I can’t speak for all women (even though I tend to try), but a lot of my self esteem comes from my ability to perform tasks well. Like bowling, or making people laugh or getting really good grades in school. My parents were never the type to stand over me and push me to do well. I pushed myself. Poor performance on an exam or in a class meant that I was not good at something and made me look bad next to my friends.
The fact that I did well in school left me with a lot of confidence and self worth when I moved on and began doing other things. I knew that I could do just about anything if I wanted to, which is how I approached the job hunt after college and how I continue to approach every task that is put in front of me. I know I am intelligent and capable and that leaves me with a sense of comfort and mental clarity as I go through life.
I can totally understand, then, the results of a recent study that claim that women who are expelled or drop out of high school experience a much higher rate of mental instability and depression than men.
For one thing, the inability to complete a task will weigh on anyone; especially one that will affect the course of the rest of your life. And, because women tend to be more in tune with their emotions, it makes sense that this would affect them more than their male counterparts. (Or at least what those macho, “I’m fine” boys are reporting.)
It is also a lot easier for men to make a life for themselves without a high school degree. There are many more jobs available to men than to women, like plumbers, mechanics, and working in construction. Yes, women can do those things too, but do they? Is there a 50/50 split in those industries? No. If women have limited job opportunities, how can they ever pull themselves up and feel confident about the life they are living?
The results of this study are sad and telling, but will hopefully do more than just bring this issue to light. Education is the foundation of EVERYTHING in this country and – as we see here – it provides a lot more than a piece of paper on graduation day.