Working Wives

Hilary Rosen definitely stuck her foot in her mouth when she said Ann Romney isn’t qualified to discuss the economy because she “hasn’t worked a day in her life”.  Having stuck my foot in my mouth numerous times, I can imagine how Ms. Rosen feels.  In fact, there were years when I opened my mouth only long enough to change feet.  (During my women’s libber years.)  Even now, I catch my thoughts and realize I’m doing it again – people just can’t hear me or see me kicking myself. 

We all say things we regret.  As soon as the words fly out of our mouths, we wish we could grab them back and swallow them.  What we say often reveals what is in our hearts – and frankly, we all could benefit from some clear-headed self-examination on our attitudes. 

Women are not very nice to women.  Women who work outside the home tend to think the housewives lazy and uneducated, and housewives tend to judge career women as selfish and willing to sacrifice the needs of their families for a paycheck and promotions.  I know ladies who work outside the home, but wish they could be homemakers, and I know housewives who can’t wait for their children to grow up so they can get back to the workplace.

Rick’s Grandmother was jokingly called Morgenthau because Grandpa turned his paychecks over to her and she managed the family money.  She paid off their home, clothed and fed their three children scrumptious meals, saved for retirement, had accounts for each grandchild, and gave loans to their children – much of this during the Great Depression.  Grandma taught her daughter, Mom Edith, the same skills.  Both were homemakers (a better word, IMHO, than “housewives”). Both had to manage everything while their husbands were away, sometimes for extended periods of time.  Grandpa sometimes hired out on ships.  Dad Bill traveled the world gathering overhaul contracts for an aviation company. One time, Dad was in the Philippines on business for Pan Am and ended up in Santa Tomas (and later Los Banos) Japanese prison camp for three years.  Neither Grandma, nor Mom had a college education, but they knew more about finance than most C.F.P.s these days.  And they definitely knew more than most members of Congress!

My mother worked outside the home.  She loved being a nurse and felt called to it, but she also had great respect for the housewives of the community.  She said communities run on volunteers, and many of the housewives were just that.  They were involved in the schools, churches, libraries, Girl Scouts, Boy Scout den mothers, sports.  You name it, and women were there working without pay to help wherever needed.  There are thousands of Proverbs 31 women around. 

Ladies, please.  Put away the claws.  Stop hissing.  We need women in the home and women in the workplace.  We need them in the military and the halls of government, in our courts and on the park playgrounds.  We also need men who respect their wives and listen to them, as President Obama and possible future president Mitt Romney do. 

We need to cheer one another on to be the best we can be in whatever arena God has called us.