We are living in an age of celebrating women’s rights. Equal pays. Schools for young girls. Female executives. Everything is thrown out like a trendy propaganda. Asian parents especially focus on sending their daughters to obtain university degrees, master degrees or doctorate degrees to feel proud about their education. Once they start to get out to the work force, it seems that all those education is to get them a suitable husband. Statistically, in one survey conducted among Havard graduates, 57% of men are in senior managment compared with 40% of women. Astoundingly 60% of male graduate expects their career to take precedence over their family while only 20% of female thinks so. What’s happening?
Socially speaking, people expect a woman to complete her study, settle down and have children by the time she is 30 years old. Once you got a job, it is unnecessary to try too hard because your husband will take care of you. So go find a husband to settle!
This expectation is not only outdated but also a double standard. Why putting a girl through all the education just to expect her to be a home maker? Why put knowledge to a brain when you only expect to use your hand and your uterus? It’s some kind of badge to upgrade a woman’s value to say “I have a Havard degree, so you better have the same one to marry me”.
To the women who actually want to do well in career, they are judged for it. Having an ambition is deemed to be a “side gig” until she is married. It’s not accepted as a way of life. The word “settle” or “stability” is used to explain the reasoning behind any argument. It is as though focusing on your own career is not stabilizing enough for a woman. Financial security through your career isnt as important as relying on a potential husband.
A man is never questioned when he wanted to make his name in his career. He would be applauded for having an ambition and competitiveness. A little neglect of family is accepted. For women, they are also welcomed in the work force but always accompanied by the inquisitives about her family. She cannot be defined by her career, her ambition. It is always about who she is attached to, be it a husband or a child.
It’s exhausting having to explain your ambition. As if it is a sin one is unfortunate with. When so many people dismiss your ambition, you would feel as though you are wrong. Its like having a tatoo. There is nothing wrong with it, only the people’s perception of it. Even when a woman successfully achieves great things, she is always asked where her husband is. It is as though being successful in your career is a way to overcompensate for her inability to be loved. When a family is broken, an ambitious woman is blamed to have a career so she neglects her family. Why is it wrong to want to have a career as a woman?
We, as a society, have to celebrate women’s right to work because it is an abnormality. It is not the norm. Not just society but women at large still haven’t fully grasped that female empowerment is a real thing. Highly educated women still feel that they are born to be homemakers and are destined to be a mom. They have to depend their worth on somebody else rather than themselves. For those who have defied society expectation to do well, they still have to tip toe around people. If too aggressive, they are called a bitch. If they venture something new, they are considered cute without being given credits for it. They can never truly win. All they can do is using their femininity to their advantage and manoeuvre around.
Is there a solution? It is impossible to put the middle finger up to society because it will turn aggressive against ambitious women. She will have to constantly prove herself , accept misunderstanding and wait till the next generation to be more accepting towards ambitious women.