I generally try to avoid blog posts on women lamenting about their overload of choices. Popular media loves to portray women as ungrateful and indecisive, eagerly waiting to complain no matter what option is made available to them. It just feeds into the stereotype of women being unstable and overly emotional creatures. And it sells papers.
But journalist Mika Brzezinski (try to say that three times fast!) brings to light real questions on real choices women need to make during key points in their lives- career or family?
Of course in this day and age, it is easy to respond with the answer that women can have both. After all, for the modern woman the message that is constantly reinforced to us is that we can have it all.
But it is not so easy. This question of choice has been haunting me more than usual recently. That probably has a lot to do with the fact that I plan on being married soon. I can’t wait to have children, but I also do not have any desire to put an abrupt halt to my professional life. And no one expects me to.
The issue is that I can count how many friends and family members I have who swing both career and family seamlessly. The numbers are not impressive.
One by one women I know had babies, and one by one they fell off their career paths. Either they willingly became hostage to their domestic duties, or they turned into accidental housewives.
I love Brzezinski’s series of posts on the difficult decisions women have to make, but I especially appreciated this one where she speaks so openly and honestly about the challenges women experience in choosing career over family, vice versa, or both. While more options are available to women than ever, there is still some unrealistic and unattainable expectation of being this perfect woman, doing it all, loving it, and of course looking amazing all the while!
It is just not realistic. And it is just not going to happen. Sometimes your choice, or your “poison”, chooses you.
The good news however is that while expectations on women to always do more has not changed, men’s attitudes towards what is expected of them, and what they desire from their wives, has. I love that Brzezinski brings up this point. It is too often overlooked.
Take a few minutes and read Mika’s post. What is your poison of choice?