Sunday, August 10, 2008

I quess I am "A Retro Housewife" an Anomaly in the Modern World: A Small Rant

Sorry I haven't posted anything in Over a Week. It has been really busy here.
I found an interesting web site called the Retro Housewife and I guess that is what I am. I am very much of an anomaly these days. Many blogs I go to are Stay at Home Mom Blogs, Many are Home schooling Moms. I have known many, including myself, who feel that they need to justify why they have chosen not to work outside the home. Several things just seem to make the choice seem more noble. First and foremost is the title Christian. That it is what good Christians do right? it is Biblical after all, and God's ideal role for the wife and mom. See now that makes me feel better. (yes I am being a little sarcastic) Next justification we use is that we are raising kids. What is more noble than investing our time and energy raising the next generation. Some (not all and certainly not most, but I personally know a few) who even feel pressured to homeschool as a means to justify their choice to be a stay at home wife and mother. Ok before anyone misunderstands me, I actually think all those reasons are very valid reasons for staying home and being a wife and motther. My gripe is the fact that we as wives and mothers have to include those things in our description of who we are to give validation and a nobility to our chosen profession. The question is why, now in society, do we have to do that?
In times past, housewives did not need to justify or validate their choice to stay home. it was the norm. My mom and aunts all were housewives and did not work outside the home. (Of Course that was the '60s and '70s.) My mom also had a maid too. It was acceptable and noble for her just to be a housewife and mom. Nobody questioned or looked down on her for her choice. Remember Mrs Brady? She had 6 kids but she also had a maid and didn't homeschool. What in the world did she do with all her spare time? Samantha Stevens had no maid but she and Jeannie both had magical powers. I also remember the show Hazel. The mom in that family had Hazel the maid so why was she staying home? Lucy stayed home even when little Ricky wasn't even born yet.

If you do not have any kids, or your kids are older like mine, and you are not homeschooling, it seems there is no justification as to why we would choose to still be at home. At least not any justification that seems to be a worthy noble reason that is accepted by the average American anymore.

I guess I have no real justification for why now, since my kids are older for not going back to the work force. I actually am asked quite a lot if I want to go back to teaching or to work. Many people don't know how to react when they find out all I am is a house wife with not even a part time job anymore. There are people I know that actually look down on me, or women like me.

Now I do know why I haven't chosen to go back into the work force. I run my house. I like running my house. I still have justification to be home, I have a 21 year old handicapped son who cannot function on his own or be left alone. Finding adult day care would be practically impossible and I also have a 12 year old still at home. I think being at home is of even more value when you have teenagers. But I get aggravated by having to use them as my validation for why I am at home. I know our home runs a lot more smoothly and calmly than when I was working out side the home. We have a close family because we have the time to be together and do things as a family. When I worked outside the home it was necessary but we were burning the candle at both ends. All house work, errand running got left for the weekends. That left very little time for family time. I love being able to be the home room mom. To chaperone the school field trips etc.

I guess my rant today is the fact that I feel it necessary to justify my choice to stay at home and choose to be only a housewife to people.

Any thoughts or opinions welcome.
PS: I like the site Retro Housewife it is
http://www.retro-housewife.com

1 comment:

motherofmany said...

;)

This made me giggle! I have felt the pressure many times to justify staying home. I've also used the "I got my education and still just wanted tobe a mommy" line because people think you would know better than to be barefoot and pregnant if you had been educated.

Really, though, the whole premise of fighting for the rights of women to chose whatever they want to do and then telling women that their choice to me a wife and mother is wrong is kinda a double standard! Not kinda- REALLY!

No more excuses. This is what I want to do.

Have you ever seen the movie Mona Lisa Smile?