Five gender stereotypes you might face as a working Mum

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Working mum – Via Shutterstock
The workplace has evolved hugely in recent decades for women, and the current generation boasts 20 per cent more working mothers than the one before them.

But in spite of the surge in the number of working mothers and the gradually changing policies that aim to make them more able to accommodate working hours, women still find themselves facing gender stereotypes, both in and out of the workplace.

Working gets you out of caring for children

It is often speculated that mothers are only in the workplace to avoid having to look after their children or do household chores. Certainly, many feel that work can be the relief they need from monotony, but this same notion applies to men and women alike, and one of the problems frequently encountered by those who work from home is the lack of variety and escape.

They are unreliable at work

Employees without children have little idea as to the seriousness of your commitment, and may allege that your family priorities make you unreliable, or uncommitted to your job. Some managers even go as far as to avoid hiring women in their 20s and 30s to avoid losing them to maternity leave. Sometimes last-minute issues crop up, but with careful planning and cooperation from your colleagues, parental responsibilities can be worked around.

Their families resent their working

The assumption that by working mothers are ducking out of more important responsibilities is still rampant, and although it is common for parents to feel guilty for spending so much time working, their families very rarely share this feeling. In fact, children pick up superior motivation and work ethic from the influence of a working mother; not to mention, they enjoy the lifestyle comforts their mother’s salary allows them.

They get preferential treatment at work

Workplaces vary, but as time has gone on, both employers and Government have tried to make the workplace more inclusive and flexible, to allow people to work for a living, regardless of their circumstances. So while parents are eligible for special leave if they need it, and may request particular hours to fit around childcare or school, these same courtesies are extended to all sorts of people with commitments. The same people that complain about preferential treatment would soon hope to be supported in the same ways, should the need for it arise.

They can’t be good at working AND parenting

This one is just laughable. It suggests that nobody is able to be proficient at more than one thing, which simply isn’t true. Men are quite capable of being good fathers as well as good workers, good readers, good athletes, good cooks, but the double standard survives at times and suggests that no matter how they try, women will only ever be good for child-rearing. Anyone who comes out with this suggestion is making their ignorance and narrow-mindedness plain for all to see.

Society is far from perfect, and despite the vast majority having moved past such outdated preconceptions, every now and then they rear their ugly heads. But keep on keeping on, making your children proud and working hard – no reasonable person can fault you for it.

About the author:

By Charlotte Baldwin, Operations Manager at IQ Cards:

IQ Cards are a fundraising company that provide schools and establishments with the necessary tools to fundraise via selling high-quality and unique gifts designed by pupils. As part of the established on-demand print and digital solutions provider The IQ Digital House, ensures that all requirements and products are produced to the highest standards, delivered on time and at great value prices. Several of the IQ cards team are mothers and PTA members themselves appreciating and understanding school protocols extremely well. They are the preferred supplier for PTA UK. For more information please visit here.

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