Thursday, September 15, 2005

Poisonous sisterhood

A few weeks back one of the Sunday paper's mags ran a story about mothers and the choices they make. Granted, we're not reading these mags looking for potential Walkley Award winners or anything particularly enlightening, but it raised a very pointed point for me that has been my own niggling burr ever since. When will we get it that it isn't about the choices we make but that there is the ability to actually make a choice in the first place. Newsflash to those women who think it is negligent to work after you've bred: Most of us don't have a choice. Most of us need two incomes, not to drive a fancy car and wear branded clothes, but to simply eat and maybe give your kids some swimming lessons or other organised sporting and/or cultural outlet. Newsflash to those women working who are bitter/jealous of those women who don't work: The question and debate should not be about whether we work or stay at home (let alone the fact that as many of us have kids when we're older and a little higher up the corporate food chain so hours tend to become h.o.u.r.s) but if when that decision is made (or forced upon us) the result of it is not detrimental to: - our mental health - our marriage - our children and their sense of wellbeing/security and comfort. Anne Manne's new book Motherhood throws a whole new light on this - and she isn't berating women for going back to work, she is saying we need to really look at our society and what we put importance on to ensure our kids are on a path to strong positive outcomes. why,Why,WHY is that so hard for the populace (and the policy makers) to get its (their) head around? But most importantly, why do women, like your 'friend' Bec, insist on undercutting their FRIENDS when all any of us are trying to do is our best?


Blogger Bec of the Ladies Lounge said...

I know, I know. And now, just when I was on the verge of sharing this blog with her husband (who has been a friend even longer) and her, I can't, cos the 'strange art' is a dead giveaway!

9/15/2005 11:15:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

let's face it, we feel guilty if we're stay at home mothers because we're not helping "support" our family and we feel guilty if we work. so let's just throw away all the guilt and realise we're doing the best we can for the right reasons. i can't believe how snipey and judgemental women can be about each other's choices and options - as though those choices personally impact them. every choice has an up and a down side. i wouldn't worry about your friend, it sounds like there's an element of (unrecognised?) jealousy and perhaps she beat herself up afterwards. or perhaps not. but it's her issue, not yours bec, so leave it with her. of course, having three kids (gorgeous as they are), a full-time job and a house under renovation doesn't keep you busy at all, does it? i beat myself up because i don't have a house. so here's my question for everyone: IS ANYBODY HAPPY??

9/16/2005 02:36:00 pm  
Blogger Kim said...

ooo, Bec, I like anonymous. They speak the truth.

9/16/2005 06:46:00 pm  
Blogger Suburban Turmoil said...

I'm staying at home and we have NO extra money. Ever. And I hate it. But I feel like I can live with it for a few years. There's a working mom next door with a baby five days younger than mine, though, who has totally ignored all my invitations over the last year and a half to let the babies play together. And I really think, for a number of reasons, that it's because she doesn't want to "mix" with a SAHM. Then I go to playgroups with SAHMs and all they do is bitch about working moms. Who cares, really? You do what you gotta do...

9/16/2005 10:46:00 pm  
Blogger Bec of the Ladies Lounge said...

Hi Lucinda
Of course, I want to think your neighbour with the baby is as nice as me (or nearly as nice) in which case her problem is GUILT, possibly contaminated by JEALOUSY, and topped off with an overlay of SHE'D HATE ME ANYWAY BECAUSE IF I CAN'T MANAGE TO ORGANISE MY LIFE TO BE AT HOME LIKE SHE HAS THEN OF COURSE SHE WILL JUDGE ME. Nice self-haters like us, we're pretty simple really.
But she could jus tbe an unpleasant bitch you're better off without? I like the sound of Addy's mum. In fact, being relatively tall and having a soft spot for pocket rockets, I like the sound of Addy!
good luck with playgroup - my husband's useless at stain removal, too.

9/16/2005 11:03:00 pm  
Blogger Bec of the Ladies Lounge said...

PS - Kim, if anonymous is who I think she is, then 'truth' is truer than you know.

9/16/2005 11:03:00 pm  
Blogger Kim said...

I had figured as much...

9/19/2005 11:25:00 pm  

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