Multitask, protective and empathetic

cuisine

Sonia María Crespo de Illingworth
Editor of Revista Vive!
President of the Familia y Futuro Foundation
Ecuador

Many women can relate to a scene like this one: One normal afternoon, after work, I go to the supermarket to buy supplies for a dinner that I am giving for my friends. On the way I pay the electricity bill just before the deadline date, and while I am in the queue I phone my dad who was not feeling well the previous day to inquire about what the doctor had said. I pay the bill and leave quickly. On the way I run into the journalist to whom I had promised an article and I say that I will finish it this afternoon without fail. I get to the supermarket and grab the four things I need, and when I reach the check-out desk the old lady behind me asks me to let her go first. Not only do I agree, but I help her to take things out of her trolley. Then it is my turn. I help the boy who is packing the bags, I leave in a hurry with my food and then my mobile rings. It is my sister-in-law who wants to tell me that she has had a fight with my brother. We agree to meet for coffee in 20 minutes, and there I play the role of psychologist and confidant. I go home and cook dinner, the friends arrive, we catch up on news, we have dinner and they go. I tidy up the house, I tell my husband that I have to work a bit and I go straight to the bedroom. I turn on the computer, and start the article promised to the journalist. When it is finished, I realise that it is already 3 am. I have to sleep because the children wake at 6 and I have to take them to school.

Women are problem solvers who multitask, and they are protective and empathetic, especially with those who suffer. They possess great spiritual fortitude and inner strength that give them the ability to support and sustain the people around them.

At work, they prefer cooperation rather than competition, and team work rather than individual work. Their emotional, practical and creative intelligence are the cards that they know how to play best in the workplace.

Neuroscience tells us that female and male brains are incredibly different: “The link between the right hemisphere and the left hemisphere in women is a sturdy bridge that gives them the ability to think of many things at once, combining the hemisphere of logic (left) with emotion and abstract concepts (right)”.1

Why has the feminine genius been blurred?

We need to look back at history in order to find out where the connection was lost with that which is truly feminine: to physically give life and to awaken life in others.

The women of the late nineteenth century struggled against the obligation to work long hours in the factories of the Industrial Revolution. They demanded the right to be at home to provide education, cleanliness and good nutrition for their children. And they succeeded.

Women in the early twentieth century strove to achieve admission to higher education and universities as well as political equality. And they succeeded.

However, by the middle of the twentieth century, a certain sector of feminism became radicalised. They did not simply aspire to equal legal and social rights for men and women, but also claimed the functional equality of the sexes. The existentialist philosopher Simone de Beauvoir warned that motherhood is a trap, a trick used by men to remove their wives’ independence. Therefore, said De Beauvoir, modern woman should break free from the shackles of nature and the maternal role, for which she recommended, among other things, lesbian relationships, the practice of abortion and the transfer of the upbringing of children to society.

In the 21stcentury, the scenario is quite confusing. After the radical feminist slogan launched in May 68 that "Women are not born, they are made", a surprising step was taken. It was the attempt to delete and ignore human nature, in other words, the body itself… “gender is performative, it is constructed with practice, it is fluid and multiple, and it could allow women ... to act almost at will in a register of variable and changing identity ... and it would lead to the emergence of new gender identities, as well as their constant change”.2

In order to free women from their unique ability to conceive, carry life for nine months and give birth, they have provided the necessary tools: contraceptives, surgical and chemical abortion, and the promotion of lesbianism and auto-eroticism ... “To be effective in the long term, family planning programmes must seek not only to reduce fertility within the existing gender roles, but rather to change gender roles in order to reduce fertility”.3

Motherhood is no longer received as a gift but as a right to have a child when you want, as you want, with whomever you want. Happiness is replaced by sexual pleasure, the woman is assured that there are no consequences for her health and emotional life, and she is offered “sexual and reproductive rights”.

To arrive at a universal acceptance of these ideas, gender ideologues promote a culture change through education and the media. We are witnessing the deconstruction of society, beginning with the family and the upbringing of children, as well as the reconstruction of a new and arbitrary world.

What do women bring to humanity?

Feminine identity is blurred, and it faces the challenges of a world that no longer understands natural law as that which is inscribed in the heart of human beings. Instead, an illusory paradise of pleasure is promoted where hedonism, individualism and materialism are the gods. Fragility of relationships and a throwaway culture are what dominate. With all of this, it is worth returning to the essentials, sometimes to the obvious, and ask what women contribute to humanity. Here are a few ideas.

    - Women transmit life: Exclusive functions of a woman are those of welcoming and gestating life in her womb and giving birth. If this were her only mission, then that would be enough. However, her contribution goes beyond the exclusive role given to her by nature.

    - Women call on men to exercise their paternity: It is women who draw men to paternity. From the first days after conception, a mother presents her baby to its father, at a cellular level, according to Natalia López Moratalla. Then it is the woman who helps the father to know the child and to understand the processes of childhood and adolescent growth. Children often have recourse to their mother by asking her to intercede with their father on their behalf. She has the ability to look at situations with realism and intuition at the same time, and to be close to the needs of both.

    - Her presence cannot be replaced: Especially regarding the child’s early years, neuroscience tells us that “the cerebral cortex does not grow automatically, but according to the stimulation it receives during the period of major growth in the first year and when the child is carried in the arms of the mother. Many studies show that the more hours a child spends with the mother, the higher his/her IQ. …It has also been discovered that the cortico-limbic lobes develop only in response to stimulation from the mother. The limbic system is the part of the brain that governs the sense of self, emotions, self-control and compassion... The stimulation of the limbic system begins with the mutual gaze of mother and baby”.4

    - She shapes the human person: A woman makes it possible for her children to enter the world of emotions because she is their first reference for love and care. Over the course of each child’s life, she trains them in human and Christian values and teaches them the norms of human existence.

When a woman discovers that it is her vocation to love and that Christ is the role-model of humanity being offered to her, she becomes a true artisan for peace in the world. Mothers work with sensitivity and they conscientiously guide the conduct and personalities of their children – and sometimes also of their husbands – to root out any selfishness and pride that may reside in their hearts. They create a culture of respect and dialogue within the family, and they have the ability to humanise the workplace.

1 Vollmer, Christine. (2011). Mujer: Tú tienes la solución. Jornadas para la mujer de hoy. Unimet.

2 Trillo-Figueroa, Jesús. (2009). La Ideología de Género. Libros Libres. Página 133.

3 Division for the Advancement of Women for the Expert Group Meeting on Family Planning, Health and Family Well-Being, Gender Perspective in Family Planning Programs (1992) en colaboración con UNFPA.

4 Vollmer, Christine. (2011). Mujer: Tú tienes la solución. Jornadas para la mujer de hoy. Unimet.

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