The basis for the meme being that British society doesn’t value or support mother’s as well as it should. We pay more for childcare than anywhere else in the world, we have poor legislation to support mothers and this combined is discouraging many of us from returning to work or making life extremely hard.
The process is quite simple and the topic so pertinent that I just had to take part so here goes…
What you have to do:
- Post the rules (see below)
- Answer the questions in as much or as little detail that suits you.
- Add your response to A Mother’s Work Meme Linky so they can keep track of the linky
- Tag three people and link to them on your blog
- Let them know you tagged them
- Tweet about taking part #amothersworkmeme
Did you work before becoming a mum?
Yes, I’ve worked full-time from the week I left university until I went on maternity leave to have my little girl, over 11 years consistently, often mega long hours, not always for the recognition or money but I can safely say I’ve worked my little butt off!!!
What is your current situation?
I work part-time but whilst I was on maternity there was a restructure and I currently don’t have a permanent role so am technically slotted into a department and waiting / hoping for something else to come up and for the redundancy letter to not hit the doormat!
Freestyle – Got your own point you’d like to get across on this issue here’s your chance…
I did have a rant about the ongoing battle for a work/life balance in my Mum 101 meme so have regurgitated a bit of this rant below, with a few added extras!
In my eyes it’s like this, you have a child, expand your family and bring to the world a new generation. An amazing experience but bringing with it a whole new set of challenges.
In the current economic climate a large section of the population are struggling to keep afloat, families are struggling with the increase in fuel and food bills and some are struggling to put meals on the table for the family, others are managing to get by but at a cost. However the modern mum and average family seem to continually be taking a kicking, making a bad situation worse and it’s unbelievable that this is the case in a modern democratic society.
Having had children most are faced with additional challenges and costs of childcare. It’s a double-edged sword though, you often need to go back to work to help pay the bills but by doing so you often end up spending most of your salary on childcare, which contradicts the reason you were going to work in the first place, to bring money in. Here in the UK we pay more for childcare than most countries, it’s crazy! Unless that is you are lucky enough to have family who can share in the responsibility of the childcare with you, which thankfully we are so we split it between the two options.
Even if you have managed to sort that, there’s still the issue of working hours and flexibility. Whilst technically speaking you are meant to have rights as a working parent, in all honesty the likelihood is that the day-to-day reality is much different. It becomes a juggling act to cram work and home life into the day!
I chose to go part time just as I went on maternity as I wanted to be able to spend time with my little girl but also wanted to work and I thought this would give me a balance. I was under no illusion that this would mean we would have to tighten the belt, but we worked out that we could manage and in our eyes I can always return to work full-time once our little girl, and should we be blessed any other children we have are of school age. However with the restructure that happened whilst I was on maternity I now find myself in a position. I technically don’t have a permanent role, opportunities have come up but they are mainly full time and in addition to that mainly shift work positions too. These aren’t suitable alternatives to the role I previously had and would mean problems for childcare and major added cost, which we just can’t afford. So I am having to turn down these opportunities (not that they are in a field or area I have experience in anyway). It’s making me anxious as I am starting to feel a little disposable and if the worst were to happen in the current climate, what else is out there? especially part-time roles too.
I am just trying not to think about it at the minute and focus on the here and now but I can’t help but feel sad that with two degrees and having worked hard and paid my taxes all my life I am in this position, and without any government support for childcare due to the new legislation.
When my mum had me women didn’t have to necessarily go out to work and often remained as stay at home mums, at least until children were of school age, and even then jobs and working hours were more flexible to enable mum’s to do the school run and fit work around their life as a mum. God how I would long for it to be like that again! The situation for the modern mum here in the UK is frankly crap and not only for mums but parents on the whole as it can also affect the quality time they get to spend with their children and as a family (and this surely has further long-term repercussions for society but don’t get me started on that one!).
I can’t see things getting any better in the forseeable future and I truly believe this situation will mean many mums continue to take a new approach… all hail the mumpreneur! Credit to these ladies for doing their own thing and hopefully as a result getting their work-life balance right. I am close to following in their footsteps!
I now tag some of my lovely new Twitter followers to get to know them better:
- A mother’s work meme (thedailymum.wordpress.com)