Monday, September 30, 2013

NOBODY can have it ALL

wah wah wah... i may be suffering from a case of the mondays...

last night i sat down to write a post about my sweet sensitive boy and his favorite pink blankie. but, being the overthinker that i am, the subject got away from me. it turned into this enormous rambling monster that jumped from gender equality and stereotypes to the traditional roles of marriage to introverted and "highly sensitive" personality types, etc etc etc. i had to rethink and decided i would break it down. one post would be about boys and girls and how, in my (albeit limited) experience, they're not as different as you would assume or as the dichotomies that permeate the ether would have you believe. at least, not in the ways you would think.

another (somewhat related) post would be about "sensitive boys" and how they fare in a society that places such a premium on these contrived notions of masculinity and femininity.

i was not and am not trying to get to the heart of persistent gender inequality or instigate the next wave of feminism or examine the much maligned plight of the white male. i was just asking questions that maybe don't really have answers, because... isn't that what you do on the internet?

THEN. this morning i see, for like, the 37th time this year, another f*cking article about how women can't have it all. ARGH.

look. i'm not saying these people aren't making valid points. but helloooooo. have you ever heard of The Little Engine That Could? or how about the Henry Ford quote, "Whether you think you can, or think you can't, you're right." women will never be truly be on equal footing if everyone keeps reminding them that they can't be. because if you hear something enough times, you are going to start believing it.

and by the way. WHY is it always about what WOMEN can't have?!? NOBODY can have it all. seriously. not even "The 1%." each of us only has two hands and one head and twenty-four hours in a day. SOMETHING's gotta give. we all - single parents, working moms, stay-at-home dads, trophy wives, fortune 500 CEOs and everything in between, have to prioritize, pick what's most important to us, and do the best we can. but let's try to find that line between reasonably tempering expectations, and clipping our wings.

so maybe my son and my daughter can't "have it all." but i want them to be able to choose who they are and what they want to be based on what they feel in their hearts and minds, not based on some predestined plan predicated upon their possession of either testicles or ovaries. i mean, okay, my girl may not be able to successfully pee standing up (but, to be honest, the boys in my life aren't super awesome at it, either) or get an embarrassing boner in gym class (no big loss there!) and my son will never personally experience the joys and terrors of carrying a child, growing boobs (or in my case, buying them), or starting your period while wearing white shorts. but. non-negotiable physical differences aside, i plan to tell them BOTH that they can do whatever they want to do, love whoever they want to love, be whatever (and whoever) they want to be. nothing's standing in their way... and i am hoping, if i say it again and again and again and again... by the time they are grown... it might actually be true.

*sigh.* a girl can dream. (editor's note: boys can dream, too ;))

more tangential musings coming your way soon.

in the meantime, a little more rain for your parade:

"Why Women Should Stop Trying to Be Perfect" by Deborah Spar on The Daily Beast

"Debora Spar, Barnard President, Says Women Can't Have It All, And Shouldn't Even Try" by Lori Leibovich on Huff Post Parents.

"Why Women Still Can't Have It All," Anne-Marie Slaughter, The Atlantic

Mother! If Drew Barrymore can't have it all, I'm screwed.

Sheryl Sandberg Commencement Speech < "Don't leave before you leave." So true! And easier said than done.

And then there's this thoroughly depressing piece, "The Opt-Out Generation Wants Back In" by Judith Warner in The New York Times. Alternatively titled, "whatever you decide to do, you're f%&#$*."

"The Women Who Do It All But Don't Have It All" by Georgeta Dragoiu on The Washington Post. The intersection of race, class and gender - triply f%^&ed.

"Why Men Still Can't Have It All" by Richard Dorment on Esquire. < Yes! Exactly!

"Longer Maternity Leave Not So Great for Women After All" by Kay Hymowitz on Time.com < Aaaaah, the dreaded "Mommy Track," I know ALL about that!

"New Study Destroys Myth Than Women 'Can't Have It All'" by Max Nisen on The Business Insider < Sweet, so, if I move to Holland, and find a law firm that's cool with me working 10-19 hours a week (I'm sure there are plenty), I'm golden!

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