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Can Professional Women Make Great Wives?

Now that’s dumb.

Yes.

Any woman can make a great wife or a great girlfriend if one, they find the right man. And two she works at it with even more enthusiasm than her career.

For some reason, our culture has, when it comes to women or feminism or anything it always wants women to choose one path and stick to it.

Working moms look down on moms who stay at home. Moms who stay at home write venomous blogs about how what they do is more important than what working moms do.

Women who don’t have kids or don’t get married trash women who do and say they aren’t living up to their truest potential, while on the flip side the married moms rail on about how the over worked childless women don’t have values, they aren’t real women if they haven’t given birth or wiped poop, they don’t know tenderness they are selfish and cold.

I was having a discussion with a man the other night when he asked me what feminism was.

And I started to laugh.  I said feminists are people who basically support women choosing how to live their lives as they please, they believe women should get equal pay for equal work and that there are no limits on what women can do in their private and professional lives and they should not live with shame or be shamed for their decisions.

He was surprised at my answer. I was like, what did you want me to say? I feel like there are stereotypes of bra burning angry women who are always mad about something and who want to be better than men and who don’t need men.

I don’t live on Amazonia. I’d never agree to that. So he asked, well can men be feminists under your definition?

I told him most certainly.

But anyway, I’m all riled up because I was engaged in a conversation on twitter with a relationship blogger from Canada who I dig. I think he is an intelligent brotha. He brought up an interesting topic and I just couldn’t resist. I made one comment and then he pulled me all the way in. Then some other dude jumped in and at that point I got tired.

Most of what this guy said, I agreed with and said so. But as the discussion evolved, it made me think. And there are so many levels to this convo, it’s hard to even encapsulate it in a twitter discussion.

It started with the blogger saying that “When professional women bitch and moan about being single I wonder if they realize their job title doesn’t make them wife material.”

At first, it sounded harsh and felt a little offensive. I even replied ouch. But I did say it was something to think about and that it was true.

I further said that I have noticed on a number of occasions while out with my professional friends that we know or met other women who didn’t have the same education and careers who were married.

So the blogger and his co-signer were going on about how men aren’t looking for degrees and high-powered jobs when they are looking for women, they are looking for a good woman.

But I call bullshit on that, for a couple of reasons. One in society, men are expected to be breadwinners and leaders. It isn’t uncommon for men to not care about a woman’s ability to bring home money or support the family because it is assumed he will do it. So you see it all the time with athletes and musicians. They can grab women and hangers on out of obscurity and it’s all to the good. They just have to be pretty and go along with the program.

In that case, it’s far more easier to date and marry a less educated woman who may not make as much if she is working. That will help eliminate a power struggle that I will admit, a lot of professional women have, especially if they do date men with less education or who make less money.

Women of all backgrounds no matter how professional, do want to find men who can be financially stable. I hear it all the time. However, yes, in gaining education in working our way up, we display more aggressive tendencies, we are clear on what we want, what we don’t want and that may seep over into our love lives. But I did ask the blogger, doesn’t all this talk put the onus on the professional woman to change and try to be “nicer” and more “palatable” but absolves the man from maybe dealing with his insecurities that may come with dating a professional woman?

So he said he doesn’t have a problem with dating a professional woman, and his home boy jumped in saying that “As soon as they walk across the stage, they forget to be likeable.”

Gulp.

So it’s magic. We take off our caps and gowns and put on our bitch hats with our Jimmy Choos. Excellent (Mr. Burns voice)

Cmon. That’s so easy.

So professional women forget to be likeable. We are just garnering degrees and success and forgot how to be people.

Ooookay.

When I asked if they gave up hope for professional women, the homeboy said his girlfriend is in fact a professional and degreed woman, but that’s not what made them compatible.

See, I think it may not be the primary thing (even though in DC it is), but your education and status play a huge role in who you date. I don’t care what anyone says. In theory, both of these well-educated men could make the philosophical argument that it doesn’t matter. Actually, the blogger was wise. He said it SHOULDN’T matter.

So for that, I give him props.

I don’t know. Discussions like this give me an icky feeling about the labels being put around the necks of professional women. And on the flip side, what do these arguments say about women who are less educated and may not have certain kinds of jobs? Does that mean, because they aren’t making as much money or in high-powered jobs, they have a greater capacity to please their men? To not be as difficult?

I wouldn’t dare paint my other sisters with that brush. It’s not right. To me that’s an insult.

Let’s face it. The two gentlemen are right status and education has nothing at all to do with love. They are often avenues by which we meet like-minded people and form connections.

So in saying that, can we say it’s safe to say whether you work at a fortune 500 company with an office on the executive level or you clean the bathrooms in that building. If you are a human being you are going to love who you love, you are going to give your all to who you want to give your all to and it’s not limited to what you do, or what school you graduated from.

I’m a professional woman and I’ve loved. I’ve loved so hard. I’ve cooked and cleaned and encouraged and prayed for. I joked around, and danced and grinded on, and freaked and massaged. I’ve treated and picked up bills and I allowed myself to be treated. I took criticism and I gave it. I know how to sacrifice and give. I know how to smile and laugh and play and forgive. And no, I don’t need a degree to do those things.

But being a working professional also taught me a few things about negotiation, understanding your worth and fighting for what you believe in, speaking up and being a little selfish sometimes. Now anyone can learn these things, but in your every day working life, you will sharpen those skills and see the results. And in a lot of cases, as I mentioned to the blogger, women will carry these things over into our personal lives. It isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But some women do need to learn the art of balance.

So can professional women make great wives?

Of course. Cmon.

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2 thoughts on “Can Professional Women Make Great Wives?

  1. I’m in love with this post! So I some-what agree with what the Canadian said. Black women in particular feel like we have to prove ourselves in the work world. It makes us fight to be independent, powerful and strong. When we’re in a relationship we sometimes forget to be soft, womanly and HUMBLE. I know I was never humble in relationships. I was too busy being strong and independent. It took me awhile to get it.

    As you said there is a flip-side- men and their egos. They need to deal with the idea that they may not be the “breadwinner.” It involves lots of communication and emotional awareness [and maybe some help from Suze Orman].

    I swear these guys do exist.

    • I’m not completely faithless. I do think men exist who can be men, be leaders, but also know how to appreciate what strong women can bring to a relationship to help make his life better and he won’t feel threatened. As I’ve said over and over, male or female, we all need balance and we all need someone who can balance us out. But it is crazy that the traits that make us successful and independent can often hinder us in developing relationships. It’s something to think about and be conscious of. I think there’s a lot of fear that independent women have. We hold back a lot. We want to be sure that the person we choose is all in before we can fully let go.

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