Friday, March 14, 2014

Can We Have It All?

I have had a couple of work related conversations lately. And in one of those conversations, this thought struck me. It's actually quite difficult for our education system to be good. And the reason is because there are too many women in the profession. And women, the married ones are a distracted lot.

A couple of days ago, I listened to this talk on TED about whether we women can have it all... career, family, personal space. And I think I agree with the speaker... No, unless there are sacrifices.

Most working women I talk to share the same thing. I have colleagues who are very keen to use the latest technology in their work. But one after another, the same reason kept popping up.... They have no time. Once they are home, they have to juggle all kinds of roles; from drivers to cooks to playmates to house rule enforcer... the list is long and I think the man's list is way shorter.

I think for many of us, reality checks in when the first kid comes. And that reality checks in even more when the kids hit schooling years. So to have it all.... I guess we still have some way to go. Women have made great strides since my mother's generation. But the sad fact remains. We are still a gender biased society. And it is still biased against the women.

If anything is to go by, I think women shoulder even more these days. Emancipated but with limitations. And so, women have ended up with more in their hands. Where once, mothers stayed at home to take care of the brood, these days, these same mothers not only have their hands full but overflowing too with career, family... There is hardly any space left for personal development or space. I think harried is an apt word to describe most married women with a family and career.

Boys are conditioned to think that housework is the woman's domain. True too, more men are lending a helping hand. But I think it's safe to say that most men still feel that making sure the house is cleaned or that there is food on the table.... those are women's domain. They don't mind helping out once in a while but it remains at that mostly.....it's rarely a consistent thing.

Women are sharing the burden of financially supporting a family. However, the burden of household chores have not been equally shared, nor that of child care. Much of the work in the family is shouldered by the women. It is still easier for the man than a woman to have it all.

Gender equality or inequality..... We see it in every facet of our lives.

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