After talking to a bunch of friends about Sheryl Sandberg and Marissa Mayer, and their choices to be top-flight executive women who also have a family to take care of, it made me rather disgusted with the whole situation.
Update: To clarify, I am not saying Sanberg is saying any or all of the above.
I am just pointing out the 2 big names that came up in the conversation as opposite role models, in regards to why women are expected to be Superwomen but men are not.
For the record, Mayer was the one who was agreed among the group to be setting unrealistic expectations for women and being an awful role model in that regard.
WHY IS THIS EVEN AN ISSUE?
Why do women have to be the ones saddled with choosing between work or family, or balancing both?
How come no one ever asks or scrutinizes the fact that Warren Buffett, brilliant billionaire-many-times-over, has had a lousy family life and is pretty much not a father or a father figure to his kids?
Why don’t we ever say: Gee how will Mark Zuckerberg deal with having kids, and running Facebook?
Why is it always women who are put in the spotlight?
I’ll tell you why.
THERE’S THIS STUPID IDEA FLOATING AROUND OF A WOMAN BEING ABLE TO DO IT ALL
A woman is still a person and a person still only has 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and needs to eat, sleep and breathe on top of all that.
A man, has the same time and the same tasks to do, to continue surviving.
Marissa Mayer can “do it all” because she has lots of money.
She can pay for nannies, assistants, secretaries, chefs, and not worry a damn bit about how her kid is going to make it to school or get picked up afterwards.
Normal women, myself included, don’t have an army that we can pay to do all of the above.
How is it that it’s even the woman’s job to worry about taking care of the kids and all that? Isn’t the man also 50% responsible for this child, and ALSO has to pick them up after school or if they’re sick?
WE ARE STILL STUCK IN THE MIDDLE AGES OF THINKING THAT WOMEN RUN THE HOUSEHOLD
Women are still being forced into their set of roles of: Cook. Clean. Wash. Mother the Family.
Everyone expresses surprise when I say I don’t cook as much as BF does at home. Why should I? He’s better at it than I am, and enjoys it.
I can cook, don’t get me wrong.. but I don’t spend hours thinking about meals and ingredients. I just stick to basic recipes and am happy with eating the same flavours for weeks on end.
MEN DON’T GET ANY KIND OF RESPECT FOR BEING STAY-AT-HOME PARENTS
Admit it, you did it once. You’ve rolled your eyes when you hear about men being stay-at-home dads.
I did it. Once.
Until I thought: Why is it so weird that a man would stay at home and a woman would work?
Ideally that would never happen in my household because we’d BOTH be working (equality), and sharing the household tasks (equality X 2), but why is it that we feel uncomfortable if the woman is the breadwinner?
TV SHOWS PERPETUATE THESE STEREOTYPES OF “WIFE” AND “HUSBAND”
This doesn’t just extend to straight couples.
On plenty of TV shows such as Scandal, or Modern Family with gay and lesbian couples, you hear others snidely calling their significant others: Wife or Husband, even if their gender doesn’t fit the role.
Being the “Wife” is still a bad thing because you’re doing all the thankless chores at home.
Being the “Husband” means you’re the breadwinner and you’re out there providing.
What a load of crock.
WE’RE THE ONES ACCEPTING THIS, YOU KNOW
I don’t want to be the breadwinner or the sugar momma, but I also don’t want to be the one who gets shoved into a role that I don’t fit into.
Why can’t I just be an equal partner, and be under the same spotlight of bringing home the bacon AND taking care of my family as a man?
Perhaps as women, we even perpetuate this a bit, with a lot of women thinking: I need to marry rich.
No joke, this is something I heard a lot of in school, even half-jokingly.
Every joke has a grain of truth, and that stereotype of women marrying rich to avoid a life of work it bothered me then as much as it bothers me now.
I don’t even understand why it has to be a fight, because it shouldn’t even exist as an issue any more.
That is.. if we really are as advanced in our thinking as we say we are.