In the book To Kill a Mockingbird in the chapter in which aunt Alexandra has come to stay with Jem & Scout at Maycomb county, she has a private chat with Atticus about Scout and Jem not knowing their heritage. After the chat Atticus comes to the kids' bedroom and delivers his lawyerly monologue about the need for Jem and Scout to remember they are Finches and behave accordingly.
This un-Atticus like behaviour unnerves the children and when Scout cries, he relents and tell them to forget what he just said. Atticus is visibly frustrated and while leaving makes the remark
"Get more like Cousin Joshua every day, don't I? Do you think I'll end up costing the family five hundred dollars?"
At the end of this Scout has the following thought
I know now what he was trying to do, but Atticus was only a man. It takes a woman to do that kind of work.
What "work" was Scout refering to? Is this in a negative connotation (eg work=fear obligation guilt) or something more positive (like making the children feel better)