The Good Wife

By: Bob and Sue Morrisson

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Depending on your upbringing, a woman's place could be in the house (the home) or in the House (the US Congress) or somewhere in between.

Below are texts describing the relationship between a wife and her husband. See if you can determine the source material, either by name or by generic type, i.e., psychology magazine, religious book, medical manual, etc.

Text #1

Have dinner ready. Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal ready, on time for his return. This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking about him and are concerned about his needs. Most men are hungry when they come home, and the prospect of a good meal (especially his favorite dish) is part of the warm welcome needed.

Prepare yourself. Take 15 minutes to rest so you'll be refreshed when he arrives. 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.

Be a little gay and a little more interesting for him. His boring day may need a lift and one of your duties is to provide it.

Clear away the clutter. Make one last trip through the main part of the house just before your husband arrives.

Gather up schoolbooks, toys, paper, etc., and then run a dust cloth over the tables.

Over the cooler months of the year you should prepare and light a fire for him to unwind by. Your husband will feel he has reached a haven of rest and order, and it will give you a lift too. After all, catering for his comfort will provide you with immense personal satisfaction.

Prepare the children. Take a few minutes to wash the children's hands and faces (if they are small), comb their hair, and if necessary, change their clothes. They are little treasures and he would like to see them playing the part.

Minimize all noise. At the time of his arrival, eliminate all noise of the washer, dryer or vacuum. Try to encourage the children to be quiet.

Be happy to see him.

Greet him with a warm smile and show sincerity in your desire to please him.

Listen to him. 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.

Make the evening his. Never complain if he comes home late 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.

Your goal: Try to make sure your home is a place of peace, order and tranquillity where your husband can renew himself in body and spirit.

Don't greet him with complaints and problems.

Don't complain if he's late home for dinner or even if he stays out all night. Count this as minor compared to what he might have gone through that day.

Make him comfortable. Have him lean back in a comfortable chair or have him lie down in the bedroom. Have a cool or warm drink ready for him.

Arrange his pillow and offer to take off his shoes. Speak in a low, soothing and pleasant voice.

Don't ask him questions about his actions or question his judgment or integrity. Remember, he is the master of the house and as such will always exercise his will with fairness and truthfulness. You have no right to question him.

A good wife always knows her place.

Text #2

If you can find a truly good wife, she is worth more than precious gems! Her husband can trust her, and she will richly satisfy his needs. She will not hinder him but help him all her life.

She finds wool and flax and busily spins it. She buys imported foods brought by ship from distant ports. She gets up before dawn to prepare breakfast for her household and plans the day's work for her servant girls.

She goes out to inspect a field and buys it; with her own hands she plants a vineyard. She is energetic, a hard worker, and watches for bargains. She works far into the night! She sews for the poor and generously helps those in need.

She has no fear of winter for her household, for she has made warm clothes for all of them. She also upholsters with finest tapestry; her own clothing is beautifully made-a purple gown of pure linen.

Her husband is well known, for he sits in the council chamber with the other civic leaders. She makes belted linen garments to sell to the merchants.

She is a woman of strength and dignity and has no fear of old age. When she speaks, her words are wise, and kindness is the rule for everything she says.

She watches carefully all that goes on throughout her household and is never lazy. Her children stand and bless her; so does her husband. He praises her with these words: "There are many fine women in the world, but you are the best of them all!"

Charm can be deceptive and beauty doesn't last, but a woman who fears and reverences God shall be greatly praised. Praise her for the many fine things she does. These good deeds of hers shall bring her honor and recognition from people of importance.

Text #3

The best of men are those who are best to their wives, and the best of women are those who are best to their husbands. The best of women are those who assist their husbands in their work, and love them dearly for everything.

The world and all things in the world are precious but the most precious thing in the world is a virtuous woman. Shall I not inform you about the best treasure a man can hoard? It is a virtuous wife who pleases him whenever he looks towards her, and who guards herself when he is absent from her.

The best property a man can have is a tongue speaking of God, a grateful heart, and a believing wife who helps him in his faith.

The whole world is a commodity and the best of the commodities of the world is a virtuous wife.

The answers are below.

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The three sources are:

  1. Housekeeping Monthly, May 13, 1955.
  2. The Living Bible, book of Proverbs, Chapter 31, Verses 10-31.
  3. The Holy Qur'an and the writings of Mohammad, various paraphrased quotations.

The Good Wife's Guide - Updated

Now, click here or on the picture to see the updated version of "The Good Wife's Guide". It is also reproduced below.

An updated version of "The Good Wife's Guide"
For the Women of the 21st Century

Have dinner ready. Make reservations ahead of time. If your day becomes too hectic just leave him a voice mail message regarding where you'd like to eat and at what time. This lets him know that your day has been crappy and gives him an opportunity to change your mood.

Prepare yourself. Stopping at the "Chanel" counter on your way home will do wonders for your outlook and will keep you from becoming irritated every time he opens his mouth. (Don't forget to use his credit card.)

Clear away the clutter. Call the housekeeper and tell her that any miscellaneous items left on the floor by the children can be placed in the Goodwill box in the garage.

Prepare the children. Send the children to their rooms to watch television or play Nintendo. After all, both of them are from his previous marriages.

Minimize the noise: If you happen to be home when he arrives, be in the bathroom with the door locked.

Don't greet him with problems and complaints. Let him speak first, and then your complaints will get more attention and remain fresh in his mind throughout dinner. Don't complain if he's late for dinner, simply remind him that the leftovers are in the fridge and you left the dishes for him to do.

Make him comfortable: Tell him where he can find a blanket if he's cold. This will really show you care.

Listen to him: But don't ever let him get the last word.

Make the evening his: Never complain if he does not take you out to dinner or other places of entertainment; go with a friend or go shopping (use his credit card). Familiarize him with the phrase "Girls' Night Out!"

The Goal: Try to keep things amicable without reminding him that he only thinks the world revolves around him. Obviously he's wrong. The world revolves around you.


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