Why Can’t I Have Both?

Since we were kids we are asked “what do you want to be when you grow up?”, and we are asked this until we hit high school, but when we start to officially decide what we want to do, new questions and opinions start to formulate as well. New questions like “are you sure that’s what you want to do?” “what about if you want a family, what if you want kids?”. With my career choices these questions are most prevalent. My career goal is to work for the Department of States and my job would involve traveling to a new place and country every two years. Every time an adult asks me what I want to be and I tell them, those are the first questions they ask. Not “wow that’s ambitious” or “that sounds amazing and like a great opportunity” and men have been even more likely to ask me these questions. However, if a guy says he wants to serve his country and be a part of the military they are praised and are regarded so highly, though his career will take him away from his family and is even more dangerous than most other jobs.

Since we were little, women have been bought baby dolls and play kitchens and all these things to help us become domestic and a good future mom or wife and when we start to stray from that people get nervous and some even horrified as if we are the one doing something wrong. Don’t get me wrong I am definitely a domestic princess. I love cleaning and baking and making things orderly and kids bring me so much joy and I want to be a mom one day, but that shouldn’t dictate my career goals. I should be able to have both a life and career goal. A thing I have started to do when people ask me what my goal in life is or what my ambitions are is now a two part answer. First, I say “my career goal is to work for the Department of State” and then follow up with “ and my life goal is to become a mom”, because to me, one should not affect the other. I can be whatever I want to be while still being a good mom and wife when that day comes. These gender roles and stereotypes that try to fit woman in a box need to be left behind and burned and shriveled up, because there are so many great examples of working moms having amazing careers and still qualifying for that #1 Mom Mug. So, instead of asking “are you sure that’s what you want?” try supporting a girl in her ambitious career goals because being ambitious and dreaming big should never be seen as an odd thing no matter your gender.

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