My wife and I were both raised by educated, intelligent, hard-working, high-powered women perfectly capable of running major corporations. Both our moms believed there was no higher calling than raising children.
My mother (not by preference) had worked outside the home for much of my childhood; hers hadn't. We were keenly aware of the sacrifices made by both.
By the late '70s, America's transition was complete: The '50s expectation that mothers would be at home had been replaced by the expectation that women would have jobs.
As women entered the workforce during those decades, and as the previous practice of paying women less than men for the same job was being replaced by something closer to equal pay, the obvious and natural result was that real wages for everybody went down.