To all the women: keep strong…
To all the men: Make sure you choose the right one….
One night President Obama and his wife Michelle decided to do something out of routine and go for a casual dinner at a restaurant that wasn’t too luxurious. When they were seated, the owner of the restaurant asked the president’s secret service if he could please speak to the First Lady in private. They obliged and Michelle had a conversation with the owner. Following this conversation President Obama asked Michelle, why was he so interested in talking to you. She mentioned that in her teenage years, he had been madly in love with her. President Obama then said, “so if you had married him, you would now be the owner of this lovely restaurant”, to which Michelle responded, “no, if I had married him, he would now be the President.”
What I find most interesting about this piece is that it brings to mind the saying, “Behind every successful man is a tired woman.” In both the caption of the picture and the above phrase, a woman is serving as a support system. Nowadays, girls are encouraged to step in to the spotlight and be their own support system in pursuit of shinny aspirations of the top, center stage, page one headlines, etc.
Of course, this message of, “don’t let him get in your way and be a do-it-yourself woman” are positive messages to instill in young women. However, I wish to pose the argument that the feminist movement may have gone too far and in trying to guide women to the top have created the illusion that being a support system to a man and not being the CEO but the next step down means that you have failed. Just because Michelle isn’t the President doesn’t mean that she isn’t inspirational; it doesn’t mean that she doesn’t lead and influence the masses; she has by no means failed. Nor have stay-at-home mothers, secretaries, and all of those women who do not have aspirations of the top!
I think that it is crucial to avoid bringing those that were, or are, comfortable with life on the sideline down in the process of breading starters and MVPs. These roles are different, and while it is vital that women have the option to fill either, I think neither one is necessarily more important than the other.