Barna: Nearly All U.S. Couples Believe It Is Possible to Have a Career, Raise a Healthy Family and Stay in Love

"...the majority of American working couples (95%) believe they can maintain their individual careers and still come together to raise a healthy family, all while staying in love. While a slight difference is found when look specifically at faith segments, over nine in 10 practicing Christians (97%) and non-Christians (94%) agree this can be done." - Barna

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T Howard's picture

They may believe it's possible, but it's not possible to do all three well. One of these (career, family, or marriage) will always take priority, and the others will suffer. If we include other important things like maintaining one's health/fitness, religious commitment/service, or hobbies/recreation one's life is even more full with competing interests.

What I have seen from working closely with senior executives in a fortune 500 company for the last 15 years is that to be senior executives (i.e. director and above), they have had to sacrifice their family relationships and their marriages to advance their careers. Many of them have been / are divorced. The women executives especially have had to rely upon parents or live-in nannies to rear their children. One VP told me straight out, "Monday through Friday is for my career, Saturday is for my husband, and Sunday is for my children."

If someone wants to climb the corporate ladder or start their own business, it will take a tremendous amount of time and energy away from one's marriage and family responsibilities. So, don't fool yourself to think you can have it all and do it all well. Even working couples in non-executive roles end up farming out the rearing of their children to relatives, daycares, preschools, and afterschool organizations. That is not healthy.