How Emotional Labour Makes Women Feel Exhausted


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A woman’s work is never done. And author Gemma Hartley knows this.

Whether she’s at home or in the office, there’s a whole layer of labour done predominantly by women that most men can’t even see. Emotional labour is being the person who notices problems, delegates solutions and makes sure life goes smoothly for everyone around her. It’s noticing there’s barely any milk left and then doing something about it - and changing the toilet paper roll when it’s run out.

This work is invisible and exhausting at the same time. And it’s not just something experienced by mothers or women in relationships.

A couple of years ago Gemma Hartley wrote an essay about emotional labour after a particularly disastrous Mothers Day. It went viral and it led to her writing a whole book on the subject - Gemma’s book is called Fed Up and she joins me now to talk about it...

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Host: Mia Freedman

With thanks to special guest Gemma Hartley

Find her book Fed Up at

Producer: Elissa Ratliff


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211 episodes available. A new episode about every 5 days averaging 44 mins duration .