Leaving a job to be a stay-at-home parent is a deeply personal decision, one that involves many different factors. There’s, of course, the financial aspect. There’s also how the change might impact your kid.
Tagged With work life balance
Sometimes, a work request from your boss isn't worth fulfilling. Maybe it's impossible in the allotted time frame. Maybe it's a different department's responsibility. Or maybe it's simply "one thing too many" when you're already overworked.
Unfortunately, refusing a directive from your colleague or manager is easier said than done; especially if you're shy or hate to rock the boat. This infographic outlines five ways to avoid extra tasks without feeling guilty.
It’s an alluring option, especially in the early years of raising children, when everything feels one Jenga piece away from a catastrophic collapse: “I’ll go part-time,” you tell yourself.
You decide to talk to your manager and negotiate a plan to scale down the scope of your full-time position—and also your pay. The set-up, you believe, will allow you to have more time with your family and stay rooted in your career. A win-win, it seems.
After spending a few wonderful, exhausting months at home with my newborn son Max, I’m back, blinking into the sun (or rather, my LED desk lamp) as I try to navigate this transition back to work. Here’s some advice for fellow travellers, both from my experience and from the wise parents in the Offspring Facebook group.
The moment I first became a believer in the power of Daniel Tiger happened when my daughter was 3. She was on a playdate at the park when I announced it was time to get ready to go home. Instead of melting into my lap and whimpering as she’d done in the past (goodbyes are so sad!), she paused, took a deep breath and belted out one of Daniel’s catchy jingles: “It’s almost time to stop so choose one more thing to do!” She then went down the slide for the final time, calmly walked over to me and sang, “That was fun but now it’s done.”
Read enough about career and money, and you’ll start to see a lot of the same pieces of advice repeated over and over again. Most are sensible and innocuous. Some are downright bad.
Here's a wild statistic: 65 per cent of mothers with children under the age of 18 are employed. This means that a staggering 35 per cent of mothers in Australia have not returned to the workforce after having a child.
For many in this camp, it's not because they have lost their drive, or they're incapable of juggling sippy cups and sales calls, or that they suddenly feel destined to spend every waking moment gazing at their babies like they're trapped in a Pampers ad. More often, it is because our traditional structures shut them out.
Dylan Thuras is the co-founder and creative director of Atlas Obscura, a guide to the world’s hidden wonders. It’s a place where you can be transported to a Japanese island where cats outnumber people or America’s famed museum of medical oddities or the Australian lake whose pink hue defies scientific explanation.
Thuras co-authored the new children’s book The Atlas Obscura Explorer’s Guide for the World’s Most Adventurous Kid, describing it as “a little sampler of what is amazing and wonderful in our world”. A dad of two, he talks to us about how he parents.
Lisa Ling is the host of the CNN investigative docuseries This is Life with Lisa Ling. In season five, which premiered this weekend, she travels across America to explore topics such as gender fluidity, screen addiction, custody battles and furries.
When she isn’t on the road, she’s home in LA with her husband and two daughters, Jett and Ray. I spoke with her about how she parents.
Looking longingly toward Nordic cultures for solutions to our problems is practically a cottage industry at this point. Between Scando design principles (more light, less stuff); sustainability initiatives (The Netherlands have figured out how to feed us all); education (Norwegian forest schools, anyone?); and health (Finland invests in public saunas), there's plenty to love. (And if you are a taller, more full-figured lady like me, I implore you to check out Swedish fashion; comfy, colourful, and proportionally smarter than American brands by a mile.)
Tami Sigmund is a senior producer at Zynga, the social game developer that brought us FarmVille, Words With Friends 2, Zynga Poker and CSR Racing 2. As someone who’s been making video games for past 11 years, she wants to help make the game industry a more inclusive place for marginalised game enthusiasts. She talks to us about balancing her career and being a queer single mum of a two-and-a-half-year-old boy. Here’s how she parents.
Jason Kottke knows how to find stuff that’ll make you stop, look and think. When you visit his blog kottke.org, you feel as though you’ve entered a rare hideaway on the internet — it’s a place to explore curiosities around the web that haven’t been shared 23 times on your Facebook feed. (Recent posts include the history and future of the hardware store, photos of Tokyo with a fractal lens, and the etymology of “orange”.)
Jason has two kids, Ollie and Minna. Here’s how he parents.
Alex Goldman is the co-host of Reply All, Gimlet Media’s popular podcast about the internet. (For an intro to Goldman and his work, check out “The Secret Life of Alex Goldman”, the episode in which he lets his co-host PJ Vogt hack his mobile phone, and “Long Distance, Part 1 and Part 2”, where he digs into a scam phone call and winds up on an insane investigation on the other side of the globe.) He’s currently on paternity leave, taking care of his family’s new addition: Three-week-old Polly. Here’s how he parents.
You missed your kid's soccer game again because you've been working on that big client report, the one you're still behind on. Oh, and didn't you promise to bring muffins to the school bake sale tomorrow? And there's that meeting at 10am, and the pediatrician appointment at 11:30, and ugh, you should probably buy toilet paper at some point. Everything seems to be hanging by a thread - your job, your family life, your sanity. And your refrigerator smells.
"Women almost never become art monsters because art monsters only concern themselves with art, never mundane things," writes Jenny Offill in her novel Dept of Speculation. "Nabokov didn't even fold his own umbrella. Vera licked his stamps for him." Women, instead, are forced to "balance" work and life.