Its interesting that the man is the one
trying to balance a tenure clock and
family. If more of these 'female' issues
became male AND female issues, I believe
more progress could be made and faster.
Tracy Ainsworth writes in her ScienceCareer article that "there is no best time for a scientist to have kids" ... "I have found that the inverse is also true: There is no worst time, either." I agree completely. And I believe those words have actually come out of my mouth a couple of times - for our first kid and when we bought a house. Life doesn't go and shouldn't go on hold while you write your award winning paper, do the critical experiment, or wait for the security of a 'permanent job'. I took the leap (with my wonderful spouse) and found ways to make it work. And I'm happy to say that I have two adorable (and annoying) kids and a house in the suburbs of DC. The only things missing from the quintessential American Dream picture is the white picket fence and dog. (I have a policy of only dealing with one source of poo that I have to clean up.) We're not rich but we're happy.
It was a bit shocking to me that some students I've meet over the course of my interviews were amazed that this was even possible. It is possible.