Ahmed Chohan engineer in Dubai. Image Credit: Supplied.

16:36 Gulf News: People presume working mothers spend less time with children.

16:39 Madhu Madan: I am against this as I am a working mother myself and have been working for more than 15 years. I can confidently say that I’ve been spending enough time with my daughter. She has been raised well and is doing fine in her studies and other extra curricular activities. This is a myth and not a reality. It’s just the mind-set of few people who are not willing to accept women being able to handle a job and family.

16:43 Shan Fazelbhoy: A working mother would be spending less time than one who isn’t working. However, this doesn’t mean it is detrimental to the child’s upbringing.

16:43 Madhu Madan: In fact, working mothers are the best time managers and they use their time judiciously.

16:47 Marcelli Pereira: I agree in part. If a mother works full time and spends most of the time away from the children, of course she will spend less time. I think that the father should also participate in the child’s development as both parents need to provide support to the family.

16:47 Shan Fazelbhoy: I think Madhu’s statement is unfair as working mothers are not always the best time managers.

16:49 Madhu Madan: Yes Shan, not always but if they have been successfully managing both fronts, then, it means they know how to best organise and manage their time.

16:52 Ahmed Chohan: Motherhood is no longer about taking care of children, rather about success in the workplace, which then trickles down into household. Mothers want their children to achieve success like themselves. Taking care is now a father’s role.

16:54 Gulf News: If women wish to work they are still being forced to compromise on their health and well-being.

16:55 Shan Fazelbhoy: I agree as a lot of mothers do not get the support they require and still have to deal with household chores and this leaves them little time for themselves, which in turn affects their well-being

16:56 Marcelli Pereira: The level of stress and work conditions can be bad for health and well-being, however, this is not only restricted to women. Stress is one of the worst factors and it affects your patience at home.

16:56 Madhu Madan: It depends on how one looks at my daughter’s achievement. I never forced her to do anything, her upbringing and mind enabled and made that possible. Why set a rule that a mother cannot shape a child’s career or ambition?

16:57 Ahmad Chohan: I somewhat agree. It’s actually the well being of the household that is being affected rather than their own health. When the mother doesn’t or can’t take care of herself how are they supposed to take care of their children?

16:59 Gulf News: You can either be a working mother or a ‘good mother’ but not both.

17:00 Madhu Madan: I am strongly against this statement. This is just a preconceived notion. I do well at work and I am also a good mother, which is evident in my daughter’s success.

17:03 Shan Fazelbhoy: I don’t agree that you can be there for your children even if you work and this has more to do with a woman’s attitude and general well being.

17:03 Marcelli Pereira: I disagree as there are women who stay at home but aren´t good mothers, and women who work and are amazing mothers, just as there are women who work and are terrible mothers.

17:04 Ahmad Chohan: How can you read, feed, walk and cuddle your child from seven in the morning till seven in the evening while in office? How can a stay-at-home mother be compared to a working mother?

17:05 Madhu Madan: Nowadays, a single income is not enough to run a family. I agree with Shan that it depends on the working mother’s attitude as well. If she leaves work tensions at the office and when she is at home, she is with her family, then she can be a good working mother.

17:07 Marcelli Pereira: I agree with Ahmad about the importance of the early development stages of a child. Maybe, more options for part-time jobs should be available for those women who want to work and contribute to the family budget.

17:08 Ahmad Chohan: This is what I was waiting for as single income is not enough. So, the child is left alone or with a nanny for a few extra dollars? Is money or motherhood essential for children?

17:10 Sisina Anish: A working mother is more efficient, systematic, organised and has clear goals and objectives. This is evident in how she manages her house, her time and life. The world needs to prepare for working women, why else are we educating our daughters? Women need to be a part of the making of society. Her thoughts and ideas have to go beyond the four walls of the house.

17:10 Shan Fazelbhoy: I believe each family has to work out their needs and requirements, after all sometimes both parents work to provide better opportunities for their children

17:11 Madhu Madan: If there aren’t enough resources to give a good quality of life to a child, then motherhood itself will not be enough to bring a smile to a child’s face.

17:13 Ahmad Chohan: Sisina, a woman is not to be locked up in the confines of her home but if her going out and working affects the family, then she is not playing her primary role well. As for Madhu’s comment, if good motherhood is unable to give a good quality of life to a child, then resources will not be enough to bring a smile.

17:14 Gulf News: With working mothers ‘houses may be dirtier’ but children are happier.

17:15 Madhu Madan: I agree as I feel working mothers need to be clever enough to decide where to compromise if they have to. In my case, I don’t compromise on my daughter’s needs and neither do I compromise on my job performance. Instead, I compromise on my house maintenance. I usually just take about 10 days annual leave to spend quality time with my family and the remaining days of my leave, I keep for my daughter’s exams or functions or days when she needs me. This way, she never feels my absence on special occasions. So yes, my house may be relatively dirtier but my daughter is happy.

17:16 Ahmad Chohan: Neutral on the last point. A working mother needs to learn the tricks and trade of being a woman of the house. With additional money coming in, house help can be acquired and the house kept clean, but without the touch of the housewife, that cleanliness can never be there.

17:17 Sisina Anish: This depends on what kind of support you have. If one can afford a nanny, then there shouldn’t be any issue otherwise this statement is agreeable.

17:20 Marcelli Pereira: If the children aren´t happy, it is probably not the home — clean or dirty — that causes it. Plan the cleaning, teach your children to put their toys in the right place, too. Ask your husband for help. Also, it depends on how much the woman likes to keep her home clean. Some, don’t even care about cleaning, others do.

— Compiled by Donia Jenabzadeh/She is a trainee with Gulf News