Working Parents' Worries: "Having Kids is Looked Down Upon"

working parents’ worries

Back in November, our CEO Dave Lissy was asked by a reporter on NECN television whether he thought working parents' worries reported in our Modern Family Index - fears they'd be viewed negatively at work after a child - were well founded.

One answer can be found in a personal narrative offered by one of our Solutions at Work blog readers.

"When I returned [from leave] I was told, 'please have in mind that THEY will expect you to prove yourself,'" wrote a commenter on our blog who identified herself as Yara.

 "I have already proven what I can do! I have given my all at all times, and I am still as capable as when I left."

Working Parents' Worries: "Berated by the Boss"

More can be gleaned from the comments after an article about the MFI on Slate.

"Being sick or having kids is looked down on if you're absent, but if you take off on a fishing trip, yay you! It's strange"

"I had to endure being berated by one boss because our son had a fever and I had to stay home. I was told to make other arrangements because my personal life shouldn't interfere with work and the meeting we were scheduled to attend off-site was important."

So the answer, according to Dave and our readers, is a hearty, "yes."

Modern Families in a Less Than Modern Workplace

"Even in this day and age there are a lot of fears that working parents have around once they have a child about how they'll be viewed at work," Dave told NECN in the interview. "Will they be looked over for a promotion? Is their position in jeopardy? What happens when they come back? Those may seem like things we think we've gotten past."

The personal narratives underscore an important fact: that results from our 2016 survey - the one showing that parents returning to work after a new baby are worried about judgement from colleagues, compromised promotions, and being fired - aren't merely theoretical, but rather are playing out in actual workplaces all around us. And the cost is to organizations in productivity, engagement and turnover.

"The study" said Dave, "highlighted that there are number of concerns that still exist out there."

Learn more about the study in our ebook, here.

Written by: Bright Horizons Blog Editor

About the Author

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The Bright Horizons Blog Editor frequently posts on the real solutions that meaningfully support employees, advance careers, and drive the world’s leading brands. The Editor curates the latest news, trends, and challenges facing HR pros because your time is scarce. Follow the Bright Horizons Blog to receive this insight in your inbox.