The Housewife Experiment

The XX Factor
What Women Really Think
Oct. 26 2010 4:13 PM

The Housewife Experiment

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Looks like someone wants a book deal! Back in May, married blogger Jen Byck decided to live the life of a 1950s housewife for two weeks and blog about experience (despite the fact that blogging didn’t exist in the '50s). She culled together a list of goals from vintage magazines and household guides and came up with some basic ambitions like: "Create a comfortable, clean, and beautiful home" and "Show pride in being a Mrs. by putting a concerted effort into my appearance." Byck measured the results in physical stats (weight, blood pressure) as well as the experiment’s mental toll on her marriage, which seemed to be overwhelmingly positive. Her conclusions? Apparently being a 1950s housewife will make you gain a few , but your marriage will be "happier, more relaxed, and more connected now than before." OK, then. No long-suffering housewife malaise. Though I suspect "pretending" for two weeks probably makes days of cleaning and cooking easier than when it's the immutable reality of your life. (Looking at you, Betty Draper.)

This week, Byck is at it again, this time experimenting with playing a "husband-obsessed" 1950s housewife . Byck will cook all her husband’s favorite meals, leave him alone if he needs alone time, avoid nagging, and provide constant encouragement (but, God forbid, not advice). Her first post is up today. Patrick, the husband, seems unimpressed with a mighty number of vegetables.

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