Monday, November 13, 2006

The Corporate Wives' Club

Read the most fascinating article in the FT Today, and I couldn’t help laughing for a long minute. It’s a man’s world, whichever way you look at it. Apparently, men..oops, make that successful men, want smart women who have abandoned the route to a successful career and willingly embraced the route of getting the private jet and diamonds via the very successful hubbie. Reading this article confirms two things to me; (a) There’s no way out of the rat race;(b) Either way, being a woman aint easy..and that’s the reality of the whole situation.You have two choices-Buy the private jet yourself or marry someone who will.Buying the private jet yourself will obviously involve total devotion to work and outsourcing of most of the household and childcare type chores that come with the feminine territory.However, you get the respect you think you deserve from work colleagues and hubbie alike. If you’ve done very well, you get global acclaim for your work and maybe get courted by the people around you, who are obviously vying for your attention.On the other hand, the succesful hubbie would have made sure you signed that awful pre-nup,just in case you change your mind and want to do a 360. However, you still get all of life’s best.. and you still get help with the housework and kids. Money will not be something that you worry about and your kids will have the best that life has to offer. Obviously, there’s no such thing as a free lunch-accepting this offer will mean a lifetime of prioritising your husband’s needs(and most would argue that women do that anyway),a life where bad-hair days will be prohibited and where you’re expected to make up for every shortcoming he has.He wants you to be smart and witty, sexy and homely, well- read and entertaining..almost reminds me of what Geisha’s were expected to be in those days.To be fair, reading the article, I mentally tick off the points I think I can live with-most good things come at a price right?? As long as he knows that keeping me at home will COST him.I’m prepared to sacrifice..The point in this article where it all breaks down for me is where the writer points out that emotional neediness is a big no-no. At this point I’m like hold on..What this guy is looking for is a functional hand bag!! And that’s where I draw the line. If I can’t express myself to my other half even when we’re alone, I would rather slave 100 hours a week at the office. At least, someone somewhere will appreciate my persistent dedication to the cause. I argue that there has to be a balance.Or maybe I’m just not being realistic. Maybe the problem lies in being overly ambituous in the first place. Many people will settle for a house and a dog? Where does one draw the line? Not many women will want to sacrifice spending time with their kids for the career in a suit, but how many people have the choice? How far will a woman have to go to capture the heart of a man whom she knows every other woman wants. What will she have to give up? One might say that at least, she gets to spend time with the kids..But how do you go from being the woman most guys will die for to being the ornament and baby-sitter of a so-called “master of the universe”..? For sanity sake, I have to believe there’s a balance. Like so many girls out there, I have my notion of the perfect man and the ideal family and this dream is kept in a bubble, well away from the tragedy and pessimism that we see in marriage today. This is just a dream and rationale tells me that the odds are against me..but I choose to ignore and like most girls.I proclaim “It’ll be different in my case”.lol.If the truth be told, most women are forced to make a choice and the majority err towards protecting their children’s future. Fulfillment is a big part of what I want for myself..and somehow I don’t believe that playing the eternal handbag is what God has ordained for me in this sphere.Or maybe, I’m just putting what I want first? Either way, it’s important to recognise that at some point, it might become important to guillotine the dreams that we hold dear and wake up the dire reality of making a choice..What will it be?? When the time comes and you reach the proverbial cross roads, will you choose yourself or your kids? Do we even have to make that choice?? Help!!


Monotony said...

Realistically being the eternal handbag is coterminus with 'love' (whatever that is). Giving up your dreams to help another's come to life- because they would not be able to blossom with your input.
Unluckily how many of us will ever be in the first wive's corporate club? Unfortunately because we are not in the first world 'land of plenty' or rather because we are not actively dating in this circle or holidaying in the Hamptons (FOR NOW!), then it is wise to think of alternatives to the 'handbag' life (which to me is tres attractive). Reality bites, and money seizes- and careers that seem so promising now, END. So unless there is some guarantee that the potential 'tycoons' have unstoppable wealth DO NOT BE DECEIVED and believe your prenup will be watertight. After all when the marriage is over and all is lost- and your hubby is broke- the costs of replacing your Tod's heels with children friendly flats BEGIN TO WEIGH ON YOUR person.
So I say only sell your soul to the Corporate Wives' club if your spouse's longevity in corporateville comes with a warranty.
If you fortunately end up in this distinguished club the one thing that distinguishes the Corporate 'hangbag' is durability and intelligence... SO INVEST YOUR ALLOWANCE WISELY! hehe!

uchenna said...

Spoken like the wise one that you x 2!

Naija Vixen said...

hmmmn,you wrote down exactly what many women have been afraid of thinking about or even if they have at all thot or gone down one of these routes,end up regretting their choice...sadly it's truly a man's world:no matter how many times i tell pple i'm a feminist or act the way i do,there just isnt room for the "enlightened powerful and successful woman"...there comes that time when you have to make a choice...i write beautifully,keep doing big things!!!