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Love vs career. What would you choose if you could have only one? What would your choice say about you? A woman muses.
“Would you rather choose an unbelievably true, passionate love over your dream job or vice versa?”
I would often ask my friends this question while playing one of our favourite games at our hang-outs. And the answers I heard would mostly be influenced by the gender I was talking to. Even though there should be a number of other key factors that must have influenced this answer, such as personal experiences, upbringing and basic nature, to my bewilderment, gender was always the number one factor that stood out. I probably don’t even have to say which gender said what because it’s pretty obvious to most of us.
Thank you, gender roles! sarcasm alert
And while I hope that life is never so brutal as to throw at you a dilemma like this one, if it were to come to that, you should be ready to make a call. Because that choice would speak volumes about where your priorities lie.
In all honesty, I have always been a hopeless romantic and while I’ve sometimes had to justify my irrational belief in one true love, I have never been cynical of something as pure and divine as love, because that’s just not me. And yet, when one fine day, a smart friend decided to counter question me, I was astonished to find myself leaning toward the job of my dreams as my answer.
The funny part here is that I have no idea what that is. On the other hand, I have a whole list of attributes that would make up my dream man, pasted in the back of my mind. And yet, for some odd reason, I wanted to choose immense success instead of love. Was it because I wanted to ‘seem’ to be more passionate about my career? Somehow, I don’t think that was the correct reason. It was something else that had led me to lean toward choosing the dream job, and I wanted to find out why.
By nature, I am not one for beaten path. I can conveniently say that I am mostly like to do the challenging thing, the thing that my fellow mates don’t prefer to. And I guess that’s what motivated me to answer career over true love that day, when I was asked to pit love vs career. Like so many other girls, I am a true believer and supporter of love and putting relationships and people over everything else, but I find it distasteful that so many of my fellow gender-mates are likely to be judged in a certain light when they choose love vs career, hence strengthening the historically omnipresent gender roles.
Traditionally, men are supposed to work and earn whereas women are supposed to take care of the family. That’s what our moms and dads grew up hearing (and helplessly believing in). But that was their generation. It’s time for us millennials to turn the game around.
And please don’t get me wrong, I am not asking you to stop believing in something that you so strongly believe in. I know I wouldn’t change my values for the world. But at the same time, I wouldn’t leave any stone unturned to prove that I choose love and people – not because that’s what is expected of me or because that’s all that I am capable of. I choose this because it’s a part of my values; I believe that the psychological and emotional strength that’s required to live by this choice is far greater than the strength one needs to establish their career. Balance it on a weighing scale if you may, you’d immediately know what I am talking about.
So let me ask you the same question that I so often ask my friends, would you give up the job of your dreams for the man of your dreams? Choose the answer that aligns with your personal values and let gender roles take the backseat for a change.
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