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07/20/2008 Sent by Madeleine H.

Retro Housewife Response  ** Reader Response Delmar 3/20/2009


Hello. I am a 25 year old woman located in Sydney, Australia who is absolutely disgusted in your website. How dare you imply that the only purpose of a woman is to take care of her husband and children? How dare you state that women are only as good as their husband, children and home? Does this mean that those of us who have dispelled any want or need for a husband and children are less successful then those who do.

Does it mean that if we choose career over family we are a lesser person?
I was particularly disgusted with your publishing of an article which states that men have a superior power over women then women have over men. If you define power as "an influence over someone or something" then I believe that women have a much larger influence over men then men over women. Perhaps you published this article in the view that all men have strong personalities and all women have weak personalities, a view held due to popular culture and media advertising but this is definitely not the case.

Maybe you have not met many strong willed women and for this I feel sorry for you. There are so many more opportunities now given to women through the workplace and extensive education then there have been in the past when we could either be a teacher or a nurse.

Expand your horizons beyond the kitchen and the laundry where your only goal in life is to serve a male who does not return the favor. Does he make you dinner at night? Does he do the dishes after he has eaten the dinner you have slaved over and not even stated a thanks? Does he do the washing, the cleaning, the budgeting for the household? Why should you do this? Because you have been home all day? Since you run this website (which is hard in itself) why cant he make the bed in the morning and make you coffee?

I am also slightly confused as to why you are running a website, a business venture that takes you out of the home, and yet encouraging your readers and visitors to stay at home an not participate in working ventures. This is hypocritical.

Life is more then husband and children. Life is full of colour and vibrancy which can only be achieved if you travel around the world and experience things outside the home. A housewife cannot be sustained anymore then a plant without sun. Maybe it could in the 1950s, but this isn't the 1950s.

It is 2008, and women need to realize the world they are in and the fantastic opportunities they have. Men can no longer be the breadwinner, because women refuse to eat the bread.

-Madeleine H.

Dear Madeleine,

I don't recall stating that the only value of a woman is to take care of her husband and children, nor implying it. I think you are confusing me with some other Retro-Housewife? In fact, I don't, in general, judge the value of any human being, so you will have to draw your own conclusions should you wish to assign value to various people.

I am sorry you were disgusted when you visited my website. I feel as though I was not a proper hostess to you. How ungracious of me. But I can understand that what I am serving is not your cup of tea; When I was your age I bought into the whole "liberation" thing, too, and even went as far as sending such organizations as NOW and Planned Parenthood a donation or two.

Unfortunately, the dish they were serving didn't do too well in the oven of reality; it caved like a bad soufflé, as a matter of fact.

I like having a family, I like having children, but if you want neither, then you won't face the same problems as I. As it turned out, children require quite a bit of attention, and unlike plants, they don't fare well on just water and sunshine - in fact, some might disapprove so strongly against the child-rearing practice of setting one's children out in the sunshine and pouring water over their heads that they could be inclined to phone up the authorities.

I tried the working mommy thing, first because I had it in my head that I wanted a career, then out of financial necessity, and I have to say both work and home life suffered because of it. Not to mention that I had no free time for myself and was always exhausted and guilt-ridden. It was, in short, no fun. I like fun.

So, when I re-married and was between jobs, I had a chance to take care of home and hearth. I found that I was enjoying myself much more than I would have thought. Plus, I wasn't tired, the food was better, kids were getting more attention and the house was cleaner.

I also started this site which gives me a great outlet for creativity. It doesn't take me out of the house though. Not that it would be a problem - the nice thing about my setup is that I don't have a boss to answer to - which I would if I had one of your jobs.