Working moms with sick kids: Liar, liar, pants on fire

It really comes as no surprise, but a new survey says working moms face an especially difficult dilemma beginning about now — the return of the notorious cold and flu season. The options: Stay home with the kids and lose money, send them to school and day care sick or, if you are in this category like the 33 percent of moms who admit to it, lie to the boss in order to stay home with your sick kid.

The survey, sponsored by TempleTouch thermometers and conducted using 324 working moms, says the recession isn’t helping out either — 73 percent reported feeling more pressure than ever to go to work instead of staying home with their sick little ones.

Who hasn’t been there? In 15 years of marriage, the only arguments I’ve had with my husband is over who stays home with the kids when they are sick. (Of course, that was before I found the über family-friendly world of Chicago Parent.)

How sad is it that working parents ever feel they have to choose between work and their kids? It’s even sadder that this pressure has apparently forced parents to come up with lies more appropriate for missing homework assignments in middle school than real life.

The survey found some common fibs:

  • “My grandmother passed away.”
  • “I have chicken pox.”
  • “I forgot I have a doctor’s appointment.”
  • “Complained of a sinus headache.”
  • “I need to leave now, or I quit.”

How about you? Have you ever fibbed to stay home when the kids are sick? And just how do you juggle the dilemma of sick kid-work demands?


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