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Can Women Really Have It All?

By: Bethany Beal

“Dear Haveitall,

You have been lying to me and to my friends. In fact, you’ve lied to millions of women and have deceived them into wasting the best years of their lives. I’m a little upset with how you’ve convinced women to give up the qualities that are completely unique to them. It makes me sad to see women who are entering their 30‘s, 40’s, 50’s and realizing they’ve spent the majority of their lives working towards a goal that won’t bring them the joy and fulfillment they desire. 

I can’t keep quiet about this any longer. I have to expose you for who you really are.  

Sincerely,

Bethany Baird”

Okay, let’s stop the mystery. Who in the world is Havitall?

Haveitall is someone that I came across a few weeks ago. After learning more about Haveitall, I decided to expose her message. I’m sad to see that so many women have taken her advice and have naively chosen to follow her. I’m heartbroken by the fact that women are giving up the best years of their lives in hopes of gaining the impossible. I’m hear to point out the truth of Haveitall’s message.

Here is the scoop. 

Haveitall isn’t one person in particular, but, a concept that has been built up over the years. This concept is actually a lie that millions of women have bought into.

Haveitall actually stands for Have It All.

It’s the lie that women truly can Have It All. I’ve seen girls graduate high school and plunge into their future with total trust in the idea that they can Have It All

These girls have been told that they can have the complete package. 

Bachelors degree.
Masters degree.
Satisfying career.
Amazing husband.
Awesome marriage.
Adoring children.
Lifelong happiness.

I hate to say this girls, but, we can’t Have It All. 

It’s impossible to fully invest ourselves into each one of those areas, all at the same time. One area will suffer lack of time, love and attention. One will have to become the priority and one will become the secondary focus. We may “have it all” in the sense that we can check each one of those categories off our list, but, we won’t be able to say that we fully invested our love and attention fully into each one of them.

Let me deflate your volcanic anger bomb that’s about to explode.

I’m not bashing on education. I’m not bashing on careers. I’m not bashing on working women. I’m not bashing on married women. I’m not bashing on children. I’m just here to lay out the facts so that you can make a wise decision about your future. I want you to be fully prepared to set yourself up for true success as a woman.

Here are the facts girls. You only have twenty-four hours every day you live. No one gets more and no one gets less.

If you choose to invest 8-10 hours a day building up your career, how much time does that leave for your family? For your children? For your husband?

In the same way, if you invest 8-10 hours a day raising your children and investing in your family, how much time does that leave for a job and building your career?

It’s basic math girls.

If you make a smart investment with your money, you will get a great return. Make a dumb investment and you will lose your money.

Life works the same way. What you invest your time in determines what you will get in return. Invest the bulk of your time in your career and you will most likely have money, business partners and respect in the corporate world.

Invest your time in your family and you will most likely have a healthy marriage, happy husband, secure children and sweet Christmas mornings with your children and grandchildren celebrating at your house in the future.

I am in love with this wise quote by Author Danielle Crittenden.  

“We must understand the trade-off of every action we take. If we want to be heart surgeons or presidents, we will have to accept that we may not be the mothers we want to be, or we may not be mothers at all. If you are are unwilling to trust men, we might not have the marriages we want. If we refuse to give ourselves over to our families, we cannot expect much from our families in return. If we wish to live for ourselves and think only about ourselves, we will manage to retain our independence, but little else.” 

Girls, we need to think ahead. We need to decide what we want for our futures. We can’t have it all. We can’t be it all. It’s not possible.

We have to make choices. Don’t focus so much on the here and now, that you neglect to think about your future.

Think ahead with me for a moment. “Haveitall” is not interested in you hearing this, so please listen closely. 

Who are you going to want at your bedside when your hands are cooling and your days on earth are drawing to an end? Will you want your boss from work, your fellow employers, or, maybe your Starbucks barista who made your drink on your way to work?

I don’t want those people!

I want my husband and children. My grandchildren. My nieces. My nephews. My family.

Danielle Crittenden says it it perfectly.

“No matter how much success we may achieve in life, it is our families who sustain us; and how they sustain us depends very much upon what we’ve given them in return. In the end, it is our husbands and children and our grandchildren who we hope will be at our bedside as the last light fades, holding our cooling hands.”

The choices that you make now will determine who is at your bedside in the future.

If you choose a career over having children, you can be sure that you won’t have any children or grandchildren at your dying bedside. If you do have children, but, invest little time into their lives, you can be sure they won’t be the ones taking care of you in your last days. They may make it to your bedside before you die, but, like their mother, they will probably be very busy with their own careers.

Don’t give up being a wife and mother, which is unique to women alone, for the sake of a career. 

Yes, the world may tell you that climbing the corporate ladder, gaining independence and making a name for yourself is the most important thing a woman can accomplish. But, at the cost of what? Ask yourself this question, “by fully striving after a career, what will it cost me?” Like Danielle said, it will be a trade-off. If you fully pursue a career, you will have to trade-off something for it.

Don’t believe the lie that you can Have It All. 

Don’t believe the lie that you can spend the majority of your life at your job and somehow have the same amount of time invested into your family.

Don’t believe the lie that you can put off marriage and family until post-career and expect the husband and children to come right along.

It all comes down to what you want for your future. 

Which one do you want to fully invest your time into? Which one do you want to be your priority? The decisions you make now, while you are young, will determine which one you pursue in the future.

FYI “Why We Like Hard Working Women” is a great follow up to this post.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this topic. Do you believe women can “Have It All?” Why or why not?

Photo credit: www.flickr.com | Lydia.Tsagari

Can Women Really Have It All?

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