07.23.15
Bonnie Siegler | Dear Bonnie

Dear Bonnie

Dear Bonnie,

I just turned thirty and think I’ll want to have kids in the next two years. I also just got an amazing job offer to be the deputy art director at an incredible design-driven magazine. I know this may seem like an old-fashioned dilemma, especially in the "Lean In" age, but I’m torn about what to do. I’m worried that taking the job will mean that either I won’t have time to start a family or, if I do start one, that I won’t be able to spend enough time with them!

I do a lot of freelance work now, so could continue to do that, which would afford me more flexibility down the line.

What do you think I should do? 

Thanks,
Nesting in New York City


Dear N. N.,

Take the job.

You have no idea what will transpire over the next two years. Maybe you’ll still want to get pregnant. And maybe you won't. 

Either way, if the job offer is truly amazing, hopefully they'll have paid maternity leave (which, of course, would have been law decades ago if men got pregnant). If you’re lucky and healthy, you can work for the full term of your pregnancy, which would mean you could work at this incredible new job for nearly three years. After you have your baby, you can decide if you want to take more time off, or work part-time, or figure out a childcare situation so you can continue working full-time.

The point is, you will be a different person in two years. And it’s possible that in two years you’ll want to put off starting a family for another year or two. If that’s the case, you will be eternally grateful that you didn’t make a decision for your future self entirely based off of what your younger self predicted.

Finally, I have to add that deciding between being a designer and being a mom is a false choice. You will be both. Forever.


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