Monday, May 15, 2006

BBC NEWS | Health | Worker-mothers 'healthiest women'

BBC NEWS | Health | Worker-mothers 'healthiest women'

This is an interesting study but look at when it was carried out: from 1972, when the women were 26 years old, until today. There have been such shifts in society during that time that I find it hard to see how any study over that period can realistically be said to say much about the prospects for today's 26 year olds (or 36 year olds for that matter).

Having said that, it's not hard to see why working mothers might keep their weight down. After all, if you are happy to leave your child in childcare for 5 days a week, 8-10 hours a day you'll probably be happy to fit in a regular hour in the gym for part of that time. But maybe that's more the exception than the rule. It's just that I've seen enough parents already who far from feeling the wrench at putting their child in daycare seem eager to cast off their reponsibilities and get back to work, leaving little Jimmy/Jemima in the capable hands of 17 year olds on minimum wage. Hmmmmm...

I find it sad when I hear women saying "oh I can't wait to get back to work, I'd go mad if I had to stay home." While I sympathise with how they feel, I'm glad that Hayley doesn't feel that way and has some imagination about her role outside the 9-5 treadmill. It's not as if giving up 9-5 work means you have to give up work altogether. And it's not as if working 9-5 is the only (or even the best) way to keep the old grey matter active.

Most of all I'm glad she enjoys the prospect of being there to raise Oliver herself in these first few years. There'll be many many years when he doesn't need her like he does now. Then she'll be free to rejoin the rat-race!