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Comments

Charlie Phelps

Obviously you are two very bright people who are driven by intellectual challenge and/or materialism. Maybe raising your kids with a (no doubt very qualified) surrogate is not the right way to go. Have you ever thought of being "the mother" or having your husband be "the father"? Why do you both place your careers above raising your children? I truly believe you two are making a mistake.

tom

or, you could do like my wife and I both did ... transition from high-pressure, 80 hr/wk, jobs (public company controller and IB MD) to less demanding positions that allow you the time and flexibility to participate in their soccer, ballet, school, etc. and to be home (shortly) after school and on weekends.

The choice is _completely_ yours, there's no excuse for bitching about having to deal with the consequences

Charlie Phelps

Tom - Good points!

My kids attend a private school in the midwest (where we now live) and a lot of the fathers are out of town all week. You could not pay me enough to be out of town all week while my kids are growing up. My kids are 10 year old twins and I LOVE being around to play with them, help them with their homework, and help coach their sports teams.

Alice Rathjen

Love to hear about the coin toss solution. Now I don't feel so bad for having used it for most of the major decisions in my life.

AM

Nitai

Well... I am the one who was left to watch over the kids :-)..Charlie raised a valid point, can you live a full career oriented life AND have a real relationship with your kids?

I think you can and the formula is pretty simple: You get the kids ready for school and you take them to school, You work until 6:00pm or so, you stay with the kids until 9:00pm or so, than you go back to work (if needed). On 80% of weekends you do not work... this leaves quite sometime to spend time with your kids.

For example: I managed to be a Mentor for my older kids Robotic team ( about 4-10 hours a week for 3 months) + escort my middle kids camping trips + take my kids to school 2-4 times a week + play chess with my middle kid + take my son sailing on weekend + read bedtime stories to my younger oneand more. The one who really pays the price is me.. and this is more a matter of priorities than anything else, make sense?

TL

Well... at one point or another (depending on your age and goals in life) you may decide to jump off the SV wrack train and move to a slower place (say Australia?)

Natalie Ferguson

I'm not a mother but I will be one day and find it very difficult to stomach critism of mothers who work. Especially when the generally accepted rule is that the father will obviously be doing so.
I find it interesting how easily people judge anothers situation by their own experience. I have seen stay at home parents who raise children far worse than those who go to work. Personally I would like to be at a stage that I dont have to, but geez, leave those who do alone a little ay?

Fara

Having two small kids and living far from my parents - I can completely relate. Plus, I love the call from the babysitter at 7:30 am that goes "I don't feel well, and I'll probably be sick all week."!!! (Probably calling from Eilat.) Those frantic moments when you think you're kid is waiting alone, the last one to be picked up, are more stressful than any meeting, presentation or business decision. But I'm lucky to be a second generation career Mom. My mom had our nightly dinners catered at one point to avoid the stress of getting home at 5 and figuring out how to put together a healthy meal in a half hour. And we (two sisters) were proud that she worked and loved her job. There are many ways to love and support your kids without coaching their sports teams! For those that posted that someone must take on the role of being home full time - I completely disagree - there is a benefit to the family in having both parents contribute to the finances and both parents having challenging life experiences.

Charlie Phelps

Fara:

None of the above posts say anything about 'being home full time'.

Also, the intimation that one can not have a 'challenging life experience' without being so busy that you need a nanny to take care of your kids is an extremely narrow (and wrong) assumption.

As you note, there are many ways to love and support your kids other than coaching their sports teams; which is why I jotted down a few others. The sentence you misunderstood was intended to reference a few examples. If you reread it you will see that it did not reference a defintive single example. The point is that you can nnot be two palcces at once. If you are at work you are not spending time with your children.

As you point out, there are obvious benefits of having both parents work. You are kdding yuorself if you believe that they do not come without a sizeable cost.

Guy

My wife is now pregnent (entering the 18th week) with our first child. A few weeks ago she was offered a very lucrative position at her already-very-demanding semiconductor outfit. That was a position she was pursuing for the last two years. She disclosed her 'deadline' and surprisingly got a green light from her boss-to-be. Now it was up to the two of us to decide whether we can pull this off (I work long hours too). Not having any kids yet, the obvious answer was - sure we can. So - she took the position. She was so happy, it was really moving... it obviously meant a lot to her. Now - this probably means I will have to make some concessions from now on. But guess what - I think she is doing the right thing, and even if we find ourselves tossing coins on a daily basis, I still think it beats the alternative of having her put a lid on her ambitions (and talents!) because people say that 'you can't do both'. So many friends of ours are proving the opposite. I am really looking forward to raising our child and dealing with crisis after crisis together - that's what marriage is for.
Tali - while obviously not all people are supportive of a balance that does not favor caving in, I think you are doing an amazing job of balancing, and I know you would not have been as complete or as happy any other way.

taliaben

Guy - congratulations to you guys - on all fronts! It's a very exciting time in your lives - building a family and building a career. As most people do, you'll find the way to manager, and yes, it's difficult. But so what!

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