Nice Little Housewife?

There’s a lot of flack given to women who genuinely prefer and desire to be stay-at-home wives and mothers (aka housewives). Many regard it as a noble calling, but in it’s time-after a go at a successful career has been attempted for several years first in or outside marriage. Still others widely claim if a woman does not have a clear identity outside of her oppressive household, she will have none at all and will pine and die a miserable soul.

There’s also a stereo-type in society I hear sometimes in the media: that a Male’s best bet at what I regard as a rather self-centered satisfaction in life is by marrying a “nice little housewife” – one who it can only be assumed will supposedly be more easily tamed, trusted and docile than a career-oriented woman; a woman who is in the work world and must surely have more brains as well as assertiveness. In short, a total misunderstanding of the value of a traditional woman as something to be desired beyond selfish motives. Two songs I listen to often have had me thinking lately, pondering the words I sing along to.

In “Say Hello Wave Goodbye,” artist David Gray sings:

“Under the deep red light I can see the make-up slidin down,
Well hey little girl you will always make up so take off that unbecoming frown,
As for me, well I’ll find someone who’s not goin cheap on the sales,
A nice little housewife who’ll give me a steady life and not keep going
off the rails.”

“So?” I hear you asking. “What’s the big deal?” On one hand, these lyrics are complimentary by saying a traditional woman is not cheap. I am bothered though by the assumption in these verses that the answer to his problems is, voila, a housewife. He’ll than have order and stability and life will be good; a completely selfish reason to desire the type of woman who will presumably put 99% of her efforts into a job that is both defined and undefined-never ending and always needed. A job that has a daunting job description and among the words?: SACRIFICE! Reading Proverbs 31 in the bible makes one thing clear; it is not for the faint of heart.

In “See the World,” the group, Gomez, sings:

See the world

Find an old fashioned girl
And when all’s been said and done
It’s the things that are given, not won
Are the things that you earned.”

I can not claim to know exactly how to interpret these lyrics but when seen as a whole, the song again seems to imply there is a safety in having “an old fashioned girl.” After all the world has been seen and wild oats have been sewn…settle down with a girl you know will be as reliable as clock work, smooth as sweet tea. Again, it seems the value of a traditional woman has nothing to do with what he can do for her but what she can do for him.

What of movies and T.V. shows? I could spend hours talking about the many films, shows, etc which demean the ideal housewife and the importance of her role in society. Google “housewives” and endless links to Desperate Housewives episodes appear, a show which devalues traditional women to the level of pathetic, philandering fools.

I am a housewife. I try my darndest to look after the many affairs of my household along with the various needs of my precious baby boy. I am loved and appreciated for this decision by a husband who not only gives in return but loves to do so when he can. I have a brain, an education and am not afraid to share my points of view. I know many women who are far better at this challenging role than I but I am committed to growing and learning and trust the scope of the job description is still so much broader than I can yet see but this does not scare me. I am deeply troubled by the belittling of this precious and shrinking population of woman. No matter what, society feels a license to portray us in an unfortunate light and I for one would love to see that change.

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5 Responses to Nice Little Housewife?

  1. Anonymous says:

    this is a test

  2. bchallies says:

    First, a test post to see if is working properly from my computer…

  3. bchallies says:

    It seems all aspects of traditional family life are under attack. I think the value of a traditional homemaker is recognized in the very determination of social engineers to demean the role. The hand that rocks the cradle does rock the nation!

  4. Grace says:

    Great post!

  5. Mella says:

    Amen! (From one proud housewife to another.) There’s a reason why the social structure of stay-at-home-mom’s ever became the norm in the first place (even if it’s deemed “old-fashioned” now) – it’s because the structure works, has worked for decades, and beyond.

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