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Traditional Marriage Roles in Modern Relationships

Money Buys Happiness in Today's Old-Fashioned Marriages

While Dutch moms say the key to a happy life is a part-time or no-time job, German moms find the same life stressful because they want to work. But there is a whole other type of stay-at-home moms in every developed country: those who stay, because they can afford to.

They've been called jet-set moms, spending days shopping in high-end boutiques, at life-coaching classes, and traveling with husbands on business trips. Despite college educations and former careers, they don't miss working one bit. In fact, when the Daily Mail interviewed three couples who've divided marriage into two clear-cut roles — breadwinner and caretaker — all couples said their divide-and-conquer approach was key to a happy marriage.

If a woman wants to stop working to raise kids or focus on turning an hobby into a job because she can afford to, I say go for it. It's what the men say that's so disturbing. They croon over how their wives (with the help of a nanny) arrange their sock drawers, cook their dinners, wash their clothes, and plan vacations that they just "turn up for."


"Sam is the perfect housewife. She doesn’t expect me to do anything domestic. She buys all my clothes, and makes sure that when I am at home, I can totally relax," said 38-year-old Scott Mullins. She "never calls me with problems at work — she knows not to disturb me."

That doesn't sound like a marriage — if a marriage is a partnership — but nostalgia for good, old-fashioned sexism.

Image Source: Thinkstock
Join The Conversation
amber512 amber512 6 years
I am technically a "housewife" and I take offense to it because that is not what I do at all. My husband still helps out around the house, I don't pitter around after him and pick up every single thing he decides to throw on the floor. I don't plan vacations that he just "shows up" for. He doesn't come home, plop on the couch and ask me to fetch him things. We plan things TOGETHER. We decide on things and do things TOGETHER. But that's what works for us I guess.
sourcherry sourcherry 6 years
Well, personally I want to have a career, and I want to share the financial burden, the household chores, the parenting stuff and other responsibilities we might have with my husband. To me that's what a partnership is, but it's a personal notion. Above all, to have a happy marriage you need to have happy individuals. If for the man that means focusing on his career and for the woman taking care of the household, than the best marriage for them is the one that allows them to assume these roles. Whatever works, basically!
lickety-split lickety-split 6 years
that's what a housewife does; stays home and manages the household affairs while the husband earns the income. why does the fact that the men are appreciative irritate you?
Studio16 Studio16 6 years
I don't think it sounds sexist. If he's working and allowing her to stay home the least she can do is make sure he's coming home to a clean house and dinner on the table. I always feel bad for men who have to work twice as hard to support their wives staying at home only to get home to a mess, no dinner, dirty kids and a wife watching TV. I'd be grateful and "earn my keep"! (I know that sounds horribly sexist but it's the only phrase I could think of to describe it. I would love to be a homemaker some day. I know moms who have missed their child's first steps to a business trip. Plus it's so unbalanced. Work, then come home and take care of the kids/house/etc. which is a job in itself! I don't really think you can have both.
zeze zeze 6 years
That's my dream life right there. While I'm an attorney, if I have a family, I feel like I want to be there for my family full time, a helpful husband is fine an all, but it can't equal what a "mom" provides - not to mention I WANT to fill that role. In order to do that, I need to be financially "well off" - I would love to have a husband making more than enough for the both of us, allowing me to be a homemaker and to get my fill of the type of law I love and the type of work that actually inspired me to go through school, I would do non-profit work on a volunteer basis. ...if only life would cooperate.
totygoliguez totygoliguez 6 years
While I highly respect those who decide to work on their home, because keeping a home is a job of its own, the relationship described on this post, is more like a housekeeper-boss relationship than a marriage. I personally wouldn't be able to stop working, but it is hard to come home after a long day of work to take care of your children. I wouldn't be able to do it, and that is why I have decided not to have children.
amber512 amber512 6 years
I have seen it work for some people. I do stay at home for the most part (I work eight hours a week), but I don't do EVERYTHING for my husband.
Natalie-Love Natalie-Love 6 years
To be honest, I can see how this can work for some, because my parents are like that. My dad's an engineer from the former soviet union, and when they were struggling financially, my mother would work with him. When he got a well-paying job in Canada, my mom couldn't wait to stop working again. She would always cook, clean, read, and draw, and always seemed so happy doing so. My dad would never as much as make himself coffee! Now she's working back with him because they want to pay down a new house they bought quicker, and she often tells me how she doesn't like spending her day at a desk. I think she can't wait to retire and go back to drawing, and cooking. I , on the other hand, would go crazy without school/work keeping me busy for the day. I can read and cook and dance on my time off!
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