Juggling a family and a career is never easy, but are working mums being pressured into returning to work before they’re ready?
A recent YouGov survey, commissioned by Vertbaudet found that:-
• 67% of working mums are likely to return to work after having another child
• 44% say the cost of childcare is a barrier to working life
• 52% are satisfied with the maternity support offered by employers
430 working mums were asked about their relationship with their careers and the support their employers offer. More than two-thirds (67%) of respondents said that if they had another child, they would be “likely” or “very likely” to return to work once their maternity leave was over.
But despite this willingness to get back to working life, the survey also revealed some big barriers to doing so. Some 44% of mums surveyed said the cost of childcare would be a big factor in their decision to go back to work, while 30% were concerned about being able to find a suitable carer for their children. Another 24% said they might reconsider returning to work if their employer was unwilling to offer flexible working hours.
When it came to the support employers give to new mums, it seems there’s still room for improvement. Just over half (52%) of mums surveyed said they were satisfied with their workplace’s maternity support – including factors like length of paid leave, flexibility to work around appointments and cooperativeness in general. However, just 42% were happy with the level of childcare support they received after they returned to work.
As well as the financial pressure to go back to work and earn money to support children, today’s mums have high-profile celebs to live up to: people like the Duchess of Cambridge, JK Rowling, Holly Willoughby and Victoria Beckham are just a few of the ‘supermums’ who make it look easy!
To find out what real women think, Vertbaudet asked some bloggers if they feel pressured by the women they see in the media to “have it all”.
Kirsty and Clara Taylor-Gallop, of parenting blog My Two Mums, said:
“We feel that there is an immense pressure placed by the media on mothers who wish to return to work whilst their children are young.
“Living is expensive and we feel there is a desire to want to provide the best, which almost always involves a return to work eventually. It’s great to get the time with your children at home, but making sure we have the best future provided for us is also a bonus.”
Stacey Priestley, Ecommerce Manager, from Vertbaudet said:
“Working mums come under a lot of pressure to support their families, both by earning a wage in the workplace and by looking after their children at home. We encourage employers to do everything they can to support mums and recognise how hard they work to strike the right work/family balance.”
What do you think? Is there too much pressure on mums to have it all?