(ThySistas.com) Last Sunday, I was watching Bravo’s, reality t.v show The Real Housewife of Atlanta, and there was an interesting scene that stood out to me. The women were going to a Las Vegas strip club and one of the ladies refused to go because she said her husband would not approve of her going. The other women did not respond well to Porsha, the one who refused to go to the club because they believed she was being controlled by her husband. That scene had me thinking about the traditional housewife versus what I call the new modern housewife. And who are the new modern housewives? Lastly, what’s wrong with being a traditional housewife?
It seems to me the new modern housewives are the women who are independent of their husbands. They have careers, they are sometimes head of their households, and CEOs. They believe they are equal to men and they have a voice in the decisions making. These new modern housewives do not understand why a woman would give a man total control of their lives and freedom in exchange for security. Equally important, why the traditional housewife would sacrifice self to just stay home, cook, clean and have babies. In other words the way it used to be. In simpler terms, the so-called new modern housewife believes the old way of doing things is fatuous, and just plain outdated.
I thought to myself: why not? What’s wrong with being a traditional housewife? And if more of us had a chance to be a stay at home housewife, I think it would be hard to pass it on. The traditional housewife says she is not missing out on anything, and that if more of us women would appreciate and embrace the
Nene one of the women in the group, who took the strongest stance against Porsha as much as admitted that her first marriage started out as a traditional marriage. She confessed the first time she met her husband Greg, she felt unburden by all her responsibilities. She shared that after she invited Greg to the strip club she used to work for, he proclaimed right then and there that she no longer needed to work there. Clearly he did not approved of her working at a strip club. She admitted that she stopped working at the strip club and she became a stay at home wife and mom.
Now Nene is a new modern housewife? Refusing to understand why Porsha declined to go to the strip club because her husband who provides for her would not approved. I think that is not only Interesting, it’s border line hypocritical. Nene was hard on Porsha, and called her out in front of the group after which everyone joined in by telling her she needed to open her eyes and not let a man control her life. I felt bad for Porsha, because having been on both side of the coin I understand that not all marriages are the same.
A simple fact that I had expected Nene and the other women to understand as well. In the first place, most people know that in addition to mutual love and respect, some marriages are arrangements, mutual and a binding agreement between two people. And in the second place, I don’t see anything wrong with staying at home and having your husband take care of you if that is the agreement and he has the capability to do so. In return, you get to bond with your baby a little bit more, have a real conversation with your kids and make a real meal for your family. The alternative is the reality that fifty percent of marriages end up in divorce, So, I would think it’s about time we encourage instead of offering negative unwanted advice to someone who has made a different choice, and that is to respect their marriage.
I must admit, once upon a time I was like Nene, the new modern housewife. Even though I had a husband, I was a working mom, and I was the head of the household, but I felt a little resentful towards my husband. Ultimately I felt he should have been able to take care of us and take on the role of head of household. I grew up in a home where all though my mother had a job my father always made sure all her needs were met. He was a traditional husband.
Instead, I was the bread winner, and consequently I missed out on the things the traditional housewife and a stay at home mom get to do. I missed out on my children growing up, parent teachers nights and just a simple day at the park bonding with my children. I did not get the chance to be the mother I knew I was capable of being because I was too busy being the financial provider. Today, I have a lot of regrets because I did my children a disservice. I should have been at home reading to them which would have improved their learning, but instead I was working too hard and was too tired. Also, I did not have an ear to lend when they could not deal with the pressure of being teenagers, because I was too busy stressing over my job. I am not going to lie, the consequences were crushing. Speaking from experience, I think there are more advantages to staying at home and take care of your family versus working a 9-to-5 job.
In fact, I am not alone in my feelings, WEBMD reported that according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Employment figures for married mothers with children under age 6 have dropped 7% to 10% since the peak years of 1997 to 2000, depending on the income group, says Cohen. Overall, the work participation rate for all women dropped 1.5% from 2000 to 2004, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.”
The idea of being a stay at home wife might be outdated, because now more women are dominating the CEO and executive positions, but at the same time more women are choosing the opposite direction. All in all, I say if you have the ability to stay home, do it. It doesn’t mean you are not empowered or have less say in the marriage, it just means you know that marriage is a two way street and both party have a role. And if one of those role is being a traditional housewife then do what works for you. In the end, what really matters is the mutual understanding you have with your husband or partner.
As has been said, I’ve been on both side of the coin, and now that I am a stay at home mom I don’t miss working a 9-to-5 job, and stressing over work that did not pay all my bills and barely put food on the table. It was a struggle, and I feel if I am going to struggle, let it be for myself and not a company who did not care that my child had a cold and needed to be taken to the doctor. Or who gave me the look, “here we go again” when I had to leave early to pick my child from school because she had an allergic reaction.
Presently, I enjoy being at home taking care of my baby and giving her all my attention. More importantly, I enjoy working on my dream and building my legacy for my children. It’s good to have found that balance, he provides and I nurture. While this might not work for everyone, because they are many Nenes’ out there and I support them one hundred percent, but I do believe it is important to find what works for your marriage.
Staff Writer; Kency Desmangles
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