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April 12, 2016



Do let me know when the hypocrites that make political hay out of this actually do it themselves. Otherwise, it's crap. I have had female managers for years. And frankly I can't think of a one of them that was any good and that should have had the job in the first place.

More victories for Affirmative Action. More defeats for reason and common sense.

Sara Smith

I like being home with my kids. I'd rather site home and not work and let my husband take care of me. I like being told what to do. I think you girls have it all wrong.



While this talk is still a long way away for me (my two daughters are 20 months / 45 days old), the time my wife and I have had dealing with these issues is hopefully good practice for this eventual discussion. We certainly don't refer to sensationalized statistics like a 20%+ pay gap that doesn't really exist. But we do have to deal with the realities of a household with two working parents in successful careers.

The first thing to teach is there is no such thing as "having it all." Compromises are a reality of every aspect of life, and balancing a career and family is no exception. Regardless of my desires to start my own company, I cannot do that while I am the primary breadwinner for two children in daycare. And while my wife has stayed in her career, she has had to hit the pause button on career advancement for the past three years while she has been pregnant and rearing infants.

The second thing to teach is to build your value in the workplace before having kids. This goes for both men and women. If you do not bring value above and beyond your average coworkers, you will have to make more sacrifices for your family. I get far more latitude to take additional paternity leave and stay home with a sick child without taking PTO than my coworkers do because of the value I bring to my company. It is not corporate charity, it is a smart retention policy.

Third is to teach you need to have frank discussions about these topics with your spouse both before and during your marriage. Both my wife and I are ambitious and love our family, so we have to stay on top of our work/life balance so that our sacrifices are made on our terms. My career has advanced more quickly over the past three years than my wife's has because we made the conscious decision to focus on my career while she focused on the children. This wasn't because I am the man of the household, it was because she felt she was years away from her next promotion and I was still on a fast trajectory. My parents made the exact opposite decision because my mom was the breadwinner.

If I can help my daughters make the same kind of calculated career and family decisions that my parents, parents in law, and my spouse and I have made, I think explaining the difficulties of being a career woman and mother will work out okay.

Mary Brennan

I was the glass ceiling! I'm 70 years old now; so that puts me right in the middle of that generation. I also reared two extremely successful children during this time. This was my mantra: women had to work twice as hard as men, only to be concerned half as good.


Alice Hori

Many of us women have made the conscious choice to be at home to take care of our families and to create an actual home - not just a fuel stop. It takes time to cook cook three meals a day, make sure that dinner is a calm ritual, spend time reading and praying with our children and engage in other activities that help to form their character. Creating a haven away from the world is a job in itself. Because we are away from the workplace for years performing work that is extremely important for our families and for society at large, it simply doesn't bother us to be faced with smaller paychecks due to lack of experience and seniority, when we return to work.
We drag down the average paycheck for all woman - but only because we are doing something more important than paid work. Men aren't going to do this work because they aren't fitted for it by inclination or nature. To be always carping about the glass ceiling is offensive to those of us who have helped to create the disparity in wages because we value traditional woman's work.


The 79 cent difference has been debunked over and over and it is jaw dropping that people still cite it. Will all things being equal the pay difference is about 5 cents. That is right, a nickle.

Jamie Barnett

Why are we only talking to our daughters about the glass ceiling? How about talking to our sons as well?

Jaye Derrick

I hear the point that this post is attempting to make, but I do think it's unfortunate the author started by talking about women staying home after having kids and then being underemployed when they return or never going back. It sounds like the author has fully endorsed the "lean in" perspective, suggesting that women are responsible for the pay gap (which really does exist and in fact the studies "debunking" the pay gap have often been debunked themselves). Beyond considering women who choose to stay at home (and good for them! it's hard work raising kids!) or are forced through circumstance to stay at home (and this is where paid family leave and paid childcare would be of immense help), there are really differences in the rates of hiring and promotion for women vs. men. Most of these differences are not purposeful. Most people don't say, hey, I'm going to pay this man more than this women for the same work. But people tend to see a young white male as "better" at his job than a young white female or person of color, even assuming all of their qualifications are equal (they've done studies where they sent resumes to different businesses - the qualifications were equal, but the names or photos accompanying the resumes were changed. White men, even with an apparent felony on their record, are more likely to be hired than Black men. Similar results for men vs. women). There is also a double standard when it comes to being assertive. Women who are not assertive are seen as "typical" and therefore not as "qualified" as men. But women who are assertive ("like men") are seen as aggressive or dislikable (the b-word). The author of this article is definitely right about one thing - there is a "mommy" penalty for working mothers that working fathers don't typically have. Engaged mothers are seen as being less committed to their jobs (look how much she could have done if she weren't taking care of her sick kids!); engaged fathers are seen as being even better workers (look how much he did despite taking care of his sick kids!). Beyond all of this, there is evidence that jobs that switch from being "historically male" to "historically female" also experience a decrease in the amount they pay relative to other jobs. Women's work is valued (financially) less than men's work. There is another side to this that often gets ignored. There are a substantial minority of stay-at-home dads out there too, and they often get overlooked in these conversations. Talking about a woman being "better-suited" to taking care of kids really hurts these dads, who are often amazing.

Mark Jones

There is no glass ceiling, it is just another political football to play with for political gain.

Shelley Carpenter

How about telling them to form their own corporations with women. How about using their intelligence for forge ahead and make a dent by being successful!!! I am in my 60's and NO MAN has ever held me down!! Ability + attitude will do it! Do it in the Name of the LORD!!


The government has to make it illegal to pay employees more than another employee who does the same job at the same quality. The government should also give a monthly stipend equivalent to minimum wage to any parent who stays home to raise their kid and/or homeschool it (but not both parents, and not additional payment for multiple kids at a time). This eliminates the need for childcare, and encourages breastfeeding, which produces healthier children than vaccines. Children cared for by their parents tend to turn out better than if they were cared for by a daycare. Homeschooled kids are usually smarter than non-homeschooled kids. If the government wants healthier, smarter kids, then they should do this. But i guess that isnt in their best interest. They would rather have a dumb, unhealthy population addicted to pharma drugs.

Gabrielle Yoder

There is no glass ceiling you idiot. Women who want to break it do, but many women don't care and find other ways to be successful. Please quit perpetuating garbage. And take me off of the care.com mailing list. I don't want to read this feminist trash. I got so irritated that I broke one of my personal rules and just flat out called you an idiot.


"How will you explain the glass ceiling to your daughter?"
At various times and places throughout history there has been mass systemic discrimination based on things like sex, creed, color and even religion. Luckily, this basically no longer exists in the United States of America, . This is still a serious issue in some countries though where women still aren't allowed to drive or even leave the house without a male escort.

"Wouldn’t it be great if you didn’t have to?"
No! That would mean that we forget/ignore the PAST and that's never good.

"The average wage of a woman working full-time, year-round is only 79 percent of a man’s earnings. "
Averages based on sex alone... sounds sexist. Let's get the averages based on employee weight ranges too and maybe we can get equal pay for everyone based on that too?! It's about skill, performance, liability and reliability not genitalia. The 79% number is junk and has been widely debunked for what it is... over averaging. The real wage gap is a couple of percent between men and women, which is lower than between many other groupings. Obviously, if companies could save 20% or more by just hiring women, they would.

"Six or more years later, we’re stuck. Our skills are outdated. We have 20-something year old managers who don’t “get it.” "

Six or more years out of the work-force and you expect to just drop back in, where you left off... when your skills are outdated? What 'skills' are outdated in 6ish years?!
The whole ' 20-something year old managers' part is very ageist and telling about your narrative.

"We need flexibility. We take a job we don’t love and feel overqualified for."
Wait! You need flexibility? Why? I thought this was about EQUAL PAY not special privileges. No one should be getting greater flexibility for the same pay as someone else without it... that's not EQUAL.

"But they too, have a uterus. They too, may have children. Will this set them back?"
Sadly, only women can have children... if the individual wants to place their career above having their own children... yet they still want children... they can ADOPT. It is this very fact about women being the child bearers that is the cause of men traditionally being the ones who do the other half of the work that is demanding in differing ways from agriculturally speaking to modern cash based society.

"Some companies – or high earning professions -- are stuck in the “Leave it to Beaver” era where mom is home with the kids. "
Well, it isn't like this at any COMPANY I have worked at, but this is how we handle things in my FAMILY. It was a decision we made... to raise the children better and more personally versus chasing more cash to pay someone else with for raising our children.
Can you cite any 'high earning professions' that can be shown to be this way or only individual families?
Leave it to Beaver went off the air over 50 years ago... 50 years ago... let that sink in, 50 years ago.

"Your kids are sick? Where’s your husband?"
You think it's OK to ask about the husband, but not about the wife?... huh... I wonder if it's wife/husband because that's the assumed role of the partner of the opposite sex? I wonder if it's actually prejudice not to just say 'partner'?! Perhaps what the employer/manager/supervisor/whatever is really asking isn't 'isn't that a womans job?' but is actually 'can your spouse take care of that so you can stay and work?'... I mean, it isn't a supervisors job to care about your spouses job... it's their job to think about the company THEY work for and not the company of every employees spouse.

Aside... I saw a comment that 'The government should also give a monthly stipend equivalent to minimum wage to any parent who stays home to raise their kid and/or homeschool it (but not both parents, and not additional payment for multiple kids at a time). ' that I think you would like.... no idea how something so silly is supposed to work in the real world, but there you have it. Maybe it would make you happy if this 'wage gap' you think exists were offset by just taking the difference from your spouse... or maybe your parents retirement... since hey, they didn't stop this atrocity when they had the chance, why shouldn't they have to pay for it?

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