BS (Social Sciences & Liberal Arts)

Faculty / School

School of Economics and Social Sciences (SESS)


Department of Social Sciences & Liberal Arts

Date of Award

Spring 2023

Date of Submission



Irum Iqbal Hussain, Lecturer, Department of Social Sciences

Project Type

SSLA Culminating Experience

Access Type

Restricted Access


This qualitative research investigates the role played by gender role beliefs held by three main groups of interest (spouses, family members, and work peers) in shaping the experience of work-interfering-with-family (WIF) guilt among Pakistani working mothers. Gender role beliefs of the interest groups were attained indirectly based on how these were perceived by the participants. Six working mothers of young children living in a joint-family set-up were individually interviewed to gain insight into their experiences of guilt and to understand what factors aided alleviation. The data collected was transcribed verbatim and thematically analyzed. The results signified that the participants’ perceptions of the gender role beliefs held by the interest groups did impact their WIF guilt. Gender role beliefs directed the degree of support that was offered, with greater support resulting in guilt alleviation and vice versa. Findings also illustrated the role of implicit gender role beliefs in increasing WIF guilt. Workplace culture, comprising work peers’ beliefs and policies, was also found to shape participants’ WIF guilt.



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