Malcolm Turnbull just told Mamamia that when he proposed to Lucy, she didn't say 'yes'.

There was a very special guest at Mamamia headquarters in Sydney this morning: Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

The Member for Wentworth popped by our Surry Hills office over morning tea for the launch of our founder and publisher Mia Freedman’s new book Work Strife Balance (you can read an extract from it here).

While reading an especially “powerful” passage from the book where Mia outlines the lessons she’ll teach her daughter, Mr Turbull explained how feminism and equality had formed the basis of his 40-year partnership with his wife Lucy, whom he married in 1980.

“We were children when we first met. In fact, when I first asked Lucy to marry me she said, ‘Can’t we wait until we grow up?'” he recalled.

“But we did – I think we did.”

Malcolm Turnbull and Mia Freedman at today's launch. Source: Supplied

The Prime Minister began his address by congratulating Mia on her efforts and agreed that, of course, "it's impossible to achieve the ideal balance" before acknowledging the "agility and innovation" of the Mamamia Women's Network.

"There are so many good pieces of advice in this book... there's two that I want to draw attention to," Mr Turnbull said.

"Mia sets out at the end her advice to her daughter - The future lessons for my daughter - and this a very powerful passage. She says, 'Seek out men who love women, who identify as feminists. Who aren't afraid of a woman's strength or beauty or power.

"Seek out partners who celebrate your success as if it's their own and who are willing to lean in and out of family and work as you do the same. Complementing and facilitating a true partnership is the only way you can succeed. Feminism does not exclude men - hell no! - we need all the soldiers in this fight for equality.

"'Also,' she adds, practical woman that she is, 'without men we can't make more feminists.'"

Mr Turnbull went on to highlight another piece of "great advice" included in the chapter.

Mia talks all things 'Work Strife Balance' in an exclusive behind the scenes podcast. Post continues... 


"[Mia] says here, 'If a man ever seriously tries to tell you what to wear, run fast in the other direction.' But then she goes on to say, 'be aware that a man buying clothes for a woman can be a form of control' but then adds again, practical as ever, 'a woman buying clothes for a man is just a public service.'"

Earlier in his address, Mr Turnbull described Mamamia is a "model business", created by someone who had decided to "break out of the mold, to do her own thing, to set out on her own path on her own terms."

"So this is a wonderful book Mia, congratulations," he said.

"You've underlined the challenges, the difficulties and the impossibilities of finding that ideal balance but you've been unfiltered in the way you've set it out.

"You've been so honest and provided both in this, but above all in your own life, such a great example and a reminder that girls and women can do anything - and everything - and should.

"And it is part of our job - all of our job - men and women, working together to ensure that we create the environment that is flexible enough, respectful enough, loving enough to enable each of us to realise their full potential in every aspect of their lives."

You can watch the speech in full on the Mamamia Facebook page.

Work Strife Balance by Mia Freedman is available now through Macmillan Australia, RRP $34.99. You can grab your copy here.