I’ve always thought I would get married. Eventually. As I got older, my perception of what it will meant to be a wife has changed. When I get married, I still get to be me.
In one of my classes we’ve all grown to be pretty friendly. It’s a workshop class in which we critique each other’s work and our own. Recently, one student wrote an essay on the phenomenon of the “wife” status people our age are obsessed with.
It shut the entire class down for an hour. We had a huge discussion on the idea of being a wife, wifely duties and our own views on it from a feminist perspective. Our discussion was mind-blowing for some; one of them being our professor.
She couldn’t believe the commonality in which we see “relationship goals” or “wife status” being shared in our social media spheres. At one point, she said this idea is especially disturbing to her.
She doesn’t see the tweets of young adults wishing to be viewed as perfect spouses rather than a part of a team. Once we got into the discussion, it drove me crazy how I had dismissed it as just a saying. I couldn’t see the problems this presents because I am an insider.
When I say #WifeMeUp or #FutureGrandma, I’m always poking fun at myself. I’m a human being who doesn’t have much going on in my life besides getting by to the next big deadline. When I find the time to be crafty or bake something for my friends, I’ll call myself a “grandma” to make fun of what is typically seen as older feminine activities.
I’ve always said these phrases sarcastically. To me, it’s funny that people my age are getting married when I’m nowhere near close. But to others, these attributes they have are actual qualities they consider enough to become the perfect wife, homemaker and 1950s-era spouse.
The idea that the particular duties I perform, in a feminine way or not, are what are going to gain me a future husband is ludicrous. I want my future husband to marry me for the person I am, not for the things that I do.
Two weeks ago, a light started flashing in the dashboard of my truck: “Wash Low”. I assumed it was for my window washer fluid but I pulled out my handy car manual anyways to check. I was right, but haven’t done anything about it for two weeks.
Each time I start my truck, the light comes flashing on and the vehicle beeps at me. I curse myself each time, yet I still haven’t solved what will be a simple problem. #WifeMeUp
One week ago, I was painting a canvas in my bedroom and dropped it on the middle of my bedspread. It was acrylic paint. I tried cleaning it to remove the stain, with no luck. I ended up taking it to the dry cleaners, who said I should’ve brought it to them immediately. #WifeMeUp
Last Friday, I committed a party foul and ended my night much earlier than I expected. I left the nightclub with a bag in my hands and woke up feeling like I had died. I spent my Saturday sleeping and drinking Gatorade to nurse my hangover. #WifeMeUp
I’m just a person. I’ve got 22 years under my belt and I’m still making mistakes. I don’t post these incidents on social media. Social media is where we post the nice things that make us look like we have all of our shit together.
I post when I clean my room because it’s an accomplishment. I don’t post that I haven’t put away laundry in four weeks. There are stories behind the tweets that make me who I am.
Our class decided that posting when you do “wifely” things is detrimental to women as a whole. Women are strong and if we keep deciding that doing duties that should be shared equally in a marriage, we’re going to end back up in the 1950s where this thinking belongs.
Don’t marry a woman because you think she’s going to do the laundry and the cooking. Marry her because she’s hilarious and doesn’t know what the hell she’s doing in life.
Marry her because you can’t live without her, not because you need a maid.