You may have seen Anne-Marie’s recent Article in the Atlantic which has already caused a lot of controversy and many people have blogged about it and commented in varying polarised ways.
Here is my take: This was written in response to a blog from a leading corporation
‘It was easier when the children were younger as I could hire au pairs who were able to take care of the house and the children (I have been a single parent over the past 10 years so had no other support)
However, the past few years have been what I call the ‘dark period’ ..the dreaded teenage years. You can’t delegate this to anybody and nobody is qualified to ‘parent’ this phase except the Mother or Father. I have dealt with 3 lots of GCSE’s 3 lots of A levels and 3 lots of University (the latter still in progress) I have also had to deal with them passing out at 3am in the morning in the streets, feinting in Boots, bouts of self doubt about body image from living in the Surrey Stock Broker belt. In other words 2 life threatening hospital visits, 2 drops outs from College and Uni and weekly emotional ‘teenage girl’ metaphorical car crashes! Oh yes and one real car crash where the car was written off at 3am in the ice and snow.
It sounds awful and sometimes it is. It tests my juggle not struggle philosophy to the limit but the rewards are immense. I have three accomplished, beautiful adult daughters and we are a close-knit family and I have an outstanding and fulfilling career.
I wouldn’t give up either aspects of my life. It is the whole that makes my life complete. I am passionate about leadership development for women at mid to senior levels because I can relate to them! It is about life, not leadership theory! They must make choices with the end in mind. Not make ‘non-choices’ and drift to an unsatisfactory end.
All of this is why I love what I do and one of the reasons that I suggest organisations make sure that women’s development is lead by somebody who a) has children and b) has a high pressure career as well.
Two of my daughters tweeted this week how proud they are of me and the third introduced me to her organisation a few weeks ago where her colleagues now say ‘you must be so proud of your Mum’
Don’t give up. Fall down seven times and get up eight!
As Stephen Covey taught me many years ago ‘begin with the end in mind’