Saturday, March 15, 2008


Misguided, it appears, was Silda. Kind of like a modern fairy tale. Smart, young woman goes off to law school. Graduates with high honors and lands a high-paying job that has her in demand. But along comes a man to take her away from the big, bad world and gives her the pot of gold: to be married, stay at home and have many children. She gladly accepts and lives happily ever after until the world learns that he has spent thousands of dollars to have sex with a hooker.

This thought came to me after reading an email link Megan sent to me describing Silda Spitzer's background on Slate titled, "Don't Quit Your Day Job."
Maybe Silda had bought into the idea Barbara Dafoe Whitehead argues in, Why There Are No Good Men Left. The Atlantic Monthly summarizes the basic finding in her book this way: the time in their lives when they feel ready for a partner, young women are at a loss as to how to find one. Contemporary young women, she points out, have been raised to seek fulfilling careers rather than husbands. And upon college graduation they want to spend time out on their own, making their mark on the world, rather than pairing off right away and exchanging their independence for family life.
The problem, she explains, is that when these women reach their late twenties or thirties and at last become interested in settling down, the large pool of eligible young men to which they had access in college—with backgrounds and ambitions similar to their own—has disappeared. A woman at this stage in her life is likely to be trapped in a somewhat narrow routine that includes work, working-out, and socializing with a circle of friends. Her odds of encountering her future spouse in these limited spheres are extremely low.

Twenty years ago, old big ears Spitzer probably seemed like a supreme catch and the fairy tale became reality.

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