The come back

of the surrendered wife


An innocuous event like sipping a latte while reading a magazine in a bar can turn into a problem for your blood pressure. It happened to me today. Ms Clover Stroud published on the fashion magazine attached to the Sunday Times a few days ago about the “surrendered wife”. The feminists I’ve known in my life (and I mean only those, not all the feminists) didn’t reach the peak of annoyance all together the way she did, especially when she affirmed that women like Kate Middleton, to play this perfect-wife role, must be “prepared to forgo self-expression”.
 
I am the kind of woman feminists would like. I want a career. If I will stay home with my kids it will be as what is generally called mumpreneur, though I find it sounds too bad as a name. However, I am annoyed by the tendency this woman and the feminists I’ve known so far have to assume the career model is fine for everyone and what will make everyone happy.
 
What if Kate Middleton’s self-expression is exactly being a step behind her husband and a surrendered wife? She got an education that would have been worth a lot of money of her own, though not a title and a husband on the throne. I have a lifelong crush on Prince Harry, but William looks a good choice enough, she still gets events, wonderful dresses and got married in Westminster Abbey. Since me and my ambitions get the JSA and a room in a shared house and my boyfriend is not Prince Harry I may be more acceptable to the memory of the feminists who suffered to give me the right to vote/drive/have properties/a career, but I’m not sure I am the smarter woman. Because I want that too. However, I am sure not being a surrendered wife (or not completely a surrendered wife, as I think I partially am) for me is a matter of self-expression and not of what is politically correct in the age of working women who make a woman who just wants kids feel bad because feminists suffered to give her the rights she is throwing away. Rights such woman didn’t ask for, and as far as her interests go she would probably fight if required to gain those she actually uses as a mother. I am not having an abortion because someone fought to give me the right to have one, and I wish I won’t marry a future alcoholic or drug abuser who’ll end up beating me and obliging me to divorce so I can use a right someone fought to get for me. Feminists fought to get rights to women so that they could express themselves and do what they wanted as men could do. This means that a surrendered wife has her right to be such because feminists fought for women to become the woman they were meant to be. Some women may not have a self other than the surrendered wife to express, and they are doing exactly what I do when I drool over the shoes in The Good Wife thinking of my career.
 
Maybe Kate Middleton is a symbiotic organism and thinks exactly the same of Prince William, so she expresses her mind when he does. Or it’s William who doesn’t have ideas of his own and expresses his wife’s after being dominated behind their own doors. We will never know the truth behind the curtains of public life. What is sure is that there are many men who would totally (or do totally) give up careers to be fathers or just being maintained by powerful (and rich) women, and nobody dares say it’s against men. It’s acceptable. What about their self-expression? Just because men had it all for centuries it’s fine if some now become mannequins?