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I am so old that I was raised a woman should obey her husband

 
 
Reply Sun 17 Feb, 2013 07:11 pm
and I had some difficulty since I thought that for a short (but long at the time) while. How could I find someone I would think of obeying (later I understood this was from my particular order of nun teachers).

That was when I was beginning dating, and a bright guy, physics/math/philosophy major and musician said, what? Which started me thinking. Thank you, Larry, forever.

I'm a now long time feminist that early on tossed the book by Betty Friedan for that reason. Never did finish it, I actually threw it out.
Snort - but also true.

So, in light of all that background on my own part, I'll say I can start to understand women in other places.

This story got to me:
http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/newsdesk/2013/02/will-the-pistorius-case-change-south-africa.html
 
edgarblythe
 
  4  
Reply Sun 17 Feb, 2013 07:34 pm
I was raised up watching women treated like servants, with privileges somewhere between those of adults and children. In my mind I questioned it, but I think I was given a clue by being around men who did not particularly deserve respect.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sun 17 Feb, 2013 08:18 pm
@edgarblythe,
We are the same age..
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Kolyo
 
  3  
Reply Sun 17 Feb, 2013 08:39 pm
Well, a book I'm reading says you don't have to look at our past or abroad to find incredibly frustrating inequalities.

According to The Feminine Mistake, by Leslie Bennetts, today's young Ivy League graduettes have the choice to become stay-at-home moms or to go to work 80 hours a week for ill-mannered bosses. (To continue one's career by working part-time isn't the option people seem to think it is.)

I was horrified to find out while reading, that right here in the United States, when a couple comprised of a working husband and a housewife breaks up, he pays hardly anything for her upkeep thereafter. So after giving up her career (and formidable future earning power) to care for his kids, she is left to fend for herself. At that point reentry in the workforce is hard, even if she graduated from Harvard once upon a time.
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Sturgis
 
  2  
Reply Sun 17 Feb, 2013 10:26 pm
@ossobuco,
I was fortunate in that for all her faults, my mother was not one to take orders from my father. They had something of an equal partnership which she likely learned from her mother (my grandmother) who was not a typical early 1900s sort. In fact when my grandfather served my grandmother with divorce papers as his last ditch attempt to get her to leave her job and friends on the east coast and uproot her daughter and join him in California, she signed the papers.

Up in Vermont from what I recall (it's been a few decades) there wasn't a lot of obeying of the husbands. The 3-I's were all born in at the turn of the century (1800's into the 1900s) and weren't about to jump on command.

It used to seem odd and insane when I'd see the mothers of some of my friends doing just about anything their husbands asked. When I questioned one friend, he looked at me and said that they (his parents) were married and a wife was required to do what the husband wanted and it even said so in the wedding vows.

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Lola
 
  2  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 01:07 am
It's a mystery to me why I never thought I had to obey my husband. Even though I think my mother thought she should, I didn't notice that she did (or didn't for that matter.) I am your same age also, Osso, so I don't really know what happened in my case. I do remember Gloria Steinem coming to speak at my college when I was a Senior. I went to see her, but I can't remember a thing she said. I also never had the idea that I might be limited in my choices of career either. You would think I would, given the way the world was when I was growing up and making career decisions, but I really didn't know that women were the objects of discrimination. I just always thought I would do whatever I wanted.

You know, I think I was a spoiled child. And that's not a joke. What I remember is that I was told I could do anything I wanted when I grew up. And I believed it.

My sisters still say, "well, you know how Lola is." Once I asked my oldest sister what she meant by that. She hesitated and said with a smile, "well, I think we all think we spoiled you."

But I know plenty of women who take the vow to obey their husbands literally. It's sad and leads to no good. And there are a lot of sadomasochistic relationships between men and women (and men and men and women and women) that are abusive and lead sometimes to dangerous situations and tragedy.
roger
 
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Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 01:10 am
@Lola,
I can hear it now. "Darling, you have broken our marriage vows."
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Roberta
 
  2  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 01:28 am
I'm a little younger than you, osso. It never occurred to me in my wildest dreams to obey a husband. EVER!

I don't think age is the only issue. I think it's also culture.

Obey a husband. ROFLMAO.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 09:19 am
@Roberta,
Yeah. I can hardly believe that was me, ditching the Friedan book because she said you didn't have to obey the husband..

Luckily I changed my viewpoint fairly swiftly as I learned more about real life.

Lola, my father told me I could be anything I wanted, and I wanted to be a doctor.
(Stupid, I shudda aimed for architecture back then, but never mind.) But until '65, amazingly few women in the US were admitted to med schools.


Edit - and you are very right about culture.
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Aldistar
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 01:33 pm
My husband and I had the 'obey' line of the wedding vows removed. Neither one of us believed it to be relevant. Marriage is an equal partnership.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 01:34 pm
@Aldistar,
That has become quite common.
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Lola
 
  2  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 01:41 pm
@Aldistar,
Me too........all the times I've been married, I've never promised to obey, well, maybe when I was 16 I might have promised to do that, but if I did, I was either lying or not listening. I'm not sure which.
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 01:52 pm
@Aldistar,
So did we, Aldistar - but re me and these opinions I can hardly remember - that was somewhere around 1962, a time I think of as pre-everything. My husband and I got together in the early seventies and married in the late seventies, which was, at least where we were, a whole different world from the same place in '62 when I tossed Friedan.
Besides, he would have been nine then. (Yes, he's younger, still younger, though no longer husband, still friend.)
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saab
 
  2  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 02:00 pm
My husband and I were partners.
My father and my mother I am sure were partners.
My father brought me up to be independent.
My grandpartents were partners
My great grandfather (a widower) was the one who told his daughters about the female problems before puperty. "Women are too stupidly shy to do it"
Sorry to say I as young could never find anything interesting in the femenism. I always felt that men and women were equal but different.
I am an old but very active woman.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 02:30 pm
@saab,
Well, it wouldn't hold attraction for you, would it, since you weren't strictured.
edgarblythe
 
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Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 03:33 pm
I read Friedan's book, in 1964. None of the guys aboard my ship, but me, agreed with a word of it. I recall one man in particular trying to fill out an image of the fulfilled woman's role. About all he ever managed to spell out, "There is accomplishment in turning out a loaf of bread -" He seemed stuck after that, but refused to consider the alternative.
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Roberta
 
  2  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 04:31 pm
Thought I'd return to mention that none of the women on either side of my family obeyed their husbands--or anybody else for that matter.

The only man who was viewed as a boss was my mother's father. It wasn't because he was the husband, father, grandfather. It was because he was respected.

I never got all the way through Friedan's book. I got bored.
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Falco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 04:45 pm
@ossobuco,
Africa is a hell hole. If the world had an asshole, it'd be in Africa.
And I don't think you can even begin to understand what some women and young girls go through over there right now, with your 40's-present experience in America. Saying that you do is an exaggeration.
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 05:03 pm
@Falco,
Have you ever been there?
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Feb, 2013 05:07 pm
@Falco,
I've never been there, though I've known several people from there, including a relative.... Egypt, Eritrea, Cameroon, Mali, Liberia, Tunisia.

It would be hard for me to generalize about these friends, much less a whole continent. South Africa does sound like a troubled place, from this distance.
 

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