I am not a parent myself but I believe parenting was and will never be easy. Many individuals raise concerns returning to the work after parental or maternal leave. I never experienced such break myself so I will not comment on this. However, I can imagine to return to research after few years of no study, no research, it will takes me a while to remember skills and the rhythm of everyday life around research. To complicate this further, I will have significant others to take care of that I am longer have a privilege to use my time in the way I desired for.
I have been introduced to this video about returning to work from parental leave. This case was set in Japan, a country that is highly regarded as one of the developed economies. Not only in Japan, but I am proposing this case to the entire community: what are we facing here?
I had several chats with female friends in and/or from Japan. Majority of them claimed that getting married or becoming pregnant can mean end of their career at that workplace. To minimise the confusion of the organisation as a whole, they will be suggested, some have been forced, to resign from their current position and re-apply when they are ready to return to work, instead of taking maternity leave. Regardless of gender, it is mutual understanding/expectation in Japan that parental/maternity leave is less supported than other economically developed countries.
I believe the only solution is to change the perspectives of general public. How? Well, this reminds me of a quote.
Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.Aristotle
Are we as adults passing on the correct message to our next generation?
Are we educating the heart?
Are we providing the best future for our kids?