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Foreign Maids Seen Lifting Japan Moms Over Career Barriers: Jobs

Noriko Hitotsumatsu, a bilingual research pharmacologist with a Master’s from Cambridge University, considers herself lucky to have a part-time job in a Tokyo pharmacy after shelving her career to raise two daughters in one of the world’s most work-oriented countries.

“I was determined to raise my children myself when they were small,” she said. “When they were older, I kept to part-time work so I could coach them through school entrance exams, while my husband worked around the clock,” she added. “I’d like to go back to full-time work someday, but I don’t think I can return to research after such a long period away.”