New Study Shows Working Mothers Do No Harm to Their Young Children

 

A new “long-term study by University College London suggests young girls fare better if their mothers go out to work.” (link to article and study) I wish that wasn’t the headline. I wish that we were past needing or wanting studies and headlines like this that pit working mothers against stay at home ones. Reality is though we still live in a world were women who work, whether by pure economic need or other reasons, are too often made to feel or just feel, that their children will suffer because of it.

We also still live in a country that does not do enough to support working parents. “The ideal scenario for children of both sexes was for both parents to live at home and for both to be working, a finding that will encourage policymakers’ moves to help families stay together, if not critics of the rising numbers of working mothers.” This should have been the headline for the research. Policies and practices like maternity leave, pay-equity, paid sick leave, compassionate leave are not women’s issues, they are family issues and need increasingly to be framed as such for the health of our children, our communities and our nation.

To learn more about the issues please check out the Institute for Women’s Policy Research.

The Bumbling of the Sexes in the Modern Workplace

My latest article, “The Bumbling of the Sexes in the Modern Workplace” was just published on Women Advisors Forum, a new online community of women investment professionals. It offers a fresh take on ‘bad behavior’ in the workplace. The kind of behavior I wrote about does not make headlines but may be one of many reasons why women are still far from achieving greater success in critical mass in the workplace.

Never Give up!

I have an 11 year old daughter, Allie, who loves soccer. It started at the age of 4 when I began coaching her mixed team. She and her teammates would run around in little packs, sometimes kicking the ball, sometimes not, but they were out on the field as a team and loving every second of it.

Every season since then she has played. It went from mom coaching to now a professional coach in the Park City League. She practices two to three times a week and we drive her all over Utah it for games and tournaments. In her spare time she is often out there with the soccer ball practicing keeping the ball in the air and her power kicks. Her dad is often out there with her as she has long since passed the skill level of her mother. Watching the two of them together, and her out on the field, makes my heart sing.

We have been watching the watching the Women’s World Cup Soccer matches as a family, and yesterday’s game between the USA and Brazil will be a time I hope I never forget. The USA was in the lead early but the game was later tied due to a penalty kick Brazil had on goal that involved a very harsh call by the referee. The US then found themselves down a player for the rest of the game, and Brazil subsequently scored in OT to make the score 2 to 1. It was in the last minutes of overtime play that the US scored the most amazing goal I have every seen. It was to be decided in penalty kicks and the US won.

This team never gave up. They did not allow a referee’s horrible call to take away their drive to win, but rather it seemed they used the injustice of it to motivate them. They supported one another and gave it their total all to the very end. Their focus, their intensity, their sense of team was one of the most spectacular moments in women’s sports that I have every seen. We were all jumping around the living room screaming and in the middle of it all was my daughter Allie. I have no doubt for a very long time to come when she is feeling defeated and down on that soccer field, and maybe even in life, she will remember that moment. I know I will. If you really want something, never give up.