I blindly grew up and into my 30s assuming the standard-issue feminist party line:
Women’s work is uncompensated and undervalued. When women become stay-at-home mothers, that benefits men’s careers, and when the marriage ends, she should be compensated for that lost earning potential. Both partners’ lifestyles should be the same when the marriage ends!
Then, I watched my friend get divorced, and face alimony.
He had a high-earning career, and after spending her 20s in low-paid retail jobs, his wife stayed home full-time until the kids were in high school, then worked part-time retail, tried to start a couple of craft businesses that went nowhere, and then started sleeping with her massage therapist.
When they divorced, this couple stayed on mostly friendly terms and would get together with the kids, who were by then in college.
His career continued on while she struggled bitterly. Since…