Where's My $125,000 Salary for Being a Parent?

Ever wondered how much you should be paid for all the hours you spend as a parent, basically working as your kid's personal servant, chauffeur, chef, maid, psychologist, nurse, teacher, and life coach? Now a "mum salary calculator", part of Interflora's new British ad campaign in honor of Mother's Day, will compute what your salary as a parent should be.

The job ad created by Interflora offers £172,000 ($258,000) for what it calls the "hardest job in the world" and describes the position as "dealing with unreasonable demands, managing a busy schedule and co-ordinating multiple projects." Sounds about right! It also mentions the lack of sleep and vacation and being on-call 24/7, obvi.

To find out how much I should be earning personally, all I had to do was enter in the number of hours I spend on various parenting tasks into the calculator and it spit out my yearly salary: £84,881, or roughly $125,000, for working 67 hours a week. I expect my salary is lower than the job ad's number because my husband and I split the parenting tasks pretty evenly. (He gets our daughter ready for school in the morning and does all the grocery shopping and cooking, bless him.)

I can't decide if computing my "salary" makes me feel better or worse. On the one hand, I didn't become a parent for money, clearly, but it's nice to be recognized in an abstract way for the effort I put into it. On the other hand, what we do as parents is as important to the world running smoothly as any other job—if we don't raise good humans, society would fall apart. It makes me think maybe we should get compensated for our contribution to the future economy. Hey, Obama, could those tax credits for having kids be a little higher?

Ellen Sturm Niz is a New York City-based editor and writer who can't wait for her "mum paycheck." Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest.

Image via Shutterstock

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