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Listen to the expectations of a wife in the mid-50’s. This is entitled: “How to be a Good Wife” and was purportedly taken from a high school economics text book in 1954.

Have dinner ready. Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal, on time. Prepare Yourself. Take 15 minutes to rest so that you’ll be refreshed when he arrives. Touch up your make-up, put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh looking. Remember he has just been with a lot of work weary people. Prepare the children. Take a few minutes to wash their hands and faces, comb their hair, and if necessary change their clothes. Minimize all noise. At the time of his arrival, eliminate all noise of the washer, dryer, dishwasher, or vacuum. Try to encourage the children to be quiet. Some don’ts: Don’t greet him with problems or complaints. Don’t complain if he is late for dinner. Count this as minor compared with what he might have gone through that day. Make him comfortable. Have a cool or warm drink ready for him. Listen to him. You may have a dozen things to tell him, but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him talk first if he wants. Make the evening his. Now, obviously those expectations were a long time ago. And I don’t know how realistic they were in 1954 but in this dual job, hectic schedule, fast food culture it’s ridiculous. And yet sometimes our expectations of each other are just as bad.

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