Jill Biden: 'You Shouldn't Have To Be Lucky To Raise A Family And Pursue A Career'

First Lady Dr. Jill Biden has opened up about her career, her 43-year marriage to President Joe Biden, and her experiences as a mother as she explains what changes she feels need to be made to better support working parents.

In an interview with Parents magazine, the FLOTUS appealed particularly to working moms and said she sympathizes with their struggle to "have it all," so to speak, as it is a struggle she herself knows all too well.

Jill explained that raising her daughter Ashley, and step sons, Beau and Hunter, all while teaching and attending graduate school, involved a lot of delicate multitasking.

As she told the magazine, "When my school day was over, I'd grade papers on the bleachers while the kids played whatever sport was in season. Then I'd pile their equipment into our station wagon and rush home for dinner. Every meal I cooked had to take 30 minutes or less — otherwise, the boys would eat an entire bag of chips."

She added that Joe would come home before 8 o'clock every night to eat dinner with his family, and would put the children to bed while his wife studied. "It was a challenge," she said, "but those were some of the best days of my life."

While reflecting on her marriage, Jill said she and husband, Joe, like any married couple, "take turns needing support and giving it."

"When we got married, Joe knew that I'd always wanted two things — a marriage that was strong, loving, and full of laughter, and a career," she explained. "He didn't love me in spite of my ambitions; he loved me because of them."

Even once he became vice president, Jill continued, he didn't expect her to abandon her career, and he certainly doesn't now that he's the president, either.

During the interview, Jill acknowledged the "unfair blow" that the COVID pandemic has dealt to working moms.

"Many moms were having a hard time juggling it all before the pandemic. Now they can't send their kids to school while they work," she said. "There are no playdates to help burn off energy. They've lost the network of family and friends who can help out. And they're expected to supervise remote learning while working or job hunting."

In the future, she agreed a "sea of change" (including equal pay, affordable childcare, and paid family leave) is needed in the next five years to help working parents better juggle their responsibilities without feeling like they might be failing in one role or the other.

As Jill said, she feels "lucky" to have had such tremendous help and support from Joe and their families while their children were growing up, and while she was pursuing her career.

"But you shouldn't have to be lucky to raise a family and pursue a career," she continued. "My hope is that all parents will feel able to work and take care of their families."

As for any advice she might have for any struggling parents out there during the ongoing pandemic, Jill encouraged them to go easy on themselves:

"Maybe your temper is shorter than usual. Maybe you're too tired to be the 'fun mom.' It's okay. You're not failing. You're strong. You're resilient. And you're doing your best to carry your family through one of the most difficult times in memory. We're going to do everything we can to get through this, together."

h/t: Parent

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