There always seems to be a little disagreement over whether working moms get a little extra leeway at work. Often, single co-workers claim that they do. I’ve always believed that almost everyone is distracted at work for a variety of reasons. A study that shows that 70% of women plan their weddings at work sort of proves that you don’t have to be a mom to have your mind elsewhere on the job. Obviously, some of these would-be brides may be moms – but you get my drift.
According to the David’s Bridal’s “What’s On Brides’ Minds” survey of newly engaged or newlywed women, 77% admit to using work hours to plan their wedding day. That doesn’t really surprise me. Have you ever been around anyone who is engaged? Even the most reasonable women get a little obsessed about their big day. It’s inevitable. I guess the difference is that a wedding comes and goes and a child stays in your life forever. Maybe that’s why there isn’t as much animosity toward women who have to make it to a cake tasting as there is toward one that may not want to miss a dance recital.
Employers appear to be pretty forgiving, too. According to a survey done by The Knot, bosses aren’t too disturbed by a little wedding planning on company time. Forty-three percent of respondents said managers were supportive of their wedding planning and understood that they may be a little distracted in the months leading up to the wedding.
This may be an unfair comparison, since planning a wedding is fleeting and parenting a child is a permanent state. But the point is, people are distracted on the job and committed to other projects outside of work for a variety of reasons. I’m kind of sick of working moms taking all of the flak here. Remember Star Jones? She completely hijacked The View in the months leading up to her wedding. I’d rather hear some harmless child-rearing anecdotes any day.
Clearly the David’s Bridal study can be a little biased. I mean, someone who would take the time to even respond to a survey like that must be a little wedding obsessed. But there are many other situations where employees may need extra time and lenience. Ever worked with an actor? What about someone pursuing continuing education? How about someone with a sick family member? Who gets to decided what life events are deemed important enough to warrant extra slack?
I think it would be nice if we could all stop pretending that working mothers are the only ones who may be occasionally distracted on the job.