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Breaking the Barriers: The Challenges Women Face When Returning to Work After a Career Break

Returning to Work After a Career Break: The Challenges Faced by Women

Are you a woman who took a career break, only to find that returning to work is like starting from scratch? Are you battling societal pressures that prioritize household duties over career aspirations?

Do you struggle with the emotional toll of abusive relationships that hinder your career goals? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then let us tell you: you are not alone.

The road to returning to work after a career break can be a challenging one, and the journey can be riddled with emotional and social roadblocks. In this article, we will explore some of these challenges, and we will share Varsha’s story of returning to work after a career break and facing abuse.

Difficulty of Returning to Work After a Break: The Luxury That Can be a Sacrifice

When a woman takes a career break, she might do so to focus on her family and personal life. Although it’s a personal decision, there is no doubt that it’s a luxury that few can afford.

Taking time off work can mean sacrificing the potential for growth in a career. Additionally, returning to work after a career break can be daunting, as the years of experience and connections may not carry the same value, and your skills may be outdated.

Facing Abuse When Trying to Return to Work

Sadly, some women encounter emotional and mental abuse when they attempt to return to work. Non-supportive spouses or partners can use their power to deny women the opportunity to pursue their career goals.

Women are often under societal pressure to prioritize their household roles over their careers, which creates a significant gap between the desires of working women and the men they marry. Women often encounter nagging mother-in-laws, dependent children, and other roadblocks that hinder their progress.

Varsha’s Story of Returning to Work After a Career Break and Facing Abuse

Let’s take a look at Varsha’s story to better understand the struggles faced by women returning to work after a career break. Varsha had an impressive education and was earning big bucks with a promising career.

After marriage to Amit, she relocated to the US on a dependent visa and was busy doing up the house and learning how to cook. They attended weekend parties, late-night movies, and enjoyed an active social life.

However, things changed for Varsha when she met an ex-colleague. She realized that her previous success fueled her validation, and she yearned to get back to work.

Amit, however, opposed her returning to work, and his obsession with work led to mental and physical abuse. He became increasingly abusive, sulking for days on end, and even pouring piping hot tea on her hands.

Over time, he took away her passport and phone, blaming his behavior on his need for work. Varsha’s situation worsened to the point where she attempted suicide.

Fortunately, she encountered her ex-colleague at the pharmacy when she was about to buy sleeping pills and shared her story of abuse. She then went to India, where she fought many legal cases, and although she had to deal with chaos, she eventually healed over time.

Returning to Work After a Career Break: Overcoming Challenges

Returning to work after a career break is not an easy task, but it’s not impossible. Here are some tips to help women who wish to restart their careers:


Keep yourself updated and in the loop: Attend conferences, read about new technologies, and network with former colleagues to stay updated on developments in your field. You can also consider taking some online courses or enrolling in a certification program to boost your confidence.

2. Start with baby steps: Start with freelance work or small projects to rebuild your confidence.

Joining a volunteer group or consulting firm can also help you get back into the workforce while trying out new things. 3.

Build a support network: Speak to family and friends about your career aspirations and seek their support. Consider joining women’s groups or online forums to connect with other women in a similar situation.

4. Protect yourself: In abusive relationships, it’s essential to protect yourself.

Keep your essential documents handy and ensure that you have access to money and a phone at all times. 5.

Believe in yourself: Returning to work takes a lot of self-belief and determination. Keep pushing yourself and remember that you have what it takes to achieve your career goals.


In conclusion, returning to work after a career break can be challenging, but it’s not impossible. Women who wish to resume their careers often encounter societal pressures, abusive relationships, and other obstacles that can take an emotional toll.

However, with perseverance, a support network, and a positive mindset, women can take back control of their careers and achieve their professional dreams. The Prevalence of Similar Situations for Women: The Need for Observation and Support

Taking a career break can often mean the end of a career for many women.

The challenges that come with returning to work after a break can seem insurmountable, and the mere thought of getting back to work can seem like a distant pipe dream. This is not unique to any one individual.

In fact, the prevalence of similar situations that women face when returning to work after a break is significant. Studies show that over 40% of women who take a career break face difficulty when attempting to return to work.

This is a staggering number that speaks volumes about the struggles that women face when they take time off work. Another study conducted in India found that up to 48% of women dropped out of the workforce within four years of starting their careers.

These statistics suggest that returning to work after a career break is a significant challenge for women. Women who choose to return to work after taking a break may feel a range of emotions, including stress, anxiety, and self-doubt.

Oftentimes, they feel shy or reluctant to talk about the difficulties they face, out of fear of being judged or not being taken seriously. This is where observation and support become crucial factors in helping women who wish to resume their careers.

Observation and Support for Women in Similar Situations: Helping Them Through the Struggle

When women feel they are struggling to return to work after a break, it’s essential to have a support system in place to help them navigate the obstacles that they may face. This support system can range from family and friends to colleagues or support groups.

The support system should encourage women to speak up, share their thoughts and feelings about the challenges they face when attempting to return to work. One of the first steps towards creating a support network for women is recognizing that many others are in similar situations.

Women need to see that they are not alone and understand that others experience the same struggles they are encountering when trying to get back to work. Encouraging observation of others’ experiences and sharing of information can help women realize they can tackle the challenges in front of them.

When women observe and encourage each other, they receive encouragement and validation, helping them develop the confidence they need to resume their careers. Many women can find balance and forge ahead with their careers if they have supportive networks and mentors, either new or old, who have experienced the same challenges.

Support networks can be physical or virtual, and they exist to provide women with a safe space to talk about their struggles, share their experiences and come up with strategies to tackle the challenges they may come across. Virtual support networks can be especially helpful, allowing women to connect with and support each other from anywhere in the world.

Not all women will have the opportunity to become part of a support network, but those who do will find the help they need to resume their careers and excel. Self-help is another option available to women who wish to return to work.

There are various online resources and support groups available to women who want to go it alone, or who aren’t quite ready to share their experiences publicly.


Observation and support are essential factors in helping women who wish to resume their careers after taking a break. Women struggle to return to work after a break, but the struggles are not unique.

The prevalence of similar situations that women face when returning to work after a break is significant, and recognizing this is one of the first steps towards creating a support network. Encouraging observation and support of each other is essential; they exist to provide a safe space where women can share their experiences and develop the confidence they need to resume their careers and excel.

In summary, women who are attempting to return to work should not feel like they are alone or misunderstood when faced with similar challenges, but instead reach out to a network of support to get the help they need. In conclusion, returning to work after a career break can be a daunting prospect for many women.

It often entails overcoming societal pressures, emotional hurdles, and practical obstacles. However, we hope that this article has highlighted the challenges women face when trying to resume their careers.

We discussed the prevalence of similar situations for women and the need for observation and support networks. The journey back to work is not smooth, but it is not impossible either.

Women can take baby steps, keep themselves updated, build a support network, protect themselves from abusive relationships, and believe in themselves. The significance of recognizing these core factors is that more women can break the barriers of resuming their careers, secure better position in their professional lives and attain the aspirations that match their intellect and caliber.

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