In Spanish this week our chapter is on the stages of life, and thus it concentrates on Spanish terminology for birth, childhood, adolescence, marriage, parenthood, retirement. It could have been triggering, but my professor, who is in his forties, is single and childless, and that has ameliorated the situation. He has talked about the fact that he can afford to teach at community college only because he doesn’t have to support a family.
It’s nice to look around and find those people with whom I can relate. Today I spoke with a long-ago friend from grad school; she is my age but she took a straight shot up the ladder while I zigged and zagged. I wanted to get her take on working in a top position.
She married in her thirties but divorced after moving for her job at the top. She said it was much more difficult making friends as an older single woman in a primarily suburban area than it had been as a twentysomething in an urban area. Today most of her friends are much older than her because the people her age are all raising families. She works in a wealthy area, and thus had to make the difficult decision to accept a long commute, as she can’t afford to live in the area.
She likes the job, but would prefer not to have to have one. Working in a wealthy area, she doesn’t feel like she’s necessarily contributing much to the world.
She also said she’s had to put her foot down in regard to people thinking she’s available at all hours due to being childless. She makes it clear that she has priorities outside the job.
It all sounded very familiar, although she does, at least, have a boyfriend.