Being a lawyer is not an easy task, for anybody. Add to that the fact that the legal world is still a mostly male dominated sphere, which makes being a lawyer incredibly difficult (as a woman). And what of those women who happen to have a family, especially children waiting for them at home? The task is difficult, but not impossible. Several lawyers in the country happen to have made incredibly successful lives for themselves, both in the professional and personal spheres. Here are four ways that these ladies have used to make life easier for themselves and keep a healthy balance between both jobs.
1. Never Hesitate
A popular misconception among people is that working mothers are at a disadvantage when it comes to work because of the time they tend to lose for the sake of maternity and other important phases. The opposite, in fact, is true. Most people often overlook the fact that parenting offers a whole new skill set that can easily permeate into the workspace for the better. So, most lawyers who are mothers use these skills to set themselves apart from the rest of their colleagues. They bring a fresh perspective to their practice, especially if they’re involved in family law, and don’t hesitate in speaking out where they feel it is necessary. Moreover, most people tend to underestimate women during events like interrogations and depositions, which gives women an added edge in the field, especially if she is a criminal lawyer.
2. Flexibility with Work Hours
Lawyers are very stringent with the work hours they need to put in, and this is no different when it comes to lawyers who are mothers. While this can mean working late hours to meet the demands of difficult clients, sometimes even on weekends, it does not necessarily mean that mothers cannot be there for their children. Several mothers have been known to take days off to be with their children on important days, such as school events like plays, recitals or sports, to compensate for the absence over the weekend or at night. This not only allows them to finish their work on time but also earns them the respect of their colleagues by proving that being a family person and a career person at the same time is possible.
3. Build A Support System
Most mom lawyers are able to maintain a healthy balance between work and family because of the support system they have at home. Either the second parent, or a third nonbiological parent steps in to take care of the children on the absence of the mom and allows the mother to spend time with her children outside of her work hours without having to compromise on either one. In many cases, a trusted relative, like an uncle, aunt or grandparent who lives close by might play that role, or it could be a trusted neighbor. Some mothers even choose to have different people involved in taking care of their children at different times of the day. Whatever the case, having people around who can help raise the children in the mother’s absence is a great help for lawyer mothers, who eventually spend the quality time they need with their children over the weekend.
4. Communicate Boundaries Clearly
Family is important, and that is a universally accepted truth. With that in mind, many mothers choose to communicate their limits to their colleagues and bosses to maintain a realistic expectation of what they can do at work. This does not mean giving less time to work; many mothers, in fact, choose to give a lot to their work to be able to enjoy some down time later. Communicating boundaries enables women to earn the goodwill and respect they deserve from the people around them as well.
Mothers are, in general, multitaskers. Lawyer mothers, although in a slightly more difficult situation, are almost no different. They manage their time well and raise their kids right just like anybody else would. In the end, love finds a way where nothing else can, and that is the one thing that keeps mothers going throughout the world.