It is frequently heard in the high-asset divorce that the wife is merely the “scullery maid” of the husband. Just what is a “scullery maid?—the term used so often by the disenchanted wife?
Well, a “scullery maid” is:
In great houses, scullery maids were the lowest-ranked and often the youngest of the female servants and acted as assistant to a kitchen maid. The scullery maid reported (through the kitchen maid) to the cook or chef.
Along with the junior kitchen-maid, the scullery maid did not eat at the communal servants’ dining hall table, but in the kitchen in order to keep an eye on the food that was still cooking. Duties included the most physical and demanding tasks in the kitchen, such as cleaning and scouring the floor, stoves, sinks, pots and dishes. After scouring the plates in the scullery, she would leave them on racks to dry. The scullery maid also assisted in cleaning vegetables, plucking fowl, and scaling fish.
So, what your wife is telling you is that she feels like a “scullery maid,” although her duties may not be nearly what a real “scullery maid” is. You may have servants in the house; you may have the house cleaned on a fairly regular basis; but what your wife is telling you is that she is not satisfied with her station in life.
She has not ascended to that that level that she believes she deserves. She still has to clean up after you, wash clothes, take of the children, shop (but not with the amount of money she desires) and you are to blame for it all. You may work to the highest level of your ability but it is still not enough. So what are you to do?
Well, you took a vow at your wedding “for better or for worse” and “in sickness and in health.” You have to make a decision. Stick with it, or break your vow or get out of this hell-hole, and hope the children, if you have any, can weather the storm.
If you decide to get out, then prepare yourself. All your faults as a husband will be revealed or imagined or exaggerated.
How do you defend yourself? My advice, with calm solemnity and facts. You make only so much. You have devoted more than you should to her whims. You have provided all that you are financially able. You remain calm and composed, you do not attack her as a fanatical witch with an insatiable desire for more than you can provide.
You let her prove that. And she will. And the Judge will understand it, and it may take a little while. You have to be patient. Be solid and be stoic.
Rely on your lawyer to guide you through such difficult times– such emotional times when your instinct is to lash out at her unreasonable behavior and enrage you. Be a rock, as your lawyer has advised, but not a wimp. The time will come for you to slowly, but surely, reveal the truth. Therein lies victory.