Wednesday, May 22, 2024
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Laura Perrins: Feminists on the brink of a great achievement. The abolition of grandmothers


Today I send out my heartiest congratulations to the feminists – you have what you wanted: women are now ‘having’ careers not babies. Take a bow.

You and the capitalists have women exactly where you want them – chained to the laptop and living in bad rented accommodation. You must be so proud!

“For the first time the number of women over 35 in maternity wards has exceeded the under 25s and comes in marked contrast with the pattern as recently as five years ago, when there were 27 per cent more births to younger mothers.”

Not only that, but marriage is going down the pan too, at least for the less well off. It is likely that soon the majority of children will be born to fragile cohabitees rather than married couples.

Who could destroy both motherhood and marriage so comprehensively? Who else, but the feminists? Never mind that cohabitation is much less stable than marriage for children to be raised in. It has been a rout.

On the back of this news are two of the most remarkably ironic comment pieces from two feminists I have ever come across.

Allison Pearson of The Daily Telegraph thinks that perhaps the career first idea might not be so wise. She believes ‘it may be time for a rethink’ as the whole late motherhood thing can be a bit tiring, and if the trend continues there will be no grannies around. This is all true but a bit late in the day now.

Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett tells us that millennials have been ‘priced out of parenthood’ (note the gender-neutral term. It is the Guardian after all).

I blame most of this priced out of motherhood business on boomer feminists such as Allison Pearson. Let me explain.

Boomer feminists themselves had young, usually full-time, mothers to mother them (1950s mothers) when they were bonny little toddlers. When these middle-class girl toddlers grew up and flooded the expanding professions they had their own still young mothers (now granny) to look after their own children when they eventually got around to having them at the age of 35 or so. If the grandmas were not looking after them (I am speaking in general terms) I am sure the mothers were leaning on them for support in other ways.

Now the likes of Allison Pearson understand that if their own daughters wait until they are 35 to have children, they will be 70 and not doing much childcare and/or running around the playground after darling grandchild (and it probably will be just one grandchild as the little critters are so damn expensive and damaging to one’s career.)

In a few generations, it is right to say, there will be no grandmothers.

There will be no grannies to lean on, knowledge to share, advice to scoff at and ignore. The matriarchy will simply die. You know that scene when the Dowager Countess rides to rescue of Lady Mary and Edith in Downton Abbey? “Where are they, where are my heartbroken granddaughters?” she exclaims and gives some much needed advice to Mary. This scene will soon be cut for ever.

This kind of relationship will vanish and what is more it will not be missed because everyone will have forgotten what it looks like, or how magical and necessary it is to have a grandmother.

The power and importance of the matriarchy to the private sphere will be wiped out. These grandmothers will not be grandmothers; they will be CEOs having devoted their life to the boardroom. The private sphere will just die and the State will expand in its place.

The fact is there are losers in the great feminist revolution and some of their stories can be read here, in The Guardian of all places.

Of course, I have sympathy for these women, one of whom felt she had to end a pregnancy of a much wanted child with a stable partner because they felt they could not afford a baby. Another says, “there are days I wish I could just take the baby-brain out, when I just feel so sad about it….I just feel like my arms are empty.”

The feminists wanted all of these empty arms – it leaves more space for the laptap and expensive handbag. It was never ‘choice’ or equality they wanted – it was sameness and total parity with men on a very male value system that measures money and professional status as the important things in life.

And now, to top it all off, the newly formed House of Commons Women and Equalities Committee is launching an inquiry into ‘How the gender pay gap for women over 40 can be reduced’ (because there is no gap for under 40s.) Again, we all know that parity of pay packet is more important than people, especially little people like babies.

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