A very interesting article on a Hungarian site lead me to two articles in English that discuss pregnancy at the workplace, and warn that people should think twice before judging the (expectant) moms. Laura Bates’ article appeared in the Guardian: Seven questions to ask yourself before judging a pregnant colleague.
Here is one of the seven questions:
“4. Would I say this to the father?
Worried that sleepless nights, nappy changes and general emotional exhaustion will take their toll on a new mum? They might, to an extent. In much the same way that illness, bad breakups and family bereavements sometimes take a toll on all of us. But we don’t suggest that people dealing with these problems should be sacked, do we? Sleepless nights are a natural part of life as a new parent. But fathers aren’t deaf to babies’ night-time screams. They, too, are experiencing major life upheaval and the emotional rollercoaster of early parenthood. Why is it that we don’t discuss the impact a new baby will have on a man’s work life?”
I find this a very very relevant comment as I have yet to hear it from a man that at a job interview he was asked if he was planning to have any children.
The other article is entitled Female company president: “I’m sorry to all the mothers I worked with” and was written by a (former) journalist who worked as a manager at The Huffington Post and then at The Washington Post in her mid-twenties. She judged and judged and judged, until…. you guessed it right. Until she became a parent herself.
Short quote from her article as a teaser: “I wish I had known five years ago, as a young, childless manager, that mothers are the people you need on your team. There’s a saying that “if you want something done then ask a busy person to do it.” That’s exactly why I like working with mothers now.”