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This Is How To Be The Perfect Wife According To The 1950s

This Is How To Be The Perfect Wife According To The 1950s

In a relationship, it's normal to strive to be the best partner you can be but by no means are we going to follow a list of how to be "perfect" for our other half.

It's 2019, where equality in relationships, satisfaction, household workload and earning power is the goal - but that's a far different outlook to what the 1950s looked like.

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No, according to the '50s, it's all about the woman pleasing her man, with her thoughts and feelings taking a permanent backseat.

In fact, magazines, newspaper and advertising endorsed these ideas, even going as far as to print guides on how to keep your man happy.

One such article was Housekeeping Monthly's "The Good Wife's Guide," printed in May 1955, which outlined the ways to keep your other half smiling.

Credit: Housekeeping Monthly
Credit: Housekeeping Monthly

We're not going to lie, it makes for pretty shocking reading. Brace yourself...

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The first tip is to 'have dinner ready' when he gets home from work - well of course! "Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal ready on time for his return," the tip reads. Apparently, this is a good way to let him know "you have been thinking about him and are concerned about his needs."

Pahaha - OK!

Next, you have to prepare yourself. The guide says to take 15 minutes to rest "so you'll be refreshed when he arrives" (unrefreshed? The horror!) "Touch up your make-up, put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh-looking. He has just been with a lot of work-weary people."

It's also advised to "be a little gay and a little more interesting for him" as "his boring day may need a lift and one of your duties is to provide it." Oh FFS.

Credit: Shutterstock
Credit: Shutterstock

There are also a ton of home maintenance jobs you must hurry to finish before he gets home, such as clearing away the clutter, gathering up school books, preparing the children, and making a fire so that "your husband will feel he has reached a haven of rest and order."

When he arrives through the door you must "be happy to see him" and "greet him with a warm smile and show sincerity in your desire to please him." Because that is life's main goal, tbh.

Once you've greeted him, it might seem natural to talk to him about your day, you know, share significant moments and worries. Wrong. "You may have a dozen important things to tell him, but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him talk first - remember, his topics of conversation are more important than yours," the article reads.

Last but by no means least: "Make the evening his. Never complain if he comes home later or goes out to dinner, or other places of entertainment without you. Instead, try to understand his world of strain and pressure and his very real need to be at home and relax."

After all, your goal is to "try to make sure your home is a place of peace, order and tranquility where your husband can renew himself in body and spirit."

The guide finishes will the all-telling line: "A good wife always knows her place."

Well, I think we can all agree if you tried giving this to a woman in 2019, quite frankly you'd get a slap in the face.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock

Topics: Life, Life News

Ciara Sheppard

Ciara is a freelance journalist working for Pretty 52. After graduating from the University of Sussex, Ciara worked as a writer at GLAMOUR Magazine and later as the Assistant Editor of Yahoo Style UK. Please contact her on ciarasheppard@hotmail.co.uk.

 

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