Friday, November 16, 2012

The Line

OK, I'm ready to consult with the masses. Remember this blog post about being a woman in the accounting program? I mentioned some stories about male BYU students being super weird (verging on creepy)? This story is the one I want to talk about:

"In public accounting, you are usually assigned to a peer mentor who is a couple years ahead of you who can help answer your questions and is basically there to help you succeed. Apparently one student told his female peer mentor that No, he couldn't go out to lunch with her, because he is married and shouldn't be alone with other women. How. Awkward."

I want to know your thoughts on this situation, and on this general theme. I've heard men my age talk about how their parents have advised them to never be alone with a women. I think it's incredibly important to be careful in your relationships with members of the opposite sex because there is a real risk of developing feelings and making poor choices. But how does this apply in the workplace? Where is the line between being appropriate and inappropriate? Where is the line between being appropriate and being weird?

Personally, I think some people are way too intense in walking the line between appropriate and inappropriate. Naturally, you don't want to get anywhere close to "Inappropriate," but do you have to be so perfectly "appropriate" that you are pushing people away and making people uncomfortable and just being awkward?

Are you comfortable with the idea of having a business lunch with a member of the opposite sex? What about a lighthearted lunch with your supervisor to discuss your adjustment to your new job?

Can you be friends with members of the opposite sex at work? Can this friendship extend to getting lunch sometimes? If you say that's inappropriate, then is it appropriate to eat lunch in the break room together? Is it ok to talk at your cubicles?

How do you personally handle the "line"?

For me, the way to stay on the "appropriate" side of the line is as follows: Never bad mouth Greg to anyone, especially other men. Don't vent to them when I'm upset with Greg. Don't share deeply personal emotions with other men. Other than that, don't flirt with other men. Be nice and willing to talk and develop friendships. Other than that, I don't do anything I would be uncomfortable with Greg doing or that I would be uncomfortable with Greg knowing I was doing.

I am comfortable going to a business lunch with a mentor or supervisor of the opposite sex. I'm comfortable grabbing lunch from time to time with coworkers of the opposite sex. I'm not ok with the idea of me having a buddy at work that I'm always going out to lunch with, just the two of us. For me, I feel like if people know I'm married and know that I'm very happily married, that will be speak volumes in defining my relationships with my male coworkers. 

Now it's your turn. Men and women, married and unmarried, business professionals and students, moms and dads, employed and unemployed, etc. Where do you draw the line?

Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Knee

Want to hear how I dislocated my knee cap? It was pretty sick.

It was the last combination of class on a day when I considered skipping ballet. It was a really fun combination and I was feeling good. I landed a tour jete on my right leg (like this). In ballet, we always turn out our feet and for some reason, even though I've done hundreds of tour jetes in my life, my toes ended up facing one way and my knee bent the other way and snap!.... Oh my gosh, it was so gross and it hurt so bad. At first, i thought I had broken my leg. All I knew was that I had landed on it and it bent the wrong way and it felt like it snapped. I couldn't even look at my knee because it looked deformed. I was such a little freaker outer.

Luckily BYU has an awesome athletic training room just for the dance department and the athletic trainer was nearby and came and put my knee cap back in place and then took me to the training room to look at it, ice it down, and wrap it up. I almost passed out several times because I'm a baby and have zero pain tolerance (I'm gonna be such a joke at delivering children). I went to the doctor and got a fancy schmancy knee brace that makes me look super hard core.

The first few days were rough, mostly emotionally challenging. I would limp around school all day and then come home and get so frustrated trying to navigate our small apartment, with my knee felling so unsteady and feeling so scared of it happening again. I hated asking Greg for every little thing, but at the same time, getting on and off the couch took forever each and every time.

I'm still gimpy. I can only bend my knee between 60 and 90 degrees. I'm supposed to start physical therapy but couldn't get an appointment until the end of this coming week. At this point, it hurts when I try to bend it and randomly every now and then for no apparent reason. It could be a lot worse - no crutches, no surgery, just a limp!

My cute little knee! This was before the doctor drained it - sick!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

My Family

The Family: A Proclamation to the World is a document that Mormons frequently refer to in their definition of what a family should be. There are a lot of parts of the proclamation that I like. I think families are extremely important. That being said, there are some parts of the proclamation that rub me the wrong way and that I just choose not to think about. There are other parts that actually don't bother me until people  interpret them very boldly and imply that their interpretation is the true interpretation.

"By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children."

Here's the thing: I don't believe in assigned roles. I don't believe that as a woman, I have a designated role in our family. I don't believe that Greg has a designated role in our family. That's not to say Greg and I haven't taken on different roles in our marriage. I generally cook and do the laundry. Greg does the dishes and folds the laundry. We both clean. We grocery shop together. This works for us. I'm positive that the roles we have adopted will change over time. If I find myself as a stay at home mom one day, I'm guessing I will take on the laundry and most of the cleaning. But the key point is that these aren't our roles based on being a man or a woman. These are roles that we have adapted for ourselves based on our situation, our personalities, our schedules, etc.

I've heard people be so bold as to say "The role of a mother and father are completely separate, but equally important." Completely separate? So... a father shouldn't worry about nurturing his kids at all? A wife should never help provide for the family? Sorry kids, a burglar broke into our house, but I can't protect you because that's your dad's role. What the heck?!

I've always interpreted this clause as follows: "Children need to be taken care of. They must be provided for and protected. They must be nurtured. This is best accomplished when these responsibilities are shared between two parents."And, if you don't mind, I'll continue interpreting it this way.

Let me just conclude by saying this - just because you grew up in a family that did things one way and just because you want your future family to be that way does not mean that it is the only acceptable way to have a family. Just because your mom didn't work and was there to greet you with cookies on the table when you came home from high school does not mean every mom needs or wants to do that. Just because your mom was nurturing does not mean that every women is a sensitive ball of nurturing-ness. I just wish people would step back and open their eyes up to the fact that there are tons of good families, in the world and in the church, that each independently decide what works for them. There is not only one acceptable family.

As always, comments are appreciated, but don't be rude or patronizing.