I ONCE overheard one man saying that he wouldn’t want a working lady for a wife because he prefers someone to be in charge of the home and look after children. He may be right, and indeed many of us were raised by stay-home mothers that took care of us and our fathers were happy to come home and find everything at home was ready. In fact, we all come from traditional backgrounds that say a woman’s place is in the kitchen. But is it really so?

The other side of the yardstick is a married woman who also goes for work and comes home to run the home after knocking off. The advantage in this case is that she would supplement the family income and contribute to the economic welfare of the home. The disadvantage is that her absence from children for much of the day may have a bearing on the children’s development. Indeed any man would be happy to have a wife who works with her hands to supplement the husband.

The big picture.

The advantages of a housewife is that the husband has no need to look for extra help to run the house or a maid to look after the children. Some maids or nuns have been reportedly accused of mistreating children and in some cases they have shaped children in manners askew to the ones the family wants. A maid who has a baby at home can be tempted to breastfeed your toddler if that’s what it would take to keep your baby from crying all day. I guess no mother would expect her baby to suck from another woman’s breast. Maybe I’m exaggerating, excuse me.

The housewife, on the other hand, would run the home effectively and train children and impart in them values the family desires. She’s an ever-present link to the relatives and family members from her side as well as the man’s.

The big picture here is that it really does not matter much if the woman is working or not, what is important is that the couple agrees on their expectations. If the woman works, for example, the couple should find a relative to help with children or a reliable maid to take care of children in their absence. There are trained maids nowadays that can provide very good service to the family as long as they are well supervised. Parents should also take keen interest after work in their children to make sure that they are not mistreated by the maid or the relative caretaker. If you can afford to check on children during lunch break, that’s even better. Breastfeeding infants may need the mother very often. Even the father can come home and be with the child just for the sake of parental bonding. If you’re very observant with your children you should be able to quickly pick some danger signs before it’s too late.

If a woman is a stay-home wife, that’s even better, especially for the reasons stated above. Children, especially infants and adolescents have greater need for parental supervision now than ever before. With the increase in population and child trafficking a big concern, a mother at home is a sure source of security and protection for children. Mothers are mentors, and as such a mother at home with children all day is a sure way of forging family bonds.
It’s worth advising here that a woman at home can still be a big contributor to the family income by being industrious and innovative. A home kiosk, a backyard garden or a small business in town is something that a housewife can add to her other duties as a mother. More than 60% of the informal businesses around our townships are run by women, a good sign that women are indispensable partners in our lives.

So this we can say: a stay-home mother is as valuable as a lady who spends eight hours at work and comes home to run the house. Where necessary, the husband can stand in and help with house chores and allow your wife to rest.In the end the husband and wife will complement each other for the good of the family.

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