It has made me much more aware of some pitfalls that I didn’t know were characteristically female in our culture. The most illuminating for me and my career was that we don’t volunteer for challenges that involve things that we don’t know how to do completely and that a man will raise a hand just because he thinks he can figure it out (pg 36). And it mentioned a question that I should have been asking myself all along, “what would I do if I wasn’t afraid?” (pg 27). I also learned about “imposter syndrome” and “tiara syndrome.” I’m guilty of tiara syndrome all of the time and imposter syndrome sometimes. I hope that being aware of these things helps me overcome them better.
I will also say that I am fortunate to have been ahead of the curve on having a real partner. I grew up in a home that was run by real partners and wouldn’t settle for anything less. I’m glad my husband thought it was a good idea too. Of course, as a close friend of my brother’s for years, he had seen the vast benefit to it. I am grateful to have him and to have been raised by a real partner, like my father had been. And to be raised by a true feminist, though he wouldn’t have known it. He just always wanted me to reach as far as I could and gave me a sense of obligation to try to get into things that women were newly allowed to do. When I was very young, he excitedly told me that women were allowed to be fighter pilots now and that I should do that when I grew up.
I didn’t, it’s just not for me. But I do reach and dream of higher heights all the time. I just didn’t put my hand up often enough out of fear. If I had this book ten years ago, I may be sitting in a different place right now.
I know this isn’t a feminist book, but it should also provide a little insight into things we all need to look for equally.