There is so much pressure on women today to go to college and join the workforce. Granted, for some women, this is the dream - you go, girl. But there are some of us - a very small percentage of us - who want more out of life than a career. We want to be housewives. The term sends shudders down any feminist’s spine.
For as long as I can remember, college was always a hot topic. From the time I started high school, I was constantly being asked What college are you going to go to? What are you going to major in? The questions were constant.
I have never been great at school, and I have changed my major four times because nothing seemed to "fit." I will never forget the day my mom sat me down and told me that it’s OK to want to be a housewife. No one had ever told me that.
No one told me that it was OK to want such an old-fashioned, traditional life.
I tell everyone that my true life aspiration is to be a housewife, and I am not afraid to say it. This statement usually leads to awkward laughter because it has become such a foreign concept in today's society. I understand their reaction. Not fifty years ago, women were fighting for the right to vote and be able to go and work outside the home - what woman would be stupid enough to want to go back?
The thing is, times have changed. During the 50’s and 60’s a woman's primary role was in the home, and to be honest, she did not have much of a say in the matter. Now it's 2018 and we do have a choice. Unfortunately, a woman who wants to work inside the home is not seen as a woman doing as she pleases, but instead as a woman who disregards everything women have worked so hard to achieve.
Traditional gender roles have become somewhat a thing of the past - that is until recently. In 2017, The University of Michigan and The University of Texas at Austin conducted a multipart study that found that young people today are more likely to believe a man should be the head of the household than previous generations were. I personally believe that it is important for men to be considered the main ‘breadwinner’. It gives men a sense of purpose and feeling of accomplishment; my husband can attest to this.
But what do men think about women wanting to be housewives?
The Yorkshire Building Society conducted a survey asking men what they valued most in a spouse. Their answers could be taken from a 1950’s home economics book. The top three answers are as follows;
- 44% of men said taking care of the home was the most important
- 39% of men value cooking skills
- 33% of men value cleaning skills
Is history beginning to repeat itself?
In my household, my husband and I value traditional gender roles. I do all the cooking, cleaning, laundry and grocery shopping - he brings home a decent paycheck and takes out the trash. I enjoy doing these task for a couple of reasons: it shows him that I value the fact he is out working all day, and it makes him feel respected to come home to a clean house and a hot meal.
Someday I hope to be writing stories from my home office, carting my kids to play dates and trying out new recipes in a beautiful yellow kitchen.
Either way, I have been lucky enough to find a man who respects my choice to spend my days building a home, rather than a 401K.