Dating etiquette in colonial times
One of the things that a good spouse can do is give you confidence in your own judgment.I now am willing to tackle things that I wouldn’t have tried before because I think I can. He’s there to help me set things right without shaming me for making the effort.Ok, so I know the only reason we’re busting our ass on home repair right now is that his parents will show up in a month. I am just glad that we’re working together again to make our house nicer.These are some of my happiest times, working as a family on a joint project. Kid will be doing jobs appropriate to her age and her interests — she will not be driven away by temper-fit parents or made to feel too special and useless to care for her own stuff.And finally, she instructed me that I should pretend not to know how to do any “man’s job” because she assumed (cynically, maybe, but in her experience with good reason) that if a woman demonstrated that she could do any job, it would automatically become hers to do for the rest of the marriage.
Likewise, while I like Stephanie Coontz, _The Social Origins of Private Life: A History of American Families 1600-1900, it was written twenty years ago and some of what she wrote then has been modified by the findings of the more recent works listed above. This one is for Nick, who appears to be incapable of asking easy questions. Any other historian who wants to jump in on this, feel free…I haven’t even touched on the whole trans-Atlantic dimension of this…) Nick writes: “I have a very curious nature, and I have a nagging history question today, a question about women in the revolutionary era.She painted, papered, nailed, sawed, drilled, did wiring and plumbing, all efficiently and neatly.(She’s one of those people who could paint a ceiling in a three-piece suit.) Mom had a variety of reasons to keep me out from underfoot.Together, we’ve sanded wood floors, done plumbing, rewired part of the house, plastered, painted, stained, refinished, the whole homeowning shooting match.He never made me his parts-runner; what we don’t know, we figure out together and we do the job together.