Recently I was flying from Dallas-Fort Worth to Los Angeles after a day of non-stop talking in interviews, to a group, to individuals, and I sank into my seat, placed my briefcase in front of me and stuck my feet up on the wall, prepared to have a three-hour period of silence to regain my strength for what was ahead. However my search for my misplaced boarding pass, and the sudden scooping up into her arms of a tiny dog (who had made a tiny puddle on the floor in front of us) on the part of my neighbor in the next seat, brought several “excuse me pleases” along with smiles that made contact of two human beings immediate. After the puddle had been mopped up, the beautiful girl sitting next to me glanced at the book sticking out of my briefcase (What Is a Family?) and asked, “Did you know that 75 per cent of marriages end in divorce? How can I stay married?” Then in a rush she went on to add, “My job takes me away three weeks at a time. He doesn’t mind that.… but we don’t have time to get to know each other very well.” To help me understand her problem better she gave me another piece of the puzzle by adding another factor, “You see I am the only woman who has attained the position I have in my field, and I am afraid I would be letting the girls down if I stopped.”

I was being presented with the very opposite dilemma from the one that current attitudes so forced on women, that of needing a career to get away from drudgery, and of needing outside contacts to get away from boredom of being too much with one person. Here was a cry of someone lost in a wilderness trying to find some path or hiking signs to get to a desired destination. The yearning was to find a ...

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