Letter: Sweeping away myths about women at home

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The Independent Online
Sir: It always amuses me that in the debate about whether women with children should stay at home or go out to work, it is assumed that the choice is between a 'sparkling' career and a monotonous existence as a drudge. For many women, going out to work means a life tied to a factory production line, a word processor or a shop counter. In contrast, caring for children, teaching them and helping them grow into happy well-balanced adults can be very satisfying and fulfilling.

Even the roles of housekeeper and 'hotel manager' can be interesting. After all, most of these jobs, when undertaken as paid employment, would be classed as professional and desirable careers.

Why, therefore, is it suggested by many feminists that when women decide to stay at home, they spend their whole time washing nappies and vacuuming? It is true that these things have to be done. A career woman will often employ someone to do such tasks for her, and while many people would be pleased with the income from such employment, it is another example of the less than 'sparkling' work that most of the workforce spend their lives doing.

Yours faithfully,

BARBARA YOUNG

Bloxham, Oxfordshire

30 March

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