The Catholic church is often quoted as acknowledging, "Give us a child the first five years and we will shape its life." We acknowledge the influence power of the church over its youth; we often ignore the influence power of a mother over her children – including her sons. But it is the mother who can make a child’s bedtime earlier, take away desserts, or ground the child if it doesn’t obey. It is the hand that rocks the cradle that creates the child’s everyday heaven or hell.

Few men have a comparable amount of influence. While theoretically the man was "the master of the house," most men felt they were visitors in their wives’ castle in the same way a woman would have felt like a visitor had she entered her husband’s place of work. From a woman’s perspective, a man’s home is his castle; from a man’s perspective, a woman’s home is his mortgage

Almost every woman had a primary role in the "female<k)minated" family structure; only a small percentage of men had a primary role in the “male-dominated” governmental and religious structures. Many mothers were, in a sense, the chair of the board of a small company – their family. Even in Japan, women are in charge of the family finances – a fact that was revealed to the average American only after the Japanese stock market crashed in 1992 and thousands of women lost billions of dollars that their husbands never knew they had invested.22 Conversely, most men were on their company’s assembly line – either its physical assembly line or its psychological assembly line.