Notkin recounts three stories. The first two are of Kate (34), who froze her eggs because her boyfriend wasn’t ready to commit (it’d be cheaper and easier to dump him), and Susan (41), who decided to become an artificially inseminated single mom (easier to control a doctor than a man). The third is about Joanna (39), who sidetracked her career to spend seven years focusing on dating, only to find nothing. Seven years?! She couldn’t find one acceptable marriage candidate in seven years? In New York City?! I don’t need to be a statistician to know that is completely improbable. I just need to be well versed enough in the letters written to Cosmo to know that these women are far too obsessed with the idea of marriage and children to ever actually commit to getting married and having kids.
The root of the problem is that they have never had to face reality like men do. Teen boys very much face reality hard, and it never lets up from then on. Girls and women, not so much.
So they believe that they can have the perfect husband, career, children, etc. No compromises are needed. Think of how US women plan weddings. Everything has to be perfect. Not one hair is allowed to be out of place. “What kind of crap is this?” the fellas ask themselves. For they know that reality is not perfect, and to even pretend that stuff can be perfect is counter-productive.
So what should have these women done? Presumably they are awesomely intelligent women engaged in awesome careers. They should have had somebody tell them that they were not really so awesome; their sense of this is misguided. Furthermore, much of what it is based on (their youth) will soon disappear. Of course, deep down, they know this, but on the surface deny it. Even better than a person telling her that she was not as awesome as she thinks, is to have society do so. Probably this will not happen.
Perhaps such a women’s only hope is to become introspective and really examine the situation as it truly is. This is really asking a lot for many of them. After all, why do I need to be introspective (with all of its work and potential bad feelings) when I am just so awesome?
So in the end, these women are screwed (figuratively), society is screwed, but at least these women can go on believing how awesome they are. And they are worth it.
Of course, much of this has been treaded on before, but reminders are necessary.