Jessica Irvine: Parenting and the battle for equality

Jessica Irvine

JESSICA IRVINE We live in a society that still puts unfair demands on only one parent.

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The Aussie toddlers being given pocket money


Frances Mao Know anyone who makes $260 a year on the side without doing anything?

The circular experience of a Centrelink client

Centrelink: the bane of many parents' lives.

Katina Curtis A mum-to-be experiences the frustration of dealing with Centrelink, myGov and everything in between.

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6 reasons you could be missing out on money

Nicole Pedersen-McKinnon

NICOLE PEDERSEN-MCKINNON No one would ignore $100 lying on the pavement Yet most people obliviously pass over more than this every month. It's time to shape up.

What would your child do with $1 million?


JODIE BENVENISTE Have you ever asked your child "If someone gave you $1 million today, what would you do with it?"

Abbott's childcare changes will 'reduce access and add complexity'


MATT WADE The government's childcare assistance package threatens to confuse and intimidate many parents, experts say.

'Maternity paranoia' and why having a baby can still ruin your career


Tanith Carey New research has found that women returning from maternity leave are more likely to face discrimination in the workplace today than they were a decade ago.


Don't worry, working mums: Just leave Dad in charge at home

'My husband is a distinguished professor of international affairs but is also the lead parent - the one who can adjust his work schedule to be available for teachers' conferences, homework projects or music lessons.'

Anne-Marie Slaughter Want to open the boardroom doors for women? Encourage - heck, praise - dads who stay home with their children.


Richard Branson launches great parenting leave policy for lucky few


Danielle Paquette Richard Branson, champion of space tourism and naked kitesurfing, just unveiled his latest eccentric plan: A year's family leave on full salary for some new parents at his company, Virgin.


The universal working mother experience

Francesca Varney is urging mothers to pursue a career they enjoy.

Francesca Varney These days mothers need more than just traditional career advice.

Federal budget 2015: Where are the childcare places, Joe?

joe hockey

Amber Robinson It’s all very well to encourage women to work if they choose to, but how can the measures lead to increased workforce participation when women are once again left holding the baby?


Getting your family finances in order

sold house

Staff writers Whether you're after a new car for a growing family, a bigger house, or are just fixing up your finances, here are the basics on borrowing.

Your guide to the 2015 federal budget


What will the budget mean for your family? Here's all you need to know about the 2015 federal budget.

Federal budget 2015: What it means for new parents and families with young children


The Federal Government's long-awaited $4.4 billion families and childcare package will see many parents receive greater payments from 2017, with predictions 1.2 million households will be better off.

Federal budget 2015: 'No jab, no pay' tipped to save $500 million

Health Minister Sussan Ley has looked for savings from a range of little-known programs.

Amy Corderoy and Dan Harrison The government estimates it will save more than $500 million from it's "no jab, no pay" policy to stop families of un-vaccinated children from accessing family and child care benefits.

Tool that compares family incomes shows Aussies are out of touch

Tony Abbott said a family income of $185,000

INGA TING It turns out Tony Abbott isn't the only one who's out of touch when it comes to understanding wealth in Australia.

Almost half of all mums to lose government paid parental leave entitlements

The government move to stop 'double dipping' paid parental leave has been slammed by a key consultant.

Judith Ireland and Matt Wade Almost 80,000 new mums will lose some or all of their government parental leave payments in a move that has been slammed by a key consultant of the PPL scheme as "the mother of all insults".

Why Rachel Zoe is many mums' dream boss

rachel zoe

Megan Blandford Stylist to the stars Rachel Zoe recently announced what she believes is “one of the best business decisions [she's] ever made”.


Budget 2015: Wealthy families to keep childcare


PHILLIP COOREY The federal government has ignored a recommendation by the Productivity Commission to slash childcare support for wealthier families.

Childcare rebate: tougher rules for stay-at-home mums


MATTHEW KNOTT A new form of activity testing will be introduced to ensure the highest subsidies go to parents who contribute the most to the workforce.

Childcare crisis: parents of almost 250,000 children unable to access care

girl painting

LETITIA ROWLANDS The nation's childcare system is in crisis, with new figures revealing that the parents of almost 250,000 children are unable to access the childcare as they require.

My income barely covers daycare, but I won’t stop working


Meredith Hale I tell myself I’ve achieved some semblance of work/life balance. But what I don’t have, according to my tax return, is any money to show for it.


Nanny pilot program to go ahead

Scott Morrison

JUDITH IRELAND The Abbott government has confirmed that there will be federal funding for nannies under a pilot program that is likely to roll out later this year. 

Childcare is a big problem, but there's more to it


Megan Blandford Let’s keep talking about these issues and not allow them to be put into a neat little box that’s labelled ‘Fix childcare and everything is solved’.

The health insurance advice you can't afford to ignore


NICOLE PEDERSEN-MCKINNON There's one simple switch that could save you hundreds of dollars a year in private health insurance.

How to babyproof your job interview

Preparing for a job interview after spending time at home with your baby can be daunting.

Masha Rumer Once upon a time, I was a fan of job interviews. That all changed after I'd switched careers, had a baby and decided to spend the first year at home with her.

Getting creative to cut childcare costs

What can families do to beat the childcare blues? For some, the answer is to get creative.

PINKY MCKAY What can families do to beat the childcare budget blues? For some, the answer is to get creative.

Proposed $20 Medicare fee axed

Government cuts to medicare rebates could unnecessarily drive patients in to emergency departments, or make them forgo treatment

Joanna Heath Health minister Sussan Ley has used her first press conference in the role to announce the government will dump planned cuts to GP fees for visits under 10 minutes.

New $20 GP fee: health charge changes explained


JULIA MEDEW Why are patients facing a new $20 charge for visiting their GP?

New GP co-payment scheme a triple whammy for patients

Under three new changes to the GP payment plan, the big losers will be ordinary patients.

Stephen Duckett and Peter Breadon Under three new changes to the GP payment plan - one of which has already come into effect - the big losers will be ordinary patients.


'As a mother I wasn't given a look in': the female funding fiasco

Louisa Forrest found it hard as a female to convince banks to come on board.

Claire Dunn Why are women are often seen by lenders as 'fly-by', rather than serious business owners?


It's official: the $7 GP co-payment plan has been axed

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has said the government's planned GP fee does not have the support needed to pass the Senate.

LISA COX Days after announcing that his paid parental scheme is undergoing a major overhaul, Tony Abbott has confirmed that the plan to charge patients $7 per doctor's visit has been axed.


Confusion as Abbott refines paid parental leave scheme

Tony Abbott has morning tea with local families in a Sydney cafe.

JUDITH IRELAND Prime Minister Tony Abbott has moved to water down his paid parental leave scheme amid worries he'll ignore support for stay-at-home mothers in the process.

The job interview question I always answer with a lie

Job interview

KASEY EDWARDS "What if I get a question about babies?" asked a childless, but clucky younger woman I'm mentoring before a job interview. My response is unequivocal: lie.


Study: Women with children are most productive at work

working mum

Ylan Q. Mui A word of encouragement for working mums: a study says you are actually more productive than your childless peers.

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Should you have a third child or not?

Tanika Davis I thought our family had been complete with our two boys. I had no idea how much I needed my daughter until she was here.

My children's warped sense of work

phone mum

KYLIE ORR I’ve wrestled with the 'working from home' thing, and have wondered about the impact it will have on my children’s working lives.


Paid parental leave scheme grinds to a halt

The Federal Government's much-hyped Paid Parental Leave scheme appears to have stalled.

MARK KENNY The future of Prime Minister Tony Abbott's paid parental leave scheme appears to be up in the air, despite the fact it is due to begin in less than nine months.


Can 'Daughter Water' help close the gender pay gap?

daughter water

JO HARTLEY More than 3000 bottles of 'Daughter Water' were yesterday delivered to the desks of chief executives across the country - all in an effort to help equalise pay for men and women.

7 tips for a financially festive Christmas

xmas baby

Melissa Browne Plan ahead - and do it now - to ensure festive season expenses don't break the bank.

'A woman's IQ halves when she's pregnant,' boss told pregnant worker

JB Were

Hannah Low A former state manager of a wealth management firm claims she was sexually harassed and bullied to stand down from her job after taking time off to have children.

An open letter to Tony Abbott: please salvage our super

Nicole Pedersen-McKinnon

NICOLE PEDERSEN-MCKINNON We face financial ruin, but most of us don’t realise it. If we don’t act together to salvage our superannuation, I have no doubt the new GFC will be the Girls’ Financial Crisis.


One of the most important things a new mum can do


VICTORIA BIRCH Finances may not be as cute as a newborn, but with many women’s working arrangements changing post-baby, monetary matters need attention too.


Future of paid parental leave scheme is uncertain

Prime Minster, Tony Abbott

LATIKA BOURKE He promised to pay working mothers their full wages for six months to look after new babies, but government sources are questioning if and when the scheme will go ahead.


One in two mums, one in four dads experience discrimination at work


Elizabeth Broderick One in two mothers and more than a quarter of the fathers and partners surveyed reported experiencing discrimination in the workplace at some point during pregnancy, parental leave or on return to work.

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Childcare costs, not paid leave, the real issue for parents

Paid Parental Leave is fast becoming a noisy distraction to the real issue confronting working parents, which is the cost of childcare.

Jonathan Hastie Given the choice between maintaining their wage for six months to have a child, or having a reduced rate of pay for a time but a better deal on childcare when returning to work, there are no odds on what most working parents would choose.

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Late-night childcare not needed, parents say

Liz Porqueddu

MIKI PERKINS The plan for childcare centres to operate around-the-clock is neither practical nor in demand, according to a nationwide survey.

HECS-style loan suggested as alternative to paid parental leave


JUDITH IRELAND While Tony Abbott's paid parental leave scheme is looking unlikely, a prominent think tank has created an alternative suggestion.

Introducing the million-dollar baby

Baby Juke

MARC MONCRIEF Juke is only three weeks old, but he's joined a generation of children whose education costs could reach $1 million by the time they finish university.

Childcare is expensive, but worth it in the long run

Susan Krieg The cost of childcare is in the spotlight again. But highlighting the cost, rather than considering its overall benefits to children, families and Australian society, is missing the point.

Paid parental leave scheme grinds to a halt Can 'Daughter Water' help close the gender pay gap? 7 tips for a financially festive Christmas 'A woman's IQ halves when she's pregnant,' boss told pregnant worker An open letter to Tony Abbott: please salvage our super One of the most important things a new mum can do Future of paid parental leave scheme is uncertain One in two mums, one in four dads experience discrimination at work Childcare costs, not paid leave, the real issue for parents Late-night childcare not needed, parents say HECS-style loan suggested as alternative to paid parental leave Introducing the million-dollar baby Childcare is expensive, but worth it in the long run Can a working mum be as good at her job after maternity leave? We need to look at the big financial picture Childcare costs skyrocket Single parents face tax slug of 80 per cent Grandparents make grand carers When every cent counts: a mum's story of spending her last $7 Is working from home really the answer to work-life balance?


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Join the Real Mums Test Drive Team

Five new mums will join the Essential Baby Test Drive Team and discover great new baby toys from Fisher-Price & write a review to be published on Essential Baby.

Two children fall from second storey window

Two young boys have been rushed to hospital after falling out a second-storey window of a home in Eastwood.

Victorian Labor to introduce same-sex adoption laws

Thousands of same-sex couples with children will have the right to be jointly recognised as parents by Victorian law.

Sneak peek: Maxomorra bee dress, t-shirt and romper for babies

Cutest snap find on the planet - bee rompers, tees and dresses for babies.

Toddler found two days after going missing

A two-year-old girl who disappeared on Friday night from her great-grandparents' home in rural Ohio was found alive Sunday evening in a nearby field.

Dad builds the ultimate bed for his toddler son

The transition from cot to big kid bed might be a little easier if every toddler had a bed like this one.

Is Woolworths now cheaper than Coles?

Woolworths appears to have taken the upper hand in its price battle with Coles after investing millions of dollars lowering the cost of groceries, according to new figures.

Aussie babies and parents stranded in Nepal after surrogacy ban

Parents say Australian babies are being "kept captive" and cannot come home after a ban on commercial surrogacy in Nepal.

Wannabe dads left behind in IVF debate

If virgin women can become mothers through IVF, maybe we're ready for another miracle - genuine equality for men in the parenting debate.

The health and fitness lessons I've learned

What I once assumed about health and fitness is wrong.

Our angel baby story: Hunter James

I have two children: one living, the next an angel baby.

Newlyweds send bill to no-show guests

Planning a wedding can be stressful – and, as most newlyweds can attest, it can be very costly, too.

Your choice or theirs: the tug-of-war over baby names

They had just decided on a name they both agreed on, but then the grandparents threw in an offer of $10,000 in exchange for choosing something else.

Dad-to-be's tearful reaction to pregnancy news goes viral

After 17 years of trying, this man had given up hope of having a family.

Claire Danes: acting out postnatal depression was difficult

Actress Claire Danes found it difficult pretending to have postnatal depression in Homeland, as she had just become a new mother herself.

The moment a 92-year-old meets her great grandaughter

It's a heart-warming photo this family will treasure forever.

How to prepare for breastfeeding when you're still pregnant

While every woman's breastfeeding journey is different, many hurdles are shared. Knowing what to expect will enable you to make informed decisions if - or when - you meet challenges along the way.

Sneak peek: new Love Mae bamboo dinnerware designs

We do love ourselves some brand new designs in tried and true products. The renowned bamboo dinnerware from Love Mae has just had several more members join the family, in addition to a brand new website.

Mum who killed paedophile gets reduced sentence

A mother-of-five who killed a paedophile has had her jail sentence reduced by a judge who described her case as a "truly exceptional" one.

Sneak peek: Geleeo self-cooling pram & high chair liners

We just spotted Geleeo, a brand new self-cooling pram liner you can buy in time for summer.

Toddler's silent debate with mum about naptime

He might not utter a single word - but this toddler is having a great debate with his mother about nap time.

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Stella McCartney honours mum with lacy bra

Fashion designer Stella McCartney has honoured her late mum, Linda McCartney, by designing a special bra for post-mastectomy patients.

Don't panic: A granddad midwife's guide for dads-to-be

Mark Harris has helped deliver 500 babies. And he's now telling fathers what to expect.

How to be a calm parent when you're feeling anything but

Being a calm parent takes a lot of work, sometimes more than is obvious to those around us.

The joy and isolation of being a stay-at-home dad

It's cool, kind of like a second childhood. I love him to bits and think, on average, I'm an okay dad. But I also want to talk about the other stuff.

How baby Teddy's short life is helping save thousands of lives

He may have only lived for 100 minutes, but that didn't stop baby Teddy from saving the lives of others.

A heartbreaking trail of missed chances in death of baby forgotten in car

A haunting reminder to stay mindful about babies in cars, especially as we approach summer.

What to do if your baby has tongue-tie

Tongue-tie can cause feeding problems. However once it is diagnosed, the condition can be easily treated.

How to move house without losing your mind

Some people move frequently, while others like to stay put. But everyone finds it stressful.

'She had nowhere to go': how new mum's life began to unravel

The birth of her first child should have been happiest of times for Campsie mother Phuong Cao, but friends say it marked the beginning of when her life began to unravel. 

Women giving birth to a son keep some of his Y chromosomes

It was an experiment doomed to failure - they were looking for male cells in female bodies. And their search was stunningly successful.


Can't decide?

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