Americans Agree: Women Can't Have It All and They're Still Underpaid

Women can't balance a career and family without making a lot of sacrifices in both areas, according to a new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll

Money is the number one pressure on American families today, a just-released NBC/Wall Street Journal poll reveals. The poll showed particular challenges when it comes to women in the workforce. A majority -- 76 percent! -- of Americans believe that women are paid less than men for the same work.

In our own iVillage 2013 Career Week Survey, 63 percent of women who said they were unhappy at work said it’s mainly because they are underpaid. But that probably won't change unless women start speaking up for what they deserve. Only 35 percent of the women we surveyed have ever asked for a raise, and even fewer have asked for a promotion.

Meanwhile, 89 percent of women in our survey defined career success as the “flexibility to balance life and work,” but according to the NBC/WSJ poll, most people don’t believe it’s an attainable goal -- 65 percent of Americans today don’t think that women can “have it all” without making serious sacrifices along the way.

Are they right? According to the NBC/WSJ poll, 65 percent of Americans polled said the country would be better off if more women held political office, and 64 percent agreed it would be better off if more women held senior positions in business. It won’t be easy but with the right tools, perhaps we can lead the charge.

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