Marc and I had the pleasure of speaking at the Boston Women's Bar Association's monthly Mother's Forum lunch meeting yesterday. The room was full of highly accomplished moms who are juggling significant careers, marriages, and young children - a wonderful audience with which to discuss ESP, we thought. And we were right! Everyone present was energized by the topic, and I'm sure the conversation could have gone on for hours. We all talked about the benefits of ESP for men (reminding me of how important it is to have Marc there to represent men's views and ideas), how women might learn to let go of control at home and with the kids, how our culture guides us all toward traditional relationships instead, and how the economy might affect the likelihood of flexible work arrangements.
Interestingly, several women brought up a recent news piece about how law firms have gotten used to a certain rate of attrition from women lawyers opting out to be home with their children. But now that the economy is poor, many of these women are staying put in their jobs to give their families more financial security, and law firms are wondering what to do about the excess of employees. Layoffs? Maybe instead they could honor the wishes of those employees of either gender who ask for reduced hours rather than full opt-outs. We don't know which will be more likely, but we're hopeful that the economy might open up possibilities for great workers to be more flexible in many professions.
The WBA Mother's Forum was a wonderful experience for me and for Marc. The support and interest of the group will be a great boost for us as we write the finishing chapters on our manuscript - due in short order. Thanks, WBA, for a terrific welcome!