Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 28th May 2012 19:25 UTC
In the News This topic comes up quite a lot on technology websites, but I generally try to steer clear from it as much as possible, since I'm not the one to talk about it (you know, with me being a man and all that), however, I feel it might be a good idea to just get my opinion out there and be done with it. The topic of women in IT is a hot-button issue, so let me just go out guns blazing: assuming women need special treatment, help, protection, and affirmative action is just as insulting and degrading as outright claiming women have no place in IT - maybe even more so.
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RE: Hmh.
by Neolander on Tue 29th May 2012 17:58 UTC in reply to "Hmh."
Neolander
Member since:
2010-03-08

As for women leaving the scene to build a family: well, that is pretty damn self-explanatory. Men cannot get pregnant. That's all I need to say. And no, we do not need some fancy laws to try and "correct" this situation as it's an entirely biological thing that no laws can change, no matter how much you want.

I globally agree with your post, but can't agree with this part of your reasoning. Sure, men can't get pregnant themselves, but they can get others pregnant, and when they knowingly do it to someone who trusts them, I believe it's their moral responsibility to make sure that the event doesn't ruin the professional life of the mother.

After all, we are more or less half-responsible for the existence of them annoying screaming little brat... And for us lucky people, the whole thing is much more straightforward than for the ones who have to bear the children.

(But, on a totally unrelated note, someone should really invent a reliable masculine contraceptive pill)

Edited 2012-05-29 18:03 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Hmh.
by WereCatf on Wed 30th May 2012 00:50 in reply to "RE: Hmh."
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

I globally agree with your post, but can't agree with this part of your reasoning. Sure, men can't get pregnant themselves, but they can get others pregnant, and when they knowingly do it to someone who trusts them, I believe it's their moral responsibility to make sure that the event doesn't ruin the professional life of the mother.


It's not really up to the father: a woman is the one who has to carry the child for 9 months with all the negative side-effects that entails and which affect job-performance, a woman is the one who has to breast-feed the child since most men cannot do that, and if the parent is responsible she won't put the child in daycare for atleast the first 3 years.

After the 3 years the father could choose to stay at home with the child and let the woman go back to work, but such a long break from work can really make it hard to go back, and most men still refuse to be the ones taking care of the children. That area is one where more men could grow some balls and take charge of caring for the children at home, that I agree with. It just doesn't seem to be happening.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Hmh.
by Alfman on Wed 30th May 2012 02:15 in reply to "RE[2]: Hmh."
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

WereCatf,

"a woman is the one who has to breast-feed the child since most men cannot do that, and if the parent is responsible she won't put the child in daycare for atleast the first 3 years."

Wow, I don't even know how to respond to this. It's sad and painful to leave a child and go to work, but that's the modern reality for every single "responsible" parent I've ever known. Having a spouse stay home full time to take care of the kids is an ideology that few families can afford any more. My wife's job only permitted a year of unpaid leave for childcare before they would dismiss her. Get this, on top of everything else, while she was on leave I was paying $1450/month to continue our cobra health plan that her job stopped covering while she was on leave. She didn't want to go back to work but I don't make enough income to support our family - sometimes I'm so ashamed of this fact that it brings tears to my eyes.


"That area is one where more men could grow some balls and take charge of caring for the children at home, that I agree with. It just doesn't seem to be happening."

It's not an easy thing to do. I watch our child for two weekdays, and the other 3 weekdays she's at childcare. But it's very difficult to find a good job at all, much less one willing to work around childcare. I've been denied positions due to my request to have some time off with her. I'm tormented about taking a job in NYC that pays better but forces me to commute 3.5hrs/day, since I wouldn't see my daughter at all during the week. I know parents who do exactly that, and I find it so sad that society forces us to make family compromises like that.


WereCatf, you need to count your blessings if you can stay home with your child or maybe have a relative that can while you cannot. Don't judge those of us who face this struggle every day, especially if you haven't been in our shoes.

Edited 2012-05-30 02:28 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Hmh.
by Neolander on Wed 30th May 2012 06:20 in reply to "RE[2]: Hmh."
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

It's not really up to the father: a woman is the one who has to carry the child for 9 months with all the negative side-effects that entails and which affect job-performance,

Sure, men can do nothing about this part, that's why I said that we have it easier in the beginning and should try harder later to compensate.

a woman is the one who has to breast-feed the child since most men cannot do that, and if the parent is responsible she won't put the child in daycare for atleast the first 3 years.

These are more matter of debates. Breast-feeding first : it's a choice, not an obligation. Some mothers do it, and some don't. I've recently heard something about its health benefits for the baby being overestimated (it would only have temporary effects, no long-term effects).

And then there is this three years number. I don't have statistics in mind, but this sounds like an oddly large number. I'm pretty sure no one does it for so long here, but I could ask all these young parents around me at work in order to get a better idea. It may be a bit of culture-specific thing (like the "Raubenmutter" stigma in Germany).

Concerning daycare... Here, an option that is often explored is getting help from the grand-parents, if one of them is retired at the time children are born. They are considered more trustworthy than strangers, so maybe one starts to get help from them earlier. But again I don't know how long after birth parents do it, I'd have to ask

And then, as Alfman mentions, there's the issue of money... A couple would really have to be fairly wealthy in order to afford losing half its income for an extended period of time, at the very time where there's an extra mouth to feed. Here, employers are supposed to keep the job contract running and continue paying a salary for about 4 months, but after that you're on your own...

Again, I can have a look around, but I'd be surprised if three years of parental leave is customary around here. That would make most French mothers irresponsible in your view, which is maybe a bit excessive.

Edited 2012-05-30 06:29 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: Hmh.
by Soulbender on Wed 30th May 2012 07:10 in reply to "RE[2]: Hmh."
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

a woman is the one who has to breast-feed the child since most men cannot do that


Uhmm..most? Are there men who can??

Reply Parent Score: 2