I asked Facebook to work part-time from home after I had my baby. They said no—so I quit. (via CNBCMakeIt)
A year ago, I had to make the hardest decision of my life: Choose between my dream job at Facebook and my baby girl.Eliza Khuner and her daughter (Photo: Eliot Khuner | ekphoto.com) A year ago, I had to make the hardest decision of my life: Choose between my dream job and my baby girl. I loved being a data scientist in Facebook's Social Good department. The open culture and shared sense that we could reach so many people and improve their lives made me enjoy my work even more. Facebook's benefits for new parents were quite generous by US standards, including four months' paid leave, $4,000 in "baby cash," partial reimbursement of childcare expenses and ample lactation rooms in every building . I was incredibly lucky to work there for five months while pregnant with my third baby. My 5-year-old and 3-year-old spent the day with a patchwork of family members and babysitters, while my husband worked as a software developer. Working full-time left me just enough time to feed my kids, tuck them into bed and catch enough sleep for myself and my unborn baby. I was both exhilarated and exhausted. After my daughter was born, I soaked up as much time with her as I could. I loved her tiny yawns and delicious toes — and dreaded the end of my leave. During wakeful nights of nursing, my mind ran in circles scheming on how to return full-time. I wished for on-site child care so I could bring her to work and take nursing breaks. Maybe I could leave early and make up the hours after my kids went to bed. I'd catch up on missed sleep over the weekends. Holding the baby who saw me as her world, I tried to convince myself that I could leave her all day. I couldn't. (Pictured above: Eliza and her daughter; Photo: Eliot Khuner ) When it was time to return to work, I asked HR if I could work part-time from home, while my baby was young. They said no. How about unpaid leave until she's a bit older? Also no. Heavyhearted, I submitted my resignation letter. I also wrote another letter about my experience and shared it on Facebook in an internal group for all Facebook employees. I told them I knew the company could do better. Almost instantly, my phone buzzed with a comment. Then again, and again. Hundreds of employees wrote to say, "Me, too." Mothers said they cried every day dropping their babies off at daycare, that it physically hurt to be apart. Fathers said they longed to be in their children's lives more. Young women were afraid to risk their career; some said they were freezing their eggs, while others said they simply gave up on their dreams of ever having kids. My post received over 5,000 likes, 700 comments, and 80 shares on Facebook. Employees called for CEO Mark Zuckerberg to answer. COO Sheryl Sandberg chimed in, explaining that it was something they wanted to do, but that it just wasn't the right time. Reading through the comments, I thought about how, in Sandberg's book "Lean In," she urged companies to accommodate women and mothers, but conspicuously never mentioned part-time options or extended parental leave. An in-office, 40-hour workweek requirement is at odds with the human need for family and community. Three days later, I stood in front of Zuckerberg with my baby strapped to my chest and told him, "I see the posters here every day that say, 'What would you do if you weren't afraid?'" I asked him what he would do: "Would you lead this company and the US in supporting working parents? Would you give us the chance to show you how kick-ass and loyal we can be with fewer hours at our desks — if you weren't afraid?" I challenged him to stop making us choose. Zuckerberg's response was no different than Sandberg's. He valued time with kids and thought it was important, he said, but offering more options for parents couldn't happen right now. I walked away still feeling torn, but knowing that I wasn't alone in needing more time. An in-office, 40-hour workweek requirement is at odds with the human need for family and community. When I Read more: CNBC
MakeIt MakeIt Said no man ever MakeIt Powerful story! This is why so many Millennials postpone starting families. And when people have to choose b/t family and job (when not flexible); companies lose talents. AndrewYang supports flex work, pre-k childcare for all: MakeIt Powerful story! You are so brave to tell this story. I hope all CEO's read this. Good luck on your search for a new job.
MakeIt Our mission at is to build the social media platform that ends fake news MakeIt Another reason to DeleteFacebook MakeIt Facebook isn't a charity. If you cannot effectively do your job, go. MakeIt facebook this is not the way to go! Your company is worth billions! Why do people have to choose between work and their families. You get to do that! At Zuckerberg you get to work 24/7 maybe you don’t have time with your kids but you get millionsin return! Disappointed
MakeIt It is really hard to find a life balance. I have been looking for a while, jobs that want you part time also ask, why are you applying part time? I’m still not choosing between money and family. I can always recover money, now time, I can never get that back! MelissaArmo MakeIt Your baby girl will give you much more enjoyment than Facebook & she will be an ever greater contribution to the Planet (if brought up a good citizen) than anything you might have produced for Facebook & they would take all the credit!!
MakeIt Good for you. Not sure why this is a story though. Who cares?
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