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Women’s Tricky Transition from Career to Family: A Reading List

Written by
AIGA DC Board
Published
February 22, 2017
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An illustration of the same woman with the words "Having It All."

Register now for “Having It All: How to Keep the Job You Love and Start the Family You Want.”

On March 23 at The Washington Post, AIGA Women Lead will host a dialogue about the impact of motherhood on women’s professional ambition. A panel of DC-area women creatives, who are leading teams at work while raising families at home, will share their insights, stories and advice—followed by a candid, judgement-free conversation. Intrigued? Register now for “Having It All: How to Keep the Job You Love and Start the Family You Want.”

In anticipation of the event, we recommend reading a series called “The Ambition Interviews,” written by Hana Schank and Elizabeth Wallace. What is it about these essays that seem particularly relevant? “This series published by The Atlantic caught our eye because many of us can relate to the issues discussed,” said Katerina Martchouk, Women’s Leadership Chair on the AIGA DC board of directors.

Check out the entire series, or pick and choose which essays speak to you:

“What Happens to Women’s Ambitions in the Years After College”
When we graduated in 1993, my friends and I had big dreams for ourselves. More than two decades later I decided to find out if anyone’s had come true.

“Having It All—and Hating It”
Some women prioritize career. Others prioritize their kids. It’s those who try to juggle both who often feel they aren’t succeeding at either.

“When Women Choose Children Over a Career”
“I went to a job interview after my first daughter was born and cried the whole way home.”

“Rethinking What Success Looks Like”
For women who left the workforce, their ambitions didn’t disappear so much as found a new target.

“How Much Ambition Can a Marriage Sustain?”
Power couples are a rarity. Instead, many high-achieving women have husbands who do their own opting out.

“Beyond Maternity Leave”
For all the focus on parental leave as a barrier to women’s professional ascent, women’s real struggle with work-parenting balance grew—alongside their children—years after their maternity leave ended.

“The Sexism They Faced”
One colleague’s constant refrain: “When are you going to have babies and quit?”

What are your favorite articles that address women’s challenges in their professional and family lives? Let us know, and join the conversation using #AIGAwomenlead.

Photo by Sebastien Wiertz, modified by Libby Bawcombe. “Having It All” illustration by Nina Reck.

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