14 September 2011

It’s been almost ten years since Allison Pearson’s book shattered the taboo about working mothers struggling to have it all.

And with Sarah Jessica Parker hitting the big screen this week in the Hollywood adaptation of I Don’t Know How She Does It, Grazia decided to find out if it’s still an accurate portrayal of modern motherhood.

After surveying 2,000 Grazia readers, we were startled by the results...

One in three of you admitted you don’t want a child. Ever. Instead, it seems having a baby has dropped off the ‘to do list’ for a whole generation of 20somethings.

Instead, nearly half of you would rather get on the property ladder than have a child, while 28% would choose a £100,000 salary over having a baby.

And the reasons for this shift in priorities?

Not only do four out of 10 say you’re not ready to give up your lifestyle, a quarter of 30-year-olds say you ‘still felt too young for a child.’

Added to this, while working mothers think they’re setting a good example to childless women by juggling it all, in reality it’s sending a whole lot of 30-something women into a spiral. Fourty-four per cent of childless working women said they felt sorry for working mums struggling to have it all. Nearly a quarter think they always look exhausted and 20% think it looks so tough it makes them think twice about having children.

Meanwhile, our survey found a new tribe – the ‘emotionally infertile’ – who fear they’ve left it too late to have a baby after either prioritising their career (a third) or simply haven’t met the right man in time (43%).

Grazia editor-in-chief Jane Bruton says, ‘It’s clear motherhood remains as divisive an issue as ten years ago when Allison Pearson’s book was first published. As the big screen adaption of the book reignites the debate this week – reminding both those I Don’t Know How She Does It generation women who are now bosses and a younger audience who haven’t really realised the realities of working motherhood – let’s hope the 20-somethings can finally create a world where motherhood and career can co-exist.’

The full story – including the simmering new ‘turf wars’ between working mums and their childless colleagues - is in this week’s issue of Grazia, on sale now. Don’t’ forget to tell us what you think at feedback@graziamagazine.co.uk


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