Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Not whining...

 I am not whining, but I came across this article that made me want to say "YES that is me!!" Though the thought of planning a vacation is a luxury that I can only dream about right now. Warning: this is more about the working mom dilemma of balance. Now, don't get your panties in a wad non-moms and stay-at-home moms. This is not the gauntlet being thrown. I am adult enough to recognize all walks of the womanly life, and I know that none of them are easier or better than mine. Ok now that's done...
So here are some lines to ponder (if you cheat and don't read the article), and I really want to know your thoughts...
"First, any illusion that mothers might have had about full-time employment as a “lifestyle choice” has, in this economy, been stripped away. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics data, 77 percent of American women with school-age children work; a quarter say they sometimes work from home; a third work on the weekends."
So that means there are A LOT of us out there, in all forms. Part time, full time, work at home...etc. I work is because I like to eat, not because I love getting up at 6am everyday.  But here is the line that made me think, and I am not sure I totally agree with it:
 "Beneath these newer realities of modern life lies an indisputable truth: American corporate structures and marriages still do not fully accommodate the working mom."
I don't know why but this line really stuck with me, for several reasons. Maybe it was the word, "accommodate" that made me think twice. On the one hand, there are several things that I feel could be remedied to help women (mom or not) feel that they are equally valued in corporate America. And as a mom, yes, I would make some changes if they asked me. But no one is really asking - and is that the problem? Not so much that there do not appear to be solutions, but that no one has even considered that there is an issue here.
However, should my business be required to "accommodate" me when I was the one who set my path to working motherhood? But did I have a choice (about the working, not the motherhood)? However, why should I not be considered worth accommodating? Is having a family just a professional bump in the road with predetermined and less than favorable outcomes?

Just some things to ponder. And gender equality issues notwithstanding, I would like to say that having a working mom - to me, and I am biased - would seem to be a perk. Can you imagine the capacity and strength of character that it takes to have two full time jobs? Where really there are no "days off" and multi-tasking is not even thought about as a talent, it is just a way of life.
I know this is not a new issue, and I don't have any solutions. But it is something that consumes my thoughts these days. So I just thought I would put it out there.
And I am just not going there about the marriages. :)