men are expected to provide emotional support, openly express their good and bad emotions, and show vulnerability and engagement at all times throughout the relationship. Gone is the tough guy husband who just provided for the family and kept to himself when it came to how he felt about things. Instead, men win girls hearts more and more by "being fun, a willingness to show true emotion, an aptitude to provide emotional support, and an ability to put in huge amounts of time together as a couple.
And men have taken this pretty far as well. Men are losing focus on their careers, starting to crumble under the weight off too many emotions, and lacking the proper emotional distance to see their relationship from an objective perspective and therefore create problems where none exist. And we can't blame men for starting to become like this, because women are providing these things less and less so men are forced to become their emotional caregivers in a way.
And so the problem comes full circle with men and women both utterly confused and often times even angry about the situation. Women get angry that they spent all this time NOT being a needy dependent housewife and they're getting treated like they're too masculine to date. Men get angry that they spent all this time NOT being coldhearted douchebags and it's come to bite in the ass with all manner of emotional distress. It hurts, then, to be treated like you're being too much of the opposite gender of yourself when at the same time it seems so clear to you that's what they wanted...
But that's not what they wanted. The youth generation is more open to a HINT and even that is a grey area honestly. Do I want to feel obligated to provide a life for my girlfriend? Do I want to pay for every bill of my one day wife? No, not really. But, do I also want her at home cooking meals and doing laundry? Do i want her there at the end of a particularly bad day to tell me I matter? (lol.) Yeah, that'd be nice. And do women really want an unfeeling guy who just works all the time and provides but doesn't even act like he remotely likes them? No, not really. But, do they also want a man who can be the voice of reason in arguments not even more emotionally distressed than they are? Do they want a man who can earn more than them and be able to put work before a problem in the relationship and can always keep an eye to the future rather than be bogged down by too many feelings of the past? Yes, that'd be real nice.
So, my humble answer is that if you want to embrace traditional gender roles in the 21st century then you must learn to inhabit both a masculine and feminine spirit. You need to put your own "gender role" first, but you must also have the ability to reach into the opposite gender role when it's needed. Clearly, you cannot be both at the very same time so you have to learn how to switch in and out. Women, work during the day but also try to be there for your guy afterward. Men, show your feelings, but also realize a little bit of emotional distance so you can focus on your responsibilities as a man and as the "leader" of the relationship. Develop your "opposite side" but never forsake your own gender's traditional roles or else things will get really really confusing. And, of course, there's always the option to forgo traditional gender roles completely...
The above girl is more subtly masculine: She doesn't seem like you can easily tie down (independent,) but also VERY feminine
The pic above is (hopefully) more subtle. He certainly spent time on his wardrobe and appearance, but still conveys strength, determination, and an ability to handle himself emotionally at all times