This may be a controversial blog post, I understand that. However, this post is not bashing those who work or those who stay home. Please read the post in its entirety.
Have you seen that show Younger? It’s about a 40-something-year-old woman who is getting divorced from her husband moves to the city (New York) to live with her girlfriend. She’s trying to find a job in the career that she once dreamt of, but she’s finding road blocks because of her age.
She decides to lie and say that she’s 26 to get that dream job. She gets the job – now she’s trying to keep up the façade that she’s a 26-year-old woman.
I feel like that is going to be me.
I’m 30 years old. I haven’t had a job in over 5 years because I’ve been a stay at home mom. I didn't have the ability to do this with my son. I missed a lot, and I still carry that guilt around. So when this opportunity presented for me to be able to do so with my daughter I was thrilled. We were OK financially and it wouldn't hurt us too badly if I stayed home. We cut back on things and didn't splurge too much. It was doable.
Now, my daughter is five (and my son is twelve), and I'm more than ready to go back to work. But that seems to put me in an interesting dilemma.
Before I decided to stay at home and we expanded our family, I had no problem finding a decent job. But now, I’m hitting roadblocks. People see this five-year gap and it’s a warning sign for them to run for the hills.
I’ve also recently started college. I just completed my first semester. However, I haven’t completed enough for anyone to hire me based on that.
No one told me that I’d be penalized for taking a break. No one told me that I’d have this problem. I never dreamt that I’d have this problem.
Why is this a stigma we must face? We take time off to raise our children, and when we want to get back into the workforce, we can’t. Of course, unless you have a degree – but even then, that’s not guaranteed. I didn’t realize in my early 20’s that I should find something stable. I had a few good jobs, a few not so good jobs. I was trying to find myself, trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my life. Why is this stuff not taught? Not shared? Why is this not common?
Why is it 2016, and women must choose to either work full time, or be a mommy. Why can’t we take time off and do both?
It’s funny, I found an article from 2008 that says it’s ok to take time off work, that it won’t hurt your career. I don’t even think this is doable unless you’re in a high position – like an attorney, CEO, etc.
I’m finding myself researching on how to explain a gap, how to explain being a stupid young person who didn’t know any better (in regards to job-hopping). I’m hoping that with a little fix-me-up to my resume, maybe tweaking the right things, I’ll be able to land that job.
I’m still hopeful.
Have you experienced this? What have you done to overcome it? What tips do you have that could help me? I read that I should use a functional resume, rather than a chronological one. I should use one that showcases my skills rather than immediately showing a gap in my employment. What do you think? Yay or nay?
(reading material: http://www.cnn.com/2013/08/13/living/parents-mothers-opt-to-work/index.html)