Could You Be A Trad Wife?

How Can We Balance the Trad Wife Movement with Feminism?

Is there a positive place where the twain can not only meet but also coexist?

The Tradwife movement seems to lose a little of its sheen this year. Last year, the media couldn’t get enough women like Alena Kate Pettitt, whose website, The Darling Academy, celebrates “home-making, good manners, and family life.”

Pettitt has found contentment “submitting to and spoiling her husband like it’s 1959” – something that, to many of us, smacks of “oppression and, indeed, misogyny.”

Tradwives don’t see it like that – they see it as empowering, as a way of “living a pro-feminine life in a world that tells us it’s ‘not enough to stay home and keep house.’”

What Is The Tradwife Movement?

Pettitt’s “view on feminism is that it’s about choices. To say you can go into the working world and compete with men and you’re not allowed to stay at home – to me is taking a choice away.”

Unfortunately, the Tradwife movement has widely been seen “as a backlash against feminism.” Others have accused it of having little to do with “fighting the [patriarchal] system” and being more “about women fighting against their own insecurities.”

Some aspects of the trad wife movement sit uncomfortably alongside feminist values. As one journalist noted, “through referring to “tradition,” these women are implying some innate rather than learned – or prescribed – behaviors.”

However, as Pettitt so rightly says, feminism is about choice at the end of the day. It also needs to be about acceptance.

Do You Follow Traditional Gender Roles?

Just because you have chosen to become the next vice-president of the US doesn’t mean you’re more of a woman, or a better one, than someone like Pettitt, who has chosen to dedicate her life to home-making (and blogging about homemaking).

We are all products of the same culture and tradition, and all feel the same pressure to conform to one notion of feminine identity or another. Shouldn’t we then accept that others make their own choices for reasons of their own, but those choices don’t make them any less of a woman?

Do You Want A Feminist Husband?

Similarly, however, it’s time for those like Pettitt, to stop upholding men as the ultimate companions and colleagues and accept the reality – that women remain “dramatically underrepresented” in the workplace and fall into stereotype perceptions.

Men are not always “nothing but supportive” to many women, not in the workplace, nor at home – not when over one and half million British women experienced domestic abuse last year.

Perhaps, instead of advocating submitting to men and drawing daggers at women who have made different choices, “we need to reverse the stereotype that women don’t support other women….  Study after study shows women who support women are more successful”.

Maybe it’s time we listened to each other even if our lifestyles are different and our values at odds with one another. Even if we do housework or paid work, like keeping up with the stock exchange. In the end, we are still in today’s society of women and deserve to have our voices heard.