A self-proclaimed ‘traditional housewife’ who spends six hours a day cooking and cleaning and celebrates being subservient to her husband says it’s “her choice” and “the way she likes it”.
Estee Williams, 25, has dubbed herself a ‘trad-wife’ and spends her days tending to the home while her husband, Conner, 23, an electrician, goes to work as the family bread-winner.
But far from resembling The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, Estee says she leads a “humble” existence and is “subservient” to her husband but “in a healthy biblical way”.
While Estee stays at home baking bread, cooking meals from scratch, cleaning, and learning to sew her own clothes, Conner makes a living and goes hunting for food on the weekends.
Estee, from Richmond, Virginia, US, said: “The husband is a provider, the protector and supports the family financially, and the woman is the homemaker in my view.”
“This is a choice my husband and I made together and I’m very happy with it. It’s very fulfilling, and it’s an honour for my husband and I to live this lifestyle.”
“People are afraid to completely depend on a partner, but in an ideal world that’s what marriage is about.
“I worked as a nanny until we got engaged in 2022, but I stopped because I’d always aspired to this lifestyle.
“I’ve had tons of criticism since I started posting on social media. A lot of people think I’m taking women back to the 1950s and find it completely distasteful. But I believe nobody should be shamed for their choice.”
‘Tradwife’ is a lifestyle trend which involves women adopting traditional gender roles in their marriage.
Beyond the division of gender roles, Estee and her husband’s lifestyle is steeped in tradition.
They have “a freezer-full” of meat which her husband hunts with his six guns and a bow and arrow.
She wears 1950s-style clothing – choosing to don dresses rather than leggings.
She also only watches television on the weekends.
Although Estee makes small purchases – such as buying coffee – without asking her husband, she said he has the final say on any big purchases including buying their house.
Estee’s Christian faith has inspired her decision to serve her husband, which she described as “an act of honour in the eyes of God”.
Despite online critics calling Estee “backwards”, she believes being a tradwife gets a “bad rep” and said she and Conner are “equally reliant on each other”.
“Women don’t need to do what men do to be equally important in the world,” she said.
“I think we can be equally important by believing in our roles.”
Estee and Conner met in 2020 and quickly realised they both longed for a traditional relationship.
“I’ve always wanted this lifestyle but kept it to myself as I knew how people would view it,” she said.
“On our first date he said that more than anything, he wanted to give a woman the stay-at-home role.
“As we began talking about the future, we developed this plan to lead a more traditional lifestyle.”
The inspiration for Estee’s lifestyle stems from her faith.
“The bible talks about home making and a woman’s place in the world,” she said.
“It’s not The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, it’s a humble lifestyle.
“Making your own bread, learning to sew, making your own clothing sometimes – it grounds you.”
For Estee, cooking is a big part of fulfilling her responsibility to her husband.
“I spend anywhere between three to five hours in the kitchen every day,” she said.
“It’s important that my family has home-cooked meals and to not have overly-processed foods.”
The couple also hunt their own food – including deer, doves and rabbits.
“My husband is an avid hunter and we usually keep game meat in the freezer all year round,” she said.
“Our freezer is full of hunted meat. The only other thing we can fit in there other than that is a bag of frozen fruit.”
On top of cooking for her husband, Estee keeps their house looking spick and span and believes in “serving him completely in the home”.
“I usually clean for one hour a day,” she said.
“I get everything cleaned around the house so when my husband comes home we can spend time together.
“He doesn’t have responsibilities at home other than heavy lifting and hanging up pictures.
“It’s important that when he comes home from work he can relax.”
But despite admitting she is subservient to her husband, she insists he doesn’t treat her “like a slave”.
“I’m subservient to my husband but in a healthy biblical way,” she said.
“I’m happy to do all the laundry, but he doesn’t just throw his shirts on the floor.
“He’s very respectful and will always take his plates to the sink – he doesn’t treat me like a slave.”
Besides cooking and cleaning, Estee and her husband remain very traditional in most aspects of their lives.
“We don’t keep a TV in the living room or bedroom,” she said.
“We minimise usage and only watch on the weekend. If we want to watch a movie, we’ll watch on a laptop.
“A lot of women today wear leggings the whole time – and I used to be like that.
“But outside the house, I believe in wearing dresses that cover your body a little bit better.”
Estee said the secret to their relationship is trust.
“A lot of people think because the division of labour is split, it’s unbalanced, but the whole thing is we are both dependent on each other,” she said.
“We trust each other completely and that’s why we devote ourselves to each other.
“People think that depending on a man financially leads to domestic abuse.
“But sadly plenty of women who go to work get abused by their husbands.”
Estee also doesn’t have any issue with women who choose to be financially independent.
“If women want to be career-based it is completely their choice,” she said.
“Women fought to have the choice to work and vote.
“But when I say I don’t want to work and want to build a home instead, I have women call me a 1950s housewife and say ‘you can’t do that’.
“What happened to the choice part?
“This is modern home making with a little vintage twist.
“It’s not an outdated lifestyle – this lifestyle doesn’t have a date. It started in the beginning of time.”