Office Mum stories – Avril Tierney

“I feel guilty sometimes for feeling guilty and the space this takes up in my head when I could be more focused on the girls instead.” Avril Tierney is a Dub living in Laois with her husband and two little girls, and she has not one but two jobs – she works for a charity, and ...

Removing Guilt and Adding Presence

Lemon and poppyseed cake - Office Mum

Once upon a time, when I worked a lot more hours than I do now, I felt like I never had quality time with my kids. Each night when they went to bed, I thought about how another day had slipped by without me noticing. I would try to think back to conversations and interactions ...

The impossible economy of childcare

childcare office mum

I remember the first time my Laser card was rejected. It was 2010, and I was just back at work after my second maternity leave. I was trying to buy some groceries, and couldn’t understand why my card wouldn’t go through. I checked my balance. Forty-three cents. Mid-way through the month. It took a few hours for it all to sink ...

Family Leave Policy: A Chance For Change

Frances Fitzgerald - Office Mum post

"Ireland is better than the US but not as good as Scandinavia," I said to the public policy student who was sitting beside me, "I'd say we fall somewhere in the middle." We were at "Families and Work: A Chance for Change", a seminar organised by Start Strong, the National Women's Council and ICTU, ahead of ...

Presenteeism: Why Are We Still Rewarding Presence In The Office?

image: pixabay

My friend was not impressed. A 5pm conference call that was scheduled to last two hours. So instead of using his office phone, he dialled in on his mobile. At 6, he left work, still on the call. He walked to the train station, took the train home, got tea organised for his kids, and ...

24 practical tips for working parents: balancing work and home

image: Pixabay

Arriving home from work one evening last week, I realised that there was a big, weetabixy handprint encrusted on the back of my trousers. Just about toddler-hug height. There since before I left the house at 7am; visible all day at work. Morto, as they say. Oh well, no time to sit around hand-wringing; there was ...