Hi, I’m MT. Nice to meet you. How do you know the bride and groom?
Oh, wonderful! I went to college with the groom.
What do I do? I’m a housewife.
You look confused and uncomfortable. . .
Yes, I did go to Ivy League University with the groom and got a STEM degree.
No, I don’t have any children.
You look even more confused . . .
Let me guess, and stop me if I’m on the wrong track.
In our society today, we tend to equate people’s value with what they do for a living. If I said I was a surgeon, or a lawyer, or a product developer you’d peg me as high status and worth your time. In contrast, if I’d said I was cleaning floors at a fast food joint, I’d better have a great story about working on a blockbuster film script.
Truth be told, I wouldn’t have told you about the floor cleaning part . . . I think you can figure out why.
Anyway, I used come up with face-saving half truths whenever anyone asked me this question, but I’m a feminist and have decided to own my choices. Rather than try to justify myself for you, how about you answer some questions for me?
Do you think that home work, and “women’s work” in general, isn’t valuable?
Do you think that as an “educated women” my choice to work in the home suggests some deficiency? Do you think I’m lazy or self centered? That I’m being stifled by my spouse? That I’m depressed or ill?
Do you think that being a housewife means that I can’t make valuable contributions in my community?
I’d be happy to continue but you look like you regret asking me what I do.
Well, lucky for you it looks like the best man is about to give a toast. Enjoy the rest of the evening!