THE CATHOLIC WIFE'S ROLE IN MARRIAGE
There is a common misconception in society that the Catholic Church degrades women by not allowing them to become priests. The Catholic Church actually elevates the role of woman in her role as a wife and mother. God gave us the distinct privilege of doing something that men cannot do-bear children. This aspect of being a woman in the Catholic Church begins with being a wife.
Society today has, unfortunately, come to the point where many choose to not commit to marriage, and instead, to co-habit. It is as if people need a trial period before making that leap of faith not only in the person you are with but in yourself. If they marry, they always know that divorce is an out, that they can get a do-over. This concept is a far cry from what the Catholic Church asks of its members. Part of the role of a Catholic wife begins even before a marriage takes place. It is the decision to take that leap. To say, "I am going to commit to you for the rest of my life."
Marriage is a partnership. It is a balance of give and take. As a wife, part of her role is to know when she needs to give. I am a Catholic wife, as was my mother before me. It may sound traditionalist, however, I feel that in a marriage, and in the establishment of a family, the woman is often the one who sets the faith tone of the household. He always tells people that he knew that his faith would deepen when he met his wife. His saying, "All it takes is a good Catholic woman." I am so blessed that I am that woman.
Again, this may sound traditionalist when compared to today's society, but a part of my role as a Catholic wife is to really be present to my husband and what he needs. I also need to pray-pray that I am a good wife, and pray that he is a good husband. As long as prayer and open communication exist, we can't go wrong.
I have friends who have chosen to not take their husbands' surname when they marry. Although there is no value judgment attached to this, for me, the decision to take my husband's name was easy. I gladly took his name in the interest of uniting us as a family. Some people may cry that this is wrong, that I have lost a part of myself by doing this. I, however, say that I am the same woman, and in fact, I am stronger for it. Being a wife and mother has empowered me in a way I have never thought possible. I can thank my husband and my Catholic upbringing for that.