Promašena tema

Klinka je imala debatu u školi za koju se nije zdušno pripremala ali je pomenula bila prethodne nedelje. Choosing Career vs. Choosing Love. Ja sam se odmah iznervirala kad sam čula temu, i začudila se zašto zadati tako odraslu temu klincima od 16 i 17 godina. Ako su i čuli za te rivalne timove (ko nije), premladi su da nešto smisleno kažu. Tema je za odrasle, iako ih (odrasle) tretira kao imbecile. I nastavnica iz engleskog joj se jako sviđa, ja sam je srela jednom i ostavlja utisak vrlo kul osobe, pa je tema kvarila celokupni utisak. No, debata se približavala, i ja sam se ponudila da napišem par stvari koje će joj možda biti od koristi.
Neizbežno se debata baš približila, u međuvremenu smo i klinka i ja bile jako zauzete socijalnim aktivnostima (nismo se ni videle nekoliko dana, svaka na svojoj strani angažmana) i tako sam u ponedeljak na poslu rešila bila da ukradem pola sata i zapišem nekoliko stvari jer ako ostavim sve za to veče… – imala sam previse posla, a i klinka previse zadataka.
Koja je to sreća bila da sam izvela tu akciju dok su oko mene zujali i zviždali korporativni pritisci, jer nakon što sam poslala tekst na svoj i njen e-mail, za vreme ručka u školi klinka je zvala u panici – ona i njen par su trebale da idu u sredu, ali je nastavnica rešila da ih pogura napred i debata je bila prvi čas posle pauze za ručak. Mama, pomoć!
Ah, pa ja sam ti već poslala svoje beleške, obavestila sam je jako zadovoljna, jer kad god čujem paniku u njenom glasu, moja naraste bar tri puta veća. U ponedejak oko podneva to je prosto previše. Proveri mail, rekla sam joj, sve je tu.
Posle dva minuta klinka opet zove_ mama, pa ovo uopšte nije tema! (Sada je već zvučala kompletno očajno).
Kako nije tema? bunila sam se. Ti ne znaš o tim stvarima, ali svuda se guraju u medijima takve besmislice…
Ma nije tema. Ti pričaš o ženama, ravnopravnosti, ili neravnopravnosti… moram da priznam da ne razumem u većem delu o čemu pričaš…
A ja sam morala da priznam, ali u sebi, da sam tu bila malo uvređena. Kako nije tema, kad jeste tema? Da sam ja promašila takvu temu?
Pa… ništa onda, ljubimac, nadam se da će ti nešto od toga koristiti – i srećno! je bilo sve što sam mogla da kažem u tom trenutku i ne traćim njeno vreme.

Debata je ispala vrlo uspešna. Dve devojčice protiv dvojice dečaka. Razred je na kraju izabrao pobednike – njih dve.
Tema je, ispostavilo se, bila vezana za knjigu kratkih priča koju obrađuju i koja se dotakla ambicioznih mladih ljudi koji su toliko posvećeni studiranju i svojim budućim karijerama, da ne samo žrtvuju ljubav, već ne znaju ni kad su kraj nje prošli. Jedino što ih možda podseti mirisom, ili drugačijom bojom spektra pa ih zaustavi na trenutak, zbuni, ali oni uglavnom nastave dalje sledeći svoje planove i krvavo stečene prednosti. Kako su mladi lekari u pitanju, za koju karijeru je potrebno iszifovsko zalaganje a na kraju koga ih čeka prestiž, lova, i etabliran život, stvorila se i dilema za koju se verovatno nije znalo ranije i sa kojom većina njih ne znaju šta da rade, uprkos izuzetnoj bistrini i sposobnosti dedukcije.
Dečaci koji su se držali stubova karijere i stabilnosti nisu imali šanse protiv nadahnutih devojčica koje su od panike dobile krila pa su bacale argumente na njih kao tople kolače, i pobeda je bila tako laka da im je prosto bilo žao. To mi se dopalo. A i njoj.

Kompletno beskorisne, evo mojih beleški niže, da se ne bace.
Uspela sam i da se nasmejem. što je kompletno neočekivan efekat kod ovakvih tema. Ima nade za mene, zaključila sam. Do sledeće promašene teme.

Choosing Career vs. Choosing Love

The division is artificial. It implies that career women reject love and stay-at-home moms don’t value education and careers for women. It is complete opposite. Stay-at-home moms want their daughters educated and to have great careers, if they choose so – that is how they are raising them. No woman today is raising her daughter with a message – don’t get education, don’t work.

The choice is sexist. There are fathers who stay at home and raise the kids, by choice or because their wives are higher earners, and they are considered great dads. The fathers who work hard and support their families are also considered great dads (or great dudes), but women don’t get respect either way – not as career women (too cold, uncaring) and not as stay-at-home moms (spoiled, don’t want to work, etc.).

Whether having a career or staying at home, women work. Raising her children, a woman doesn’t earn income or a pension, but raising children and taking care of the home is a full-time job. Love has nothing to do with it. If the woman also has a career, she has two full-time jobs. The benefits to society from children raised well and in a loving home are incalculable yet the mothers behind those children rarely even get mentioned.  If the time involved in raising kids by their mothers gets evaluated even at the minimum wage level, it would cost a huge amount per child. The society gets this for free. The women might get a ‘thank you’ occasionally.

Women have always worked. Until recently women had very limited access to education and were not allowed to enter into well-paid careers, but throughout history, majority of women had to both work and raise their children. They worked as house maids and house-keepers, governesses, in factories, later on in other service industries, and they were poorly paid. It was when women from higher classes who obtained education but were still limited to marrying and quitting their jobs (mid-20th century) became dissatisfied and wanted more choices that things changed. Slowly, but they changed.

The choice is not really a choice. Only a small percentage of women can choose ‘career or love’. Most women have to work. The economy today is based on two-income families, if they are to prosper. With so many single-parent families, conditions are even harder. Only very well-to-do families can offer a woman the choice of deciding if she wants to pursue a career or raise a family without bringing her family to the verge of poverty.

It is not a ‘passionate’ but an educated choice. Women who have the luxury of choosing to stay at home and dedicate themselves to their families are without exception well educated women who understand the market place today. They know that high-earning careers require huge dedication in time and effort (you have to work 50+ hours per week) and that their kids will have to be placed in daycare or raised by nannies. Those who choose to stay at home, especially while their children are young, are motivated by the desire to participate more in the lives of their children, but they are also aware that they are sacrificing a lot. Being away from the work force for a number of years, they will lose skills and contacts and if they want to join in later – as many of them do – it becomes even harder.

Any way you look at it, and whatever choice is presented to them, it is still much harder for women. The real question should be: why is it still so different for women and men?