Talking to a Daughter, or Two
A Minute to Myself (184)

Sidebar observation on Judge Sotomayor

Oh look, another woman rising to the top who doesn't have children and is not married (she got divorced in '83). No, I am not cynical nor am I angry (at least regarding this, at least now), it's just a tired observation. Does this reflect society's relentlessness, that a person needs to be wholly committed to one's job at the expense of all else? Yes, maybe it's a tired argument, but enough already. Look at the economic situation we are in, even with all those overtime hours and that commitment to the job, business went down, jobs were lost, homes were lost. And it doesn't really matter who's at fault, it was a whole system based on greed, whether for money or someone's time or someone's life blood. Wouldn't it be lovely if at this time we really revamped life as we know it in the US? Couldn't we figure out a way to be committed to both home and work and interests without losing one or restricting another?

I wish Judge Sotomayor a smooth confirmation hearing. But wouldn't it be nice, too, to start seeing women and men who don't sell their soul to the office getting pushed up the ladder in recognition of the fact that the amount of time a person can wear a dress or suit in a day does not make him or her the best candidate for that promotion or opportunity. 




I've always thought North Americans should take a page out of Europe's book (well, some of the countries there...) when it comes to holidays, siestas, mat. leave, etc. A so much more civilized and balanced way of life.


I could write a bucnh of posts on the greed of corporate America. The lack of balance. An (ex) friend used to brag "I Am the job." He rose to the top in banking and would tell how he only promoted people willing to give up their lives to make the big bucks. This guy used to be fun before his rise past the middle.


Our current economic climate should hopefully help us to set our priorities and weed out the excess. Over the years in my work, I've marveled at the people I've encountered (lawyers) who spend ridiculous hours at work and are expected to in order to achieve. Usually the men have a wife at home who raises the children. I've often thought what's the point of this? You work to provide material things for your family, but you're never home for them? Work, work, work, then you die.

One thing about Americans that I've heard Europeans comment about is we define ourselves by our profession and not who we are. Say, in France, if you ask someone what they do, they might say, "Oh, I paint and I like to write a little." Here, the answer, "I'm a doctor." I am my job. That's so sad.

In my world we would have a daily siesta and parents would be able to work AND have time for their children. Why should we have to make the sacrifice one or the other?

morethananelectrician I go.

In my fifteen years of managing people I have found that people who are not married (or in a lon term committed relationship) are generally devoid of one great skill...the ability for compromise. And someone never married and no kids, that level increases.


I think it's difficult- I look for female role models and the ones that excel are the ones who are like men, who commit themselves to the job, who make sacrifices. It just seems you have to live your career in order to make it, I don't know any women high up in certain fields of work with children. Maternity and Paternity leave and pay should be equal. Men and women should both have the choice to stay with their children, legally and socially. I know I've felt like I had to sacrifice a home life in order to achieve, and have felt looked down upon because I chose to have a boyfriend, another part of my life where my friends and family are important. I was once told by a boss I couldn't go on holiday to see my boyfriend, but I could visit my family. She (yes she) also told me that she was worried if I got pregnant I wouldn't be strong enough to "make the right decision". She is single with no children, and it appeared at the time her way was the only way to get ahead. Now I realise my friends and family are more important than my career, but should it have to be like this? One or the other? It's sad.

Laura of Rebellious Thoughts of a Woman

Beth, that was one of the great things about Israel, it was more European in the work-life balance. People worked really hard, but weekends and holidays (religious) are for family.

Pseudo, we can see that the "cream" really does rise to the top. Who said cream is good for us?

JC, exman used to work as a lawyer, and he always worked long hours. Work always came first; I had thought that at some point that would change, but the more someone becomes established, the more he likes how that feels and sees himself more and more as a WORKman and not a man who works.

MTAE, I shall not expel you from this site for saying that, there certainly is some truth to what you say. Someone who has not had to have the give and take of life together is less understanding of what others might think. But, doesn't her life story show that she is aware of the other sides of the story?

SSG, advances have been made so that women can play with the men, now we need to start pushing so we can all play with the girls and boys in our families as well as at the office. For so long I thought that I could do the commitment to work thing, and when I couldn't I felt like a failure. That, truly, is a failure of our way of life.


Oh great, another parent who thinks you can't know anything unless you pop out a few kids. Like it takes any special skill to reproduce. Maybe if people weren't having so many children and overpopulating this planet,there would be a lot less damage and suffering going on.

Laura of Rebellious Thoughts of a Woman

Wonderwall, my comment has nothing to do with a parent thinking that parenting skills make her more capable than anyone else, rather that the restrictions that are placed on women--and men--who choose to devote time to their family often find that they are restricted in rising to the top in their field. I understand that these are "choices that we make," but I don't think that that's the way it has to be, nor should it be that way.

Liz A.

Though it's totally off topic, I pretty much agree with Wonderwall. When my husband and I first got married, people commented either how the first year was the hardest or disparage our contentment with some comment about just wait til you have kids, oh you're newlyweds, etc. I get really tired of the, just wait til you kids comments. They're continuous at his work functions.

As you know Laura, this topic is big in my world these days. This is what's so crazy to me, women either have to succumb to the societal pressure of being a "true" woman and try to have a child, like it's a sin to deny a uterus it's purpose...or be like a "man" and sacrifice almost everything to be at the top. I think all the commenters are right in one way or another. Balance is the key to life, and Americans tend to suck at it.


this is the issue I have with the workplace in general. White collar work all to often involves selling your soul to the job. Sure you can have a family. just keep them at arms length. I am quite happy to see this woman making it this far. We need more diversity in the Supreme Court. I also enjoy the fact that it is ruffling all the stuffy old white men.

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