A Protestant wife of a high-powered Sydney QC has today declared that celebrating International Women’s Day is only going to hinder your chances of living a fulfilled life like the one she has hoped for all of you.
As millions of businesses, organisations, governments and citizens of the world commemorate the struggle for women’s rights on today’s annual March 8 day of observance, Jennifer Waverley-Whitely (68) says while the sentiment is understandable – it’s not going to help you land a private school rugby hero.
“In my day we didn’t have any of this stuff” she says, while she mixed herself a gin and tonic at 11:45 am
“We were too busy focusing on actually making a life for ourselves”
“Do you think If I was out burning my bra I would have ever been seen as a suitable candidate for Alistair?”
“I would have ended up marrying some Catholic from Coffs Harbour and spent my weekends working in a canteen at some ghastly junior rugby league club”
With her granddaughters today taking part in a women’s demonstration at the University, Jennifer says she remembers when her daughter went through this phase.
“It doesn’t last very long” she says.
“I thought the best thing for her to do was get her type-writing certificate and float around the Rower’s club, but she wouldn’t listen”
“We amused her wishes to attend university, and what do you know, ten months after graduating she was sat next to state rugby union player at the Matron’s ball”
“I still don’t know if she knows I played a part in that [laughter]”
When asked if she thinks her attitude might be perpetuating a unproductive stereotype that puts in place limits on Australian women in their attempt to break glass ceiling, Jennifer responds by saying that we aren’t living through a potato famine.
“We are lucky enough to live in a world where women don’t need to be out wearing themselves down”
“I tell my girls that they can go to women’s demonstrations if they want to hear some plain things, but they should be careful because they might become those plain things”
“..and look at me. I’ve spent every winter in Thredbo and every summer in Noosa since I was 23”