I read this article in which Indira Nooyi shares some of her experiences as a mother and says Women can’t have it all. At first, when I read it, I thought I couldn’t agree more. But after a lot of thought process invested into it, I realised that I beg to disagree with some points. I really do. There are very good points that I completely agree with , like the thing about the biological clock and the career clock in total conflict with each other and dying out of guilt etc.
But there is a very important point that I disagree with.
When you are not able to make it to the coffee meetings at school because you are a working mom and cannot make it and then when your daughter genuinely complains about it, you looking for options to counter attack it? I mean, seriously, taking out a list of names of mothers who couldn’t attend? Is that a genuine enough answer for your daughter who seem to have a genuine and sincere expectation from you as a parent? With all due respect, I beg to differ. The girl had a sincere and a genuine feeling of being upset, and the answer for that should have been an utmost sincere confrontation of her feelings and explanation of why the mother couldn’t make it, that's all..... A simple acknowledgement of her child’s feelings is needed and letting her know that she is a working mom and she is juggling between responsibilities and that she cannot make it. Honesty is what children need and encapsulated with all love, even if you are tending to disagree.
You know, most of the times, I think we feel that we need to mother our children and teach them values. But parenting is all about setting ourselves right, because our children are busy learning every bit of it from us. If we lie, they learn to lie. If we tell the truth, they learn to tell the truth , no matter what. If you make excuses by picking out other options, instead of facing the truth, they will do the same, at some point of time in the future. And then please dear parents, don’t complain when your children give it back to you.
Ultimately, it all boils down to priorities. Everything in life is a choice. And when you have made a choice, accept it with all heart and dare to confront your own feelings first, and in turn your children’s feelings. Because, they deserve answers and we have the responsibility to give it.
Oh yes, I can’t agree more that women can’t have it all. But you know, nobody can have it all, men included. We are humans and putting ourselves before anyone else may not be wrong. Follow your heart, but at the same time, practise some honesty and sincerity with your kids, because as you move on in life, they will become your biggest critics, because remember? They are learning from you and they observe each and every bit of you. You will be fooling yourself if you think you can hide things from them.
This is an honest attempt from me to put forth my feelings on this issue and with all due respect, no offense intended to anybody including Indira Nooyi. Ultimately, we have to be in their shoes to understand what they have gone through.