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Think Out Loud

Another Take on Having It All

Pete Springer/OPB

Last Monday we had a lively discussion sparked by Anne-Marie Slaughter’s Atlantic article Why Women Still Can’t Have It All. Like Slaughter’s article, the conversation focused mainly on mothers who balance parenting with demanding office jobs. One thing that came up again and again was the importance of flexibility: the ability to work around school schedules and take time off to care for a sick child.

But, as many subsequent articles have pointed out, there are plenty of women out there who don’t have this level of flexibility in their jobs. Their choices are much more limited when it comes to “having it all.” Parents who work as janitors, check-out clerks, servers, and construction workers struggle to balance child care with a rigid work schedule.

Are you a parent with an inflexible work schedule? How do you balance work and family? Who do you rely on for help? What would make your life — possibly your parenting — better?


  • Megan Coppock:  Mother of two and former a restaurant employee
  • Susan: Mother of two, works in customer service at a local grocery store
  • Andrea Paluso: Mother of two and executive director of Family Forward Oregon and the Mother PAC
  • Anjanet Banuelos: Mother of three and a union laborer for Michael’s Pipe Services
families family gender parenting politics

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