In this extract Betty Watson expresses regret at having been forced to leave school at 14. She reflects on her life as a wife, a mother and a housekeeper and acknowledges the lack of educational opportunities open to her as a younger woman which denied her the chance to see her life differently. She poignantly remarks "I could have been what I am now".

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And do you think then, well I suppose you’ve gone back to education, so you have developed skills and characteristics in your later life that you didn’t have when you were younger.

I always felt that like I was missing something, cause, I didn’t want to leave school I was taken out and put into the job, and I felt, academically….I was always good at saving…I reared 6 children on a shoe string as the saying goes, but I felt, I always felt, years ago, I…and that’s what I really feel... years ago I could have been what I am now, or what I’ve been for the past 10 and 20 years, but I didn’t see myself with that, you know? I just seen myself in a mother role… wife, a mother and housekeeper, that was my role then, and I didn’t see beyond that, and that’s, I think, there’s more opportunities now for younger women


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Dublin City Life, Work and Family, Family



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"Betty Watson expresses regret at having to leave school at 14. She reflects on the deprivation of education in her early life.." Lifescapes: Mapping Dublin Lives, Item #128 (accessed February 23 2018, 4:50 am)