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The Motherhood + Parenthood + Familyhood Penalty

This month, we are bringing to you an entire series on the Motherhood Penalty, er, the Parenthood Penalty. You see, conversations on our team started out with a focus on how working moms are penalized both at work and home for simply being a mother who works, though we wanted to also provide support and insight on how to truly manage it all and build up those key strategies for resilience (as we always aim to focus on not just the problem but actual solutions).

As we discussed the topic in-house (in conjunction with our ever-amazing social media team, Treebird Branding!), an interesting point rose to the surface: the penalty is not just on moms, though we may bear some additional brunt of it (HuffPost had a great article here on the mental load of moms). Rather, we noted the trend in fathers stepping up their parenting game as well and wanted to include them. Dads should get credit where it is very much due!

You’d think we’d stop there, end the meeting, and get to work on interviews, posts, blogs, etc. We didn’t stop there. You see, another population bubbled to the surface – working adults who ALSO care in some capacity for their elderly parents. Some of those working adults have kids of their own (author raises hand) and some do not but, regardless, the mental load of working and caring for others, no matter the age or situation, is downright HARD. As such, we wanted to speak to everyone who feels themselves drawn in multiple directions between work, caring for others, and the honest need for self-care as well. This is adulting at its hardest and we understand – and are living it as well.

In our monthlong series, you will hear from the RYS Team on our own struggles, resources, and support as well as some clients who span the spectrum of who they care for, the challenges they have faced, and their word of advice for resilience when it gets difficult.

You will also hear from some of our clients whose own experiences have run the gamut from parenting little ones to the elder adults in their lives, often overlapping. All of our situations, experiences, and advice may very well help you to identify solutions for your own unique adulting obstacles.

I, for one, want to share some of the most brilliant advice that has kept me going when I am needed by everyone at the same time: we’re all juggling a ton of balls at once – some of those responsibilities are glass and some are plastic. Your job really is to proactively identify which ones are the super-important, can’t-let-them-crash-to-the-ground ones versus those that will be just fine if you let them go for a bit. Somehow, it was quite liberating mentally to know that some of my own workload could take a backseat (bounce on the ground and not break, as it were) but be picked back up when time is right. To my brethren who are working, adulting, and caring-for-others humans out there – I salute you and here’s to us all in this crazy phase of life!

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