Work-Life Balance: Fundamental Disagreements – Part II

First read this

The problem is I can’t seem to not buy it. Why?

  1. Health care coverage requires a job that offers affordable benefits.
  2. Jobs for creative, sensitive types are few and far between, which means that those individuals (like me) have no choice but to select careers that will provide a means to an end (even if that end is simply to put food on the table and provide basic needs).
  3. Childcare is expensive. If I follow my passions, I don’t know that I can afford to pay for childcare. Trying to watch kids AND fulfill my other innate callings is basically undoable. (If you don’t have kids, I don’t want to know your opinion on this matter. No disrespect but one day you will eat your words so I’m going to stop you now or else I’m going to go apeshit.) 
  4. I don’t want to let people walk all over me. Even though I am a sensitive soul and can “see” the subtle, quiet, emotional aspects of life, the group recognizes only the extrovert ideal. That means if I want respect I have to pretend to be like them.

It’s the same problem that women of my mother’s generation faced in trying to prove themselves as equals to men: they had to show that they could be as cold and calculated and tough as men. Only women aren’t men. They are women. We want to be respected for being WOMEN, not our ability to imitate men.

Look at it this way: the corporate world and our government were designed by men. To play the game, to have respect and honor and recognition, women have had to figure out how to maneuver in a man’s world.

While we have succeeded and made tremendous inroads, I am hopeful that the next change women AND men can bring is one that allows women to be women – a change that honors our menstrual cycles and natural rhythms and embraces our maternal, care giving side without a reduction in pay or respect, without a glance down the nose as being “less than.”

That is my dream for my children – both male and female, for our boys need to see that respect for both sexes is beneficial for everyone. I don’t want to denigrate men by wishing women were honored for their contributions. Many men don’t buy into the corporate ideal and would like to be more available to their families, but they also don’t want to come across as weak and jeopardize the safety of their family through insufficient income.

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