Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Flexibility

The following was previously posted on the internal blog at my office. I actually threw down the gauntlet:

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In the [local paper last week], the top story was about the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation which is focused on work-family issues. It is one of those ask question then print the response type articles. Kathleen Christensen talks about changes in society's views of balancing:

"Prior to our starting this work, the issue of balancing work and family was really seen as the problem of an individual family and the solutions were seen as private and individual. This wasn't a compelling public issue. "

I would argue it still is seen as private. Take my moaning (admittedly, moaning) to a colleague about tough drop-offs (scheduling, crying, constantly running) which led to "You should really think about not working and just be home." A simple "it is tough to be you" would have sufficed.

I also believe this continues to be the public angst of middle- and upper-class women and those of us with (blessedly) jobs that allow us some flexibility. Those with less money, fewer family resources and inflexible jobs it is still a private and difficult balance.

What could [our organization] do to broaden the discussion to include all working women, regardless of income?


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And what could I have said in reply to my colleague's oh-so-supportive comment?

2 comments:

Jenn said...

I can think of some options. Although, I'm not sure if any are appropriate...

Ambassador said...

"Oh! I didn't realize that we'd suddenly been transported back to the 1950's...thank you for completely dismissing the breathtaking progress that a generation of women fought for while making personal sacrifices for the good of their families. Silly me--my mistake!" How's that sound for openers?