No Backup No Job

The girls waiting for the action to happen

The girls

I read with interest Clementine Ford’s article “When paying for child care is women’s work”.  In Ms Ford’s article it shows that women don’t work due to not earning any money and child care fees taking a big chunk of the women’s wage, but why is it solely the responsibility of the women’s wage to pay for care? As the article so clearly states having a child is a joint decision and so should be the costs of care, they should be equally shared.

I am sure that if it was up to the man and his wage was getting eaten up by fees and costs due to child care he might have something to say about it.

I am in the same boat as some of the examples in this article. I am not working due to the fact that we cannot afford care and by the time I work and pay for the kids to be looked after we are minus money. I would like to have a job to have some more independence, sense of self, of course bring more money into the household and allow us to do more and have more choices, contribute to my superannuation as women live longer I will need the money, do something other than being seen as a mother and housekeeper, feel worthwhile and valued for your opinion/skill/education and work history.

It is a pity that women no matter what their qualification or background is that they will still earn less than the men due to having kids. I know there are exceptions to this rule and good on them, wish I was one. However it is hard to race off to the high powered job when you have two four year olds to care for and no help. Child care is both parents responsibility and should not be all on the woman or the primary care giver. It is not fair and it does not allow the child or children to experience time with the other parent.

In our case hubby would desperately love to stay home more and be with the girls; however his job is in the office and in multiple locations so it is not flexible to this demand. Maybe in the future it might be, or we as a couple have to put our heads together and create a business for us that allows us the freedom to be with the kids, the ability to work more locally, to have a better lifestyle and allow for care demands.  In Ms Ford’s article it also discusses the fact that women are seen to be the ones that are lumped with all child rearing activities and care options, I for one don’t want to be just seen as a mother and a care taker. I do love that I am looking after my kids and adore them to bits but I do have other things to offer the world other than caring for babies or kids. Do you feel like this too?

I recently went for a job and it was a work from home role, all to be done in your own time as long as you meet the deadlines given. I could do nearly all communication via email and the odd phone call to a client in business hours which I could do, so no issue. I did not get the role due to not having a backup babysitter on call. I was upset to learn that the flexible work from home role was not that flexible. The reason I was applying for a work from home job was due to the kids in the first place, and if it was not for them needing me I would have applied for a job that was full time and in an office like I had before kids. It made me quite depressed that I had an excellent application however when kids were home from pre-school there lies the problem, no family or instant babysitter to help me.

Why is it that employers are not willing to give an excellent candidate a chance? In the advertisement it did not state that you needed to be available at all times during business hours but sometimes is understandable. My point here is, I am willing to work, I have skills and things I can offer an employer however I am in a situation where I need something to fit in with the current lifestyle, ie. Looking after the twins at home, hence a work from home role. One of my friends said don’t worry it will all get better when the twins go to school, that will allow more days per week while the kids are at school, but still faced with the same issue of the school holidays as before.

In regards to this missed job opportunity I feel like the article about women being responsible for child care costs and care hit the nail on the head. I feel that there has to be an easier way to allow women in my situation to work and to stay at home with kids or at least make it easier to access care. Organisations are not tapping into the virtual world and the wonderful technology that will allow so many to telecommute to make a difference for themselves and their families. What great employees are out there wanting to work and cannot due to kids at home?

Also why is it that the woman is penalised for earning less and then paying for care as well? Not fair if you ask me.   Do you work and have kids? How do you fit it all in? Do you find that by the time you pay for child care working is pointless?

I am currently about to start summer school for my last subject and next year to graduate from my Master’s in Project Management. 2013 is going to be me time, allow me to develop more skills in sewing and see if I can do anything with it, I also would like to create more short films like I have been aching to do for a while – maybe I can enter a film festival, now that would be great.

I am not worried about not getting the job, just disappointed that the employer could not see what an asset I would be and that the kids or the fact that I look after them should not be an issue. I do hope when the time comes for the next big thing that they will see beyond the fact that I am a mother to the twins. You never know by this stage the kids most likely will be in school and I will have more time. You never know what is on the horizon.

I am not sitting still and will keep active and busy. I just find it sad that as a person that would like to achieve I am worried that I will not get that opportunity due to being seen as a primary care taker of kids. I am thinking the only way that this will work, if I make the opportunity for me. No wonder so many women go into business for themselves, it all makes sense now!

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