Friday, October 21, 2005

Is it my job to bust the glass ceiling?

Last month when I read the editor's letter of Dallas Child magazine, I was a little perturbed, but I got over it. I thought it was just the opinion of one woman ... and we all have our own!

However, I finally made my way through the latest Newsweek. Their special report is on "How Women Lead." Great. I'm glad to see them focusing on women who are excelling in their fields. Yet ... there it was again ... on page 47 ... the same thought ... the same idea ...

"But there are other, more troubling developments as well...Recent stories about women at elite colleges who want to ditch it all to stay home with their kids...There is a fear that all those glass ceilings have been broken for naught and younger women who grew up with working mothers struggling to have it all have decided that the struggle just isn't worth it."

Is it just me, or is that completely screwed up? We don't make the decision to stay home because we're exhausted with trying to smash out the glass ceilings in corporate America. We stay home because it's the best decision for us as individuals ... period. So, with that being said, should we feel bad about that decision? Are we betraying women everywhere?

Thoughts like that above make us sound selfish, because we are not willing to sacrifice the best choice for our family and for us, for the women who either don't have children, or are not choosing the same path.

Now, I'll be the first one to support equality in the work place. I will gladly speak in favor of working women who are not given opportunity to go as high as they can go. However, I am not going to take on the 40+ hour week, simply to jack up the numbers.  It's not right for me. One day I will probably be back in an office. The seasons of my life will shift me into another dimension, as my children leave my home. When that time comes, I should receive respect, equal treatment and encouragement.

Then again, I should receive that now.

I'm anything but a quitter.


Jenn said...

Ohhhh, very well said! That whole train of thought has been weighing heavily on me lately.

I said on my blog recently that I think its just as bad to expect women to be out in the workplace as it is to expect women to stay home!! Its NOT progress in my opinion. Not really.

I feel like staying home has more (good)effect on my children (male as well as female) than being out in the workplace!

Stacey said...

True women's equality will be achieved when women finally feel free to do exactly as they feel fit without the pressures from society that are mysteriously absent in the lives of men.

Running2Ks said...

See, I agree completely. It is some sort of attitude that SAHM's are just being lazy, or taking some vacation.

As a homeschooling mom of 2, with no plans to return to working for the money, I know what I have given up to be with my kids. And I got a Masters Degree before I did it. I worked in the outside world, until I decided that home was where I wanted and needed to be.

Everyone can make their choices based on who they are--but it is really time to stop slamming the stay-at-home parents. I feel for you with the articles. I do!

Radmila said...

I think so many of us missed the point of the womens movement.
Wasn't it about choice?
So typical of society to take everything to extremes.
Life so goes in cycles, and as people we so don't want to be like our parents.
So many of us are stuck in the vacuum of what we were missing when we were children and then swing the pendulum the other way thinking that it's better (and sometimes it is), but then sometimes it's not what we thought it would be.
But, as long as we as women do what we think is right for our families and children, that's all that matters.
In the end, your job may end, your position of power may end...if you don't secure your home as a haven, what's the whole point?
I'm sure the next generation will swing back.
The Mom of the 50's dream family was the result of the Rosie the Rivitor women of the second world war.

Sharon said...

Wow- you said it so well!!!!

I even get this from my own brother- how I "waste" my degree b/c I don't teach right now.
How can I waste any of my time w/ my own child?! I teach him things every day.

I am not defined by my job. I don't need that to feel important.
But when I get that smile from my son, or make a good meal for my family- I don't miss those paychecks as much.
I hope one day the media will find a way to show the GOOD of being home to raise your own children.

Jeej said...

I completely agree. Who said someone else's child (be they adult, child, or childish adult) is a more important recipient of my time and talents than my own?!?

Really people, the workplace is not our home...and if it is, that is a choice too.

Choosing to allocate my (note "my", not yours or yours or yours) attention to building up my home and family indicates that I really do have society's best interests at heart. After all, aren't my children future members? Shouldn't they be brought up to be good members of the society? I am not refusing to continue in my mother's footsteps...I am merely acting on what I learned from her triumphs and mistakes.

Good glory.

Katherine M. Curlee said...


I agree with you completely on this Christine!! I am absolutely SICK and TIRED of people degrading us families (Dad's get it to you know) who stay at home with our children rather than going to "work" whatever that is. I'm tired of having to feel shamed because I'm a "stay at home mom" and feeling as if I'm some lower class than someone who's contributing to society and making my children a product of that. Who are the first to blame those parents who raise children who become criminals, sexual predators, etc.?? THOSE THAT WORK 40+ HOURS A WEEK!! THAT'S WHO! There's absolutely nothing wrong with working full time...been there, done that.

I can easily get on my soapbox for this one, sister. I'm right there with ya!!

Love to all...

Angela @ Refresh My Soul Blog said...

That is the key to remember it is just a season! It is so worth it. I hope to be back to post about this topic. It is a good one.