Letters

Women’s History Month is a time to reflect

Women’s History Month is a time to reflect on the enormous social strides toward gender equality that we’ve made: Today, nearly 60 percent of working age women are employed. Record numbers of women are working in business and elected to high office, but these strides come with a new set of challenges we must learn to face.

While women continue to even the professional playing field, many do so without leaving behind the domestic duties that generations ago were a full-time job in and of themselves.

Our grandmothers may have been expected to spend their days cooking, cleaning and raising the children; Modern women often face the same expectations, only now they’re piled atop 40-hour work weeks.

As they face a week of staff meetings and soccer practices, of emails and errands, it’s no wonder many women today report feeling overwhelmed or inadequate, regardless of their achievements.

Women often feel compelled to do well at everything – to be the finest employee, the greatest partner, the best friend, the perfect parent. Everything in life is a high priority. But expecting excellence in all things is unrealistic. Couple the demands of extremely busy schedules with the high standards many women feel compelled to try to live up to, and you have a recipe for high levels of psychological distress.

It’s a plight I see in young students as well as in older friends. To these women, the most important piece of advice I can offer is this: find a mentor.

The waters of life include periods where the waves seem overwhelming, the surf choppy and perilous, and cross-winds seek to blow you off course. And just as you would not, for your very first time at sea, buy a ship and set off as captain and commander, you should not try to brave the waters of life all alone, not at first.

Find an experienced captain, a woman you admire who has navigated these waters before. Let her show you the ropes; let her help you map your course. Pushing through the vulnerability that comes with asking for help can be difficult. But the tutelage of someone who has faced these same challenges and bested them is invaluable.

The second piece of advice I can offer came from my own mentor. She told me to think hard about my values, about what kind of contributions I wanted to make to the world, and to write them down and revisit them often.

This values list helps me to prioritize my choices in a world where everything can seem vitally important, to act with confidence, knowing that the things I choose to spend my time on are the things that make me happy and fulfilled.

To do otherwise, that is to agree to everything that comes your way, can lead to a sense that you are not in charge of your own life and are not spending time on what matters most to you.

Women have made great strides and continue to advance. So, too, must our research efforts to improve their health and mental well-being. If you are passionate about these issues, please consider supporting the Institute for Mental Health Research, which has made supporting research into women’s mental-health a top priority. Visit imhr.org to learn more.

-Mary Davis, Professor and

Associate Chair at ASU’s Department of Psychology

Bemoans conditions at yet another golf course

Dr. Eger addressed the Lakes Course in the March 20 edition. Like Dr. Eger, I bought my home on the “big course” in 1989, paying $10,000 more for mine, than an identical home across the street, just because mine was on the golf course.

Now I look out at what was once a very green, lush course, to see partially dried fairways, brown grass, weeds and dust billowing up when golf carts travel on the now dead grass areas along my backyard fence. Additionally, the clubhouse/restaurant exterior has not seen a coat of paint or any structural repairs in many years.

Mr. Gee, are you letting this course head in the same direction as your other two courses?? Shame on you!

-David A. Gilliland

Sinema, Stanton have seen single-payer nightmare

I don’t think that it is a coincidence that leaders like Sen. Kyrsten Sinema and our own Congressman Greg Stanton are working to improve the Affordable Care Act instead of supporting a single-payer system like Medicare for all.

That is because both Sinema and Stanton were elected leaders in Phoenix when the 2014 scandal in the Phoenix VA system occurred.

They saw firsthand how poorly a government-run health care system could get. As a Veteran, I know that we can do better. One way would be to improve the system we have. We should tinker with the Affordable Care Act until we get it right and more people are covered under insurance.

The private system can work with the right rules and regulations. We can’t let another healthcare system be the victim of government incompetence.

-Anthony Bartoli

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