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How to anger a working mom, according to Tina Fey

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What's the worst thing you can ask a working mother?

According to Tina Fey, "How do you juggle it all?" is followed closely by "Are you going to have more kids?"

Her thesis is outlined in a New Yorker magazine piece, Confessions of a Juggler, which is making the rounds online even though you can't read it without a subscription.

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Women across the Internet are replying: You said it, sister.

How, you ask, could the "juggle" question be offensive? Isn't it said in admiration? To many women, it implies that we're not, actually, juggling it all and that you've noticed. Or that you can tell we're one daycare pick-up away from dropping all the balls.

As for the next-baby question, Ms. Fey writes about how that one activates the baby-vs-work debate that keeps her up at night because both fertility and acting roles start to wane after 40. You can get a taste of the piece here. (The weird third-person abstract explaining the piece is kind of funny in its own right.)

One of Ms. Fey's hilarious tales: After her daughter brings home a book from school called My Working Mom, which depicted a witch mother who was very busy and had to fly away to a lot of meetings (she points out it was written by two men), Ms. Fey asks her," "Did you pick this book because your mommy works? Did it make you feel better about it?"

Her daughter's response: "Mommy, I can't read. I thought it was a Halloween book."

Have you ever asked or been asked these questions? Is Ms. Fey on to something here or is she overreacting?

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About the Author

Tralee Pearce has been a reporter at The Globe and Mail since 1999, starting as a writer in the paper’s Style section. She joined the new Life section for its launch in 2007. She covers parenting and family issues for the daily section. More

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