Wednesday’s article entitled, “Happiness, contentment both factors separating men, women” proved controversial with me, as well as the students in two of my classes.I felt Ms. Hutchinson’s attribution to the “recent survey” inadequate and was unable to easily differentiate between what was factual information from this survey and what was her opinion.
Because she believes that only “Superwoman” is capable of the “impossible” – staying “home with the kids while working full time, traveling and also having a strong marriage” – I feel it necessary to present an opinion that addresses the opposite side of this coin that insinuates that women are not as happy as men.
Who says that women cannot “have it all?” I have known and encountered a number of powerful and/or successful women who do manage to juggle their career, children, a husband, and the daily tasks that come with them. Women have worked incredibly hard to be seen as equals with men, especially in the workplace, and now that we are reaching our goals, are we to simply give up with the excuse that balancing the life you have been handed is “impossible?”
It is possible for men to have just as many stresses as women. Working men share many of the same experiences that working women also face. They are often – though not always – the ones charged with putting food on the table and supporting their families. Some men share in household “chores” with their wives, putting the two sexes on an even, more equal plane. Men that find themselves living the life of a single-parent having to learn to manage their careers and the kids; are they allowed to declare defeat?
Some women do strive for a lot in life and to “have it all,” but being goal-orientated should not be viewed negatively nor should the potential of the women that attend this university be hindered by the thought that if they do manage to achieve “it all” they will be unhappy.
Perhaps some women find their fulfillment in setting high expectations for themselves. Personally, I will not be one to be confined to “be(ing) in the kitchen or helping with chores around the house” as stated in the survey Hutchinson pulled her information from. That said, I do not consider myself a raging feminist, and in the future I will more than likely find myself participating in the duties required to manage a household – cooking, cleaning, doing laundry, etc. I hope to have a successful career, a husband and, eventually, children. I know it will not always be easy, but I believe that any woman who does want those things will find a way to balance them. However, I do not believe it is right to insinuate through this un-attributed survey that those tasks are only for women and make them unhappy. What a negative, restraining stereotype.
If women will be allowed to reach their full potential, perhaps then, “everyone could reap the benefits, and happiness could be had all.”
Rebekah Hood is a junior broadcast journalism major from New Braunfels.