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A comment on the last thread by Sergey points out one of the biggest issues with the “modern woman” script: In youth, the world is her oyster. Anything is possible, options are all open. But then unexpectedly it tops out around age 35. Once one is no longer a young woman, the path becomes murky… where does the path go from here?

He says:

“It’s the best time ever for Western women in their 20s/early 30s. After that, though, the options are the following:
* spinster – crushing loneliness and a feeling of self-inadequacy for most, except radical egoists;
* single mom – financial and emotional strains, a risk of problematic child, a sense of life wasted on upbringing the kids;
* divorcee – effectively one of the above, with bitterness of life wasted on wrong mate/stupid breakup on a whim;
* having a committed partner, without kids – generally trying to conceive, due to the strong social/biological pressure and time until fertility window close running out fast; child-free variety is probably one of the happiest combination;
* having a committed partner, with kids, without career – with life embittered by the sense of missing something other women presumable have (“a care-free single life”, professional achievements etc) – thanks to all that lib-fem messages they are daily bombarded with;
* having a committed partner, with kids and a career – have-it-alls; they have their problems as well, all too common self-shaming of “being a bad mother”, envy to ‘care-free’ lives of single women etc.

Self-contradicting mix of social messages sent to women by society (mostly other women, both “progressive” and “conservative”) seems to cause much harm. The lack of it, a sort of ‘each to her own’ relativism is no better: seems that women are somewhat wired to external validation, and the lack of praise/shame feedback to their choices confuses females even more.”

At one time the female life path was fairly defined. She’s a girl, a maiden, a young woman, a wife, a mother, an empty nester, a grandmother, a matriarch.

Yes the choices were limited, but perhaps that is as liberating as stifling? Studies show the more choices we have, the less satisfied we become, ironically. Without a clear path… is modern woman lost in the wilderness?

What do you think? Please share in the comments (while respecting the viewpoints of others.)