Thanks to all of you who took the time to comment on my blog, respond by email or on Facebook and Twitter. It’s great to know there is a lot of interest in this topic and I look forward to exploring it with you further.
I thought I’d take a look at the relationship between the level of financial contribution the mom provides and her overall satisfaction. Your answers broke down this way, ranked in order of satisfaction from highest to lowest:
40% of women who stated that they and their partners contributed to household income equally (or near equally) rated their satisfaction as “4” or “5” – (scale of 1-5, 5 being highest). The average satisfaction for this group was 3.3.
- 29% of women who stated that their partners were the primary breadwinners rated their satisfaction as “4” or “5.” The average satisfaction for this group was 3.1.
- 24% of women who stated that they were the primary breadwinner rated their satisfaction as “4” or “5”. The average satisfaction for this group was 3.
So here are some questions we can discuss:
- Is there a real difference between an average satisfaction of 3.3 and 3?
- Can we infer from the higher satisfaction of those who contribute equally to the household income that there is overall higher satisfaction when there is a sense of equality in the family? Do equal income contribution also play out in equal parenting and household responsibilities? (I have this data and can find out!)
- Is there something going on that fewer women expressed high levels of satisfaction who were the primary breadwinners? Is there pressure on this person that feels to weighty? Do you think we'd find something similar for men who are the primary breadwinners?
By the way, if there’s a statistician out there who can help with statistic significance, let me know! Otherwise, I’m just going to present the findings using averages and other math that I learned before grad school. I could crack open that stats book, but, well, I’m not going to.
The next blog will be about specific strategies that moms who work full time out of the home, who rate themselves as highly satisfied, use to make it all work. If you haven't taken the survey, and want to contribute your strategies to this blog, please send them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org or take a moment to complete the survey!
What a pleasure it’s been to read your survey responses. 115 amazing moms responded – and the collective wisdom of this virtual group is incredible and inspiring. I am so excited to share some of the strategies and findings and to follow up with many of you to learn more about your stories.
I thought your self-assessments of "satisfaction" were particularly interesting.
The most satisfied sub-group within the survey group was women working part-time. 82% of the part-time working respondents rated their satisfaction with their work-life balance to be either a “4” or “5.” My initial assessment is that the most satisfied in this group had managed to do part time work that they truly love and identify with, enabling them to both nurture an important part of themselves and contribute to the family income, while also feeling like they were spending an adequate amount of time with their children. So as not to idealize this group, many also expressed that part time arrangements can also leave them feeling as though they are not giving their all to anything -- though this was pretty common across all groups.
The least satisfied group was women working full-time working moms – 33%. This is not to say that there weren’t some very satisfied people in this group- 33% is a pretty high number. I think it’s great news that so many women feel satisfied no matter what their arrangement is. And I think we all know that this satisfaction is highly dependent on individual personalities and family arrangements. These satisfied working moms have some great strategies and I look forward to sharing them with you. Stay tuned!
I’m interested in your reactions to these initial results – please share them. Have a great weekend, inspiring mamas. I’ll be thinking about all of you and your responses for many weeks to come.
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