Susan Patton, who earned the nickname “Princeton Mom” last year when she wrote a letter to her alma mater advising young university women to “find a husband on campus before [they] graduate,” has wrestled herself back into the spotlight. Patton was the focus of a Fox & Friends segment on Monday morning dubbed “The Good Wife: How to Keep Your Husband Happy.”Patton, who also wrote a book earlier this year called Marry Smart, says American society has become too focused on women, and it's up to wives to make men feel important again. On the segment, Patton preached “respect” as her key to a healthy marriage, but her definition of the term seems to reflect a patriarchal 1950-style approach to heterosexual marriages. (To be clear, there was no mention on Monday’s show of how husbands can keep their husbands happy.) According to Patton, a woman who is fortunate enough to marry and have kids should count herself lucky and “stop acting like such an entitled princess.” She claimed many married women aren’t nice enough to their husbands—that they are “dismissive” and disrespectful—and that there’s no way they will ever find another man should such behavior render them single. Among Patton’s other suggestions: Make your husband a drink when he returns home from work, offer to cook him dinner, and ask, “What can I do that would make your evening more enjoyable right now?” In Patton’s view, the women of today have been “emboldened by … antagonistic feminists” and have “overcorrected” American culture to concentrate only on women’s needs, desires and priorities. The hosts steered clear of asking Patton about her other well-known contentious opinions, such as her suggestion to rename date rape. “Rape is rape,” she told Maureen O’Connor for New York Magazine in March, but sex with someone too drunk to consent is “mistake sex.”
Jessica Corbett, a former In These Times intern, is a Maine-based staff writer at Common Dreams. Follow her on Twitter at @corbett_jessica.