It wasn’t that long ago that women had little choice but to become a housewife.
Up until the 1950s and ’60s, there were very few professions that were open to women. Now, though, that’s not the case at all, and women dominate all types of industries. However, some still choose to be a stay-at-home housewife and mother.
It’s a matter of personal preference, but it gets a bad rap all the same. Housewives are often accused of being “lazy” or “unmotivated,” but what’s it like to actually be one? Here’s what ten real-life housewives have to say.
1. “I am not making money but I am contributing to something way bigger than me and making a difference in lives. I couldn’t be happier. Plus I am available for my daughter anytime and still am able to take care of the home. I really do often feel like I have it all…By the way, no we are not wealthy. We have found that we can live with a lot less than we used to think.”
2. “I LIKE being a housewife…I like cooking dinner and keeping our house clean and running. I like taking care of my daughter all day. I LIKE IT. I wish everyone would stop acting like I’m being oppressed or I’m bringing women down. It seems like people don’t really believe that women like me really like our situations. Stop feeling sorry for me! This is the role I’ve chosen and I’m happy!”
3. “I am a housewife, recently transplanted from Salt Lake City, UT, to Mountain View, CA. I stay at home all day while my husband is at work. I make no income and am fully dependent on him financially. I am 23 years old and perfectly content with this lifestyle.”
4. “I’m a stay-at-home mom of three kids, which is awesome. The housework though bores me to tears. I can’t imagine just doing that.”
5. “I made the choice to be a stay-at-home mom/housewife as well. I’ve had people gasp and say ‘how very 1950s of you’ with an eye roll. Seriously? I’m sorry this is what works best for MY family…Don’t look down on me for being able to stay home and choosing to.”
6. “I am a feminist and I decided to be a stay-at-home mom when our baby was born…My complaint is when people think being a stay-at-home parent is so easy. I hear a lot of ‘what do you do with all your free time?’ Really? I’d like to know if the people who ask that also ask their nanny/daycare that question!”
7. “People just don’t understand. My husband has said, if you want to work, then we’ll figure it out. If not, then great. He gives ME the choice for what works for me and our family. And to an extent, that’s enough. Just knowing that I have the options. And it does mean a lot to me that I CAN stay home (with our soon to be first). Ultimately, it’s our family decision.”
8. “I was a stay-at-home mom for eight years before I rejoined the workforce. I got to see my kids’ first steps, hear their first words. I was able to experience so much that I would have missed out on if I had gone back to work right away…These are people that YOU made going on to make their own way in the world through the guidance that you have given them. There is no higher calling, in my opinion, than that. To me, that is what feminism is about, making your own choices.”
9. “I work much harder at home than I do when I go to my outside of the home job, and I enjoy it more. I feel like I’m making the lives of my family better when I’m at home. When I’m at work I feel like anyone can do what I do, I’m not unique or special but at home I feel like I am making a difference.”
10. “It’s a pleasure to be at home. It’s not gender-determined, either. My husband and I talked about the situation years before we had kids. I was talking about pursuing my doctorate degree at the time. If I had, I would probably be making more money than my husband, and would be the working one. It was just important to us that the kids have someone at home with them…whether father or mother, no big deal.
Thank you, housewives, for speaking out! It’s about time people realized that it’s just as oppressive to tell women they can’t stay at home as it is to give them no other choice.