"...for we put the thought of all that we love into all that we make" ~ J.R.R. Tolkien

Thursday, February 12, 2009

I Am A Homemaker, Not A Housewife!

I was running errands this morning that included a trip to the grocery store. I had the unpleasant experience of running into a former co-worker. This former co-worker has always been unfriendly to me, despite the fact that I have never been anything but polite to her. She got really nasty when I left my job 3 years ago to be a homemaker. Nearly everyone else I know thinks it's great, and I have more than one friend who wishes they could do the same. Not this person! She said I was "betraying" the women's rights movement to be a "housewife" and "become a slave" to my husband.

Today she asked me if I was still "sitting around all day doing nothing". I just smiled and walked away. I wanted to ask why such a busy career woman as herself was at the grocery store at 9:30am on a Thursday, but I restrained myself. Barely.

Anyone that knows me (Mom? care to jump in here?) knows that I am stubborn, and I simply don't do things I don't want to do. The comment about becoming a slave to my husband was really funny to me, because I cannot imagine anything being further from the truth!

I really feel like it's a give and take thing. He fights Chicago traffic for nearly an hour to get to work, works all day, and fights Chicago traffic again for nearly an hour to get home. He earns the money we need to have a house, cars, electricity, food, and indulge our hobbies, which are numerous. He is an excellent manager of money (something I am not, but he is teaching me!). We do not have a mortgage on our house- we paid for it with cash. We also paid cash for our cars. We pay cash for everything, actually! We have no debts at all, and that is very nice in the current economic climate!

I clean the house, do the laundry, plan our meals, cook our meals, do the grocery shopping, and make sure the bills get paid. I also take care of the yard in the summer (I love mowing the grass, I have since I was a kid!) and plant and tend the garden, which is pure joy for me, and healthy vegetables for both of us (and usually our neighbors!). I also have time to sew and knit, which I enjoy very much! I wish Hubby could have as much time to indulge his hobbies.

My understanding of the Women's Rights movement, in it's original form, was that those women were fighting so women could choose. And this is my choice! I choose to be a homemaker. I love what I do! It's a lot more relaxing than going to an office every day. Here's something funny- Hubby and I each think the other has the harder job!

Sorry, but I needed to rant a little. This woman has always gotten under my skin, despite my best efforts to not be bothered by her! I do not criticize her choice to have a career, and I cannot imagine why she attacks my choice to be a homemaker.


  1. I hear you sister! Of course it's all about choice and I think your co-worker is more than a little envious of your lifestyle. I know I am! *chuckle* If I didn't have to work I would much prefer to stay at home. You musn't let the petty jealousies of others upset you. How you choose to live your life is your business and no one elses. How you and your husband organise your married life is your business and no one elses. Hold you head high my friend.

    Cheers...Ann :)

  2. I totally agree with you! I became a homemaker when my husband and I got married. A few of the girls that I used to work with called me a "princess" because they thought I was just going to sit around at watch soap operas all day long. I just ignored them. I'm happy that I have the option to stay home with my daughter and clean and cook and work on crafts. I think I'm busier now as a homemaker than I was when I was working full time. You're completely right...it's all about choice.

  3. Well said-you well know that being a homemaker does not necessarily mean you are wealthy!
    (and, as your Mom, I affirm that it would be extremely difficult for someone to make you do something you opposed!)

  4. Never in a million years would I think you are your husband's slave! Has she met him?! I've seen the way he looks at you, he adores you! No ones life is stress free - you've just been able to choose which stresses are ok with you. I would love to be able to stay at home and keep just that full time job. Did you run into her on the produce aisle? Cause she sounds green with envy!

  5. I have to say, it totally makes me laugh that she thinks you are a "slave" to Richard! She obviously hasn't met him or seen you two together. Don't let her get to you, she's just jealous.

  6. As a mom and wife who has worked most of her life, I say "well said". I applaud the women who are homemakers - and look forward to the day I use that word to describe myself!

    Good luck with the indoor garden! Would love to hear how it works out.

  7. I cannot believe her cheek! Wow do yo know that you actually work the equivalent of many hours a day....take into account you would have to pay someone to do the gardening and all the chores you do!

    I think the people who know you have it right...she is jealous of your financial freedom..although I do not think all women who are catty about this issue automatically want to be homemakers. For some it is a battle and they feel they have to win it...and when it comes to your family's happiness you do not want home to be a battleground

    It was great to meet you on flickr....am going to pop over to that other blog....need to check whst it is called !!1 again and see if my "profile" is accepted this time. BTW ...you are going on my google reader...you are interesting!

    Oh and speaking of that....have you actually said to that woman that it is your choice and you do not appreciate her barbs? Wonder what she thinks of the men who are homemakers?

  8. She is just envy! Don't let her stupid comments upset you. Thanks for supporting homemakers - I love the word!