Last week, Amal Clooney gave a profound speech on the genocide ignited by ISIS in Iraq and urged officials to take action and investigate. That in itself should have been THE news, yet the media was more focused on the bump in her midsection and the height of her heels while carrying the baby responsible for her bump. We would never have focused on anything but the content of a man’s speech on genocide, not the sharp Tom Ford suit he was wearing, or the new belly that must be from all that high end scotch – why did we have to shift the focus here to being a celebrity’s pregnant wife and comment on the daffodil yellow color of her dress when a woman spoke on such an important topic?
This brought up a lot of discussion – amongst mothers, fathers, parents and really everyone. The question that resulted, “what is a woman’s MOST important job? being a mother??”
I think the answer to that is completely personal. I have many friends who don’t have a “real 9-5 job” yet find immense satisfaction in being a full time and fully available at all times mother. I work full time in a job with kids who are full time in school. And while I love my career, I have to say that I still feel my most important job right now is raising my boys and being a supportive, committed and loving partner to my husband. My family, their health and well being come first and I make no exceptions for it. I personally don’t have a problem with a woman’s favorite label of herself being “mommy” – again, it’s personal. It might even be my favorite label at the moment, not.gonna.lie.
BUT, to proclaim that being a mother IS a woman’s most important job as a universal truth, now that’s problematic. Sure, serving as the literal vessel for our future (both men and women), that’s gratifying. But don’t dismiss what women can and are doing without being a mother OR alongside being that vessel and raising those babies.
There was a time when women weren’t allowed to hold many jobs so having a baby and being a mother…that was kind of it. But the fact that a large part of our society holds onto this mentality from the past, it’s just sad. There are women who don’t want any part of being a mother, it will never be their most important job because it’s their choice. For others it’s not a choice and they can’t be a mother. Either way, society shouldn’t automatically get to say that being a mother is our most important job as women.
Holding onto this mentality is what will hold us all back.
It’s baffling in this day and age that this is still happening. Society has to change their mindset. This has to be addressed. It is up to us what our most important job is as women, no one else. What are your thoughts?