Sunday, September 22, 2013

Please Don't Call Me That

So my new obsession on TV is Investigation Discovery or ID.  If you are a fan of shows like Dateline, 48 Hours, Unsolved Mysteries, and the like, then this channel is for you.  ID runs those types of shows all day, every day.  No stupid infomercials cutting in at 3 a.m.  No way, José.  They have enough crime and passion to fill 24 hours with shows like Deadly Women, Bad Men, Nightmare Next Door, Wicked Attraction and Evil Twins.  And the worst thing is, as soon as one show ends, another one instantly begins.  If you have ever sat down at 7 p.m. to catch an episode of Law & Order on TNT back in the day, then you know what I mean.  From the time you see Created by Dick Wolf and you haven’t gotten up, the next thing you know it’s 11 p.m. and you are hearing the “Chung-Chung” sound one last time.

The thing about me and my obsessions is that they are quick and they are intense; but honestly I’m so fickle that they don’t last long.  [Case in point:  I wrote this post about six months ago, but never published it.  I cannot recall the last time I watched ID.  Don’t think I’ve watched that channel all summer because I was so busy with the children.]    Anyhow, I’m totally jealous of folks who have been watching the same soap opera for 30 years.  Well, I’m jealous that they have such stamina, commitment and loyalty; but I’m not jealous that they have been watching the same nonsense for most of their lives.  But who am I to judge?

So I’ve been obsessing with this channel, and when my insomnia kicks in, I simply put the TV to channel 285 and eerily whatever story is on lulls me to sleep.  But lately I notice that I’m getting turned off.  It’s okay to watch Criminal Minds on Wednesday nights, but these real life stories are making me a tad bit paranoid.  And we know I don’t need any more paranoia in my life.  [Guess this explains why I haven’t watched ID for a while.]

Anyways, I was watching an episode of Fatal Vows where an 18 year old got married, had a baby and became a housewife.  Bored with that lifestyle, she turned to stripping.  Sorry, exotic dancing.  When she proceeded to bring her work home, her husband was not impressed.  He went to his father for help, and his father had a meeting with the young couple.  Her father-in-law and her cuckold of a husband convinced the young lady to stop stripping and go back to being a housewife.  She relented, but after a while, she secretly returned to stripping and ultimately killed her young husband for either the insurance money, her new man or her freedom (it’s always one of those three, hence I can’t recall), so she could proceed with her exciting life.

As I watched this episode, I totally empathized with this young lady……..sans the stripping and the killing.  I never imagined that at this age the highlight of my life would be going to BJ’s Wholesale Club to grocery shop.  Don’t read too much into this because I’m not that complex of an individual.  I’m not saying that I don’t enjoy the pros of not working.  I’m just saying that I don’t enjoy the cons of staying home.  That’s all.  But I feel like we’ve been down this road already, so you know my stance.  If not, it’s this - the mundane tasks just don’t do it for me anymore. 

But before I go off on the wrong tangent, let me discuss the topic of this post and list what I don’t like being called:

Ø  Housewife – Why isn’t a married, female accountant called a housewife even if she is the main person responsible for running the household?  She lives in the house.  She is the wife.  Even as a child, I never liked that term.  When I saw it on my birth certificate for my mother’s occupation, I was highly offended.  After all, she did so much more than take care of the house.  Maybe it’s me, but every time I hear that term I picture a woman in a housedress, holding a broom and wearing a headscarf/head tie.  And I know I don’t cover my head at home, and I use a vacuum mostly, but still, it just doesn’t represent who I am.

Ø  Homemaker – I know people think it’s an upgrade from housewife, but homemaker conjures up an image someone in construction gear actually building a home.  Plus if the house is where you live and the home is where the heart is, doesn’t the entire family make the home?

Ø  Full-time mom – I don’t care where a mother works.  I don’t care how old her children are.  Once a person is a mother, it’s a full time job.  A mother is always thinking about her children, always thinking about what she has to do for her children.  And don’t get smart and ask what about deadbeat mothers?  You and I both know there is no room for them in this conversation.  So back to the topic at hand, even if the children are in day care or in school while the mother works, once she gets home, she has to be there for them full time.

Ø  Stay-at-home mom – Where the hell is the mother supposed to stay?  On the job?  Even that accountant lady who works 60 hours a week stays at home, doesn’t she?

Ø  Domestic engineer – This is just a fancy name to appease people like me who are offended by housewife.  I’ll sweep, mop, cook, chauffeur the kids, but you all know I will not fix any machinery or engine that has the propensity to spark.

Ø  Domestic entrepreneur – Even I joined the band wagon some time ago and coined my own term because basically, I wanted to feel like all that I do at home is more important than just taking care of the house and the children.  I mean when I stayed up late all those nights in college, this was not the career I envisioned, so I had to prove a point.  And since I handle the family’s finances, among other specialized tasks, then shouldn’t I get a bump in title?

But I’ve been at home long enough and have reconciled to putting N/A next to occupation when filling out forms because I cannot find a suitable term which encompasses my role.

And I hope you have figured out that my main point is not to belittle the ‘profession’; instead it is to point out that I don’t like labels.  Labels seem to give some people wrong impressions of what others do and who they are.  And I don’t like it.

If you have to call me, call me ‘Myra’.  If you don’t know me, then call me ‘Miss’.  If you have to refer to me, then ‘young lady’ or ‘lady’ is fine because perspectively speaking, if you call me “Ma’am” we are going to have another problem.


  1. I had a friend who would refer to his friends and others by their profession. Well we are no long friends because I am no longer a professional...... Love it