How to be the Perfect Wife – The 50s way to welcome a man when he comes home from work.

This was taken from Helen B. Andelin’s Fascinating Womanhood, published by Pacific Press in 1965. The course was designed to teach women how to be happy in marriage.

This is how I fare as a perfect wife. (written in green within brackets after the text). Read on and check how you are doing against the list.

Plan your tasks with an eye on the clock. Finish or interrupt them an hour before he is expected. Your anguished cry, “Are you home already?” is not exactly a warm welcome. (I’m usually asleep when he gets home)

Plan ahead, even the night before to have a delicious meal, on time. 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 prospects of a good meal are part of the warm welcome needed. (I’m usually asleep when he gets home. When he wakes me I make a mad dash to the kitchen to prepare dinner)

Take 15 minutes to rest so you will be refreshed when he arrives. This will also make you happy to see him instead of too tired to care. Turn off the worry and be glad to be alive and grateful for the man who is going to walk in. While you are resting you can be thinking about your Fascinating Womanhood assignment and all you can do to make him happy and give his spirits a lift. When you arise, take care of your appearance. Touch up your makeup, 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. His boring day may need a lift. (I’m usually asleep when he gets home. Ribbons in hair? Haha. Toussled hair more like it)

Make one last trip through the main part of the house just before your husband arrives, gathering up school books, toys, paper, etc. in a bucket or wastebasket and put them in the back bedroom for sorting later. Then run a dustcloth over the tables. Your husband will feel he has reached a haven of rest and order and it will give you a lift too. Having the house in order is another way of letting him know that you care and have planned for this homecoming. (This one is alright because I usually get rid of the clutter before I have a nap with the kids)

Take just 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 look the part. (The kids are usually asleep when he gets home)

Especially give heed to this if your husband has to join rush hour traffic. At the time of his arrival eliminate noise of washer, dryer, dishwasher or vacuum. Try to encourage the children to be quiet at the time of their father’s arrival. Let them be a little noisy beforehand to get it out of their system. (The house is very quiet because we’re all asleep)

Greet him with a warm smile and act glad to see him. Tell him that it is good to have him home. This may make his day worthwhile. If there is any romance left in you, he needs it now. (Hopefully I don’t snore in my sleep)


  • Don’t greet him with problems and complaints. Solve the problems you can before he gets home and save those you must discuss with him until later in the evening. (Sometimes I call him up at work with problems and complaints)
  • Also, don’t complain if he is late for dinner. Count this as a minor problem when compared with what he might have gone through that day. (I don’t complain when he’s late because it gives me more time to complete my tasks before he gets home)
  • Don’t allow the children to rush at him with problems or requests. Allow them to briefly greet their father but save demands for later. (No problem because they’re usually asleep)

Have him lean back into a comfortable chair or suggest he lie down in the bedroom. Have a cool or warm drink ready for him. Arrange his pillow and offer to massage his neck and shoulders and take off his shoes. Don’t insist on this however. Turn on music if it is one of his pleasures. Speak in a soft, soothing, pleasant voice. Allow him to relax – to unwind.  (Err.. how to make him comfortable when I’m usually asleep comfortably in bed?)

You may have a dozen things to tell him, but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him talk first, then he will be a more responsive listener later. (Yaaawwwn. How was your day? Ok? Good. I have to go and cook now!)

Never complain if he does not take you out to dinner or to other places of entertainment. Instead, try to understand his world of strain and pressure, his need to be home and to relax. If he is cross or irritable, never fight back. Again, try to understand his world of strain. (Usually he is not cross or irritable but I am!)

Try to make your home a place of peace and order where your husband can renew himself in body and spirit. Then add to this the application of all the principles of Fascinating Womanhood and your husband will want to come home. He will rather be with you than with anyone else in the world and will spend whatever time he can possibly spare with you. Try living all of these rules for his homecoming and see what happens. This is the way to bring a man home to your side, not by pressure, persuasion or moral obligation. (Walaueh, I fail miserably so how?)

Oh dearie me. At the rate I’m going, my husband won’t want to come home. But then this list is the 50s way of welcoming a man when he comes home from work. Times have changed sistas. Time have changed.

How do you greet your man when he gets home from work or perhaps it is he who greets you when you come back from work?

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