Filed under: Work/Life Balance | Tags: illegal interview questions, interviewing for a new job, interviewing for a new job and having a baby, interviewing for jobs, job loss and being a mom, mommy blog, mommy wears heels
As some of you know, I lost my job a few weeks ago. Since then, I have been networking like crazy, applying for positions and going through the interview process. I’m telling you, looking for a new job is a full-time job in itself! Now, I know I’m weird, but I actually don’t mind interviewing. It allows me to meet people, have an adult conversation and most importantly, gives me a reason to get out of my sweatpants for the day and put on a little make-up. Then last week I had an interview that took a bit of a wrong turn…
Everything was going well until (somehow) it was brought up that I have a nine month-old son. I know I am not in Human Resources, but I do know flat-out asking a question like that is illegal. I’m pretty sure the interviewer knew that as well, and that’s how he just gradually dropped it into the conversation. All of a sudden, our nice conversation about golfing with our significant others turned into “how was I supposed to travel for this position when I had a young child?” “Who was going to drop off and pick up my son from daycare?”
Needless to say, I was a little baffled. Last time I checked, it was 2010 and a man was allowed to do daycare duty and hold down the house for a few days if the woman of the house was out. In fact, it’s becoming the norm as more and more women are working outside the home and becoming the breadwinners of the family. This guy made it sound like I had to be home every night to cook dinner and change diapers.
In a matter of minutes, the job that I had such a good feeling about felt like it had been pulled away because this guy couldn’t fathom having a mom with a young child in the position. So, my question to all of you today is: Have any of you felt like you were passed up on a job or a promotion because you are a mom?
Filed under: Work/Life Balance | Tags: cluttered house with kids, finding time for family, finding time to clean with kids, mommy blogger, mommy wears heels, work life balance with a family
I remember when I was pregnant… I swore I would never have toys in my living room―because that would be “messy.” I swore I would not be the type of parent whose house was a cluttered disaster and people had to step over toys to find a walkway to the kitchen. The (finished) basement was where all toys, walkers, bouncers, etc. would be and everything would be nice and tidy. I had an idea of the kind of parent I wanted to be. I was disciplined and way too type A to fail.
Well, that rule I had for myself lasted approx. one day. I was too nervous to walk down the stairs with a newborn so I allowed the swing to stay in the living room―but I told myself it was only for a couple of weeks. I started to stack the magazines I didn’t have time to read and added a couple of days on to the dusting/vacuuming schedule. Now, 8 months later, as I sit typing this, I glance up and see a jumperoo, a play mat, 2 teethers and a book all within 8 feet of me and my rug hasn’t been vacuumed in 1 ½ weeks. So, needless to say, there were a few kinks in my plan.
There was always an excuse from me; the basement was too cold, I didn’t want to put something away when I was going to need it later, I wanted to go to the park as a family instead of dust, etc. At first, I felt like a failure. I wanted to be one of those mothers/wives I saw on TV. You know the one… always looked great, dinner was on the table every night at 6:30 and the house was immaculate. Unfortunately, that wasn’t me and it took me a few months to get “why” it wasn’t.
What I have learned is my “mess of a living room” doesn’t make me lazy or weak; it makes me like every other mother I know that isn’t a television character. I’d rather spend time with my child than throw him in his crib while I straighten the house. I doubt in 10 years you are going to remember one time you came to visit and my living room was cluttered. But I am going to remember the great day I spent at the park with my family instead of cleaning. I’m not perfect; there are toys in my living room, a few dust bunnies under the sofa and my house isn’t at all in order but I’m OK with it.
Moral of this post: We all could use a little lighter load and a little less stress about the small things in life. This is what I love about parenting – your kids can unintentionally make you total liars and eat your words!
Filed under: Work/Life Balance | Tags: boston globe, johanna weiss, maternity leave, maternity leave policies in US, mommy wears heels, paid maternity leave, swedens maternity leave, unpaid maternity leave, working moms
I went back to work after having my son in March. Unfortunately, my company did not have maternity leave, so I had to go on short-term disability. Yes, even in 2010, my former company did not have a maternity leave policy. Now, I thought that was bad and after reading this article, I think it’s even worse. 18 months paid leave… for dads? Wow! Move me to Sweden!
Johanna Weiss, a columnist for the Boston Globe agrees with me. She spoke out last month about the fact that generally speaking, maternity leave policies in the US… well, kinda suck! Fueling her fire? The recent court ruling in Massachusetts that limits unpaid maternity leave and job protection to eight weeks. As she wrote in her article for The Globe, the ruling insinuates that “if you can’t afford to stay home with your baby, you shouldn’t bother to procreate.” And according to Weiss, this just underscores a greater problem with the American attitude.
Now, there is a big difference in having a baby and having to tighten the purse strings for a while and having 14 kids and expecting the government to pay for it. (yes, I’m talking to you, octomom)
According to the National Partnership for Women and Families, 40% of mothers are the primary breadwinners and two-thirds of mothers earn more than 25% of a family’s income. With these stats, I think something needs to be done about the lack of maternity policies we offer in the United States. Granted, I don’t think 18 months is necessary, (although, nice it would be) a nice 12 weeks with your job secured for a year would be fair. What are your thoughts? Should the US have a guaranteed maternity leave policy or do you believe you shouldn’t have a child if you can’t afford not to work?
Filed under: Reader Stories, Work/Life Balance | Tags: etiquette when shopping with children, mommy blog, mommy wears heels, shopping manners with child, shopping with a child, taking a child shopping
I was in BCBG last weekend, drinking my latte, leisurely enjoying my time away from the house when all of a sudden piercing screams and alarm sensors started going off. I looked up and towards the door to see what was going on, when I was almost trampled by 2 children running through the store. Their mother; looking at herself in the fitting room mirror, completely oblivious to what was going on.
Now, I’m all for bringing your children out shopping with you on one condition—they behave! The guys and gals working retail on a Saturday afternoon do not moonlight as baby-sitters for you as well. It’s your job to keep the kiddies in line, and occupied too! If they are really small and having a meltdown, pay attention to them (or at least act like you are). Looking through the sale racks or trying on clothes in the dressing room while the little one screams their head off or goes “sensor crazy” cuz’ it makes a “cool sound” is just inconsiderate.
Moral of this post… if you bring your children out shopping with you, please teach them to behave in a store. Or, try this novel idea: when you need to shop, little junior can have some good ol’ “Daddy Time” or if you’re lucky and they live close, “Grandparent Time”—in the comfort of the home.