It's a discussion we have often here at Salt & Nectar. How do moms of all types (and dads) find more balance at work and at home?
Authors and working moms Sharon Meers and Joanna Strober tackle this eternal debate in their book Getting to 50/50: How Working Couples Can Have It All. What struck me from the first chapter of this book is that both Meers and Strober approach this discussion with a really holistic vision. They spend a lot of time establishing that working parents who are happy at home and happy at work benefit everyone - the mom, the dad, the kids, the boss.
From this vantage point, the emphasis is no longer on the moms and the changes they need to make. (Can I get an amen to that!?!) In fact, the authors address in great detail the importance of having an involved and active spouse who doesn't let mom to become the CEO of the house.
Of course, this suggestion isn't new. Many books talk about equal partnerships in marriage to create more peace and balance in a home. However, Meers and Strober go beyond advice with real tips and tricks to make your marriage 50/50 before baby and once the kids have arrived.
One particular insight affected me, which is surprising considering just how much time I've spent thinking and writing about this topic. The authors make the incredibly valid point that it's not enough to focus on your perceptions of your role as a mother or even what your husband sees as your role. What is also important is understanding how you perceive your spouse's role in the home and at work.
The challenge is what wives and husbands believe about each other.
I have spent so much time thinking about my role as a mother. It never occured to me that I need to have some honest self-reflection on how I viewed Nicholas's role as a father. Do I keep him from comforting because I think fathers are more for encouragement and motivation? Do I let him rough house instead of discipline because I see fathers as playmates?
I'm not sure of the answers but this book definitely helped me to ask the questions.
If you'd love to read an excerpt on why no one wins when mom feels guilty, click here.
Getting to 50/50 Book Giveaway
We're giving away a copy of the Getting to 50/50. Simply leave a comment telling us what you do to get to 50/50 by this Friday, November 22nd at 12:00 PM PST. We'll pick a winner at random (must be within in U.S.) and send you the book!
All opinions expressed are our own. We were only provided a digital copy of the book for review purposes.
~ Sarah Stewart Holland