Is ‘Equality’ taking the ‘Lady’ out of Women Today?

shells-shizzle-lady

I ask this question to cause thought and prompt responses from you dear readers for my own pondering ………

I’ve recently been considering “what makes a woman a lady?”

I’ve reached that phase of life where I could become a grandma at any time and that has reminded of my own Grandma and Nanna, who they were and what they stood for.

Both women were beautiful, elegant, kind, loving, well spoken, well dressed, to a degree ….God fearing and most definitely, both were true ladies. Both women taught me practical life skills and spiritual lessons. They had the classic traits, I would say, of real ladies.

They came from a different era though, their only concern was to keep a good home for their families and attend to their working husbands. Once married these women did not work outside the home any longer. Their work then involved house chores, making clothes, being frugal with limited funds, cooking nutritious meals and educating their children on how to survive in the real world. Most importantly – they made happy families and they were admired and respected by their children and grandchildren. They had TIME to perfect all aspects of their feminine ways.

I ask myself:

“Were women more ‘ladylike’ then?”

“Were families more stable when women were at home to raise children with morals and guidance?”

“Are women less ‘ladylike’ now that they have to compete in the workplace, sometimes struggling to be heard and recognised as equally competent as a man?”

In the modern world women have to hold down successful careers, manage our homes, share the raising of our children with other care givers, look after our husbands and all whilst being amazingly fit and well groomed. The Pressure is on us ALL THE TIME.

Women have fought tirelessly to be recognised as equal to men both in the work place and in the home ……..and quite rightly so. We SHOULD get the same pay for the same job, we SHOULD have the same rights. We SHOULD work if that is what we choose for our life.

But,

Does that so called equality come at the cost of being a real ‘Lady’?

Should we even be concerned with being a ‘Lady’ in this day and age?

Are children suffering because women are working just as long and hard as our men?

From my experience:

I have worked nearly twenty years in the construction industry………. I have had to be hard faced and constantly had to push myself forward for responsibilities as a ‘feeble’ woman, I have had to adjust my behaviour to be more like ‘one of the lads’ in order to be accepted and listened to and I have constantly been referred to as the ‘the bird from Charter’ – I have forsaken my ‘Lady’ at times in order to fit in.

My Children spent more time with other care givers than with me, ergo other people’s views and behaviours have had a major influence over their education and world view rather than my own.

I was tired and stressed most of the time when I was at home because that was when the chores needed to be caught up on. As adults both of my children said they missed me when I started working full time. I thought I was setting a good example but all my children wanted was for me to be there after school for them. I thought I was teaching them a work ethic but what I actually taught them was that work is more important than being with my family……. And I can’t go back and change that now.

As a young woman I wanted ‘equality’, I wanted the same rights and the same pay as men. I wanted to be super woman, super mom and super wife. I wanted to be the perfect example of a modern woman.

As a middle aged woman who’s raised her children, I now reflect; what I’m left with is a sense of sadness.

I’m sad that I put so much effort into being accepted in the workplace because, I am in actual fact, no more equal to men in the construction industry now than I was twenty years ago, my children went without my love and guidance and instead took that from other people, my health suffered because of high stress levels and among all of that I have mental health issues that have come with me from childhood and been exacerbated by happenings in my adulthood and my continued desperate need to fit in, to be accepted and to be loved.

I feel like I sacrificed my most precious offering of feminine nurturing and care for my family, in order to fit what the modern world expects of women. I feel like I was less of a lady because I was busy trying to be equal to men…..when I already am!

If I could tell my younger self anything it would be:

“Stay home while your children are growing up, be a real lady, set a shining example of love and femininity in the home because there is NOTHING wrong in that”

gender-equality-sign-

Is a woman less equal to a man because she is feminine, or a stay at home wife/mother? Hell NO!

Whilst I am all for women’s rights I also recognise that the natural role of men and women is clear. Women were made to be the nurturing ones, women were made to be the child bearers, the care givers, the teachers, the home makers; physically, emotionally and psychologically women were designed to do these things and we do them best. Likewise; men’s bodies are stronger for working/providing, they are designed more toward logic and physical work. When you bring the two energies together………. then perfect balance and harmony is possible.

When both parties are clear on what their role is within a relationship there is less discord and confusion. Without the blurred lines of what is expected from modern men (metrosexuals) and women then a lot of tension can be removed.

We’re not less than men, we’re simply different from men, we should be PROUD of the differences.

I’ve come to believe in my journey and experience that the natural order seems to work best: Families work best when ‘mom’ stays home and has the time to fulfil her role of care giver, teacher and nurturer and is not taken away from it by the pressure of having to work.

Likewise a ‘man’ can go to work and earn the money and come home, relax and enjoy his family time because he’s not being ‘hen-pecked’ to do chores because his wife is tired from work also.

I realise that this may seem to be a controversial opinion in this modern era and could inflame some sensibilities. However I strongly believe that women are NOT LESS THAN anyone, especially men, because they choose their natural orientation of being a mother and a wife.

I wish I had chosen this route instead of believing that I had to be ALL things.

Maybe my children would be more balanced, maybe I would have struggled less in life; one thing is for sure though, both I and My children would have been happier if we had followed a traditional family situation.

I essentially would feel more like a feminine ‘Lady’ had my role of Mother and Wife been prized and valued above the male energy oriented role of being equal bread winner……..a role that societal influence made me believe, as a young woman, was the proper ideal of a modern woman.

In other words the ‘in your face’ feminism and ‘Women’s Rights’ beliefs adopted from media as a child growing up, actually made me feel less than a lady, in fact made me feel that simply being a woman is not enough when ALL along being a woman has been my most precious gift to the World.

I don’t have to work a particular job or earn a particular amount to be equal to a man because quite simply: Women and Men are already equal in their birth rite to existence and following the natural roles of who we were designed to be does not make us in any way weak or less than.

We work best when we work in unison and we each have clear understanding of our role.

What are your views?

I’d love to hear thoughts that are opposing to my own (to open my mind) and indeed I’d also love to know if others agree

Love & Peace – As Always

Shell xx

(Please note: This article is written from a heterosexual viewpoint but the crux of some arguments could be the same for same sex relationships where there is female/male energy dominance in the partners)

20 thoughts on “Is ‘Equality’ taking the ‘Lady’ out of Women Today?

  1. I’m so happy Simon shared your blog so that I could visit! Love this post. I like you grew up with Grandmother’s and Aunts that stayed home to prepare meals and to keep house. But, my parents spit at an early age so my Mom had to go to work and provide for us. I learned from her to be extremely independent. But like you, I’ve lost the majority of my lady like tendencies. I work in a male dominated industry and have had to stand my ground and be one of the guys but by doing so I’ve become hardened and cold. So, I understand this post so well. I’ll be looking forward to more of your posts and getting to know you 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Reblogged this on LADYHOOD and commented:
    It is extremely difficult to be a modern woman. The financial demands alone, have made it almost impossible to be a stay-at-home mom, because if most of us didn’t work, we would be considered low-income. As a fairly new mother myself, who struggled financially due to the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the required amount of unpaid Maternity Leave women can get when pregnant or after delivery of their child, I know what it is like to struggle financially. (Please check out my post https://aladyhoodjourney.wordpress.com/2016/12/05/maternity-leave-in-america-the-story-of-the-struggling-mother/) There was no way I could be financially stable and be a stay-at-home mother. I feel that all women have the right to work and take care of their families, but sometimes I wonder if I was neglecting my child by putting her in childcare at 9 months, or if she would be “more balanced… happier if we had followed a traditional family situation.”

    Like

  3. I definitely agree and ask myself this same question all the time. My blog, LADYHOOD, is all about challenging what popular culture thinks a woman should be… its so hard to be a modern woman because if we dont help financially with our families, most of us would be low income… i love this post. I feel challenged to talk about this subject because i feel being independent woman has caused us to lose our LADYHOOD! Please check out my blog, i would love your feedback!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you Shellsshizzle I love what you write about…I had to reblog your post “IS ‘EQUALITY’ TAKING THE ‘LADY’ OUT OF WOMEN TODAY?” because I think it is such a valid point and I ask myself all the time, how different things could be if I could be a stay-at-home mother. Great Post, once again and i look forward to hearing what you think of my site. Thanks again

        Liked by 1 person

  4. In Billy Joel’s words…”The good old days weren’t always good and tomorrow ain’t as bad as it seems…”

    I do have issues with society’s view that women must be the “same” as men to be equal. I believe this sets most women up for definite failure. Women have more options today but if feminine power is discounted it’s only because it’s feared.

    I say stand tall & proud in your femininity…wherever you choose to go & whatever you choose to do. Always follow your own heart even when making little day to day decisions. Don’t lose yourself, love yourself, you are beautiful!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi Shell, really good to hear from you again. Wow, nothing for ages and then straight in with the big questions.

    I’m going to flip this over and say what about the machismo in men. In all my life I could never have been considered Macho. I was quite thoughtful, quiet and introspective as a child. I got bullied a bit by other boys (and girls). Possibly as a result of childhood experiences, I took a different direction in life to my peers. I tried as far as I could to take a different path to the traditional male construct. The result seemed to be that I not only became alienated from many of my male peers, (I didn’t talk about cars, football or trash talk about women) but also “some” women.

    My thinking is, that nobody easily escapes the pressures to conform to the social norms that we live in and through. However, this is a struggle that has to be worked through; otherwise society would remain static. Change has to happen, not for the sake of it, but because previous ways of working actually become detrimental to survival.

    You talk of being a lady, of being feminine but these states of being may not be things that are intrinsically part of being female. Many believe that these ways of being are simply social constructs created by patriarchy. Women may simply have adopted these states as a means of surviving in the society they are living in. As such, they could be seen as oppressive ways of being that need to be thrown over. Rather than held onto and defended.

    My own view is that it is fine for any woman to be the way she wants. Provided that she is confident that it is what she wants; that is, that it’s not coming from a position of fear and insecurity about who and what she is.

    You state that you, and your children, would have been happier if you had been a more traditional family. I have to say that I don’t agree with that statement. Your life would have been different yes, but it would not necessarily have been happier. That is something that can’t possibly be known. I have regrets (everybody does) about certain things in my past; but if I stop to think about it, I realise that there is little point in beating myself up with these regrets. My life simply was as it was.

    I’ll finish with a favourite quote of mine:

    “The hardest battle is to be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else.”

    Take care, :0)

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Wow – thank you for the thoughts….. most appreciated.
      I like that you turned my argument on its head ……. you make very good points to consider ….. change is definitely good and impossible to avoid because “all life is change ”
      Is the idea of being a ‘Lady’ archaic ….(because it certainly seems underrated these days ) ? ….. Maybe!
      Surely we all have the divine right to be who we are naturally ; whatever ‘that’ may be without pressure/fear/conformism etc

      And you’re right every woman should be confident and happy in their choices, there’s nothing more beautiful than a confident person being their authentic self.
      Ultimately , in an ideal world , everyone should be free to be who and what they are free of judgement – NO ONE should be discriminated or denigrated …… but that’s just me day dreaming …..AGAIN 😉
      Interestingly you’ve made me see the hypocrisy of my spending my whole life trying to conform in order to receive love yet hating the concept of conforming and hate that other people feel they should.
      There is much thought to be had from what you’ve kindly given and I could carry on writing my thoughts randomly all night but I shall be kind 🙂
      Thank you x

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I see totally what you’re saying and this is a great piece. I think that women should be able to live the rile their meant to without pressure from others, but also if they want to work to be treated equally. While it may be possible to be a working mum it must be hard work. Is that really how it should be?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for your kind comment 😀
      I love to question things, to question myself and to try to HEAR or understand other points of view.
      Not to validate my own thoughts as much as to educate myself (hopefully others too) .
      It’s absolutely right for anyone to be who or whatever they choose to be in this day and age (certainly anything seems to go nowadays) so long as their motivation is their own true , authentic self. Gender therefore in the future must become completely irrelevant in all aspects of life……and as much as we as a society would like to think it is now ….it is not ….
      I don’t however wish to be like a man , I for one wish to aspire to the ladylike ….as much as possible. 🙂
      It IS hard to be a working mom – it is possible to be all things required but it’s damn tiring !
      There are so many aspects to this argument that could be discussed .
      Thank you for reading x

      Liked by 2 people

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