Lucknow: Many first-time mothers are opting out of jobs to raise children, according to a survey by the Associated Chambers of Commerce (Assocham).
"A growing number of highly-educated women in urban India are abandoning their professional lives to become full-time mothers as raising children while maintaining a serious career becomes complex," said the findings of the Assocham survey.
The Social Development Foundation of Assocham interacted with some 400 new mothers, in the age group of 25-30, in 10 cities of Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Indore, Jaipur, Kolkata, Lucknow and Mumbai to know their employment decisions post-motherhood.
The survey, conducted during March-April this year, found out that about one-fourth of the total women who recently had their first child quit their jobs to raise children.
Most of them said they plan to shift their focus back to career after their children start going to school.
"However, many of those willing to pursue their career again after a few years of motherhood said they do not want to return to the same job due to fear of discrimination," it pointed out.
A majority of the respondents were highly qualified as most held a master's degree in various fields but cited conflict of priorities as the primary reason for them to quit their jobs.
"In nuclear families, married women have a tough time balancing work and childcare, especially if they don't get help from others," Assocham Secretary General D S Rawat said.
"Stress and emotional distress associated with household chores, social commitments and other obligations make raising kids a delicate balancing act for women, which tends to take a toll on their career ambitions."
Not wanting to miss out on the growing up moments of their children, many women opted to work from home, which gave them some flexibility to do justice to both.
About 30 per cent women in Ahmedabad, Delhi, Jaipur, Lucknow and Kolkata quit their jobs after their first child was born, it added.
Some 15-20 per cent respondents in Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Indore and Mumbai decided to ship out of their career to look after their wards.