Help! Beyoncé says I should be financially independent. Apparently in the January edition of GQ she says . “I truly believe that women should be financially independent from their men. And let’s face it, money gives men the power to run the show. It gives men the power to define value. They define what’s sexy. And men define what’s feminine. It’s ridiculous.”
Well I hate to say it, but back off B. I wish I could be financially independent and still live the life I lead. I wish I made zillions of dollars for writing my blog and slaving over my stories but I don’t. I also don’t look as good in my underwear as you do.
Lately I’ve been struggling with the whole financial dependence thing myself and when I read her comments I felt a stab of resentment. I mean it would be awesome if all women were living that life but they don’t. I don’t. As much as it’s my ideal, it’s not my reality right now.
Look, let me get one thing straight, I admire her for being awesome. I don’t care if she lip-synched the national anthem or not, she’s flat-out amazing. Likewise, I have the utmost respect my friends who’ve decided that staying home with their children is the best thing for their families.
I just…struggle with being dependent. You know?
I realize you are probably barfing in your toque right now. I know this is a very elitist, white, middle-class post. I took women’s studies, I am fully aware of how very Betty Friedan my dilemma is; just as I know that I am so, so lucky to have this choice to make. Does that knowledge make any decision I make cut and dry? Absolutely not.
Both the hubs and I made concessions in our careers after we had children. He left the firm that he loved but had him traveling CONSTANTLY because it was hard on all of us to have him away so much. I eventually left editing because I was tired of commuting for 3 hours a day, only to pay someone else most of what I earned for watching my kids. By the time I got home, I was zonked. So I stopped working full-time and I more or less gave up my financial independence. Now I’m toying with the idea of pausing all work for a while, just until the kids are all in school full-time. And it terrifies me.
I was raised to be a strong, independent woman. I know I can support myself because I’ve done it. I’ve lived on my own and been just fine — I paid the bills and the rent and I even supported my cat.
But I don’t think I could raise three kids on my own doing what I do. And that bites. But still, something about quitting entirely and depending on him 100 percent has me resisting it.
Even if I’m only making a couple of hundred bucks here and there, I have deluded myself into believing that I’ve still got my hat in the ring. That if, God forbid, I ever needed to pick up where I left off, I could.
But this is a partnership. And so I trust him to take care of me for a while. While I take care of us.
What’s with this crazy pressure I put on myself? Do you do it too? Does this post even say anything?