I was at dinner last night with a group of uni friends. We religiously ‘do’ dinner once a month to catch up and share some banter over a few wines. At the moment we’re experiencing a lot of firsts. We’ve been out of uni for a year and we’re all beginning to find our first jobs, first salary, first glimpses into the ‘real world’.
We were discussing our careers, what we wanted to do with our careers, when one of them said something that made the table go silent.
“I’m only planning on working ‘til I’m thirty,” my friend who’s smart, charismatic and loves to watch re-runs of The West Wing said. “I’ll marry rich and become a stay-at-home mum.”
What shocked us was not her desire to become a stay-at-home mum, all the women at the table have discussed being a mum somewhere along the line and how we could balance this with a career and also being able to take time off, it was that my friend had decided, already, she was going to marry rich and this would be her only source of financial income.
Gen Y’s get a lot of flak about being the ‘me’ generation. Yes, we can be selfish and desperate to take everything the world has to offer. We also have the largest rate of unemployment for university graduates in history and will be lucky if we can ever afford our own home, yet, what we do have are opportunities, especially for women. More than ever, women have the freedom to pick a career of their choice and pursue it. Our grandmothers didn’t have this luxury. They were generally pigeonholed into being either a teacher, nurse or secretary.