How my generation were told a huge lie

Kirstie Allsopp

Kirstie Allsopp

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It seems the one way to get yourself noticed on Twitter is to have Location, Location, Location presenter Kirstie Allsopp retweet you.

Not that I’m spoofing (well I am, I was almost excited by Kirstie retweeting me as I was the time I got the private message from Matt Goss) - but there I was watching my Twitter feed on Monday when the television presenter began to talk about an interview she had done for one of the UK newspapers.

In it, Ms Allsopp, a 42 year old mother of two young children, not to mention a hugely successful television presenter, said she thought perhaps women should reconsider the order in which they do things in life.

Certainly I grew up in an era where women were encouraged to want it all and told to let nothing stand in their way when it came to having it all. So I did what Madonna and her ilk told me - I decided to go for “it all”.

I’d get my career, my house, my car, my family and it wouldn’t take a fizzle out of me because we women are totes amazeballs and can do “it all” without so much as laddering our tights.

Like so many of my generation I subsequently have found myself robbing Peter to pay Paul time wise. I have become an expert at juggling the demands of a job with the demands of family - but as life gets more complicated (as it is want to do from time to time) - my juggling skills no longer seem to be able to keep up with the extra balls being thrown in my direction.

I will put my hand up and say I wish I could concentrate on one, or the other. That - contrary to what we were told as young women in the 80s and 90s - it is not easy trying to be all things to all people. Many of my friends who work say that, like me, they feel they pulled in too many directions - crippled not only with mammy guilt but also with the desire to over achieve in work, as if to prove a point that we can manage, honest.

What Kirstie said in her article is that maybe, just maybe, if you can at all why not think about having children first - when we are more biologically able to do so - and then when they are a bit older go and forge your career.

It may sound like a backwards step for the traditional feminist movement - but in reality if society adopted such changes women would be more empowered than ever to make the life choices that suit them without the added pressure of having to achieve “it all”.

Having it all, all at the one time - as you can probably tell - is really quite overrated in my books. I’d rather take my time and cherish each stage of my adult life as it happens.