Women and their careers… I was listening to the radio when a woman called in frantic to plead for advice. Her husband had threatened to kill her if she didn’t leave the house by the weekend.
Apparently, this was not the first time. This was his attitude whenever they couldn’t meet up with financial commitments. He would get abusive verbally and then progress to physical abuse. She had called in to ask what she should do. Everyone listening thought it was pretty obvious; she needed to leave him immediately to save her life. But alas! With 3 children and no savings or means of earning a living, she had no money to fund any decision to leave. The show ended with a few people raising money for the transport fare required to travel back to her home town with her children.
There are a few things that irk me and one of them is this; seeing women in helpless situations. The most disheartening is seeing women lose their ability to make major decisions because they have no money.
Money gives you options.
Money is earned from working or from assets working for you. If you have none, you should prioritise it before anything else. Yes, before marriage, family or children. The only thing that should be prioritised before working is any form of education or training.
Everything changes with marriage and when children are involved the challenges rise. The odds against you are dependent on how supportive your spouse is and till you cross that bridge it’s really a gamble. Even if you have a supportive spouse, life happens to us often. So, why gamble when you can plan better for your future?
I will say this. If you are a healthy, single woman and planning to get married, never, ever stop earning, whether through a job, business or investments, don’t stop earning. It is tough I can tell you, but it only gets tougher in marriage and with children. Before you consider buying bone-straight hair or an expensive iPhone please have enough money to pay house rent for at least 6 months. Maintaining your earning potential is your top priority. You owe it to yourself and your current or future family.
If you are already married, with diminished or lost earning potential, please retrace your steps. You need your own money. It’s important you find a way to keep that financial tap running. Finances are cited as the number 1 cause of marital issues. Don’t go into marriage with the hope of someone else picking up your bills. Times have changed, and so have family dynamics. Understand that it’s no longer business as usual.
A lot of abuse against women begins with financial disempowerment. A lot of dreams are cut short when women have no financial capacity. A lot of desperate decisions and sacrifices are made by women with no livelihood. The cost to you is dire and the risk too high. Fight for your career. Your dreams are valid and so are you.