Thursday, October 2, 2014

Confessions Of A Stay-At-Home Wife

H/t to The Retro Homemaker for the link.

Here is an interesting article from Forbes about a childless housewife. The lady by the name of Karah is 37 years old and started working right after college and was at first very enthusiastic about her job in hotel administration, however, she quickly found out that hotel management is incredibly demanding. 

She met her future husband, Joel, who is several years her senior, at work and right away moved in with him, however, in her case, it worked out just fine, though it took her more than 10 years to get him to the altar, so to speak. They had to relocate several times, as Joel was advancing in his career, and finally, after they got married, Karah realised that her husband was making so much money that she didn't have to work any more:

We knew that financially, it would be feasible for me not to work; Joel would be making enough in Curaçao to support both of us. The transfer meant a better title and a raise to a low six-figure salary.

Of course, the truth is that your husband doesn't need to earn that much for you to stay home, you just need to be a good manager of family finances and stay out of debt.

Karah was also afraid that if she had a demanding job herself, there would be less time for her to spend with her husband, which is definitely a problem for too many two-income families and contributes to the divorce epidemic:

I knew his hours were going to be long—he was on the management team that was building a new hotel on the island. I knew that if I also worked at a hotel, then we’d never have time to spend with each other...

She quickly found out what women in the past knew right from the beginning: as a woman, you don't need to compete in the world of men and bring home the bacon to be happy:

I felt so grateful for the opportunities that not having a day job afforded me. I was always trying to discover the untouched spots, where none of the tourists went. Most days, I’d walk to a new beach and I’d collect sea glass, coral and driftwood. I even started making crafts with my beach finds.

She actually runs a blog about home renovations where she sells stuff but it's still not comparable to working full time outside home, of course. Despite this, she got viciously attacked in the comments for being  (you guessed it) a parasite, sponging of her husband, blah, blah. One enlightened and tolerant lady commenter even hoped that Joel was banging his secretary (she used the word assistant which I assume is the newspeak for 'secretary' these days:)

Karah also manages family finances, has more time for cooking and does lots of other things:

All the annoying job-transfer details—like shutting off utilities, scheduling movers, requesting doctor records—are easy for me to handle, which makes it a smoother transition for both of us.

I suspect that there are more women like Karah out there but they don't advertise their "alternative" lifestyle (which used to be quite normal 60 years ago) for fear of the feminist backlash. Karah very wisely points out that they are a team who work together to achieve their goals. I wish more people realised how true it is.


  1. Thanks for the link! The comments were horrible, I think a lot of them are just jealous of her!

  2. You are welcome! Personally I think she went to the newspaper to advertise her blog so she didn't mind whatever publicity she was receiving. I just hope that more women who choose to stay home will come out of the closet:) And you don't need a home business to stay at home, either.

  3. I was given a copy of the book The Heart Has its own Reasons...Mothering wisdom for the 1980s by Mary Ann Cahill. It was put out by the La Leche League International. published in 1983. In it it recommends women stay home with their children. They gathered many ideas on how to manage that and the reasons they feel it is best for any child. They also stress that you know in your own heart this is the right thing to do. I was almost surprised to read non feminist ideas that were written into the 80s. Now it does not mention staying home without children as that is not mentioned one way or the other that I remember. Yet it does fly in the face of what many believed at that time. Put your own desires for success aside and do the right thing they say. In the long run you will find that you are so happy in your life at home. They do not say to never work{that being your own decision} but to stay home for the children as many years as at all possible. Please do this! All their growing years is good. I could not help but be so happy to find this book. I hope I can find a mother or soon to be mother with an open mind to give it to. I would love to help any women I can. What you love you want for others. Sarah

  4. Sounds like an interesting book!

  5. It's funny how this is now viewed as an alternative lifestyle. It was completely normal decades ago.

  6. Decades ago! :-) I guess it has been a while but 60s although it seem just like a blink way to me! lol. Yes my mother and her friends never thought life was horrible and they were slaves to their homes I can tell you that for sure! Husband working and wife at home was the norm and I heard no one saying it was wrong. Even the few women who 'worked' usually did so volunteering at political or church or women's groups that helped hospitals or such or helped keeping their churches clean and such. Many women did that once a week and took their children with them. women at home were always the back bone of the neighborhood. There would always be other mothers or even grandmothers around the neighborhood during the day. I still wonder at how fast things turned around..for the bad in my opinion. Sarah