Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Working Mom and Working Dad

I read an article on a blog that was a response to this letter. In the response the writer blamed America for not providing paid maternity leave (which we do have, sure it would be great if it paid more) and affordable daycare options.
As a working mother I understand the difficulty and guilt women face in the workplace especially when your child isn't school age yet. But I disagreed with the direction of the response. I wouldn't have thrown blame as if this woman wasn't given any other options because of a sexist America. She seems to have been juggling a Big Law job and family for years. Kudos to her for working her way to that position in the first place. And more so Kudos to her for being able to walk away and have another option for financially supporting her family.
I am not in that position and I don't know many women who would work so hard to accomplish such a career and be able to walk away without going broke.

One topic I don't see addressed enough is the difficulty Dads face as well.
With my husband being the amazing partner he is, he too faces issues with working and balancing fatherhood. I don't know how many times he has left work to care for Hayden in one way or another. I also don't know how many times he's had a co-worker ask him "Well can't your wife do that?"
Well, I can, and I do and thanks for being a Douche. Not that either one of us need to explain it to anyone but WE TAKE TURNS and balance it out the best we can to ensure that we both don't neglect our jobs enough to lose them.

A higher up executive we know just found out his long-time girlfriend is expecting their first child. The gossip-mill at the workplace exploded and with it came some erroneous comments about how the poor guy probably freaked out, didn't want a baby, and hated brats. When really he is super-stoked and described finding out as "I WAS JUMPING UP AND DOWN!"  It's just sad that people passed judgement and spread lies instead of being happy for them especially when both of them have really demanding careers.

We made it through baby-dom, toddler-dom, and daycare-dom pretty well together. Now we're in the 1st grade-dom where we rock, paper, scissors for who has to tackle the War and Piece amount of homework this kid has and then spend a good thirty minutes humming and hahing over what we want for dinner every night after work. Our kid came out pretty amazing and I wish more Moms had partnerships like ours.

 I know first-hand that sexism in the workplace sucks. I also know that it goes both ways.
Lisa Belkin from Huffington Post said it best: "There is no workplace reform that will ease every conflict or erase the reality that work is often time-consuming and hard. But there are changes of attitude and policy that can mitigate many of the strains that have become accepted as the norm."

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