A recent article by Jennifer Howze on the Aplha Mummy page of Times Online caused me to raise both my eyebrows. The article states that ‘non-parent’ workers (your classic Bridget Jones singleton if you go with the theme in the article), are picking up the slack for working parents.
Having been a working mum in an office where my daily juggling act was far from understood and empathised with, I have to say that I disagree with the articles claims.
My 4-day a week role, really meant that I was expected to fulfil a full-time role in the 4 days – as is so often the case with ‘part-time’ positions. And that was just the office job. I then, of course, returned home to my other numerous jobs of mother, house orderly, cook, cleaner etc.
Of course, I did have days when I was absent from work at short notice as a result of a child being sick, but I would like to think that these days were no more disruptive than my singleton colleagues’ ever-so-predictable rounds of Monday-itus and Friday-itus (after a hectic weekend and mid-week schedule of socialising and partying). As a working mum I, of course, had no time in my week for such frivolities. Sigh.
Personally speaking, I think working mothers are ultra-committed – because they know that they are being watched for the slightest slip-up, giving everyone the opportunity to say, “I told you so – unreliable working mum”.
Howze tells it as she sees it – and, to be fair, she has experienced both sides of this argument. Eyebrows still aloft, I’m afraid I am firmly in disagreement.
What do you think?