~ archived since 2018 ~

Fending for yourself vs. Being overprotected

March 15, 2017

If you haven't read a previous post of mine (can't link because on my phone), I have a girlfriend who used to be an incredibly successful investment banker. She finally married in her late 30's, to a man that she "helped" become a successful general manager of a major hotel chain. Anyways, the post was about how she felt she sacrificed a lot for her husband but then he ended up cheating on her, and whether or not that could have been prevented.

I spent some time with her last night, and she talked about how she had to fend for herself since she was a teenager because she went abroad for boarding school and she wanted to be independent and not rely on a man for money. (It's not clear to me whether she was "forced" to fend for herself because of family circumstances, but most likely not if her family was able to afford international boarding school). She's 46 now.

So she talked about how she chose a lucrative career (financial investment) that allowed her to make a lot of money. She is not family oriented at all. She rarely goes back to see her own family and she spent her 30's being very high status because of her assistant vice president position.

Anyways, so I was just pondering last night after the conversation because I'm a woman that was babied when I was growing up and was taught the importance of family. My parents let me choose an arts career because they said my main job was to take care of my family and work came second. However, with my brother, they insisted he had to choose a career path that would allow him long-term and sustainable success, because he's a man.

Compared with my friend, she's very experienced in life but also very hardened. She's extremely calculative - bordering on pessimistic because she knows what will work and what won't. And I'm on the naive side - I still cry when my boyfriend goes on a business trip for more than three weeks because I miss him so much. And I hate making major decisions because I'm afraid.

So my question is - How did your family upbringing affect your career choice as an adult? Were you ever forced to fend for yourself? Was it feminism that inspired you to choose a certain career path? Or did you choose an industry that would allow you to have time to take care of family? Do you find your choice of career affects your personality as well? (are you softer or harder because of your job choice?)

Last funny side story: My friend realized she was "too independent" and that kept her from being married until she was late 30's, so nowadays she tries very hard to "not be capable" (although we all know she's very capable), to the point where she won't open doors or move chairs by herself and stands there expecting other people to do things for her. It's a bit comical sometimes...thought RPW would enjoy this tidbit.

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[–]jack_hammarred7 points8 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

My mom stayed at home with me until I was going to school, at which point she started working jobs that allowed her to get me on and off the school bus every day. I want to manage my time the same way if it’s financially feasible. They never "pushed" me, but instead expected honesty when they'd ask if my work was truly my best effort and if I was taking advantage of every opportunity to succeed. I found a passion for science and communications in high school, and the way my mom tirelessly supported my participation in career and technical education allowed me to make a name for myself in the industry, earning scholarships/internships/assistantships all through undergrad and grad school. Getting married young, health problems, less earning potential, and living in a great public school district with outrageous property taxes have made finances rough for them. I never had the misconception that a degree would equal financial success, but I knew I would have to make myself an asset and being the most qualified candidate on paper would at least help me land opportunities. In this way, I have fended for myself because financial support from my parents wasn’t entirely possible.

I believe in equal opportunity for everyone, but feminism was in no way my inspiration. I kind of grew up red pill. The inspiration came from learning about the world's need for science and mentors pointing out my strengths.

I could easily spend way too much time at work because I love it. While I'm fresh out of school, still dating Man, hopefully married in a few years, I'm going to also date my dream job really actively. I'll be earning a big salary compared to Man's still competitive hourly pay. We've discussed it to an extent, and aren't failing to consider the possibility that he may do more in the home (since my earning potential is, at this point, higher and I enjoy my job more than he does his) or even leave his work for the side business I'll be starting. I’ll probably save for extended maternity leave and rework my job duties so I can slow down and raise future young people full time until phasing myself back into the workplace as they spend more time at school and with their after-school interests. Like I grew up, I don’t want to “push” my children and would rather actively support them finding/making a rewarding, sustainable direction for themselves.

I find meaning in life by serving other people, this job allows me to do just that so I'd say there's cyclical feedback between job and personality... I picked it because it fits me, and in turn it helps me become a better version of who I am. I would say my job demands I be harder and softer in different ways that are all core to my femininity… more adept at finessing difficult interpersonal situations, more diligent and confident about earning credibility given the number of male customers I have, more resilient and futuristic given the lack of certainty in this field. I don't want to be a different person at work, at home, with friends... there are just behaviors that are/aren't appropriate to bring to different settings and behaviors I'll have to pronounce to achieve certain responsibilities in each setting. A man could earn as much success in this job as I do, many of the skills required are equally valuable for a man or woman, but our ways of achieving that success are different.

[–]Macheako7 points8 points  (9 children) | Copy Link

The reason, in my opinion, women have a harder time being happy while being career oriented is that, simply put, reality is fucking cruel! And women have a hard time handling the experience of the callous, negative, dog-eat-dog world of career life. Men, if trained right, are your natural born killers. So when we have to deal with the VERY REAL harshness that comes with having a career, we deal with it. We shut up, put our eyes to the ground, and our nose to grind stone, that's sorta just how we're built. You know, cold calculating machine types lol.

And that's the thing women don't fucking realize about a career, or just the free market in general...the place is fucking NASTY lol. Not so much for men, again, we're killers, but for your average, innocent, life-is-still-beautiful person they almost always get fucked up by the reality of work life after a few years.

So pushing women to be in this kind of environment is downright wrong, if not borderline deceptive and evil lol xD Sure, it doesn't look like it from the outside, but careers are full of consequence, long nights, no one to talk to, lonely weeks, hard decisions, shallow friendships. Men simply do it cause we have to, and shit, somebody's got to, better us than the ladies is our line of thinking.

So don't ever worry about "missing out" from a career lol. Honestly. If I could, I would spend every minute with my family, just enjoying life, and having fun. And those times with your loves ones are beyond priceless. So as women, you can't ever think you don't bring something to the table just cause you're not working 80'hr weeks. If your man ain't appreciatin those things you actually do for em, then he needs a lesson on just how important that shit is to keepin a smile on his dumb face lol.

[–]vanBeethovenLudwigEndorsed Contributor2 points3 points  (4 children) | Copy Link

You're absolutely right, and the fact that my friend was able to reach up to the level she did as an investment banker, just tells you something about her personality. I mean she's not just a career woman but she was the top of an extremely cutthroat industry. Even sometimes I can't follow her because all she talks about is her rich people circle and financial projects. It's totally beyond me. And just by talking to her you can tell immediately she's of another class level. Not just the 100k/year level but the 500k/year (perhaps even more with their combined incomes).

Again, I can't keep up with her sometimes. She's so cold and calculating that I can't ask her about relationship problems because the way she analyzes it is so pessimistic and negative. I just found I'm much happier being an average woman and not one of high intelligence and prowess.

Men, if trained right, are your natural born killers. So when we have to deal with the VERY REAL harshness that comes with having a career, we deal with it. We shut up, put our eyes to the ground, and our nose to grind stone, that's sorta just how we're built. You know, cold calculating machine types lol.

Yeah totally this. It puts it in perspective the type of jobs men have though. Most women who have jobs have "safe" jobs. They're not out there basically manipulating the world as a global playing field, you know?

[–]Macheako3 points4 points  (3 children) | Copy Link

I just found I'm much happier being an average woman and not one of high intelligence and prowess.

AMEN!!!!!!! lolol. I chose the more modest route myself, I'm a programmer, and about half my buddies all went to California for their 6-figure checks but I stayed behind in FL. They're all doing good, I don't wish them harm, but they have said how life out there isn't at all the glamour show they thought, so yea, I've no interest in sacrificing parts of myself I enjoy for that bull shit lol.

And here's the thing with being "super analytical with zero emotion", I personally, don't consider that "Intelligent". Why? Because they're basically just a shitty computer lol. Any number they can crunch, a computer can do it infinitely faster. The thing humans possess over machines is emotion. I can't make my laptop laugh, we can't share our thoughts on Socialism, or talk about sex stories lol. So even though our society values that type of thinking, I personally find that pure logic without emotion...really ain't nothin special, again, they're not leveraging their abilities as a human! We already have calculators! lol

So yea, I don't give two shits when I see people like that anymore haha. I mean, God bless and I hope they find what they're looking for, but I've yet to find the same happiness in a 45 minute calculus III equation then I did when I was in love with my ex. So....ya, you know lol life n shit.

Most women who have jobs have "safe" jobs. They're not out there basically manipulating the world as a global playing field, you know?

I'm a dude...I TOTALLY know lol. I've been tryin to tell your type the same for ages :P My only gripe is when the hell did "Being a woman", like, the archetypal womanly/feminine features ever become so...hated by women? I can tell you guys never use to hate girls cuz they're physically weak, or soft, or touchy who the hell is going around and telling these young girls you can't be a natural woman AND be happy...cause it's really fucking people up lol xD

[–]WeCaredALot1 point2 points  (2 children) | Copy Link

My only gripe is when the hell did "Being a woman", like, the archetypal womanly/feminine features ever become so...hated by women? I can tell you guys never use to hate girls cuz they're physically weak, or soft, or touchy feely

The thing is, feminine virtues have always been seen as 'less-than.' I'm about to be 28, and I don't recall men OR women ever speaking highly of femininity -- even girls who called themselves feminine! (or 'girly' when we were young). Womanhood and femininity has always seemed like a thankless disposition to me even though I see the value of it more now than in the past.

Even now, how often do you come across people who see emotion or sentiment as a good thing? Some of the most feminine-looking women I know will pat themselves on the back for masculine virtues like being cold, calculating, blunt and aggressive. They despise emotions as 'weakness.' And men often say the same thing -- they treat femininity with such contempt even though, yes, they do desire feminine women. It's very rare to find someone irl who actually values feminine virtues (emotion, softness, gentleness, nurturing, etc.) and will openly say so without their words dripping with disdain.

[–]AirWolf4122 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

It may be that men aren't very good at saying it, but all the guys I work with are jealous of the men who's wives who live RPW in their lives.

[–]vanBeethovenLudwigEndorsed Contributor0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

I feel lucky that my boyfriend appreciates femininity. Whenever I make a dessert with beautiful presentation, he says "Women always make beautiful things with their hands." And he's always praised me for my compassion and empathy and softness. But he comes from an extremely patriarchal culture, as do I.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (3 children) | Copy Link

I love my career. I love making a difference in the world and I worked my butt off to get where I am. I may not have dealt with the kind of cut throat free market competition men do, but I dealt with the catty bullsh-- of a female dominated field, until we got a male director. His female predecessor ruined careers and lives because she could. This woman would blacklist you for saying her name wrong in an interview. I'm not exaggerating... and I kissed ass until she left and then I was able to move up. We may not fight the same battles men do, but we do have to fight.

[–]Macheako0 points1 point  (2 children) | Copy Link

I never said ya'll don't, I said ya'll aren't built for killin, But I didn't say you couldn't fight :P Shit, to be real with ya, most guys want their chick to be a fighter lol so good on you girl!

And I just said women have a "harder time", not that they can't do it :P You're reading words into what I'm saying now, don't make me pull that "chick card" on ya lol.

Also, I 100% believe everything you said about your female director lol. It's funny, cause I actually don't like chick bosses BUT I have had 1 female manager that I absolutely loved, so it IS possible. Ironically enough she was also married and had a big family, so she was well versed in all the intricacies of managing her own family, which I think is why she did so well as a boss, but at the end of the day she was able to put OTHER people before herself, which, is the very essence of what it takes to be a good leader.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy Link

I think the mentality that the workplace is harder for men is pretty common and I just think it depends on the field. In libraries, it's all under the surface and all very passive aggressive. I'd almost prefer to have someone yelling at me, sometimes. :D

[–]Macheako0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

it depends on the field

Yea, I was literally about to say that lol. But nah, I was originally talking about The Corporate World. And like I was saying, I didn't say women don't fight, or they can't/shouldn't do it, just that, don't sit there and keep play pretending it's anything like they told us growing up lol. Working with professions, man or woman, IS hard. Just the environment of Business is what's so cutthroat. And most women I know just don't deal well under those situations, which, again, ain't necessarily a bad thing, you just gotta know what's good for you.

it's all under the surface and all very passive aggressive.

KILL ME NOW!!!!! I HATE PASSIVE AGGRESSION!!!!!!!!!!!! lol seriously.

I'd almost prefer to have someone yelling at me sometimes. :D

haha I was about to say, be careful what you wish for. And i don't think it's so much that guys deal with yelling, that's not what really makes things so nasty, it's more that we're expected to give everyone everything they want while at the same time not bitchin about a single thing, which, to be fair, bitchin gets you nowhere, so I'm OK with that one lol. But there's a LOT more pressure on guys, in terms of "delivering" and being able to "get the job done", again, without a single damn complaint. And when I say no complaints, girl, I've had my back thrown out, my legs destroyed, fully diseased, it didn't matter, unless you literally can't move your body, when you're a guy, nobody cuts you any slack lol. And dealing with that is very hard :/ But yea, I think the reward is worth it so you won't find me complaining, I just don't think anybody explains to women WHY Men were primary bread-winners and Hunters. We seem to think it's ONLY because we're bigger physically, but...come on lol we had bows N arrows back then! Women could hunt too! But the Men still did predominantly did it. Why, again, cuz we killers! lol And I mean, it ain't like that's a Good thing haha, it is what it is ya know. It's just that, again, SOMEBODY has to do it, right? And guys don't mind getting themselves hurt so long as a little TLC is waiting for em back at the village ;)

[–][deleted] 8 points9 points  (3 children) | Copy Link

Your banker friend sounds like my wife's story, except she came from poverty. Her chasing money meant that another woman basically raised our children.

I can see her imprint on my kids in some of their behavior and ideals. We really didn't vet her on the basis of her value system (not that I have fault with it), which is a warning I would have for other before going down this path.

[–]vanBeethovenLudwigEndorsed Contributor0 points1 point  (2 children) | Copy Link

If I may ask, what was the marriage like with a wife that chased money?

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (1 child) | Copy Link

Much of the time she is away from the house. The children were basically raised by our daycare lady (primarily) and myself when I got home from work. She would come home much later at night. It was an odd role reversal of sorts. When she came home she wanted to take over the caring role, but was to tired to do so effectively. Her only goal was to relax after work, which conflicts with the demands of children needing structure, supervision, and nurturing. This has been a major issue in our relationship.

[–]vanBeethovenLudwigEndorsed Contributor2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

My mother was a SAHM until we were middle school then she started chasing money. She only did the cooking but she stopped nurturing us - she still supervised but she was always in this horrible mood because she was so stressed so she always screaming in the house.

My father made enough to take care of an entire family of four (plus occasional luxuries) so she didn't really need to chase money. She could have worked a tiny bit less and saved her peace of mind for relaxing and enjoyment. But she wouldn't. She made life really difficult for everyone for a long period of time.

[–]loneliness-incEndorsed Contributor7 points8 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

My parents were always somewhere in the middle class when I was growing up. It went up and down depending on how the business went that year. During my most formative years, my parents were the wealthiest they've ever been. Yet, they were extremely careful to never spoil us.

My father taught me how to budget when I was 12 and I blew a lot of money in camp. He gave me more money but only after sitting me down and teaching me how to use it wisely and only spend within my means. He's guided me on that throughout my teenage years. When I went away for school at 17, my friends - who came from poorer families - would blow money like there was no tomorrow, I was one of those who spent wisely. I'm forever grateful to my dad for teaching me how to spend in a manner that's not like a cheapo but also on a budget.

Independence was always a virtue. It was clear to us that no matter how wealthy our parents will ever be, they'd bring presents for us and the kids but will never pay our bills for us. Sure, as a temporary thing, yes, but never on an ongoing basis.

Home ownership was always a virtue. My dad had us start saving money from a very young age so that we can buy a home when we marry. Most of my married siblings own homes by now, the rest will buy when they can. My house is now worth almost double and I own it for 9 years.

Family is huge in our family. We're extremely close with one another. I come from a large family and so does my wife. Our extended families are very close. In our extended families, women work as a supplemental thing. Never in place of the family. When you grow up in big beautiful families with a healthy relationship with money, this is the result you get.

[–]ThatStepfordGalEndorsed Contributor5 points6 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I was born in a third world Asian country that is an irony in itself. They treasure stay at home mothers and housewives very much yet are so materialistic because there is a large amount of poverty. I was torn apart growing up, all my life. I was praised for being feminine and motherly but at the same time pushed to do well in school and focus on academics for a good 'career' (aka anything that will make a lot of money like law or medicine). However I never forgot how much I enjoyed playing pretend housewife and mother as a child. Then I immigrated to Australia. There were still some traditional views in my family, my mother was a housewife but soon she started feeling ostracised for it and spiralled down, becoming more influenced by modern Western values. Not long after my parents divorced and I stayed with my father willingly as he was the better parent. Growing up while this was happening I was bombarded at school with modern Western values about feminism and 'girls owning it', that sort of crap narrative. This lead to me burying my feelings about mothering and homemaking, I was convinced that that was 'old fashioned', my culture had been wrong and I needed to 'get on with the times'.

As time passed by my shame grew because I was starting to remember what I really loved, then came to a horrible conclusion that most of Australian society would not accept me.

I reflected long and hard, about what I truly liked doing. I like to provide care, whether through homemaking, cooking or even looking after children. Thinking back to my childhood and high school life I remembered teaching others simply because I wanted to. I also wanted to take care of children. I soon came to the conclusion that while I'm not a housewife and mother yet, my love of teaching has always been there.

I was both being overprotected while also trying to fend for myself through those years, the irony!

[–][deleted] 4 points5 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

How did your family upbringing affect your career choice as an adult?

My mom stayed home with us. She worked around the holidays for extra money but otherwise was home. It wasn't until my youngest sister was a sophomore that she got a job again, and by that time I had moved out and was on my own. Family quality time was heavily stressed in my family, both of my parents had rough home lives growing up. They wanted better for us and they provided it.

Were you ever forced to fend for yourself?

It was something I chose. My parents suffocated me and wouldn't let me make the smallest decision for myself. I moved out two days after I turned 18 and have been on my own ever since. I had one bf completely take advantage of me for three years from 18-21 and I vowed it would never happen again. I went ultra independent, don't need no man. I had a lot of fun and learned a lot about myself (making financial decisions alone, living and dying by my own decisions, all responsibilities on me). I had a hard time shutting that off when. I got into my LTR with Mr. Dunham.

Was it feminism that inspired you to choose a certain career path?

My mom and grandma both are in healthcare and I swore I'd never do it. Ten years later, it's all I've done my adult life. My profession chose me and I love it.

Did you choose an industry that would allow you to have time to take care of family?

Luckily enough healthcare has the most convenient of work hours. If you have a schedule, you can find a place that needs someone to fill it. The combinations are endless. So it's great that it worked out that way. I've been on-call, per diem, full time, part time, first second and third shift, I've done it all and it all fit any given point of my life.

Do you find your choice of career affects your personality as well? (are you softer or harder because of your job choice?)

My personality is perfect for nursing. I'm an empath and it's something you really need to have the ability to do to be good at this profession. It is hard because I work with the elderly so I do lose people and it is emotionally taxing but I love it. It hasn't made me harder as a person. It's helped me express my vulnerability at times.

[–]WeCaredALot3 points4 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I spent the first 12 years of my life living a more traditional lifestyle where my Dad was the unspoken head of the household. However, this set up failed when he developed a gambling addiction, thereby forcing my Mom to separate from him and raise us on her own. With my Dad's earnings, we could have owned a home and had a more financially stable upbringing but that didn't happen. Neither of my parents have college educations, which greatly reduced their earning power.

This is an interesting topic because I am hyper career focused now but not necessarily because of my upbringing. I've balked against the traditionally feminine/'girly' things as far back as I can remember and have always been more of a tomboy. My background simply reinforced my innate tendencies towards independence and a desire to make my own money. I find it difficult to relate to many RP tenets that focus on the traditional Captain/First Mate setup because I've learned firsthand what happens when you depend on someone financially and don't have the skills to make your own money. It's not pretty. I think some RPers tend to glorify female dependency when it's actually a terrifying experience to go through in real life.

EDIT: for clarity

[–]Willow-girl8 points9 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I grew up seeing my mother wheedle my father for money for basic household necessities. Ghod only knows how he took it out of her hide when I wasn't around! It curdled my stomach and I vowed I would always work and have my own money and never have to beg a man (especially one I despised) for anything. That's been my plan thus far, and so far it's worked out for me.

[–][deleted] 7 points8 points  (4 children) | Copy Link

I grew up with those 90s parents who believed a college education was the key to happiness. My mother was a nurse, who felt fulfilled and made good money because of her job, despite long and unpredictable hours. My father was a lineman for the electric company, who worked long, hard hours and knew he wouldn't have to if he'd had a degree. I was pushed to make good grades, when I was young, so much so that a 93 (scale of 90-100 = A) was too close to a B and I needed to get it up.

Fast forward a few years and my father was gone, because my mother's crazy and made every effort to keep me from him. No male or female role model was in the home, but my grandmother was my rock, as a former business woman and 1970s divorcee. She helped to maintain the mindset that good grades would mean a good job and I kind of just did it on my own. My mother wasn't even checking in at that point, to see how I was. I graduated Valedictorian, with a 4.0, but got married right out of high school to a lazy sociopath, because I felt like I had no one. It was my grandmother who inspired me to get out of that situation while I still could, as well.

Initially, I wanted to be a nurse or a teacher. After a semester if majoring in nursing, I chose teacher. After my first observation, I chose to go to graduate school to be a librarian. I wanted to help people, while making myself smarter, in a predictable and physically comfortable environment, so yeah... I guess my mother, father, and my grandmother all shaped my choice in career.

[–]smirk_addict0 points1 point  (3 children) | Copy Link

How are things with your father now?

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (2 children) | Copy Link

We're great. My mother's in an institution and his wife is really stepping up to help with wedding planning. Life is good and I met a good man who shares a lot of his more admirable qualities.

[–]smirk_addict0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy Link

I think most people who grow up in that situation have resentment for the absent parent and usually have toxic views fed to them by the other parent. How were you were able to see everything for what it was at an young age? Or did this all come later in life?

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

I realized at 18 that everything she'd told me was a lie. I just... didn't remember those things happening. It was a hard realization, because my dad was still kind of an ass when I was growing up and now my mom was a manipulative sociopath. Gradually, my dad and I reconnected, over the periodic lunch. We can't reclaim what she took from us, but we can make the best of who we are and what we have now.

[–]jenna_r2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I grew up in an enlisted family of 6. Money was tight, but we never went hungry. And they always found awesome things to do that only cost gas. We moved a lot.

It was a fun life where I got to experience a lot of things, but having no physical roots was exhausting as a kid. I only attended one school for more than 2 years.

I wanted stability and certainty for my own future and for any children I may have. So I got my degree in IT, did a small business gig to get my "experience", and I now get a steady paycheque from a corporation. We (my husband and I) also agreed to buy a house before we had any kids. So now we have a house and 1 kid. One we can afford to either home school or send to private school (because this state's public education is horrible).

Adding more:

My choice of career had three components: I'm good at it, I enjoy it, it pays well.

My decision to stay with this particular company did have something to do with the possibility of children in the future. There is an in-house daycare that saves is hundreds of hours in travel time each year and has a fantastic program and staff.

I actually did move to a different position after she was born that affords more flexibility in hours, but more responsibility.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

Definitely grown up being pampered and spoiled, my parents gave me everything I wanted, which may have worked out for them, because I don't have any demands. In fact, when go shopping, my father has to virtually force me to buy something or else I don't buy a lot of stuff for myself XD

My parents urged me into a career choice that I'd feel fulfilled in. Since I was young, I was one of those people that just "knew" their path in life, why they were put on this earth. Sure saved my parents a whole lot of trouble. But it was never about "earning money", yes, that'd always be a factor, but yes, it was about making choices that helped you as a person.

For my mother, that choice was quitting her job when she had me, for me, it's the career roadmap I've drawn up.

[–]azngirl76892 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I'm hardened and cling like hell to financial independence and avoid reliance. But I also balance that with kindness and giving in other ways like cooking and quality time spent. I'm unlikely to take money from anyone and fight like hell to split it 50/50 (I feel better when I do that) but I don't think I act like an overbearing c-u-next-Tuesday. Or at least bf has never said anything.

I'm in finance too, btw.

[–]allhailthebitch2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

To be honest, I was raised by a very successful single mother (she made nearly six figures a year) and I was also separately raised by my father who was a deadbeat and abusive. I'm honestly very surprised that I turned out the way I have, feeling totally comfortable letting myself be supported by my man. I have moments where I worry what I would do if he somehow died and I have this huge gap in my working history. I'm very conscious of financial things, and very frugal, but overall, I don't know how I found the courage to hand over the sole money-earning capability to my fiancé. The only experience I had with being supported by a man was awful and terrible. But I'm glad I did!

[–]nukessolveprblms1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

Mom stayed home with us kids and dad worked. Very traditional upbringing and I noticed the difference with how my parents raised us when my younger brother was born. I was always taught to cook and clean and my bro never had to help in the home at all! haha, but he did help dad with the "man" stuff, heavy lifting, yard work, house repair, etc. in fact, I still don't do any yard work but my husband is happy to do it for me.

I like this topic, me and my husband talk about how we want to raise our kids and even though I work FT now, I plan to drop down to PT or even stop altogether because we don't want someone else raising our kids. But, I was never career-oriented and have really looked up to my mom consistently putting her husband and children ahead of herself.

We were also raised in a Christian house and my husband and I are christians. Theres a teaching/ verse that woman should be home makers, and that had a huge influence on my upbringing. I still struggle with what that looks like, but I'm comfortable putting myself in the "weaker" position of depending on my husband for income. I know that's counter to Western upbringing though.

[–]abingo1901 point2 points  (2 children) | Copy Link

The culture I grew up in is very male centered, a man is always the head of the household. I accept that, I kind of like that too. However, my family is crazy so growing up I had to be tough, I would say I was forced to be independent as I had no other option to get away from my family, and I did not want to be crazy like them.

My career was strictly chosen b/c it allowed me to live on my own without my parents support.

I do think my career choice affects how people see me - I think to a lot of degree I am looked at as this independent, strong, woman but honestly I am not that strong as I appear to my friends, I want a partner to be with me, to be in-charge, to be my lead in life. I know that b/c I am independent and come off as this strong woman that men sometimes think I am doing so well on my own that I don't need a man. But its not that I need a man, its that I want a man. I do believe if I had support I would be in a different career path, a one I would love.

I am currently single, and it hurts sometimes b/c I want to take care of someone, I want to be there for them and have them be there for me, I want someone to take charge and I am afraid if I were to show that side in my everyday life I won't survive long on my own so I show that strong, miss independent side.

Deep down I would love a captain in my life and let him lead.

[–]vanBeethovenLudwigEndorsed Contributor0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy Link

What's your career, just out of curiosity?

[–]abingo1900 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

Information Technology - I am not an IT person! :p

[–]RainbowKitty771 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

My parents taught me to be independent and find a job I like.

[–]tempintheeastbayEndorsed Contributor1 point2 points  (1 child) | Copy Link

There's a funny Chinese saying, basically goes: raise your sons as if they're poor, raise your daughters as if they're rich.

The idea is your sons should come out scrappy, hardened, even a little cynical. Your daughters should come out soft, gentle-hearted, and optimistic, convinced of the world's goodness.

Didn't exactly work out in my family (my bro and I flipped that on its head, both for inborn personality reasons and because my family's financial circumstances changed a lot over time).

On one hand, I like that saying a lot

OTOH, that saying sets up a false dichotomy. I'm ambitious, financially independent, and tough. I take no shit from men at work and hold my own. I also cry like a baby over 2 episodes of television a week, do most of the cooking & decorating, and am generally an extremely, extremely girly girl. I'm pretty sure my man feels extremely needed, etc.

I'm not sure how I'm ultimately going to reconcile the time it takes to raise a family with the time I'd like to give my professional quests.

[–]vanBeethovenLudwigEndorsed Contributor0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

There's a funny Chinese saying, basically goes: raise your sons as if they're poor, raise your daughters as if they're rich.

The idea is your sons should come out scrappy, hardened, even a little cynical. Your daughters should come out soft, gentle-hearted, and optimistic, convinced of the world's goodness

Yes! This is exactly it. I was raised to be a girl whereas my friend raised herself to be a man (again, it's not clear whether she was forced to fend for herself or because it was feminism.) I feel a bit bad for her because she said if she divorced her husband she had no family to go with.

[–]Auspica1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

Both, kind of? I was pretty babied growing up and even now - my parents pay my rent and bills (though I was lucky enough to have my tuition waived) and I never had to work in my life. My mom was a SAHM and I think she would've been happy if I went that route (as long as I married rich). But I was also pushed hard to do well in school. My parents are older and my brother is disabled so it's my responsibility to make sure they are well taken care of. We do have sizable savings and receive disability payments but obviously my having a good income would make things so much easier.

I'm currently studying biology and have been accepted to med school (well, MD/PhD programs) as well as several PhD programs for next fall. While I know I'd be much more fulfilled staying at home or working a less-stressful/flexible job, that isn't possible without the support of a husband who's the main breadwinner, especially since I am meant to find a way to support my family. I didn't meet my boyfriend until quite late in the game, after I had already been accepted to all these programs, and he isn't planning to marry me anytime soon, so I feel stuck like I have to go get an advanced degree. At least academic science isn't as cutthroat of a field as some others I can think of, so I will hopefully be able to hang on to my idealistic nature for a little while longer :D

You can kill a man, but you can't kill an idea.

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