This post, like the last one, was inspired by the conversations I had last week with those awesome individuals I graduated with 25 years ago. Most of them, just like my husband and I are in this dynamic exploration of what share of family and income responsibility each one should take. In this, the classical gender roles seem to dissolve while external stereotypes seem to make it hard to find and stick to what works for each couple or family.
The first time I realized this is when my husband told me about the reactions of his professional environment when they heard that I went back to work a few weeks after giving birth to our children. It sounded like he was judged just as harshly as I was. And from what I heard form my school mates, it’s sometimes a tricky ride for most of them.
In this context, I thought back to Sheryl Sandberg’s (COO of Facebook) book “Lean in”. What struck me most about it is that it stereotypes are not just perpetuated by misogyn men, but equally or even more so by women. It’s really eye-opening how she describes how those stereotypes are getting perpetuated and how easily we can work against them.
I find this book to be an invitation to ask questions and to question what we do and how we think. An invitation to make life’s choices in line with what we aspire to and not letting ourselves be held back by stereotypes.
Hats off to all of you following your unconventional path! And huge gratitude to my husband for his way of being unconventional.
PS: to those busy people challenged by finding time to read: the book is available as audio-book as well so you can read on the road and while gardening. Or so.