MUM GOING BACK TO WORK

Hello,
My mum has been out of work for 20 years and will now start a new apprenticeship and go to school again. She is a bit insecure about sitting there with 16-18 year olds (she is 44), and about how my siblings will manage alone at home after her always having been there before. I would like to give her a book to teach her to be confident in herself and a bit egoistic for the sake of her career and to trust that my siblings will manage on their own. Maybe there are even novels about people in the same situation - elderly and going back to school? Thank you very much.
Yours,
Concerned for Mum
Dear Concerned,
It's lovely that you are concerned about your Mum, and wanting to help her in such a sensitive way! At 44, she's still in the spring of youth! But we do understand your point that she has been out of work for twenty years, and doing an apprenticeship with far younger people is definitely difficult. The Odd Women by George Gissing, written in 1893, is an inspiring novel that championed the women of the time who were left 'on the shelf' or who chose to work rather than be married. Gissing takes the lives of two women in particular,and shows them from teenagehood to adulthood, finding happiness in work, rather than marriage. This is a different situation than your mother's, but it does sensitively examine some of the difficulties of working as a woman in an unfamiliar environment.
For a more modern interpretation, Thursdays at Eight by Debbie Macomber is a novel that reminds one of the essential camaraderie of women in the face of life's ups and downs. A group of friends meet every week at 8 am for breakfast, where they share their tales of love, loss, pregnancy, menopause and all the events common to all. Four women, ranging from their twenties to their fifties, experience cataclysms in marriages, work and parenthood, and the way they deal with these issues will inspire your mother. It is not directly a parallel to her situation, but it will certainly show her that there are many ways to cope with the empty nest, and dealing with work once more.
Yours,
Ella and Suse
We prescribe - The Odd Women by George Gissing
Thursdays at Eight by Debbie Macomber
  • Hi Ella and Suse… I’ve just read an article in the new yorker about the novel cure. A year ago I was reading simone de beauvoir’s book “la mujer rota” and o couldn’t stop crying. it felt close and it made me feel relieved. I tell those who are loosing control of a “loving” situation to read it.
    Now its me who would like to get some recommendations.
    I think Im feeling lonely. There aré days in wich I Struggle to be calm and happy. I excercise a lot since i had found that it makes me feel better. Im a french teacher and I enjoy classes. Its Just that sometimes I would like to share it with someone else. I have been Dating guys but, for different reasons, it ends. i have decided To see those experiences as opportunities for me To know me better and take less seriously “break ups” but Also to identify What im looking for. I think things happen for a reason and I have to enjoy mi present situation. EVen if I try to keep this positive approach, sometimes I feel lonely. I really try yo keep this things in mind. I need something that remembers me that I have to enjoy What im leaving, that i have yo be grateful and not to feel Im lonely Just because I dont have a boyfriend, and to take love matters less seriously.
    I would appreciate any recommendations

    By Lonely but happy? on 15 Jun 2015

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A SLUG WITH VISIONS OF HUMANITYABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP ENDED, LEAVING SCARSADULT ACNEAFRAID OF FAILUREALCOHOLIC DAUGHTERALONE ON A WIDE, WIDE SEAAlways wanted to be a writerANOREXICANXIOUS ABOUT SINGLE FRIENDAT A FORK IN THE ROADAVID READER, LACKING BOOKBEREFT OF A CATBORED IN ALABAMABOTHERED AND BEWILDEREDBRAIN SHRINKING MOMMABROKENBROKEN HEARTBROKEN HEARTED - TORN BETWEEN MALE AND FEMALE BEST FRIENDSBROKEN UP WITH GIRLFRIEND; FEELING BURNT OUTCAN’T MOVE ONCANDIDA REVOLTAIRECan’t afford to go on holidayCAST ASIDECHEATEDCHRONIC PAINCOLD HANDS AND FEETCONCERNED ABOUT DAUGHTERCONFLICTED PARTNERSCRAVING FOOD CULTURECYNICAL STEPSONDAILY ABUSEDARK NIGHT OF THE SOULDEPRESSED AND UNABLE TO READDEPRESSED DURING CHRISTMAS, AND LONELY NOWDESPERATELY WANTON GIRLDIRECTIONLESSEASILY BORED WITH NOVELSEMOTIONALLY SABOTAGED BY MY MOTHEREMOTIONS IN EXTREMEEVER THE FRIEND AND NOT THE PARTNEREXTREME ANGER AND FRUSTRATIONFADING AWAYFALLEN OUT WITH MY FRIENDSFALLING IN LOVE WAY TOO FASTFAZED AND CONFLICTEDFEAR OF CONFRONTATIONFEAR OF GETTING OLDFERTILITY PROBLEMSFOMO (FEAR OF MISSING OUT)FORGING A BRIGHT NEW FUTUREFRIEND WHO HAS LOST A CHILD LATE IN PREGNANCYFRIENDS DAUGHTER LOST TO SUICIDEFrightened of lifeGAPING HOLEGetting over a break-upGIRL OF UNCERTAINTY, BOUND BY RULESGIRL WHO DOESN’T FIT INGRIPPED BY LOSSGUILTY FRIENDHOPELESSNESSHOUSE AND LIBRARY DESTROYED BY FIREI love music more than booksI no longer commute – and therefore I no longer readI PEEK AT THE END OF NOVELS BECAUSE I WORRY THE CHARACTER MIGHT NOT MAKE ITI wish I were famousIN MOURNING OVER LITERARY DEATHSINABILITY TO SIT STILL AND ANXIETYINCONSISTENT AND NON-STUDIOUS- BUT AMBITIOUS NONETHELESSINDECISIVEINSECUREINTERESTED IN EVERYTHING BUT ACHIEVING NOTHINGINVISIBLE WOMANITALIAN NOVEL CURESJILTED AND UNSUREJOB IN LIBRARY UNDER THREATKICKED IN THE HEADLEADENLIVING ON THE MARGINSLONE RANGERLONELY AND DEJECTEDLONELY IN LOVELONELY IN MONOTONOUS JOB, LOSING SANITYLOOKING FOR A SENSE OF PURPOSELOOKING FORWARDSLOSS OF A SISTERLOSTLOW WATTAGELOW-ENERGY PESSIMISMMAD SCIENTISTMARRIED TO A MAN, ATTRACTED TO WOMENMISSED THE BOATMISSING MY MOTHER-IN-LAWMUM GOING BACK TO WORKNEED TO LET GONEW CITY, NEW LIFE -BOOKS FOR 12 YEAR OLD BOY?NEW FRIENDSHIP WITH HOLOCAUST SURVIVORNIGHTMARISH COLLEAGUENOMADIC FLANEURPOST NATAL DEPRESSIONPREGNANT AND ALONE