Life Without Baby

Filling the silence in the motherhood discussion

Childless in the Workplace October 15, 2010

Filed under: Children,The Childfree Life: Issues and Attitudes — Life Without Baby @ 8:19 am
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A friend of mine was recently offered a “promotion.” The job came with more prestige and opportunity, but also a significant increase in stress and responsibility, and no increase in pay. My friend wanted the job, but politically, she knew she had to take it. Declining the offer would have been a mark against her for future opportunities, so she accepted the position (and is now working crazy hours, weekends, and also had her planned vacation cancelled.) She later came to find out that someone else had been offered the job, but had turned it down because he has children. My friend, with no children, had no legitimate excuse for not taking the job. If she’d refused because she wanted to spend more time with her fiancé, she doesn’t think she would have a job at all today. Yes, my friend was able to take that opportunity, and yes, it will serve her well in her future career, but it seems that more is expected of childless employees.

Have you found this in your workplace?

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One Response to “Childless in the Workplace”

  1. The above scenario very closely describes the situation I am in now. I’m in a position that two prior (female) employees quit, because they could not handle the workload and juggle the demands of family. Because of dept. reorganization I had no choice…other than leaving…to take this job (which was presented as a “promotion”) and I too, was not given an increase in pay for this so-called “promotion.” There are days…even as a childless person…I have difficulty managing the job and the demands of home. I think this promotion without increased pay phenomenon may be greatly due to the bad world economy. Jobs are hard to come by, and so companies are downsizing and demanding more work out current employees because they know that folks have very few alternatives. With that said, as a childless woman that has been in the workforce for 20 years there are definitely more expectations put upon childless employees. There are times I’ve had to put my foot down, and literally told one boss, “Just because I have no children it doesn’t mean I don’t have a life.” That was a make or break statement, but fortunately it worked in my favor (at the time I was being asked to take some of the workload for two women out on maternity leave…I was none to happy about that and made my position known).

    For now I do this job hoping that if nothing else I’m getting a good resume enhancement.


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