Millennials are redefining the workforce and what it means to be a housewife. We are proving that women can have it all. There’s a new breed of powerful women being born everyday who are choosing to stay home with the kids and bring in some bacon.
Are you one of these Powerhouses?
Housewife. The term sends shudders down any feminist’s spine. My own mother refuses to even use the word. In her twenties women were burning their bras and shouting to bring down the patriarchy. For so long it has become a word that women have been conditioned to frown upon.
But, times are once again changing, and so is the definition of the word “housewife”. With more and more Millennials getting married and starting a family, they have developed a different view of how a family structure could work for them.
In a 2012 survey by Forbes and TheBump.com, 84 percent of working women said staying home to raise children is a financial luxury they aspire to. These women want have enough financial security to be at home to personally raise their children, but many feel the financial strain and can’t afford to do it.
When I went to a conference they had a panel of successful women speaking. These women were self made entrepreneurs and CEOs of large companies. One of the questions asked of them was if women could have it all. Could women have a successful career and raise a family? The answer was no. Something was going to be sacrificed be it time with the family, or moving up the corporate ladder.
Well, I beg to differ. I believe you can have it all, and Millennials are proving that each and every day.
So let’s explore why everyone wants to be a Millennial Housewife.
Here are some definitions.
The top definition of “Housewife” on UrbanDictionary.com is:
“A woman who stays home to take care of the house, the kids, the husband and the pets. She works up a sweat, has anxiety attacks and burst into tears when a 2 year old says “no!” for the 100th time that day after having to picking up dog poop from the livingroom floor, washing 3 loads of laundry, washed all the dishes, went grocery shopping with 2 screaming kids, who get sick and throw up in the middle of the store. Then she comes home, cleans up the kids, starts to make dinner with both kids hanging on her leg, only to have it burn. She receives no thanks from anyone and gets no paycheck.
I have no life…I am a housewife.”
Ummm….wow. This definition got over 800 likes. My point is, this is what people think of when they think of a “Housewife”. This portrays the housewife as being a stressed out, crazy lady, who hates her life and needs to be on meds. And, that is seriously the perception that people have of housewives. It’s twisted, not fair, and completely inaccurate. Ok, I’ll admit that my dinner has burned before and I have cleaned up dog poop off the floor, but that just means that I need to work on my cooking skills and train my dog, not that I’m weak and pathetic.
There are a lot of shows out there that depict housewives a certain way as well. The Real Housewives of “wherever” run around causing drama and spending their wealthy husband’s money. Then there’s WAGS, where women who marry professional athletes prance around spending their husband’s money. While this is all very fascinating “reality” tv, it’s not really reality.
You and I both know that real housewives don’t go out to five-star restaurants for lunch everyday and gossip behind each others’ backs in their 6-carat wedding rings and Christian Loubotin high heels while the “staff” cleans their mansions. But, one thing we can take away from this is that some of these women have launched successful businesses (with the help of their millions of dollars from their husbands, but that’s beside the point). They do show you that you can be a housewife and bring in extra income. More about that later….
According to UrbanDictionary.com, this is what a Millennial is:
“Born between 1982 and 1994 this generation is something special, cause Mom and Dad and their 5th grade teacher Mrs. Winotsky told them so. Plus they have a whole shelf of participation trophies sitting at home so it has to be true.”
Darn right we’re special! I love all my participation trophies. And you know what, we are taking over the world. Millennials are in the drivers seat and we are shaping it to be a better place, not just for us but for future generations. Since we were told how special we are, we believe in ourselves and have the confidence to keep pushing through what anyone throws at us.
Did you know that Millennials have the most student debt and a majority of us got out of college just as the Recession hit? Thanks a lot America for throwing us into debt and giving us no way to pay it off.
But, did that stop Millennials? No way, Jose! We made our own jobs, created or joined start-ups, weathered the Recession storm in our parents’ basement until it blew over then came out swinging. Boom!
Millennials are smart, tech-savvy powerhouses that are redefining, well, everything.
So here’s the big one (get your mind outta the gutter). I mean the definition we’ve all been waiting for!
There is no UrbanDictionary.com definition or any other definition for Millennial Housewife, which means it is ours to define. Here’s how I define a Millennial Housewife-
“An intelligent, tech-savvy individual born into the age of technology who can navigate Whole Foods in under 45 min while her kids eat organic puffs. She attends baby music classes with her latte in one hand and iPhone in the other while still having all the songs memorized. She can be seen at the park watching a toddler, with a baby strapped to her chest, while she posts a selfie on Instagram.
Often found in yoga pants and a messy bun, this social media maven texts to donate to the latest cause, cleans the house while drinking Chardonnay, has an organic, non-GMO dinner from the farmer’s market on the table when her husband comes home, and runs a profitable side-hustle all while the kids play with their “green” toys. The Millennial Housewife can do this without breaking a sweat. She does, in fact, have it all.”
So let’s talk more about it.
(First off I’d like to say that while I refer to the Millennial Housewife as being female, this also can be true for Millennial Househusbands and doesn’t necessarily have to fit into a “traditional” household. The Millennial Housewife is non-gender specific. Equality, yo!)
Millennial Housewives generally have previously been in the workforce in very successful jobs. They have been-there-done-that when it comes to working in an office and were ready to be at home to raise the kids themselves. They are college educated and started a career or launched their own business and worked their way up the corporate ladder.
Then they got married. Once the Millennial Housewife settled down, both spouses continued to work to bring home a duel income. They went to festivals, breweries, took weekend trips with friends, and happy hours with co-workers.
Then came the baby. That cute little bundle of joy. Once baby came into the picture, the Millennial Housewife decided she wanted to stay home and take care of the baby. That and the cost of childcare was so high that it didn’t make sense for her entire paycheck to go back into childcare when she would rather be home with the kids. (Seriously, I can’t tell you how many MHs I’ve talked to that said it made more sense to live on one income then to pay for childcare. What?! Something’s gotta give. But, thanks, I guess?)
So the Millennial Housewife is born. Welcome to the crazy world. The Millennial Housewife isn’t content to sit still and look pretty (thanks, Daya), she’s a go-getter who wants the best for her kids and marriage, a tidy house, healthy food, and to contribute to the household income.
So here’s how Millennial Housewives have it all.
1. Parenting in Style
When I say the “best for her kids” here’s what I mean. The Millennial Housewife spends hours scouring the Internet for the safest and best practices for raising kids. She conducts research (while the little baby is breastfeeding or napping) on her iPhone on the safest car seat, the best crib, the most Eco-friendly toys, the latest high tech high chair, the stroller that tells you when your baby poops and changes it for you (don’t they have that yet?).
Since there is so much access to information and the Millennial Housewife knows how to use it, she has an overload on knowledge and takes the time to process it all before making her decision. This holds true for parenting, where she joins Facebook parenting groups or attends local Mommy meet ups to make sure she is parenting the “right” way.
She also takes her baby and kids to all the best classes. Music classes, gym classes, ballet, art, gardening, yoga, Zumba, the list goes on and on. Anything new and beneficial she signs up for, wanting only the best for her babes.
2. Love and Marriage (fits together like beer and chicken wings)
It’s also important for the Millennial Housewife to keep her marriage strong. In this day and age, it has typically been frowned up for the wife to stay home. Women are supposed to be powerful and independent, not having to rely on their male counterparts. This is wonderful and I fully support strong women in the workforce. I was one of them, and it was great. But, I chose to stay home and raise my kids and that was my own choice to make.
Just because a women stays home doesn’t make her weak. I am not putting anyone one down for the choice they make, just asking for acceptance and understanding once the choice is made. Because Millennials thrive on acceptance and understanding. That’s what makes us strong!
But, I digressed. The Millennial Housewife wants to make sure her husband is happy. She isn’t necessarily there at the front door wearing an apron with the table perfectly set and the children in clean clothes all washed and ready to eat when her husband comes home. Ha! Dinner may be ready and the house tidy, but she’s in yoga pants throwing some plates on the table and the children in their normal paint-stained clothes chasing each other in the yard. That might be more typical.
In this day and age the marriage is seen more as equal. The husband shares the responsibilities of setting the table or cleaning up after dinner. He may come home early to pick up a kid from soccer while the wife is getting the other kid from karate. It’s a partnership, and that’s what makes it beautiful.
The Baby Boomers don’t quite understand this. When they hear that the husband has to come home and do dishes, steam starts coming out of their ears. When they find out the husband left work early to pick up the kids, they turn red. And if that same husband has to attend a ballet recital instead of golfing, they internally combust. Things are different now than they were 60 years ago and even though the husbands work, they still are active participants in the family.
Don’t get me wrong, the Millennial Housewife knows her husband is tired from work, but he also knows she’s tired from changing all-natural, chloride-free diapers that leak and watching the kids tornado through the house.
So there is a deep understanding in the marriage and because of that, and a once a week date night to the local brewery, their marriage thrives.
The Millennial Housewife wants to keep things hot and spicy. Date nights are also important and the Millennial Housewife still loves to go out with her friends. At least once a month she schedules a babysitter and she and her hubby go out with some friends to grab drinks or have dinner. Or, just she and her hubby go grab drinks together and the bar around the corner. Whatever it is, the Millennial Housewife makes time for her marriage and friends.
3. Cleaning the Floors and Cooking the Food
In days past, the Housewife of the ’50s would plop their baby in the crib with some toys while they spent most of the day cleaning and cooking. That’s how most people view housewives and why there is such a negative stereotype around them. Parenting now-a-days is about interacting with the kids and involving them in whatever you are doing. You know, “Talk. Read. Sing.” You’ve all seen the commercials.
The Millennial Housewife involves her kids in the cleaning and tidying up, teaching them about organizing and self-care. If she’s sweeping the floor, little Junior (oh, wait, this isn’t the ’50s, the kids name is probably Asher or Dexter, or some other up and coming hip name) is sweeping along side her with his own mini broom. Or if she’s dusting, little Nova has her own dust cloth and is carefully dusting around the iPad. And, she always makes sure to use Eco-friendly cleaning supplies or even makes her own!
The Millennial Housewife does the best she can to keep her house in order. Sometimes things go un-dusted or the toilets not cleaned, but that’s ok, because she’s busy raising a family and running her side-hustle. Back in the days of the traditional housewife this would be considered appalling and your friends would never speak to you again, but in modern times it’s understandable and no big deal. And if you can have a housekeeper come twice a month, great! I’m seriously trying to side-hustle on Etsy just to pay for a housekeeper. No joke.
When it comes to cooking we are in the day and age of locally grown, non-GMO, organic, gluten-free, no processing, as naturally grown as you can get. So farmer’s markets are huge for the Millennial Housewife to buy local organic produce, eggs, and meats. Or, Whole Foods is another great option (if you have the $$).
A lot of Millennial Housewives are starting to grow their own vegetables too, and find it fun and educational to have the kiddos help grow and pick their own food. And for those super hardcore Millennials, they order a whole cow and share the meat with friends. Leave it to Millennials to go back to their hunter/gatherer roots. Let’s be over the beard phase, though. K?
4. Side-Hustle It Baby!
Even though the Millennial Housewife is busy raising the kids, cleaning the house, making the food, and keeping passion in the marriage, she still has time for her side-hustle. More and more women want to feel like they are contributing to the financial security of their household. And, with the good ol internet, it is easier then ever for Millennial Housewives to make a little extra income on the side from home while their kiddos nap or enjoy the latest episode of “PJ Masks”.
The Millennial Housewife is keen to start her own freelance writing business, become a virtual assistant, open a shop on Etsy, or start a blog (my personal favorite). They can have a creative outlet that is also financially rewarding and feel like more then just a slave to the army of wild kids she created. There are so many ways for the tech-savvy Millennial Housewife to earn an extra $1,000-$10,000 a month and in this day and age, and every little bit helps!
The Millennial Housewife is the CEO of her home.
She runs her home like a boss.
She brings in some extra money.
She still has friends and gets out of the house.
She is in control of her life.
She is happy.
But, there’s always room for improvement. The Millennial Housewife recognizes that though she has it all, she can always be better. And, she relies on friends and family for help. She read blogs and joins groups for support. She is always looking to improve.
The Millennial Housewife is a new breed of women being born from an age of technological advances, and she is determined to do things her own way. You can’t hold her back, and you shouldn’t try. Let’s she how she will change the world.
Are you a Millennial Housewife? Is there anything in this article that you identify with? I’d love to hear from you!
If you’re a Millennial Housewife and you need some ideas on how to have it all, sign up for me FREE 5-day email course here!