Studying family life used to be so simple. A husband and wife got married and usually stayed married, the husband went to work and the wife stayed home and reared the children. It was what we called the nuclear family.
But now you are DIPS or SINKAS, WOOFS or DINKS. Let me explain.It all began with the now-famous YUPPIES who many consider part of the Baby Boomers born in the late 1940s and 50s after World War II. YUPPIES became an acronym for Young, Upwardly Mobile Urban Professionals or something to that effect, and much (perhaps too much) has been written and noted about this particular group. The fact is, because of their large numbers, YUPPIES have initiated many social and economic changes as many now approach their early 40s.
The YUPPIE phenomenon, however, has caused another social innovation: acronyms for other marriage and family types. For instance, if you and your spouse are both employed but have no children you are now called DINKS (Double Income, No Kids). If you are married, have no children and only one spouse employed you are OINKS (One Income, No Kids).
SINKAS are "Single Income, No Kids Anymore," while DIPS are "Dual Income, Paying Support," and SIPS "Single Income, Paying Support." Many married couples today are what is known as DEWKS. Can you guess? "Dual Employed, With Kids." And if you are not DEWKS perhaps you are DENKS (Dual Employed, No Kids) sort of like DINKS. Susan and I hope someday to be WOOFS, which is "Well-Off Old Folks."
If wives become employed, we create not a dual career or dual employed family (DENKS or DINKS) but a TCC or Triple Career Couple. Running and managing a home and family in and of itself should be considered a full-time job. Husbands, therefore, end up with one career or job. Employed mothers usually end up with two.
One great injustice heaped upon contemporary woman is the supposition by husband and children that if she goes to work, she alone is still solely responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the house. Not long ago I was talking to a wife and mother who was employed full-time. She was highly irritated because her husband (and subsequently her children) agreed to "let" her work on the condition she could still manage the home and keep it running smoothly. She and her husband (DEWKS) are both employed at least eight hours a day. But when they come home at night she is the one who has to prepare the meals, wash the clothes and clean the house. While her husband outwardly expresses appreciation for the money she earns and contributes to the family's income, neither he nor their children will help with household maintenance because of their traditional belief that it is "women's work."
We need to create more acronyms such as FWM (Frazzled Working Mothers) or HWWHH (Husbands Who Won't Help at Home). Something like that to draw attention to an unfair trend. No matter your choices, whether you are DINKS, SIPS, SINKAS, DEWKS, DENKS or WOOFS, when wives and mothers are employed, other family members need to help around the house. And even if they are not employed, help by family members is still warranted.
If you have comments, write to 1230 SFLC, BYU, Provo UT 84602.