The 4:45 divide
This has been a really busy week at work. We have been staying late to meet deadlines, pulling 12-hour days, blah blah-dee-dee-blah-blah.
Oh, and by “we” I mean we, the child-less employees. Parents, on the other hand, seem to have a fistful of get-outta-jail-free cards.
Our office is made up of pretty young people — I’m the youngest, at 25, and the oldest is maybe 35. So we are all either married or attached, and a few employees have kids.
Yesterday, in the midst of a mega-crisis, the “parents” in our bunch raced out the door at 4:45, explaining it away with daycare pick-ups.
The rest of us? Yeah, we got to stay late …
It was the same at my previous job. The mommies and daddies got to work flexible hours, were excused from certain shifts, and usually were not asked to stay late. It’s not even a matter of seniority, because the older child-less employees were stuck working.
I would imagine that sometimes they feel guilty. I was in a cast last summer, and had to work from home occassionally when I couldn’t get a ride. And I felt terrible about that.
If I return to the full-time workforce once we have children, I’m sure I’ll be taking advantage of flex-hours and the other perks, too. Plus dealing with the guilt of being a working parent.
But it really does suck to be on the “other” side of it, and I hope I remember that, as I rush to daycare at 4:45 … leaving the child-less employees cursing me behind my back.