Over the past several decades, society has witnessed a profound change in the way women view men and marriage. It began with the baby boomer adage “never depend on a man.”
This message resulted in a generation of women who turned their attention away from settling down and onto the workforce. They did what their mothers told them to do: they became financially independent so they’d never have to depend on a man.
In time, “never depend on a man” turned into the full-blown belief that men are unnecessary. In 2010 Jennifer Aniston claimed women needn’t “fiddle with a man” to have a child. I guess she made that comment after Angelina was able to satisfied Brad Pitt with dozens of children.
Well, to be financial independence is a great thing, but you can’t take your paycheck or salary to bed with you. And there’s nothing empowering about being bound to an employer when what you really want is to have a baby and a homely home. That’s dependency of a different sort.
This may strike you as an isolated case of foolishness, but Aniston’s willingness to put it out there speaks volumes about modern cultural attitudes. No actress would have said such a thing in the 70s, 80s, or even early 90s.
Fortunately, most women come to the realization that they do, in fact, need a man—at least if they want a family.
This is the conclusion to which most women have come. According to Suzanne Venker, “what women want more than anything else is not to work full-time and year-round but to live balanced life.”
How will they do it? That’s the number-one conversation among women today.
‘Round and ’round we go, asking how women can gain more control over their lives. How can they spend more time with their children? How can they make time for exercise or even a social life? How can they keep their houses in order and still have time to cook? The answer is obvious.
Lean on your man. As we all need somebody to lean on!
I know what you’re going to say. Where are these men on whom women can depend? And you’re right: there are fewer men these days who seem eager to be primary breadwinners.
But ask yourself why, and I bet you know the answer.