Gender Disparities in Career Advancement Across the Transition to Parenthood: Evidence from the Marine Corps

A mother and father looking at their newborn

Birthing parents need parental leave to physically recover from birth, in addition to any benefits of bonding and caring for the baby. Many birthing parents work in physically demanding jobs and there are long-term effects of having a baby on physical performance, which could explain part of the motherhood earnings penalty even among mothers who return to work. These physical effects are long-lasting, and birthing parents may need additional support after returning to work.

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