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Comments

Zan

Actually, I think my son likes to cook because he watches me. I do the majority of the cooking.(My husband works very long hours and is not able to spend a lot of time with him.) I also consider cooking pretty gender neutral as I do climbing trees. I was raised in the country and was a big tree climber and tom-boy even though I was raised with all girls. We rarely had boy toys but I would always be the one doing the "boy" chores with my dad because he has no boys. My parents never tried to sort anything out of me with any of my games. However, though I leaned more towards being a tom boy I always wanted to be a mommy and loved girl things too.

Oh, gardening is also very gender neutral.

Dr. Sue, I'm sure you love your son very much and want what is best for him. I am not ignorant to the affects of young children being put in daycare so their mom's can work long hours. Sometimes it is unavoidable (single moms) but I think it is very sad if it is a choice based on mommy's fulfillment. I beleive if you have children they are your responsibility. Once again, our ideas of thriving are very different and it is not because of ignorance but of different beliefs regarding priorities and child-rearing in general.

Dr.Sue

Zan, this is what I mean by ignorance. You know nothing of my situation, and you make a lot of assumptions. Did I say I had put my young son in day care? Not that I believe there is anything wrong with quality day care, but I didn't say it. I said I was frustrated by the paucity of child care options, and this is true. In fact, he is a middle schooler, and my frustration springs from the difficulty in keeping him occupied in a wholesome way when school holidays and half days fall out on work days. I could as easily say your son must suffer from the lack of a male role model since your husband works such long hours, and brag about how my husband and I have arranged our lives so that we are both around more. But I don't know what else is going on in your life, so that would be an ignorant comment.

"I beleive if you have children they are your responsibility" also shows ignorance, I think. If you truly believe that you have a monopoly on responsibility--that your way is the only possible road to successful childrearing, then I think you need to look around.

I think that ultimately the system is stacked against both working moms and SAHMs, though I can believe SAHMs are happier because they are at least conforming to the patriarchy's expectations and not pedaling uphill all the time. I think we need to stick together and support one another, rather than compete and attack. I think that would be the best thing for all of our children, as well.

deborama

It's all good being a SAHM unless and until your husband decides he doesn't want to support you anymore. That's what happened to me after 12 years of being happy at home. Now I've got two teenagers to raise alone and absolutely no money, and it is really really hard to get started again after so many years out of the workforce. I've got a master's degree and lots of work experience but for 12 years it's been all freelance, volunteer and part-time, and NONE OF THAT COUNTS to corporate America.

I'm just saying, all the blissfully at-home mothers are only good for as long as their husband agrees to the arrangement. As soon as he's tired of it, you've got a BIG problem on your hands. Everybody thinks they're happily married for the long haul when your kids are little and cute. Soon as they're older, a lot less cute, and MUCH more expensive, a lot of men get tired of being the breadwinner. Then you're in your 40s with teenagers and no income. Good luck girls!

alice, uptown

I came to this blog via Salon. It is an interesting debate, but factually, Zan, you are ignorant. You wrote: "It has only been since the 60s that this whole idea of society dictating the way that men and women act came about." Prior to 1964, married women were legally denied access to credit in their own names. Prior to 1920, American women were denied the right to vote. Suffragists fought long and hard -- see Seneca Falls, 1848, for details -- to get the vote. I will spared you more information, since history is obviously not your forte.

On the language front, there is a huge difference between being "busy" and "bored." If you can't discern it, will your children learn it? Have you considered what will happen if they don't?

Bina

Those who seriously believe that women would or should be happier without feminism, need to remember what it was that prompted Betty Friedan to write The Feminine Mystique. If stay-at-home motherhood really were the be-all and the end-all of female fulfillment, wouldn't everybody be like that? And would there ever have been a concerted effort to change things?

BTW, I'm a feminist. Not married. No kids. And yes, VERY happy, not in spite of all that, but BECAUSE of it.

Lauren

Give me a damn break!! Why is it self-serving,biased,ignorant,snobby,bigoted groups out only to serve their own goddamn agenda and who don't give a CRAP about people [or women]of other races always have the NERVE to make us part of your b.s. argument. And just a thought but MAYBE women could succeed further if we didn't always contribute to the VERY sexism we whine about and are always looking out for self but under the disguise of 'sisterhood' what a complete CROCK!! The only 'women' the feminuts care about are their own damn asses and to bring black people into this argument is not only laughable but insulting as hell especially considering how racist the femiphony bitches are so save the theatrics for Broadway and the rhetoric for the lemming goofballs following your fake ramblings off the cliff.

The Happy Feminist

I never made women of other races part of my argument. I made a comparison.

But why am I bothering to respond? Your comment is completely incoherent.

Txfeminist

Hm, well, wow. Anyway.....

I agree, it's asking the wrong question. I mentioned elsewhere in response to this article that I'll personally take serenity and wisdom any day over happiness. Happiness is cheap, and fleeting.

Lauren

No f---ing DUH you didn't make women of 'other races' part of your argument[you never do] and my point was if you have a problem then that is your problem leave the people you don't give a crap about out of it.

The Happy Feminist

All I can say is that I don't think that being a feminist precludes being concerned about racial equality. It's not an either/or proposition.

I don't at all mind listening to constructive criticism as to how any allusions I have made to race may have been wrong or insensitive. I sense however that you are more interested in attacking "feminuts" than actually engaging in any kind of productive discussion. In other words, I don't know what your beef is, so I can't address it.

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