Friday, March 14, 2008

Feminism's Hate towards Women

The following is an article that I came across a few weeks ago, written by Virginia Haussegger, an ABC TV news presenter. It's entitled The Sin of our Feminist Mothers and shows in a painfully clear manner that feminism is not pro-woman in the least.

A few years ago, in my mid-30s, had I heard Malcolm Turnbull pontificate about the need to encourage Australians to marry younger and have more children ("The crisis is fertility, not ageing"), I would have thumped him.

How dare he - a rich father of two, with perfect wife and perfect life - presume for a moment to tell women, thriving at the peak of our careers, that we should stop, marry, and procreate. The sheer audacity of it.

Yet another male conspiracy, a conservative attempt to dump women out of the workplace and back into the home. A neat male arrangement: a good woman to run the household, and a workplace less cluttered with female competition.

A win-win for patriarchy. And precisely the kind of society I was schooled against.

As we worked our way through high school and university in the '70s and early '80s, girls like me listened to our mothers, our trailblazing feminist teachers, and the outspoken women who demanded a better deal for all women. They paved the way for us to have rich careers.

They anointed us and encouraged us to take it all. We had the right to be editors, paediatricians, engineers, premiers, executive producers, High Court judges, CEOs etc. We were brought up to believe that the world was ours. We could be and do whatever we pleased.

Feminism's hard-fought battles had borne fruit. And it was ours for the taking.

Or so we thought - until the lie of super "you-can-have-it-all" feminism hits home, in a very personal and emotional way.

We are the ones, now in our late 30s and early 40s, who are suddenly sitting before a sheepish doctor listening to the words: "Well, I'm sorry, but you may have left your run too late. Women at your age find it very difficult to get pregnant naturally, and unfortunately the success rate of IVF for a 39-year-old is around one in five - and dropping. In another 12 months you'll only have a 6 per cent chance of having a baby. So given all the effort and expense, do you really want to go through with this? Why don't you go home and think it through? But don't leave it too long - your clock is ticking." Then he adds for comic value, "And don't forget, the battery is running low!"

For those of us who listened to our feminist foremothers' encouragement; waved the purple scarves at their rallies; read about and applauded the likes of Anne Summers, Kate Jennings, Wendy McCarthy, Jocelyn Scutt, Morag Fraser, Joan Kirner, Elizabeth Proust etc (all strong examples of successful working women); for those of us who took all that on board and forged ahead, crashed through barriers and carved out good, successful and even some brilliant careers; we're now left - many of us at least - as premature "empty nesters".

We're alone, childless, many of us partnerless, or drifting along in "permanent temporariness", as sociologist Zygmunt Bauman so aptly put it in a recent Age article by Anne Manne to describe the somewhat ambiguous, uncommitted type of relationship that seems to dominate among childless, professional couples in their 30s and 40s.

The point is that while encouraging women in the '70s and '80s to reach for the sky, none of our purple-clad, feminist mothers thought to tell us the truth about the biological clock. Our biological clock. The one that would eventually reach exploding point inside us.

Maybe they didn't think to tell us, because they never heard the clock's screaming chime. They were all married and pregnant by their mid-20s. They so desperately didn't want the same for us.

And none of our mothers thought to warn us that we would need to stop, take time out and learn to nurture our partnerships and relationships. Or if they did, we were running too fast to hear it.

For those of us that did marry, marriage was perhaps akin to an accessory. And in our high-disposable-income lives, accessories pass their use-by date, and are thoughtlessly tossed aside. Frankly, the dominant message was to not let our man, or any man for that matter, get in the way of career and our own personal progress.

The end result: here we are, supposedly "having it all" as we edge 40; excellent education; good qualifications; great jobs; fast-moving careers; good incomes; and many of us own the trendy little inner-city pad we live in. It's a nice caffe-latte kind of life, really.

But the truth is - for me at least - the career is no longer a challenge, the lifestyle trappings are joyless (the latest Collette Dinnigan frock looks pretty silly on a near-40-year-old), and the point of it all seems, well, pointless.

I am childless and I am angry. Angry that I was so foolish to take the word of my feminist mothers as gospel. Angry that I was daft enough to believe female fulfilment came with a leather briefcase.

It was wrong. And Malcolm Turnbull has a point.

*edited very slightly due to some inappropriate words.


  1. We are finally able to get on your blog!!

    This is an amazing post. I have said these same words myself. As one of those raised in the 70's and 80's, I have learned firsthand that the feminist way doesn't satisfy. I grieve that I was raised in a time when the world scorned the traditional role of women. I grieve that so many of my child-bearing years were spent trying to prevent children. I lament that I spent so many years trying to "do something important and change the world" that I missed the best that I could be doing. Truly, feminism harmed women of my generation!!

    I will show up as Praying 4 More, but I am Ella's mom!

  2. Wow... it's too bad more feminists and other women and girls could hear that, straight from a person who was (or perhaps still is) a feminist. It was a very interesting article. Thank you for sharing this with us Rebekah!
    Hope you've had a great week!

  3. Rebekah, just so that you are aware, my computer has unblocked you now! This was a very good article. The textbook I have been reading for school was written by a feminist perspective, but you have to wonder if the majority of woem feel the way that this author does. More than anything, reading things like this should make us want to pray for them!

  4. This is great to hear, esp. from a person involved in secular media. It's also very sad that this is happening to many women across the country (and globe for that matter). Hopefully these women will realize their are others like them and can have a support system in that.

  5. I read that editoral peice and it's sad. I go to feminist blogs and websites all the time and it's so sad how they say anything to do with "femininity" and "masculinity" is "sexsim" and that anything "feminine" and "masculine" is just a "streotype". It's not! how many time do I have to say it! I feel so sorry and many of these bloggers are very young (early 20's) and don't know what comming! I can only hope that these women will see the light before it's too late!

  6. Hey sister,
    Awesome Posts! What a great thing you are doing.

    Keep up the good work, and God bless you!

    Laura H. of Mayden Fair

  7. I read this another time on some other blog and it was quite powerful. Great post, Rebekah!

  8. This is an excellent article! I pray that all the feminist-minded women will have their eyes opened.

  9. Rebekah! Rebekah! Where have you been! I miss your wonderful posts! Hope that all is well with you and your family!

    Love and Blessings,


  10. Hi Leah! I go to church with Rebekah and I talked with her on Sunday. She did not plan this big laspe but a lot of stuff came up. She was very rueful and self deprecating, poor girl. I am sure she misses talking to you all.


  11. This is an excellent post, one that hits close to home for it is how I was raised. And unfortunately, how I lived my life until I was 30. I was a card carrying member of NOW, and it was a completely demeaning experience. Hindsight is always 20/20.

    Thankfully though, I realized the truth (our Lord was key in that) and became a married lady then a mother at 30 and 32 respectively. I also quit corporate America and devoted myself to my dear husband and family.

    Our families don't understand our choice for me to be a keeper at home, especially now that our daughter is in college (online at home). I'm available to my family, which is right and good and brings blessing to those I serve, namely my Lord Jesus.


  12. Thanks Monika for letting me know! I just hoped that she was alright!

  13. As one who is NOT married and WORKS fulltime, I am not sad or angry or regretful of my choice. Not every woman is "miserable" who chooses to work or who chooses to be single or delay marriage/kids. What is for one is not for another.
    In my line of work, I hate being referred to as "oh, you're a woman." I much rather like to be thought of as one of the guys - I can keep up with them (if not do better!) during a PT test and can hold my own when fighting a guy who refuses to be handcuffed.
    I have not lost my feminity by choosing to be single and choosing to work as some of you may think. I am a woman but I am a woman who has the freedom to choose what life I want to live and I choose my career. No regrets. None.
    You can even ask my family....they have never seen my happier than when I entered Law Enforcement.
    So please do not think that the feminist movement is all bad - it may not be perfect but then again what is perfect in this day & age? Feminism has done some wonderful things for women throughout history! Heck, without feminism you would NOT be able to post your blogs because you would not be viewed as smart enough to use a computer as that should be left up to your husband.
    Just remember.....not everyone is meant to be married and have tons of children and stay at home. Each person is an individual and what God has in store for them is not what He has in store for you.

  14. USA, I absolutely love your comments! Very well-said. Typical for anti-feminists to behave as though their former beliefs that women have the right to be doctors and such are now evil.

  15. Thanks for posting my comment, Rebekah. Just as a confirmation, I do not support radical feminism and you are quite right in speaking against it. I do, however, fully support female doctors, especially pediatricians, gynecologists, and OB/GYNs and it bothers me how some people are so anti-feminist that they speak blindly against these. Heavens, even most of the LAF and VF exhort women go to female doctors for personal things. I wish people would be more balanced, rather than be either totally against feminism or totally against homemakers.

  16. Not all women want children. If I don't want children, it isn't actually a tragedy if I turn out not to have any.


Hi!! Thank you so much for visiting my blog! Please come back often. Thank you for your comment as well; your input is always most welcome! Even if you disagree with something, I encourage you to leave a comment; I just ask that you do so in a loving and Christ-like manner.

God bless you!

~Rebekah S.