Why 'Having It All' Doesn't Have To Mean Having Kids

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Why 'Having It All' Doesn't Have To Mean Having Kids [EXPERT]
Anne-Marie Slaughter's article in the Atlantic assumes "having it all" includes having kids.

I'm not advocating people abandon their children. I'm simply suggesting that we broaden our definition of what it means to have it all. Having it all isn't about checking all the boxes on the page (wife, mother, career woman). It's about choosing and checking only the boxes you want to experience in this life and celebrating those choices because they are your own.

Don't get me wrong; I'm not oblivious to the blessings and joys that being a parent, even temporarily, has brought into my life. There's nothing sweeter than a child lighting up when you walk in the room, or wrapping her arm around your neck as you carry her down the stairs, or leaning in to you as you sing her to sleep.

I'm humbled by the deepened intimacy caring for a child has created between my husband and myself, and for the new things we've discovered about each other along this journey. I had no idea what a talented artist my husband was until he started drawing with my niece. And he had no idea about the childhood songs I wrote and made my family perform on command that I now sing to my niece on a daily basis (it's awesome to hear him singing those same original songs to her while I'm in the other room working.)

I get it. Those moments are priceless. And I'm grateful for having had the opportunity to experience them. But while I've adapted to less sleep, paying out the nose for a nanny, and getting used to my sex life and travel schedule being on hold indefinitely, I am now more clear than ever that for me, having it all does not include a wee one.

Again, this isn't about my choices being right or wrong. It's about the fact that they are my choices. Just as they are every woman's choice.

Whether you're single, in a relationship, married with children, every woman has the opportunity to have it all by celebrating exactly where she is in life and relishing the power of her choices. 5 Steps To Self-Love & Happiness [EXPERT]

And instead of judging each other's choices or condemning another woman who has made different choices as being incapable of having it all, wouldn't we all be better off to broaden our definition of having it all and celebrate what that looks like for each and every woman we know? To me, this is the new woman's right to choose. And while we may never agree, I would hope we can adopt the new definition of having it all and honor each other's choices for the complex and unique women of the world we are. 

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Lisa Steadman

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Lisa Steadman

Location: Los Angeles, CA
Credentials: Other
Specialties: Dating/Being Single Support, Life Management
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