Keira Knightley said a spot-on but controversial thing about working mums.

Superstar and mother of one Keira Knightley has resumed her acting career after giving birth last year.

But she says she’s one of the “lucky” ones for being able to juggle a career with motherhood.

In an interview with Harper’s Bazaar, the Atonement actress says the cost of child care can stop all but the wealthiest women from returning to work after childbirth.

Knightley, who had her daughter Edie in May 2015, says the “unbelievable expensive” cost of childcare is a real problem.

Image via Getty.

"[T]here is no option for a woman to go back to work unless she's being paid really, really well," she says.

"I think I've become unbelievably aware of that and how lucky I've been to be able to afford really good childcare, because otherwise it would be at least four years out of my career."

Knightley, 31, also says paternity leave should be equal to maternity leave.


"You need to be a family unit, not just have the guy there for two weeks and then go back to work and the mother is left desperately trying to figure it out," she says. (Yep, we can all get on board with that.)

In the United Kingdom where Knightley lives, statutory paternity pay is either £139.58 a week (USD$171) or 90 percent of their average weekly earnings, whichever is lower.

This Glorious Mess, Mamamia's podcast for imperfect parents. 

In the United States, neither paid maternity nor paternity leave are mandated at the federal level. Just a few progressive companies such as Facebook (nice one, Mark Zuckerberg) do offer new fathers paid time off.

Knightley's comments have been met with criticism from some working mums, who point out that sometimes it's financially impossible to stay at home with the kids.

"Might just be cheaper to stay at home with the kids, daytime at least, when hubby gets home," writes one Daily Mail commenter. "Sometimes they have no choice but to return to full time jobs."

Another wrote: "Seriously dumb comment—I went back to work, after both of my children in 1993 and 1994 not because I was rich but because I was not rich."

Knightley, who has been married to former Klaxons keyboardist James Righton since 2013, is due to appear in four new films including Collateral Beauty with Will Smith in the near future. In late 2015 she also appeared on Broadway, in a play called Therese Raquin.

Read the full interview with Knightley in the December issue of Harper's Bazaar, on sale from November 1st.

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