Thursday, March 17, 2011
HOUSEWIFE, August 1965
When you stay home, day after day, cleaning, cooking and taking care of others, looking at the drab walls of your tract house that are painted the same dreary colors that you find in most hopsitals, it may dawn on you one day that you have needs, too. And you ask yourself: who will take care of my needs?
Your husband's answer: "Well if I got to stay home all day, I'd think it was a vacation!"
Your daughter's answer: "Oh, you just don't understand!"
Your Mother in Law's answer: "Well I didn't have enough hours in the day to get everything done, and I didn't have all these labor saving devices, but at least my home was clean."
Your son's answer: "Oh, c'mon, nobody likes it when they mother hugs them in public!"
Your minister's answer: "It is better to give than receive."
Your best friend's answer: "You are so lucky to have Chuck and the kids! Believe me when I say that if you were to get run over by the bread truck in front of the grocery next Tueday at 1:30PM, I'd leave Leroy and happily take your place..."
You see, your needs, those feelings that you have been pushing down, down, deep down are at the root of your family's unhappiness. They sense your selfishness - your unhappiness - and that effects them. It even means that their underwear isn't as white as it could be. And it is all your fault.
Its your fault your husband enjoys collecting knives and guns. That your daughter isn't prepared to be good wife to her future husband, and it's also your fault that your son will grow up to be more famous under the stage name of "Formica Dinette" than he could have been as a doctor or lawyer.
And we don't mean to add to your burden, but you are just too hard on others. Take your next door neighbors. They smile when they see you out side hanging your luandry, but they often wonder if you drink alone. Not that they have smelled liquor on your breath - why everyone knows that you are a tea totaller - but when they look at you you seem to give off the aura of someone other than yourself. That accounts for their concern for your family, and it also explains why they never loan you things when you ask.
If you just had an anchor - something to help you get through the day. A little helper that would make it all better.
Now curl up with a copy of Housewife Magazine and read up on everything else that happens when you put your petty, insiginificant "needs" before anyone elses.