Here’s a good one on Quora:
‘My daughter immediately wants to become a housewife after college. How do I convince her to get a career in case she is single, gets divorced or widowed?’
From this I assume the daughter must be in her early teens. She, like I was, might have grown up receiving various dolls or dolls’ prams as Christmas or birthday presents, or a miniature cooker containing tiny pots and pans in which to cook make-believe dinners for an imaginary family.
As a small child I craved a doll’s pram for Christmas. All I wanted to do was push my dolly around in a pram together with my little girlfriends and their prams. Little did we know that these toys, added to our normal in-built female nurturing instincts, were conditioning us from an early age into wanting real live babies of our own. We watched older women in our families cuddling their little warm bundles of joy, and if we were lucky and sat still on the settee we found they gave us the chance to hold a real live baby for a brief, supervised period of time.
It all changes for the majority of girls round about 15, when the hormones kick in big time. Of course there will be exceptions, but I’m going to generalise here. All we can think about is whether the boy next door loves us or the girl down the lane instead. We love him so much that we want his babies NOW! We dream of a real kitchen where we can lovingly prepare his evening meals, and of a rose-tinted life with our ideal man where we produce lots of doe-eyed babies who look just like him and never cry.
So we get married at the earliest opportunity, filled with the wonder and promise of a happy-ever-after, and find out that life isn’t quite how we had envisioned. Babies scream for hours on end and hardly ever sleep, our dreamboat of a man snores and belches, and even worse, finds the dubious joys of fatherhood rather restricting to his social life. He often stays out until the early hours doing goodness knows what, but we girls carry on still hoping and trying to build that ideal family.
Comes the sad day we have to face the reality of the situation. Our man wants a divorce to marry the daughter of the girl down the lane, and now we’re a single parent with scant finances. We wish we’d taken our mother’s advice and built up a career before starting a family. We have to leave the kids with granny (if they’ve got one who is willing to have them), and stack supermarket shelves to pay the bills.
So to answer the question above, no mother can convince a 15 year old to get a career when her hormones are raging and all she can think of is the boy next door and having his babies. It’s only when she’s older and had his babies that she realises a career might have been a good idea after all, so she tells her 15 year old daughter to study hard at college, pass as many exams as she can, and build up a good career to fall back on before settling down and starting a family…