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The Way We Weren 't : Myth And Reality Of The Traditional Family Essay

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Stephanie Coontz in “The Way We Weren’t: The Myth and Reality of the Traditional Family” emphasizes that the traditional and ideal nuclear family widespread in media and textbooks are false and far from reality. In fact, it is common to see more similarities to the traditional family consistent of “male breadwinner and nurturing mother” (1) today than in the past.
It is commonly taught in textbooks or shown in the media that colonial mothers are always taking part in childcare, but in reality the “modern working women” (1) spends more time taking care of their children. During the hours that modern women are not working, they are usually taking care of the children and doing household work to manage the household, in which the “traditional family” seems more fitting in categorizing the modern family, rather than the colonial family. The colonial women did not have to worry about taking care of the children, because they usually gave the task of caring for the children to the servants or older siblings. Moreover, the traditional family are usually perceived as a family where the husband and wife are role models of a loving, caring, and supportive relationship for their children. This leads the children to act in the same positive way with others by observing the relationship between their parents. Interestingly, the “traditional” families in the past were not traditional, as women and children were advised to be obedient to their husbands, otherwise they would be abused and
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