Ladies, Get Real About Balance

This article from Texas Lawyer, Kathleen Wu has some tips for all the young(ish) ladies about to enter the work force, and among them, “Get real about balance.”

Recent grads shouldn’t get their hearts set on “having it all.” The practice of law is demanding — exceedingly so. It is next to impossible to balance a full-time legal career with marriage, children and regular trips to the gym. It’s no coincidence that the two women most recently nominated to the U.S. Supreme Court — now-Justice Sonia Sotomayor and nominee/U.S. Solicitor General Elena Kagan — are unmarried and childless.

Well said, Wu.  But, I think it could have made the point a little more strongly.

Professional women have been raised to believe that not only can they “have it all,” but that they deserve to have it all, and if they can’t have it all, the system needs to change to let them have it all.  They want a rich, handsome, successful, attentive husband, who spends lots of time with the kids while still billing 3500 hours a year, and they want to some how get to be primary care giver to their children, taking off time for maternity leave, taking the kids to school, and playing with the toddler, and essentially working part time without taking a hit to their paycheck or failing to make partner within 10 years.

Well, as Wu says, you probably aren’t going to have it all, because you’re going to have to make sacrifices.

Sorry, but this is a lesson men have known since day 1.  We aren’t raised thinking we can have it all.  We’re raised with the belief that if you bust your ass you might get to have one great thing in your life that makes all the other crap worth while, but there are good odds you won’t even get that and will spend half your time at work and the other half with a glass of scotch contemplating putting your head in the oven and ending it all.

Unless you were blessed with amazing genetics and incredibly wealthy parents, you aren’t going to get to have it all.  Pick the thing that matters to you and go get that thing, and stop bitching at men and the patriarchal establishment for failing to deliver your Disney princess fairytale ending.

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16 Responses to “Ladies, Get Real About Balance”

  1. es Says:

    And just to bring the point home, the Disney princess fairy tale ending means a man rescued you from a situation in which you had no control.

  2. J Says:

    I really enjoyed this. I completely agree with you and I’m a woman. I read this after I read about how expensive weddings are and how women fantasize about them from when they are a young’un. My advice to guys: run.

  3. bl1y Says:

    My future wife is going to be pissed off when she learns I’ve also been fantasizing about my wedding. There’ll be lobster, but it’s going to be a low country boil.

  4. Unmarried and Childless | Attention Crash Says:

    [...] comes from bl1y and some crazy post about women in law post but towards the bottom I found something that should be a life lesson for everyone. We [...]

  5. Marie Says:

    I would only marry a guy who could ensure we lived a great lifestyle. I would give him 2 children, and I could return to the workforce when I wanted to. I do not feel ashamed for saying that I want it all. I did not get through college and law school to give it all up just to be some guy’s housewife. I want my husband to help with domestic chores, but also to earn enough money to carry us when I am out of the workforce. It is difficult to find a guy who will do all of this for me, even though I am sexually desirable.

  6. C. Says:

    Marie,

    You fucking scare me. If one of your internet comments can scare a guy away I’d venture to say that you will be looking for Mr. Perfect Husband for a long fucking time, like your vagina turning into the sahara kind of long.

  7. Marie Says:

    You are paranoid, C. What do you suggest, that I NOT have scrupules, and just marry any dope that asks me?

    Or are you suggesting I just go around screwing every jerk that comes around irrespective of earning capacity?

    I have great looks, good academics, and a desire for the best. Therefore I will not sell myself short.

    I will not settle for any losers, and that in all likelyhood includes guys like you.

  8. BL2Y (No relation) Says:

    Marie, there’s selling yourself short and then there’s coming off as, for lack of a better term, an uppity, spoiled bitch. Your comment is focused exclusively on your future husband’s earning potential not his disposition or your love for him. I understand everyone wants to have the best but just look at the manner in which you expressed yourself. Not particularly flattering.

    Further, when you truly experience love it doesn’t really matter how successful that person is when determining if he or she is a loser. I met the love of my life when I was a starving non-profit theater manager and now I’m a lawyer at a large firm. She didn’t stop and worry about my earning potential before determining how she felt. To do so would make her a petty, materialistic gold-digging skank. People who start a family find a way to make it work. I wholeheartedly believe that because I’ve seen it firsthand.

    Further, you should feel ashamed that you want it all, especially since it seems to come at the expense of your future husband. Unless he’s already filthy stinking rich, he’s going to have to work like a dog to give you that “great lifestyle” you seem to want. So other than you being “sexually desirable” (which I might add is not a solid foundation of a relationship) and a uterus, what exactly are you adding to the equation? Will you be raising the kids? Seems like based on your stated disposition you’d have “the help” do that for you. A marriage is a partnership and it seems like you just want to be the limited partner, with all the benefits and none of the liabilities.

  9. bl1y Says:

    Damnit BL2Y…

    Trolls: 1, Internets: 0

  10. Olga Says:

    I agree with Marie. She is not unreasonable. She is just looking for an eligible man, using her standards for eligibility.

    Why is it when a woman does that she is branded as a picky bitch, but when a man won’t look at a woman twice because she is 10 pounds overweight that he is labelled as a stud?

    Double standard.

  11. bl1y Says:

    When a woman turns down men for not being superman with an MBA, she’s labeled a bitch.

    When a man turns down women for being 10 pounds over weight, he’s labeled a virgin.

  12. Olga Says:

    I know a guy who would not have sex with my sister. She was a little heavy, but had a cute face.

    He was not a virgin because he slept with me a month earlier.

  13. DonnyDangles Says:

    Olga,

    Your story is all kinds of wrong. If that was a real person, he’d bang you both just to say he did. I don’t think there’s a guy on Earth who could turn those bragging rights down, unless “a little heavy, but had a cute face” means a duece and a half and pie-faced.

    Marie,

    Hope you like cats.

  14. P. Galore Says:

    I completely agree with the post, and in turn I feel compelled to comment on Marie’s viewpoint as a female.

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting a partner that can provide for a family while (if) the other is raising said family. However, that comment is in ignorance of the point the post/article is trying to make. You can WANT that all damn day, but if YOU want to be in a respected, high paying position instead of relying on your baby’s daddy to do so while you take on the role of housewife, you may have to forego having a baby daddy.

    Sure, it is possible to have it all, but speaking from experience, it’s rough on the family. My mother was a corporate attorney and my father is an engineer. I was essentially raised by my grandparents. If you honestly think you can do it all and SHOULD have it all, just because you chose to go to school for longer than you had to and watched too many Disney movies growing up, you are either Superwoman or a cold-hearted, near-sighted bitch. Since I gather you’re of the second variety, please remove yourself from the gene pool (as it sounds like you’ve done already) and save us all the headache your neglected but entitled offspring would bring. And take Olga with you while you’re at it.

    That is all.

  15. bl1y Says:

    P. Galore? …Really? Pussy Galore? Is this because Goldfinger was on today?

    Also, how weird is it that men, who supposedly have all the opportunities, are okay with settling for mediocre+, while women, who think they are disadvantaged at every turn think they should get everything?

  16. Serp Says:

    Okay, let’s say I am this tall, muscular, fit, rich, awesome guy. Now, why would I marry a woman in her late 20s/early 30s when I can run around banging 20 year old super models every night?

    Do people like Marie actually think they have some sort of bargaining power? Go to any trendy night club or even sign up online for a dating service, attractive women are a dime a dozen. There are waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more young attractive women then there are super men. In fact, super men probably don’t even exist in the first place.

    As for academics, who gives a fuck. I don’t even know what a “scrupule” is and I could care less, I am pretty sure you meant scruple but since academics doesn’t even matter to me or anybody that actually has that high earning capacity it makes no difference. I don’t understand why women think that is some sort of selling point.

    The only bargaining chip a woman with a terrible personality has is her vagina and her looks, both are depreciating assets. Any man that is in the position to make a choice will demand more than that, or will take the highest level of both.

    Also every woman on the internet thinks she is attractive anyway. Probably because, as I said, there are so many attractive women to begin with that maybe most can lay that claim.

    To be honest, if a woman isn’t married by 30 at least once, she is pretty much already damaged goods. Disney princesses are all teenagers or twenty somethings haha.

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