We all have our favorites from the Food Network, and Ree Drummond, better known as The Pioneer Woman, has certainly gained quite a following over the years. She calls herself the “accidental country girl” for a reason — and that’s because she never originally envisioned herself raising a family in Oklahoma. She’s talked at-length about how she dreamed of life in the city as a youth — but after meeting her husband, her plans of moving to Chicago were out the window.
Not everyone’s a fan of the Drummonds, however. And some also take issue with the traditional gender roles she seems to abide by — especially after she admitted her husband treats their sons and daughters differently.
Not everyone’s sold on Ree Drummond’s version of domestic bliss
Viewers of The Pioneer Woman know Ree talks extensively about her life on the ranch. She’s seemingly the one in her household who takes care of the kids and fixes up the meals for her cowboy husband while he works hard outside with the other ranchers. She certainly has fans who don’t mind her way of life — but she’s come under critique, too.
Psychology Today notes an essay by Melanie Haupt criticizes the image Ree Drummond puts forth to her fan base. “[The Pioneer Woman] represents an idealized woman, a frontier version of the angel in the house with a 21st-century twist, one who offers up domesticity as escapist entertainment,” the essay reads. Haupt then went on to criticize Ree for following “tropes of femininity and masculinity,” especially with the way Ree talks about her husband, Ladd. Haupt notes that Ree frequently refers to Ladd as the rugged “Marlboro Man” with “muscular forearms” and an ultra-masculine demeanor while she’s the blogger, cook, and housekeeper at home.
She admitted on her blog that her husband treats her sons and daughters differently
Is Ree really perpetuating an outdated view on the modern-day woman? There’s no doubt she’s a self-starter, as she was famous in the blogging world way before she got her show with the Food Network. And even aside from her husband’s successful family cattle ranching business, Ree has her own line of products and her TV show that bring her millions of dollars. She’s certainly not riding on Ladd’s coattails for money, that’s for sure.
Even so, it seems like traditional family values may run deep in the Drummond household. On a blog post for Ladd’s birthday, Ree mentioned how he fathers their two girls and two boys differently. “When I’m with the girls, or talking on the phone to the girls, it’s sometimes frivolous, newsy, and scattered,” she wrote. And Ree then added that Ladd talks to them more about their personal lives than he does the boys. “He loves those girls,” she adds.
As for the boys, Ree wrote that Ladd sees them all the time, as they help out with the ranch work. And this is one of the reasons that they don’t have as many intimate conversations. “So it’s less about diving into deep conversations and more about giving of his time to facilitate their sports and interests and all that he knows is important to two boys growing up on a ranch, because he was one once,” she wrote.
What do fans think of Ladd Drummond?
There’s no doubt Ree and Ladd have a great relationship — and they’ve made it clear that they help each other out both on the ranch and in the home. Even so, the persona Ree shows to her audience has definitely annoyed some viewers. And not everyone’s a fan of Ladd (or rather, how Ree treats Ladd), either.
One Reddit user mentioned, “I never thought about it as being annoyed with him specifically, but it drives me nuts how she is always making distinctions between cooking for the gals vs the guys.” And another called the Drummond family “completely unrelatable.”
Even with some of the online hate, Ree and Ladd certainly still have fans who love how they come across on TV. The Pioneer Woman and her cattle-rancher husband are here to stay.
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