Working moms

Crib notes: Does corporate America show working moms any love?

Feb. 16, 2012 at 4:42 PM ET

Working nine to five, what a way to make a living... Especially if you're a working mom. We get paid less than men because we're women, we get paid less than childless women because we're moms and we have some of the shortest maternity leaves in the world. Not to mention the "unconscious bias" many employers have against working moms, assuming we're less dedicated to our jobs and likely to  run out the door the second we get a call from daycare. Don't forget the judge who ruled it's okay to fire a woman for pumping on break, either. Plus, it starts before you even give birth. Recently, the media has been covering a lot of the various penalties working moms face. Some are hoping that this will lead to a renewed national debate on parenthood and the workplace. What would you like to see changed for working moms?

Vive la Va Jay Jay!

Okay, French ladies, we give up. First you rubbed it in that you don't get fat, then we found out you're better parents than we are. Now you tell us that even your vaginas are superior?! We can't compete. What did your doctor's post-natal vaginal care instructions include? If you're American, chances are your answer to that is "huh?" However, French women are prescribed rééducation périnéale, which includes 10 to 20 classes (paid for by the government, no less) which include vaginal exercises to help get a new mom tight, happy and sexy. Yet another American living in Paris is sharing the ways life in France is better for moms -- and their va-jay-jays.

Babysitting grandpa gets picked up by the cops, for being white

There are few things more terrifying or horrible than child kidnappings. But, has the fear of them led us to be a little too quick to call "kidnapper" on someone? A white grandfather was walking with his five-year-old, African-American, granddaughter, when he suddenly found himself in the back of a police car. The two were happily walking down the street in Austin, Texas, when a police officer stopped them. The officer asked the little girl if she knew the man she was with. She told the cop it was her grandpa as she clung to his leg. The officer asked for Gramps' name to use in her report. He said he'd rather not answer questions and the inter-racial, inter-generational pair set off on their way. A couple of blocks later, they found themselves surrounded by police cars, and cops were pointing tasers at the grandpa, while handcuffing him. They took the little girl to the back of a police car, where they questioned her fairly extensively. Eventually the pair was released, without an apology. This wasn't the first time this Grandpa had been stopped for spending time with his granddaughter of another race. The case has led to renewed discussions about both racial profiling and gender stereotyping.

Non-Parents just don't understand

There are the things about motherhood they tell you and the things that they don't.  They warn you that you won't get a good night's sleep again, ever. They don't warn you that you'll find yourself wondering about Max & Ruby's parents. (Do those bunnies live alone? Grandma's down the street, where are those parents?) They advise you what kind of diaper bag to buy, but they don't tell you that you'll soon replace that diaper bag with an enormous purse filled with all sorts of random things (socks, Matchbox cars, diapers, graham crackers and sippy cups, anyone?). They don't leave these things out on purpose, it's just that they're suffering from mommy brain. Besides, maybe there are some things that only a fellow mom could understand.

You're hip and trendy, but is your toddler's drink?

I'd like a decaf, extra froth, half cinnamon, half sprinkles, babycinno, please. The new rage amongst hipster, Brooklyn parents is the babycinno, which is described as a macchiato-like drink for the trendy, urban, toddler set. Because sippy cups and juice boxes are just so mainstream and uncool, the cool kids have started serving their cool toddlers, babycinnos. Of course, Londoners and Australians are quick to point out that they're the real trendsetters here, as they've been serving their little tikes babycinnos for years. When French babies sip on them while waiting for their moms to finish their vagina rejuvenation workshops, then we'll pay attention...

Dana Macario is a TODAY Moms contributor and Seattle mom to two sleep-depriving toddlers. Once properly caffeinated, she also blogs at www.18years2life.com.

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