Friday, March 14, 2014

"So, Ladies, You Want a Career?"

This article is from Return of Queens and was written by Deborah Elmar.

"Young ladies, think about this. Actually, first read these two books: Worthless, by Aaron Clarey and Forced Labor: What’s Wrong with Balancing Work and Family, by Brian Robertson.

"Then think about your future.

"With whom do you hope to spend your life? What do you hope to have in life?

"We’ve all been listening to the grrrrrrl-power, women-run-the-world stuff for decades now.

"What makes us 'women?'

"We have wombs. We are weaker physically than most men. We are driven by feminine attributes: emotions, intuition, a desire to nurture, a need to fit in, an impulse to help others, to be ‘nice’, pretty, pampered, cuddled and loved. Almost every one of us yearns to be baby-makers and nurturers and we need men to help us be the best we can be at those vital tasks. We do not invent or create too many things. We don’t build the infrastructure, buildings, roads, plumbing and the electronic devices that civilization needs - if that 'Lean In' woman walked off her job tomorrow it would affect us not a whit, but please, electricians, plumbers, road-crew members, policemen, farmers, mechanics and soldiers, pleease don’t leave! We multi-task, though, in all those ways that make us such a great support system in the busy world around us (dear nurses, I adore all you wonderful ladies!). And we love being with our strong, decent men; we love resting in their headship, their decisiveness, their masculine strength. To deny this is to deny who we are.

"Yes, yes, of course there are always exceptions to the qualities I just described … do stop your indignant huffing and puffing, some of you.

"So you want a career. Okay. What will you study? What courses will you take? How long will you devote yourselves to your pursuit? What years of your life will be spent on this pursuit? Will it be the years when you are at your most beautiful, fertile, and vibrantly young? And – this is important now – how much money will you waste?

"Yes, I said 'waste.' If you don’t choose courses of a practical nature, courses that will help you become a lab technician, hair-stylist, photographer, nurse, teacher, book-keeper, accountant, etc., you will waste significant years and lots of money. You’ll never recover those years, and it will be extremely difficult to get a good return on your monetary investment. You need to carefully research the job market for your 'dream' career. For example, I had first included 'veterinarian' in that list of practical professions, but read just last evening that there are few jobs available in that line of work right now and it’s a very expensive field of study.

"Who says you need to go to college, anyway? You might not be interested in one of those professions I just mentioned, and you might dislike school. Well, do you have practical, hands-on smarts and business sense? Start your own business right out of high school; possibly even during high school – I’ve seen it done. It could involve interior home painting, nanny-ing, cleaning, sewing, growing and selling fresh produce, managing products online, looking after vacationers’ pets, etc. Or become an 'apprentice' somewhere to someone who is already running a business, such as a baker, a manager of a gym, a photographer or a seamstress. I thought of that last vocation because my daughter might soon start hemming and ironing with a lady in town who is a seamstress. Completely out of the blue last year, my girl started making some of her own clothes and loves doing it. I personally can’t sew a stitch and I’m so impressed with and proud of her!

"Eventually you could become a partner or own the business yourself. This sort of smart, spirited, gutsy approach to life is more impressive than spending those precious years after high school accumulating tens of thousands of dollars in debt as you party and sit in college classrooms for a few hours a week hearing stuff you could pick up free on the Internet. Even working at a minimum-wage job for several years is better than that. At least you’re making money, not wasting it. A degree that’s not worth the paper it’s printed on is no longer such an impressive object to flaunt in a world out there that has grown increasingly skeptical about the quality of its college and university graduates. In fact, some degrees only serve to expose the degree-holder’s inferior decision-making skills. We do not need a degree for everything, although the education industry has certainly tried to sell that idea over the past decades. In practical, STEM-like fields of work, yes, of course we need to prove our credentials with degrees. But we really, really don’t need a degree for everything.

"Think about it. You could be building equity during those years instead of falling into debt. Even if you have no clue what to do with yourself and can only find a minimum-wage job until you figure out what you want to do, that’s still better than going into debt for a hastily-decided on degree that will not give a good return on your investment. You might even make and save enough to travel to different places for a short time, which is so much fun when you’re young and fit with few commitments. And if you own a business but find it all too hectic when you marry and have children, you can sell it. You’ll have an asset, not a student-debt liability.

"Don’t just take my word for it. Forbes Magazine has this to say:

“'Here’s an indication of how burdensome student loans have become: About one-third of millennials say they would have been better off working, instead of going to college and paying tuition. . . The problem sometimes is that not all college educations are worth their cost since they can’t guarantee a high-paying job to help pay off that student debt. . . the rising student debt problem can have a bad impact on the economy. Even in the best of economic times when jobs are plentiful, young people with considerable debt burdens end up delaying life-cycle events such as buying a car, purchasing a home, getting married and having children. The other problem on student debt is a lack of financial education. The first major financial decision many students are making is with their college loans. It’s a major decision and often times there’s been little financial education, if any, that’s been taught. . . personal finance should be taught in high school; basic investing, how to save for retirement and how loans work were the top three topics they “wished” they’d learned more about. . . student debt has also affected home ownership in the country . . .' - 'Student Loan Problems: One-Third of Millenials Regret Going to College.'

"Is the much-hyped 'college experience' really worth all the pain that comes later? Yes, you do make great friendships at college and you can establish a very valuable network of contacts for your future career advancement, but this benefit probably offsets the gigantic tuition costs much more in practical, STEM courses than in the arts.

"Are you interested in philosophy? Borrow a book on Kant out of the library. Do you like literature? Go get Middlemarch off the bookstore shelves. Don’t spend thousands on courses about Jane Austen; her marvelous works are available everywhere. Go online to get the free ponderings of intellectuals on these works, if you want to know an expert’s thoughts about what you just read. Many successful people did not go to college, but I don’t doubt most of them are avid readers. Are you one of those exceptional few who can make it in politics, or in the celebrity world of the music, stage and movie industries? Go for it, if you are. Take drama classes and dance lessons; learn about fashion. Follow your dream, but be aware. Be aware of time, be aware of consequences. Be aware that many of the most glamorous-seeming jobs still involve hours and days of tedium; not to mention you’ll have to endure all the office politics with other women. Admit it, ladies, we don’t like each other that much; in fact, many of us are finally admitting that we don’t actually like being in the workforce at all.

"Even women doctors may end up looking longingly at the stay-at-home mom, and then the medical community has to adjust as it loses doctors who would otherwise still be in the field, if they were men. All those coveted spots in the medical college courses, all that training and investment, could have gone to men who would benefit us all by remaining doctors for life, or by plying their trade for six days of the week instead of only three.

"Ladies, don’t waste those years, that precious, wonderful time leading up to age 30 or so. Be careful and wise about your choices. Don’t rush heedlessly into four years of useless, expensive 'Women’s Gender Studies' that will teach you many things that are just simply not true, and can’t land you employment. For one thing, you learn next to nothing useful for the job market. For another, when you do apply for a job, some prospective boss will see your resume full of 'I am Woman Hear Me Roar' nonsense and he (or even she) will assume, because he’s met your type before, that he’s probably got a trouble-maker on his hands: someone who doesn’t think things through, makes poor decisions (such as choosing to waste money on those courses), is most likely irrational, is proud of being ‘radical’ (i.e.: just plain annoying) and has been indoctrinated into viewing every male colleague with uber-paranoia and hostility.

"Imagine the following scenario: A sporadically-employed (in coffee shops and restaurants) 22-year-old woman with a liberal arts degree, who hopes to eventually become a professor somewhere (if there are any openings!) but still needs to find a way to pay for grad school, meets the man of her dreams. As their relationship grows into something serious and long-term, he gradually becomes aware that hitching his life to hers also means taking on her mountain of debt. He balks, especially because he’s been prudent with his money, he works very hard at his job, and regards his income as an earned reward for his labor, not as a trough for someone else to dip into. He listens to her talk about wanting to spend many years first following her 'dream' of a career, a dream that feminists and Hollywood told her she was supposed to follow if she wanted to feel 'fulfilled.' He makes some mental calculations and realizes that perhaps, after years of hectic chaos trying to juggle both his and her schedules, a child or two will come in his mid-to-late 30s. This in turn delays all the rest of his life’s plans, depletes his finances and his time, and adds to the chaos with more hectic schedule-juggling because two demanding careers will have to find ways to fit in trips to day-cares, sports teams, swimming lessons, doctors’ appointments, etc. He notices how she lives her life, in her messy apartment, with microwave dinners and really expensive shoes, scarves and handbags that are still not paid for as her credit cards keep maxing out. He thinks: 'Wow, she’s high maintenance.' He perceives her thickening, pizza-and-cupcake-fed waistline. He might already have endured too much of her entitlement-princess attitude as she constantly demands many thing from him but brings little to the relationship except her marvelous princess self that she seems to think is so wonderful simply for existing. And he says, 'I don’t want this in my future.'

"This, is, of course, all conjecture. And everyone is different – I acknowledge that I’ve presented a derogatory stereotype of an arts major here and that there are many holders of arts degrees who have successful lives. But please, ladies, think about this. Men are certainly thinking about it. And they’re walking away from the ages-old pattern that sustains civilization, walking away in droves. Many of them don’t want to marry you; they don’t want to marry anyone. They think marriage means nothing but economic slavery to an emotional basket-case and most likely a loss of most of their financial assets in divorce court in a few years’ time, accompanied with the heart-wounding devastation of losing their children in a custody battle. This quote that I found on a site called 'Why Men Don’t Marry' (language warning) sums up their view: 'If I ever think I want to get married, I’ll find a woman I don’t like and buy her a house.' There are dire consequences for society if too many young men take this approach to life; yes, dire consequences even for feminists.

"Get it? Young men are walking away. Western women are going to have to work hard to get them to come back, to trust that marriage will bring happiness. They don’t care that you’re 'tough' and 'strong' and 'independent' and 'powerful;' they just yawn, or they wonder how many tax-dollars Big Daddy Government will extract from the working man to rescue 'strong,' 'independent' you from yourself in exchange for your vote. They might notice that you’re beautiful, but there are many other beautiful women out there. And these days, they’re getting the milk for free from most women. They’re not going to buy the cow. Get it, ladies? They won’t rescue you from your loneliness and your perhaps desperate financial situation that you brought on yourself with your poor choices and lack of self-control. They don’t want to.

"Think carefully about what you hope from life. Make your choices accordingly. Be informed. And, if you choose to enroll in useless courses, find yourself deeply in debt and unable to get a job except as a barista in some organic-foods coffee shop that’s as unique as all the other unique ones out there, or even if you end up as a lawyer in some paper-pushing office job that is not as glamorous as Hollywood told you it would be, with no 'good men' out there to be found … blame no one else but yourself for the choices you made. Don’t blame ‘The Patriarchy.’ Don’t blame a mythical 'war on women.' Don’t blame 'sexism' and 'misogyny” and 'the glass ceiling.' Don’t yell at men because they won’t 'man up' or 'grow up.' Be honest with yourself and admit that your choices had consequences you don’t like. Then change. If your answer to the questions I asked in the beginning of this post ('With whom do you hope to spend your life? What do you hope to have in life?') is that you hope to be happily married to a good man and have a family with him, then use your time wisely in your young years and actively try to become the type of woman who a good man will want in his life as his wife and the mother of his children. Don’t max out the credit cards; focus on gaining equity instead of wasting years and resources; make sure, if you do go to college, that the courses you choose are a good investment for all that money (cooperative education seems promising, for example); and show in your living quarters, your appearance and your personal behavior that life with you will be pleasant, not 'complicated.'

"What makes a good man? What sort of man will you look for? Women all want the handsome, fascinating rich guys, no doubt about that, and some of you may actively look for and pursue men like that. But they’re not around every street corner, and they can pick and choose from the best of the best ladies who’ll be vying for their attention. Try to be realistic, not immersed in a Hollywood-fed fantasy. Also, stop demanding that the man you want to marry should change to suit you. He is quite honestly very capable of having a good life without you, and there are many, many women out there for him to meet. If the 'spark' is there and you are definitely attracted to him, look at yourself and ask, 'What can I do to suit him?' And when I say 'him,' I’m not talking about the users, players, creeps or jerks out there, and I’m especially not talking about the abusive men. We all know some men exist who are not suitable partners for life. I’m talking about a good man. A good man is a steady, moral, dedicated guy who will treat you like a Queen while you treat him like a King.

"Good men will have the world at their feet from their early 20s until their 60s. Many of you will only have 15 years or so before you turn the corner and become invisible women. Use those years wisely."


syngrapha said...

Very good article. I think many women are just deluded about the reality.

When they finally recognize and understand that they shouldn't have waisted their most precious years it's too late.

Robert What? said...

There are still foolish men out there that heed the call to "man up" and marry someone in their mid-30s who has left a trail of broken hearts in her wake. I know - I was one of those fools. And my life has been a misery for it. But then it was long before anyone was thinking about the "red pill". Nowadays many more guys are savvy to it (although not all - and some simply don't want to believe it even when presented with irrefutable evidence.) But my point is that the number of fools out there like me who will fall for the "man up" idea is growing fewer and fewer. And I see lots of late twenty-something young women heading full speed to "the wall" who bring nothing to the table.