Skip to main content

Dear Kelly Brook...

Am I professional?




Dear Kelly Brook,

I would like to drop a quick note to you about those comments that you made about mothers being unprofessional compared to their childless colleagues if they have childcare issues.


I'll share the day I had yesterday with you. I am a freelance writer having left my office job last year. Sounds like a walk in the park working from home around two small kids?

It's not.


I know how in demand writing gigs are and I have to go up against a number of writers with no children and thus more managable time.


I had my 11 month old baby yet I juggled 3 deadlines and even chose to take on some urgent quick turn around work that afternoon too, three loads of washing and then worked up until the kids bedtime. 


I know I have to put in more effort, work harder and be more reliable all because I am a mother. I still took time out to play, put him down for a nap and dropped my other son off at nursery. I presume this makes me unprofessional working with my childcare issue?!


I still had everything submitted on time and done well. Unprofessional or not I made it work what gives you the right to say what is and isn't professional?

I know mums who have been up all night yet leave the house at 5am to go into work. I know mums who work all through the night and stay up for near on 3 days straight looking after the children with no help. 


You see most of us are only working to pay the childcare bill we only have to pay beacuse we are told to go back to work after having a baby. It takes military presecion just to get to the office in the first place. 


As a mother you could be up all night with a fussy baby or an ill toddler yet we will still 99% make it in and complete our shift.

When I was working in the office I felt the seismatic shift in attitudes towards me after I had a baby. I worked over time, through my lunch and took out of hours work as I felt I had to prove myself once again because I was a mother.


I used to leave the house 2 hours before a shift walk 2 miles to nursery then go in and do a 9 hour shift on little to no sleep.

As women in the workplace we already go into the office with a loaded weapon because we have a vagina with potential employers wondering when we are going to shoot babies out compared to our male colleagues.


But guess what men become parents too. They take time off too and have to leave early because of a urgent pick up request are they too unprofessional? Me and my partner balance our working time with our children it isn't just down to me as the mother we are a team.


As mothers we know we are seen to get the best deal with many choosing to work flexiable hours or agreed hours around childcare. Holidays can tend to favour those with children such as Christmas leaving our childless colleagues picking up the slack.


You see I've been on both sides of the equation pre and post children. I know how frustrating it can be from both sides.

Would you being say this about a colleague taking time off as their dog was sick? Or needing to look after an elderly relative I wonder? Why is it only mothers you've chosen to "out".


Every working parent tends to have childcare worked our to an inch of it's life but there are times where there is an emergency. Children get ill. Partners cannot get off work so yes, we may need to leave early. I am sorry you view this an unprofessional should I instead leave my sick child at nursery and wait for social services to call me or call a random stranger off the street so I can remain "professional"?


You see when something like this happens there is then the looks from collegues, the comments and you know when you next go back in once again you are needing to go above and beyond to prove yourself knowing everyone thinks you are a liability just for reproducing and having responsibilities. 


We talk alot about "the sisterhood" women supporting women so we can gain equality especially within the workplace. But it's your comments and attitude that are stopping this. Women should not tear women down because they have children or don't have children. Mothers and non- mothers should not be pitted against each other in the workplace we instead should work together to find a balance. Give and take so everyone gets a fair deal children or not.


Women will never be equal when we choose to destroy one another rather than build up and support one another especially in the workplace. 


We also need to ensure we are including men in the conversation about childcare in the workplace too. 

Why didn't you pick up on dads going to collect their sick children or leaving early to collect them from school? Why just the mothers? The responsibility for a child doesn't automatically fall to the mother. 


I guess I want to thank you for saying what you did as at least we can begin to start a discussion about these issues in the workplace but don't place guilt at the door of mothers and parents who already have to prove themselves because of yourself and others and what you have made us out to be.


From an unprofessional mum of two who occasionally has the odd childcare issue.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Dear Elijah, on your fourth heart day

Elijah the heart hero never letting anything stop him. Today  is your 4th heart day. It's 4 years since we took you down to Great Ormond Street for open heart surgery. It seems to have crept up on us again. Another whole year has passed but it hasn't changed how I feel about that day. Some have said that oh, by now surely you should have gotten over it after all it's been 4 years. The answer is I don't think I ever will. I have been thinking a lot about that day, where I signed the consent forms for them to take you and operate on you. To either save or take your life. That day was the worst of my life, the unknown certainty of whether you would come back up again. I held you as they put you to sleep. They gave me your dummy as they took you from me and laid you on the operating table as if you weighed nothing. I couldn't even kiss you goodbye in case it was the last time. That's why I won't ever get over it and those who have been in the

The obligatory birth story

Eighteen months have passed since our beautiful little miracle emerged (I say emerged because 'vigorously ripped out' doesn't have the same ring to it). The rollercoaster of the past year and a half has somewhat levelled off, and things have become almost normal. Now feels as good a time as any, for me to confess (to HONESTLY confess) what it's like to give birth, become a mother, and cope with the joys of reflux, teething, milestones and TODDLERDOM! And how having an NICU baby with a heart defect makes these things all the more stressful. Oh, and there's also my increasing fear that Elijah is Damien from the Omen, with his endless antagonising of our cats. I will save the nine glorious months of swollen feet, constipation, and eating chocolate on the sofa, like a whale (whilst watching RHOBH in my pants) for another time. This is the story of how Elijah was born. To be honest, after watching numerous programmes on TV, they make it look like, once your 

Day One - Diagnosis

Disbelieving the diagnosis. Every day for 28 days I will be taking part in the  #chdphotochallenge over on my Instagram but I will also be blogging everyday too. Today, is day one and the theme is Diagnosis. I can remember vividly when we recieved Elijah's diagnosis of CHD and Tetralogy of Fallot. It is a day I don't look back on fondly. We were visited bedside by the consultant on the maternity ward. We were told via diagrams that Elijah's heart wasn't working correctly. There were numerous structural abnormalities which were causing his cynatic episodes. In layman's terms his heart leaked back de oxygenated blood, there was a hole that would need to be repaired and thickening of the heart muscle too. The terms overwhelmed me, I didn't know what they really meant for my baby who was fighting for his life. Receiving the diagnosis was the day our lives changed forever. We were no longer new parents but heart parents of a CHD bab