WOMEN: The Relentless Ordeal of Political Wives

As Betty Ford was in the hospital battling cancer, the nation thought of her with warmth and sympathy. She was undergoing a physical ordeal that all Americans dread and that has become almost familiar. But for many years she has also undergone a psychological ordeal, far less serious and less familiar, but nagging and pervasive: the tribulations that befall so many wives of politicians. Though at the center of a close and apparently happy family, Betty Ford has often come near the end of her nervous resources. It is a rather special...

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