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Home Living Working Woman What Our Culture Of Overwork Is Doing To Mothers

What Our Culture Of Overwork Is Doing To Mothers

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Women have been catching up to men in the workplace. Or so we thought.

A new study suggests that women are not paid as much as men due to the longer hours required by them to get ahead, get promotions and attain raises. Though attitude towards working mothers has been on the rise while the push for equality between the sexes gains traction, the culture of "overwork" is hindering women's successful careers. 

A study published in the American Sociological Review pointed to the culture of "overwork" as one of the main drivers of lower pay for women.

"One reason for the stall in gender equity during the 1990's was a change in typical work WomenWorkplaceInfo-11057weeks and remuneration patterns," said Youngjoo Cha, assistant professor of Sociology at University in Bloomington.

"This period saw a significant rise in 'overwork,' the practice of consistently working 50 hours or more a week, along with a dramatic increase in the financial incentives for working long hours."

Women feel pressure from both work and at home. Put in the extra hours for more respect and money or go home and raise the kids? Because of this internal struggle, many can’t provide those extra 10 to 15 hours of work, therefore not being able to reap the benefits. 

There's also the unfortunate stereotyping for those who cannot "keep up with the pace," being seen as lazy or less productive. The expected norm for employees is that they need to be available all day, everyday, whether by email, phone or in person. If not, they are viewed as uncommitted and not serious about their careers.                                                          Photo Credit: ZenoGroup.net

Only a third of the people surveyed in 2012 (down from 42 percent in 2000) think that the best type of family is the "traditional one" - where the father is the breadwinner and the mother is the homemaker and raising the children. It’s a bittersweet finding. Working women aren’t seen as a negative anymore... but their 40 hours a week of hard labor won’t suffice. 

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