“The unequal division of household labor and caregiving responsibilities often can lead to women cutting back on her own work investment,” said Barbara Gault, the vice president and executive director at the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, a Washington-based think tank. “We need systemic changes so that women and men can continue to advance even if they go to reduced schedules due to caregiving.”

Some companies are beginning to move in that direction. Netflix announced Tuesday that parents could take unlimited leave during the first year of their child’s birth or adoption. Some lawfirms are also tweaking their partner tracks to allow high performers who work fewer hours to still have a shot at top-level jobs, according to Gault.