We know the pandemic is affecting working moms—but how is that affecting kids?

A shift in gender roles could be impacting children as well as parents.

With two master’s degrees—including an MBA from Columbia University—Sarah Shtutin always valued her career as a healthcare consultant. But when the pandemic struck last year, she and her husband decided that since her husband had the larger salary and the less flexible schedule, she would cut her work hours in half to care for their three children, all under six years old and now home from school.

At first, without the pressure of hustling kids out the door and with more time to play outside, things were great. “But I didn’t think it would be February and we’d still be here,” she said. “Right now, I feel extremely burned out.”

Shtutin’s experience is almost old news at this point in the pandemic: Almost one million mothers have left the workforce since the shutdown began, and many others have cut back work hours to deal with household responsibilities. Working women are also assuming more childcare responsibilities as schools and daycares stay closed.

Read This Next

Inspiring kids to change the world
Missing family during the pandemic? Celebrate your ancestry with recipes.
What having a teacher as first lady might mean for your kid