Recently, Paul Tudor Jones (a hedge fund billionaire) made some comments to a crowd at a University of Virginia symposium that would appear laborious or even cold to the plight of women.
The Washington Post (May 23, 2013) reports his comments as follows: "As soon as that baby's lips touched that girl's bosom, forget it"
"Every single investment idea . . . every desire to understand what is going to make this go up or go down is going to be overwhelmed by the most beautiful experience . . . which a man will never share, about a mode of connection between that mother and that baby."
"You will never see as many great women investors or traders as men – period, end of story."
However awkward such comments are, I would urge us to take a second look.
Jones advocates that women are changed somehow when they experience the arrival of children. Having had three of my own – I could not agree more! As a working mother, the experience was both beautiful (as he iterates) and challenging. And yes, it made a difference in my work life – of course. But, is this a bad thing? I think not, and I actually do not think he is suggesting this is a bad thing, just the reality. My life was interrupted, pleasantly, with each child's arrival.
He also states that we will never see as many great women as men as investors. Of course this is likely extrapolated to other fields. Well, is this not the obvious, that men are solely able to focus on the scope of work and women are dually involved in both work and family. Each family works out the logistics that will work best for them – be it the mother caring for the children and working, or the father, or a "share the load" mentality. Reality dictates that we make it work as mothers, we do our best to contribute meaningfully to a workplace, but also are highly devoted to our families. This is a good thing!
I remember when I approached my husband with the idea of my going back to school for my masters and PhD. We had three children at the time and I was already working, yet the idea seemed ominous. WE decided to pursue the journey together, WE worked hard all the time, and WE achieved it together. After all, WE are one.
I have been doubly blessed to enjoy three sons, who are all grown now! And I have also enjoyed a work life that has been very fulfilling. So, did my life change as soon as the baby's lips touched the bosom? Yes, and I thank God it did.