Article that was published in an Atlanta Parenting magazine – February 2014
The workplace in America is becoming increasingly dominated by women, and in ways that many people never saw coming. In terms of legal issues, of course, women and men have been equal for many, many years now – however, there is a difference between legal rights and societal attitudes, which is why it has taken until now for women to achieve anything close to equality in the working world. Yet now, this equality finally seems to be within reach. More and more women are finding ways to succeed professionally – in fact, even working mothers are becoming more common. Mothers all over the country are finding new ways to take care of their children while they go off to work just like the fathers.
One major underlying reason for the rising numbers of working mothers is historical in nature – as mentioned above, it takes some time for equal rights to take effect in society, with the result that we are still seeing the after effects of women with college educations. In the past, men often received higher education, while women stopped going to school and started looking toward raising families. Now, however, women starting families are more likely to have received college education first, and in many cases have already started careers before they give thought to having children. This is of course a fantastic trend for mothers who want to stay occupied professionally.
Unfortunately, there are still some hurdles to clear for working mothers. For example, statistics show that though women in general are close to surpassing men in terms of employment numbers, working women still make less money on average than their male counterparts. This is likely a sign that the working world is still catching up to the number of women it is now accommodating! Additionally, however, there are also somewhat troubling indications that mothers have a harder time getting hired in the first place than single women, or men. It seems that employers often do not trust mothers as frequently as others just yet.
Ultimately, however, the overall trends for working mothers are positive. Again, the working world and professional America are still adjusting to increased women in the workplace, and thousands of young women all over the country are still figuring out ways to balance motherhood and steady jobs. However, the numbers of working mothers are still increasing, and many families are becoming more comfortable functioning with both parents working, many by finding alternate daytime care for younger children. At the least, there seems to be no one these days specifically telling mothers not to go to work, and that is a step in the right direction.
– Monica Lowry