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women need advanced degrees in homemaking


lilah

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growinghomeblog.com/2013/11/girls-shouldnt-be-highly-educated.html?m=1

posting on my phone so I can't write a long response to this but once again we have a fundie who thinks homemaking is super duper complicated so women need years and years of training in lieu of any other forms of education.

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I get letters everyday from earnest, sincere, highly-educated Moms that go like this:

"I feel so overwhelmed! Do you have any tips on how to stay on top of everything? My house always looks like a disaster and I just can't seem to figure out a schedule..."

"What do you do when your husband wants to start a new business? I'm nervous about the idea and there's tension in our marriage. I know he's supposed to be the leader and I'm supposed to be submissive, how do you deal with this kind of situation?"

"Do you have any healthy snack ideas for toddlers? I'm not really handy in the kitchen, but I know sugar isn't good for them so I'm wondering if you have any recommendations..."

Ahh, I love it when straw-women letter-writers conveniently describe the myths the author is trying to create. Because all highly-educated women with degrees who become stay-at-home moms are so incapable of educating themselves about household management that they don't know how to use google/research and read a book on the subject/ask a real-life person. They write in to ask some random religious blogger what they should do, because they have stumbled upon her blog and divined that she is the source of the ultimate wisdom they are seeking. Right.

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I mean, who should I ask these questions too? My Mom who has a degree in Mathematics and was a computer programmer? Or my grandmother who was somewhat of a math savant who graduated high school when she was 15, and worked a classified job for the War Department during WWII?

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wtylcf, you just posted EXACTLY what I was about to! I think, however, that these "letters" are out-and-out fiction. The college-educated moms I know tend to have MORE and BETTER info on how to run things. The ones with jobs outside the home (horrors!) often are even better organized and informed than the SAHMs are.

I'd also like to remind the blogger that a college education =/= a course in housewifery. As MamaJunebug once told us, her father dissuaded her from majoring in home ec: "You can teach YOURSELF how to cook and sew." And this was back in the '70s, I believe. I've gotten the general impression that her husband and kids haven't yet gone naked or starved to death.

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wtylcf, you just posted EXACTLY what I was about to! I think, however, that these "letters" are out-and-out fiction. The college-educated moms I know tend to have MORE and BETTER info on how to run things. The ones with jobs outside the home (horrors!) often are even better organized and informed than the SAHMs are.

I'd also like to remind the blogger that a college education =/= a course in housewifery. As MamaJunebug once told us, her father dissuaded her from majoring in home ec: "You can teach YOURSELF how to cook and sew." And this was back in the '70s, I believe. I've gotten the general impression that her husband and kids haven't yet gone naked or starved to death.

My great-grandfather's second wife majored in home ec. (That would have been back in the early '30s.) When she met my great-grandfather, she was teaching full time. I think after they married, she shifted to teaching classes in the winter, so she could get some farm work done during the planting and growing seasons. And she was adamant that her daughter M get a college education, too. (Great-aunt M has been teaching college French and ESL for my entire life and just finished her Ph.D so she can teach more electives.)

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Judging from conversations I've had in real life and online, lots of people have no idea what is a healthy snack for a toddler. People really do ask that one all the time, and to be honest, I just don't get it. When did it become passé to just hand the kid an apple, banana, or tangerine and call it a day?

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My great-grandfather's second wife majored in home ec. (That would have been back in the early '30s.) When she met my great-grandfather, she was teaching full time. I think after they married, she shifted to teaching classes in the winter, so she could get some farm work done during the planting and growing seasons. And she was adamant that her daughter M get a college education, too. (Great-aunt M has been teaching college French and ESL for my entire life and just finished her Ph.D so she can teach more electives.)

I'm not ranking on home ec (nowadays often called "consumer education"--crappy name IMHO) at all--I'm just amazed at these fundie bloggers who expect a college degree in math or literature to teach women--in particular--how to cook and sew. I remember when the Botkinettes or somebody wrote of clueless college grads who came weeping to them because they didn't know how to make a cup of tea or sew on a button.

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I'm not ranking on home ec (nowadays often called "consumer education"--crappy name IMHO) at all--I'm just amazed at these fundie bloggers who expect a college degree in math or literature to teach women--in particular--how to cook and sew. I remember when the Botkinettes or somebody wrote of clueless college grads who came weeping to them because they didn't know how to make a cup of tea or sew on a button.

Yeah, I'm pretty sure the Botkinettes invented those college grads. My classmates and I learned how to sew on buttons and make pancakes in junior high school, those of us who hadn't learned already. And I will admit to being fairly incompetent at sewing-- I cannot make a garment that anyone would want to wear-- but I am not about to weep over it. I still remember how to sew on buttons and hem things, and I can repair a seam on a fitted sheet when it starts falling apart. That is good enough for me.

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wtylcf, you just posted EXACTLY what I was about to! I think, however, that these "letters" are out-and-out fiction. The college-educated moms I know tend to have MORE and BETTER info on how to run things. The ones with jobs outside the home (horrors!) often are even better organized and informed than the SAHMs are.

I'd also like to remind the blogger that a college education =/= a course in housewifery. As MamaJunebug once told us, her father dissuaded her from majoring in home ec: "You can teach YOURSELF how to cook and sew." And this was back in the '70s, I believe. I've gotten the general impression that her husband and kids haven't yet gone naked or starved to death.

Hane, I completely agree that these letters must be pure fiction. I think they're a fantasy in which the author gets to feel superior to the educated woman, who has supposedly acquired no practical knowledge in her education. Since the fundamentalist woman has been indoctrinated to do as they're told, they imagine career woman are likewise doing as they're told by feminist bogeymen, pursuing a career. When the fictional career women convert to fundamentalism, they have no way of learning other than doing as they're told by the new authorities, ie. these fundamentalist woman bloggers. Since the fundie women wouldn't seek independent sources of information that had not been vetted by some authority, especially concerning traditionally domestic knowledge, they set themselves up as the authority. They are vetted by x religious sect and can be trusted, whereas Martha Stewart has a suspicious penchant for alcohol and can't be. I think these letters spin a convenient fiction that allows them to feel superior to educated women and bedevil secular influences. Of course this is a caricature, and I'm sure we can find varying degree of independence and independent thinking among fundies along with some acceptance of secular public figures, but I think these "waaa, I can't sew a button" narratives are all about demonizing the secular/ feminist woman.

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A lot of the people who commented on her article politely disagreed with her; that's good to see. I'm in grad school, but this is Thanksgiving break, so today I baked brownies, tried a new recipe for veggie burgers, and sewed a reusable alternative to a plastic bag. How can I possibly know how to do those things when I spend all of my time on my useless degree? What will I EVER do if I have children? I hope she's still around to advise me!!

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Fuck that shit :lol: I actually learned how to cook and clean in college and I am damn good at both. In fact, it is unlikely that I would be able to do either as well if I had just gotten married instead of going to college. Thanks to my obviously foolish education in healthcare I have a slight paranoia of germs. My bathrooms get fully sanitized at least once a month and they are cleaned every 3-4 days. The kitchen gets it more often. Most of these fundie wonder-wives have kitchens I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole.

Same with diet and nutrition. Thanks to the evil college education I received - I know what a balanced diet looks like (hint: it isn't 2 chicken breasts for 12 people).

And this isn't because my mom didn't try her best to help us learn these things. She did, and I was a passable cook and my place was never filthy. But college for me, anyways, honed and perfected a lot of those skills - and taught me some really great new ones. There's nothing like doing home care work with overlapping client visits to teach some wicked time management skills

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In no way am I belittling women (or men) whose primary work is caring for their home. It's great to have the skills to do so. For those who have the opportunity and circumstances to choose so if they want to, I am sure primary home care is fulfilling and rewarding. However, I think it is quite naive (or willfully stupid) to assume that someone who is focusing on academics cannot also develop such skills. I know someone *cough* me *cough* who did not spend her young adulthood focusing on homemaking skills because her heart led her to focus on obtaining a different kind of education at a pacademic center for higher learning. Although her mother accuses her of "cooking like a scientist" and not a chef, she gets by. She has also used other resources (yay Youtube) to teach herself other "domestic" arts like crocheting. Chalk up one for a woman with an advanced academic degree who seeks to continue to educate herself in many other aspects of life.

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My very religious grandmother got an education and spoke 5 languages fluently enough to become an international secretary for a European import/export business before the Second World War. Despite that obvious handicap, she still managed to work out how to run a household-including canning and sewing and feeding her kids on practically no money-when, after the war, they immigrated to a backwards-arse place where work for skilled women were non-existent.

When will these ppl work out it's not an either/or situation?

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The years I spent getting a university degree were great for learning everything about homemaking. I was far away from home and had a very tight budget so I had to learn to do everything myself or it wouldn't get done. No parents to ask for help.

I had to learn a great deal about frugal cooking, cleaning, doing the laundry, paint walls, make bookshelves, repair my car, make my own curtains and clothes. Heck, I even took a course in weavning so I could make my own linen napkins and table cloths.

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Homemaking is not that hard. Fundies act like it this huge skill that takes years to learn, so much that girls shouldn't even attempt to want to do anything else, and men don't need to attempt because God didn't give them those skills.

Its not, its basic self care and a part of being an adult. These are the things that every parent should teach every child before they leave home. Anyone can send their kid off to school, but then after school they can go and help their parents cook dinner and do a few chores. It only needs basic instruction as it is not that hard.

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Homemaking is not that hard. Fundies act like it this huge skill that takes years to learn, so much that girls shouldn't even attempt to want to do anything else, and men don't need to attempt because God didn't give them those skills.

Its not, its basic self care and a part of being an adult. These are the things that every parent should teach every child before they leave home. Anyone can send their kid off to school, but then after school they can go and help their parents cook dinner and do a few chores. It only needs basic instruction as it is not that hard.

I know how to clean up after myself and my three cats and I can cook, that's not worthy of an advanced degree.

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I'm a highly educated SAHM, and it is challenging exactly because it's mindless. Me and my highly educated SAHM friends are bored out of our brains so we over-think stuff and try to create challenge by over-intellectualising things. Hence all the interest in flylady or motivated moms. Cleaning isn't hard, but it's boring. Flylady is the equivalent of doodling during math class. The healthy snack question is boredom, too.

You can tell she operates on a low level of Bloom's taxonomy, which is why she thinks anyone encountering a new situation must hrow up their hands and fall apart. Those of us with good educations have a whole suite of tools with which to problem solve. I'm not even going to bother with her implication that a 25-30 year old could not know how to cook food or clean their house by the time they have their first child. But problems like discipline of a toddler or nursing a baby are not dissimilar to being given an essay to write or a project at work. Look at the problem, do the research, implement solutions. Even a rocket scientist could do that.

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I have always said that my nursing degree was the BEST degree I ever could have gotten to train me for motherhood. Love came naturally for me, learning how to triage and handle the myriad of accidents, blood and snot that children bring took a nurse and not just a mother's touch for me. Though, I do parent special needs children deliberately so that might have something to do with it.

DH's grandmother had a college degree in Home Ec. She ran the entire housekeeping staff of a military base. Those barracks and mess hall didn't run themselves and she was an expert in that job. She was GOOD at it and she ran her own household on the side rather than a full-time job because she liked her work.

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I just read the entirety of her post and I'm just ticked. Don't tell little girls they don't have to be a mother????

I have a child with significant mental health issues. She wants to be a mother, but the reality is that motherhood may be a BAD idea for her mental health issues. I've worked YEARS to help her understand that it's okay to only have one child if that is all she feels she can mother WELL and still take care of her own needs. Or, if she decides she cannot care for her own needs and still give what a child requires, then she comes from a large family and there will be LOTS of children she can shower her maternal yearnings on as a lovable aunt....who can go home and still care for herself.

I stress to all of my children that parenthood is not about having a set number of children. It's about having the wisdom to only parent as many children as you can parent WELL. Do not have children to fulfill someone else's preconceived idea of family but then refuse to give everything for those children. Children require the adults in their lives put aside everything and put the child first. You can balance your needs most of the time, but sometimes you have to sacrifice yourself for the needs of your children. Only have as many children as you can honestly make that commitment to, and if that is honestly no children then don't have them.

The arrogance that you cannot be full without children is disgusting. Not all little girls WANT to be a mother. Why isn't it enough to let a girl determine her OWN destiny?

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The arrogance that you cannot be full without children is disgusting. Not all little girls WANT to be a mother. Why isn't it enough to let a girl determine her OWN destiny?

Agree!!

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Judging from conversations I've had in real life and online, lots of people have no idea what is a healthy snack for a toddler. People really do ask that one all the time, and to be honest, I just don't get it. When did it become passé to just hand the kid an apple, banana, or tangerine and call it a day?

I don't do it for snacks so much, but I am constantly googling "healthy toddler dinners" and things like that. Trying to get out of a rut, or come up with a unique way to make something, anything to get them to eat whatever I make for their dinner. I love hearing what other people serve and what other toddlers like to eat willingly.

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I don't do it for snacks so much, but I am constantly googling "healthy toddler dinners" and things like that. Trying to get out of a rut, or come up with a unique way to make something, anything to get them to eat whatever I make for their dinner. I love hearing what other people serve and what other toddlers like to eat willingly.

Well, meals are slightly different, as that implies at least a little preparation, though of course toddlers, like all humans, have varying tastes.

But snacks? I don't get it.

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I am arguably a fundy, theologically.

I read this and had steam coming out my ears. It is SO RIDICULOUS.

Let me tell you, my mom is a traditional Catholic, a medical doctor, mother of 4, and an excellent homemaker. She can do the homemaking thing. She prefers to subcontract some of it out because she likes being a doctor. But she didn't need 12 years of homemaking school. (As it happens, my father who is also a traditional Catholic and medical doctor can do all the homemaking things too, and they work together as a team. Oh the horrors!).

People with reasonable intelligence who are taught critical thinking and problem solving skills can manage to become highly educated and simultaneously have the knowledge of how to keep a house tidy and put together a decently nutritious meal.

I expect all my kids, the boys and the girl, to achieve a certain baseline level of self-care before they leave for college. Cooking basics, operating a washing machine, the importance of regular cleaning and tidying to avoid dust and mold issues, some semblance of organization. All of which is entirely possible to learn before they head for college, and will serve them well when they're out on their own.

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In fairness, my husband and I are the Dumb and Dumber of homemaking, and we have advanced degrees.

We would, however, likely be pretty hopeless even if we didn't have our education. We'd just lack the ability to make a living and pay for the practical help that we often need.

Homemaking requires a certain amount of visual-spatial skills. Mine happen to be mediocre, while my husband's are non-existent. It's not obvious to us how to neatly organize things, nor do we naturally have any idea of how to get things clean. People like us need to be taught things that seem obvious to other people. For example, my family seems to need a course on How Not to Set Your Kitchen On Fire (hint: don't put plastic in the oven or on a hotplate, and don't clean your gas stove with paper towel WHILE THE BURNER IS ON), followed by a course on How Not to Get Paint on White Carpet.

I do happen to have some basic cooking skills, but many people don't. Unfortunately, it's not obvious to everyone that eggs = almost instant meal, or how to plan a weekly menu and shopping list, or how to organize cooking so that meals are ready on time. I manage my more complex family/holiday meals because I've had practice and put some real effort into it. For weekday meals, I'm still learning. Part of my weight struggle is that I don't always plan properly, and end up binging on junk when I'm hungry.

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What system should I use to stay on top of the laundry? /quote]

Here ya go: When there is a pile of dirty shit from the same color family throw it in the washer. Add some detergent. When washer is finished throw the wet shit in the dryer. Add a dryer sheet if you so choose.

FFS--you're not creating subatomic particles.

Edit: ok seriously...laundry is MUCH easier than getting the damn quote thing to work!

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