Women at Work : The Never Ending Struggle

May 28, 2008 at 9:07 am | Posted in Quotes, Women | 18 Comments

Why do women work ? Why did I chose to work ? It was not easy ? It’s still not easy ? Why do I say so ? No , not because it’s difficult to manage all.

Because our society has still not accepted a working women. People think that the primary task of women is not to work but to take care of the house and kids. I don’t question and I don’t deny. But I don’t agree as well. Who is anyone to decide what’s my primary task ? If I decide with my better half , its okay ? But why should anyone else ? And why can you not acknowledge that I can take care of my primary and secondary tasks equally well , with due credit to my better half for being on my side.

I started working when I was single in a mid-size well known company. I was different from others. Because I never stayed in office overnight. I used to work only during office hours. And they said that I am different because I am a woman. So you mean , finishing your work in time , not staying late , not taking breaks for smoking and ususally seen on your desk is a woman’s characteritic. Well I always took that as a compliment , in case you don’t know that. Yes I am different because I am a woman and I don’t feel proud in staying back late in office even if I have nothing much to do after the office and I am staying in a hostel. You may though attribute it to my physical and social incapability.But then you don’t have any right to say that unless you prove that I am working less than you do , in TRUE SENSE.

And then I got married. And I moved to a Internationally well known , so called BIG AND FAMOUS company. Did this change anything for me ? Yes it did ! Since I was married now , I was looked down upon with sympathy and sometimes with some artificial respect. Yes , I call it artificial , since I know that you don’t really appreciate the effort I make , when I choose to work , but you still try to acknowledge that, with your artificially sweet smile. I want to tell you LOUD AND CLEAR that I don’t want that. I want no extra respect and NO SYMPATHY AT ALL , just because I am a working woman. Thats my decision and I will cope up with that , as I would want to. When I am in the office, I leave back all the rest at home. I may have got up at 6.00 and struggled to make breakfast , I may have brushed my hair in the car , I may have to cook when I get back home , but this does not affect my productivity. But you will not know this. ‘You’ ,the bachelors , ‘you’ the married males , who do not have a working woman in your life and who feel its okay to leave your shoes and towel for your wife and to think that you have all the rights to sit and just watch TV after you get back home , and claim that you are tired after the day’s work. AND ALSO ‘you’ the SINGLE FEMALES , who know that you will sooner or later end up into my shoes and will have to make choices , but then you wish to leverage what you have today by sympathizing with me.

And then I had kid. And people thought that its the end of my career. Why ? Unless I decide so , who are you to decide ? I know I have a challenge ahead , a bigger responsibility, but when I think that I can manage , why do you worry ? My kid is important, rather most important for me. I think of him day and night. About his well being , his growth , his successes , his failures , yes my life centers around him to a great extent. But why do you think I cannot think beyond him. Why do you sympathize with my physical capabilities of taking care of my kid, home and work. Why do you think I cannot talk beyond my kid and food? And I know nothing else about the world ? Why do you think my individuality no longer exist ? Why do you think that I cannot take up any challenging tasks ? Why do you give excuse of my kid , for not giving me an opportunity , when I never deny for taking up anything ? My kid , my home , my husband and my family is my strength. They motivate me to work. They, in no way hamper my productivity and efficiency. Yes , I still don’t want to work late and on weekends , but you cannot question me unless I have slipped any deadlines.

The day I would feel that I cannot manage all , I would quit. So bear with me till then.Don’t get sugary sweet with me , for I know the difference between real and fake. If you respect me at all , just DON’T THINK I AM AN ALIEN.

Editted to Add this quote , somehow speaks a part of what I wanted to say :
I’m just a person trapped inside a woman’s body.
-Elayne Boosler

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18 Comments »

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  1. A very well written post. I can feel it comes from your heart. And you are so right! Nobody askd anybody to sympathise with you. But, I feel, it could sometimes be their inferiority complex too. πŸ˜‰ Watch out next time you see such an attitude, and you could laugh and give this back to them in your attitude. Yes, be proud of the fact that you are more capable than those couch potatoes.
    And why can’t these men not help in the household and take care of their child instead of sympathising and feeling pitty for working women.

  2. Well expressed, Swati!
    In whatever years I have spent as a working woman, the discrimination has been loud and clear, especially in my role as an Oracle DBA..Now that I am planning to be back in the corporate sector, the fear of being overwhelmed by such pressure has taken its place in my heart. God bless the women (working in offices or not), it surely is a tough job to be one!
    (BTW, thanks for visiting my blog and leaving kind comments πŸ™‚ )

  3. oops! what happened, somebody really got on your nerves, did they?
    Don’t give a damn, just be the way you are.
    Hugs!

  4. I know how this can get. It is so easy to judge people, form stereotypes, and label people. All single women seem despo to get married. All married women cannot think beyond their husbands. All mothers will leave work as soon as they give birth..blah blah!

    You are right. Who has the right to choose who you are and what your inclinations are. Its hard to be a woman in this world. People say its changing. I say yes but at a snail’s pace. We have to deal with it. Period.

  5. tagged! will read this post and comment soon!!

    looks interesting!

  6. Very well written.. I am quite a bit like this. Even when I was pregnant I hated people treating me differently at meetings … they made me feel so huge !! lol!!
    I have written a poem on quitting … would love for you to read on http://celebratingcreativity.blogspot.com/

  7. swati!

    i know what you mean! frankly i use it to my advantage now. i insist that i need to get home on my time and push people on whom my end work is dependent!

    just the other day i was excitedly telling my MILs that i am trying to do some freelance writing work and earn some money! she said something that makes my blood boil even now as hard as try to not get affected!

    she said accha hai! do chaar paise bhi kamao toh kaafi hai! aisa hi kuch karo aur ghar pe baith ke bacche ka khayaal rakho!!

    aarrgghh!! does she know how well or badly i manage both?! she hsnt come here to help even once! then what right does she have to comment!!

    frankly i am not a very ambitious woman but i LIKE working and earning whatever small amount i do and having fun along the way!

    dont let anyone judge you girl!

    you rock!

    cheers!

    abha

  8. Aww.. Swati. Someone must have been very mean to you.
    I know what you mean. The 2 years that I worked in India, I felt that way. Its a lot better in US. It i the other way around. You are looked down when you say you have to go home and cook. I am questioned by my non-indian friends why husband doesn’t cooks. They don’t know that even if he did, it won’t be edible.
    ok, jokes apart. I am completely with you on working extra hours. One thing I have never encouraged in our company is extra hours. If you accept a timeline and are productive even 6 out of the 8 hours, you can easily meet that timeline.
    One of the reason why I go out of my way to help out woman who want to start their own business… okay.. I realised I am not writing a post, rather commenting on yours.. going.

  9. Yikes!!! Looks like someone rubbed you the wrong way …

    Like MamaMia said – dont let anyone else judge you – as long as your family supports you – and you know you are doing the right thing for yourself and your family – forget everything else. Its only the person in the mirror that you should be worried about!

  10. Personally I have never experience this type of discrimination at work, but society at large has that impression for sure!

  11. I haven’t really experienced it in my professional life, but my in-laws really drove me mad with the same insane logic..

  12. Well mam, to some extent I do agree with you. However, to me, it still does not justify you becoming mad at all this. I mean, whatever you have said is all so very correct, and so you just dont have to be mad, to prove it is. Cause it is.
    Problems never end. I being a guy, have issues which will make u feel sympathetic, specially with my ‘upstreet’ upbringing. When i was not an engineer for a damn good college, i was a jerk, and when i finally made it through, i am still called a jerk, cause am not an mba. I was told i cannot get married to the female that i like cause she was an mba and i was not. Then when i finally got thru the best mba college in teh country, am told that she is not from the best college, so u cant.. Huh..
    and this is just the tip of the ice berg.
    So mam.. i think it does not matter what u are.. My manager once said, “if you think ur problems are over, then either u are drunk or u are dead! Choose!”

  13. Did you sneak into my head and just “copy + pasted” my thoughts here?!!
    I had a draft of this – and it’s so similar – even down to the words you have used! It’s down-right creepy that both of us are thinking the same things!!!
    You had me nodding along – your anger is well placed, but I repeat myself – don’t let others judge you – you and your better-half are doing what’s best for YOUR family and no one else has a say in this matter.
    *hugs and more hugs” to u

  14. i loved what u’ve written here. Havent read it written better anywhere else..

  15. Attagirl, Swati! Handshake, backslap, and BIG hug! Been there, felt that. And have felt like socking one to the fakies! Esp the women, I tell ya. not so much the singles as the married ones, who have a maid and a cook and a driver and a nanny and sit and gossip at work, and party after office hours. They haven’t a clue what it is to do all this themselves and still work AS WELL, if not better than some. GAH to them! And 3 CHEERS to us!

  16. PG : Thenks ! Its true that it comes straight from heart ! You know , its not about the man at home , its about the rest of them , the MCP’s

    Puja : Thanks ! All the Best ! I like your blog and will be there often !

    Usha : Ohh its not today , just that I spilled today!

    Solitaire : Yes , Trying to deal with it. Sometimes you need a let out , don’t you ?

    Preethi : Loved your poems !

    Mama – Mia : You are smart ! Even I am not too ambitious but I want to work. Period.

    ddmom : I know things are much better there!

    K 3 : Thanks

    Poppins : You are lucky girl ! It depends on where you are stuck. Like I told you , my boss is intellectually innocent πŸ˜‰

    Imp’s Mom : I can understand sure ! I wrote part of the story πŸ™‚

    Smokin Joe : I agree with you Sir ..but then don’t I have the right to get mad , once in a while , atleast on my blog πŸ™‚

    Pixie : How do we always do that ? Copy each others thoughts ???? Will reply to your mail soon !

  17. How do we know : Thanks

    Just Like That : I know , they are a pain in the neck!

  18. Wow ..well written..Will come tomm and comment more..
    AM


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