Whatever you do, do not make significant changes in your professional life at the same time that you are getting married. Because people around you, including people who know you well, people who are self proclaimed feminists with a bookshelf full of books on feminism will assume that you have decided to never work again, and instead plan to remain barefoot and pregnant for all eternity. Never mind that you have another job lined up, never mind that to date you have always given your career the highest priority. If you are making changes, and these changes happen to coincide with your getting married, you might as well be wearing a sign that says ‘I am officially retiring my brain and intend to be a bimbo for the rest of my life.’


Or at least that is what I can infer from the reactions of my colleagues. We can no longer speak off my career plans (what career?). Nor can I say anything about whether I will like my next job and what I’ll do next if I don’t. “Get married” is the response I get. From a woman. Repeatedly. That is her response to many of the statements I make. And then there are the people who automatically assume that I have begun restructuring my life for the progeny I will bear. I suspect it is a little worse in my case because I’m leaving a tenure-track appointment in academia, and academics cannot envision any career outside of their own having any merit. But still it’s beginning to drive me crazy.

No, you fuckwits, I like working, I like having a career, I have had a career thus far and will continue to do so.  I just don’t like what I’m doing, or the way I am doing it. I will still have a brain and I will still use my brain, I’m just changing how I am going to use it (and how much I will be paid to use it). That is not the same thing as never having had a brain or retiring it forever. For a bunch of intellectuals engaged in critical thinking they don’t seem to be able to grasp this distinction very well.

Just needed to get that off my chest.

Advertisements