When I was first married, I never once considered quitting work to stay home after starting a family. Then I had a baby. And a second one. They learned how to talk, and argue, and developed their own agendas. And I started to see the appeal of just focusing on parenting, without the distraction and pressure that work brings.
Ultimately, I love my career too much to leave it, even for a portion of the two decades that my children will be under our roof. (If we're lucky enough to avoid boomerang 20-somethings!) I truly believe that the fulfillment and intellectual challenge of work makes me a better mom, not to mention that my income helps support our family. But increasingly, I understand the different choices that stay-at-home moms have made, and respect their unique challenges that stem from their life path. My curiosity about all these choices meant for fascinating reading when I received the recent report "What Moms Choose" by Working Mother Magazine and Ernst & Young.
The researchers surveyed over 1,300 women to get at the question of who chooses to work, who stays home, why we make these decisions, and what employers could do to improve work-life benefits and keep talented women in the workforce. It's fascinating reading, especially the finding that both working moms and at-home moms agonize over how clean our houses are.
Are you a new working mom? Or have you been at this juggle for some time? I'd love to hear your thoughts about your choices, and the report.
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