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When "opt-out" moms opt back in

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by LongTimeListener, Aug 12, 2013.

  1. LongTimeListener

    LongTimeListener Well-Known Member


    Decently interesting story about an always much-discussed (and by now probably even cliche, I guess) topic. These were the highly educated, high-achievement corporate women who were profiled in the early 2000s for their decision to leave the workforce. They were in the Times, 60 Minutes, and on the cover of Time.

    Long story short, they're now trying to get back in, although not in the demanding (and high-paying) fields and jobs where they once worked. And the story shows that as a rule, the greatest negative effect was on the women's marriages. Either the wives resented being shunted into the "traditional" role (including housekeeping), or their husbands resented that they weren't doing the housekeeping, or the women felt a general inequality relating to money and having to run all decisions past the breadwinner, or the men were envious that the women got so much time to live life the way they wanted while the men had to work.

    All us married people have gone through this deal in one of its many forms, I'm sure. And the only thing I'm convinced of is that you simply cannot read a damn thing -- whether it's "Lean In" or that counterbalance about having it all -- as for what applies to your own family. You can only do what's right for you, and screw the impact on society as a whole.
  2. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    The woman who was the main subject of the story, if I recall, left a $500K a year job. They have those?

    The story went on a bit, but I was impressed, from a reporting standpoint, that the writer got the husband and the wife to both talk pretty candidly, for the record, about what they had been through.

    Being among young urban woman now, with their drive, it's hard to imagine that this was a real movement just a decade ago or so. I read in Slate a few weeks ago a first-person piece by a woman who was pregnant at age 26 in New York City and basically just shocked the world by choosing to have a baby at such a young age.
  3. LongTimeListener

    LongTimeListener Well-Known Member

    And yet she ended up divorced and living in a nondescript townhome, cash-poor and tapping into her 401k, needing to take a job, any job, just to keep money coming in. Crazy.

    That was another strain of the story for sure, all these families lived as if their income would go up forever, and now they find themselves kind of up against it when that didn't turn out to happen.
  4. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    I'm prepared to get hammered here, but the thing that bugs me about stay at home dads, stay at home moms, women wanting to get back in is that they have to be accompanied by "trend" pieces. Some women who stayed at home made sure that everyone knew that they could be a corporate hotshot if they wanted to (unlike most stay at home moms I guess is the point trying to be made). Stay at home dads emphasizing their love of being a dad, being involved with their kids (unlike other dads I guess) Etc. Etc.
    You want to work? Fine. You can afford to make do with one salary and stay home? Congrats! There are plenty of people (most - probably) that can't afford to have a choice to make.
  5. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    These are the type of women that terrorize and ruin affluent school systems because they have too much time on their hands. The world will be
    a better place if they get back into the workforce and out of the bake sale biz.
  6. doctorquant

    doctorquant Well-Known Member

    I liked Megan McArdle's piece on this ... a juicy little snippet:

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