Why Do We Mock Work at Home Mothers?

3 comments

Hi ya’ll!   I’m Danielle and I am a work at home mother of three here in Connecticut!  I am in the Fairfield County area, and I love

Keep Calm and Mother On!

living here!  I was born and raised in Stratford and one day I will migrate back there!  That is certain a goal for me!  I just figured I would give you a little introduction before I really got into my post!

Stay with me while I tackle some of the stereotypes of 2011.

If you are a stay at home mother… You are a lazy freeloader who doesn’t do anything.  Because we all know taking care of kids all day long, while keeping up with household chores, running errands, and whatever your day consists of really is nothing… right?

If you work out of the home… You are a bad mother who should have never had kids to begin with!   Want to work?  Skip kids and just have your career as a baby… right?

If you are a work at home mother… You can’t compare to the mothers who leave the house to work, you don’t make enough money, and you do nothing more than neglect your kids because you have an internet obsession… right?  Heck, that is what I have been told about being a work at home mother myself!

Wrong!

And I finally let loose!  I am sick of work stereotypes when it comes to moms. No matter what we do, and how we contribute to our household and society… it is just not good enough for strangers. And it pisses me off!   It is almost like as women, no matter what we do, there is always going to be someone out there hating and saying it isn’t good enough… Same goes back to online Mom wars, but that is a whole other post in itself.  Whole other can of worms!

Lets be real though. If a mother wants to stay at home with her children, and be a homemaker, or whatever you would like to consider it these days, good for her!   Her children will benefit from that. While it may be more of a financial burden on some, that is their issue, not yours.  Good for them for making the best choice for their own family.  Right?

Mom wants to go back to work after having her baby, or better yet… has to go back because financially losing that income is not something their family can deal with, or maybe she just loves her job… that is something up to that family to figure out. Maybe they will have a Nanny, or a family member watch their child… maybe they will use a daycare facility.  Maybe they will even get government assistance for childcare. Because again if we are being real, with the economy the way it is today many women can’t afford to take 6 weeks off from work… and are back to work a week later. This is a reality in 2011.

And we should support her in that choice.

That doesn’t mean they shouldn’t have children, that means they are doing what is best for their specific family.

But what gets me most is the hypocritical double edged sword of being a work at home mother.

Are you a full time mom, or do you work full time?
Do you watch your children and interact with them like a normal stay at home mother would do, or do you stick them in front of the TV all day so you can rot in front of the internet because we all know when you work from home… you aren’t making a real income… you are just sitting in front of a computer doing nothing for a whole $1 a day.   (Insert eye roll here)

As a work at home mom… let me give you a run down of my day…

Wake up
Do diapers… and get the kids dressed for the day
Get breakfast ready
Check e-mail while kids eat
Published pre-written blog posts while eating breakfast myself.  (A breakfast which typically consists of a coffee, donut, or whatever I can quickly shove into my mouth before my “time limit” is up)
Get a Kid to school somewhere in here… Oh, and it isn’t even 8:30am yet!
Stumble, tweet, and facebook said posts.
Allow my kids their 1 hour of morning TV
During this time struggle to do whatever chores must get done… (Laundry, dishes, pull out dinner for the night, vacuum, feed the baby… whatever is piling up, or has most importance.)
Hour is up…
Cue a craft project or some kind of learning activity
Tweet here, tweet there…
Diapers, potty time, check on laundry.
Snack/Lunch or whatever the kids decide they want at that point in time.
NAPS!   If I am lucky BOTH will actually nap.
Pick a child up and pray I don’t need to call my sitter because the other two kids are napping!
If I am lucky enough for them to nap at the same time, I can surf the net and have some down time, while working..
Write a blog post, or three. (Since I am contracted to write 5 a week no matter what now, down from 10 a week previously.)
Laundry, dishes, whatever…
Kids get up, lather rinse repeat… potty, diapers, snacks
Go outside to play, play on the deck, go for a walk…
Come in, 1 hour of afternoon/evening TV
During this time I prepare dinner, or whatever needs to be done at that time.

This is all from about 7am till 4pm….
From 5 till bedtime would probably send you over the edge.  FOR REAL

So not only am I doing the normal job of a stay at home mom, but I am also working on top of it… Making exactly half of what my husband does in a calendar month. Give or take $100 or $200 on any given month. I have been doing it for over a year now, and I love what I do.

I feel like I get the adult interaction that I need on a daily basis, as well as continuing to work, make money that at some times we truly need, what family doesn’t?   but best of all, it keeps my mind functioning in a way I don’t feel like I was before.

Long story short… work at home moms work just as much as moms who work outside of the home… so lay off them… and mind your own career choices!

3 comments on “Why Do We Mock Work at Home Mothers?”

  1. @vtnative, I see what you are saying. It is hard for us as mothers to sometimes understand how anthers family dynamic works, or what their day actually entails. Maybe they watch too much tv, or depend on another spouses income. But maybe that is all they get from their spouse? Maybe they are unsupportive in the sense that they are the only parent involved or running all the household chores, kid chores, etc.

    But I get where you are coming from

  2. Danielle, I love how passionate you are about this issue. It’s great that you don’t hold back in your post, your voice really comes through! I agree with you, women shouldn’t mock other women, mothers shouldn’t mock other mothers. Parenting, working, marriage, and all the daily issues we face are difficult enough without worrying how we are viewed and judged by other women.

    However, I must confess, when a SAHM in my neighborhood approaches me to tell me how tired and busy she is, even though I saw her at the bus stop at 8:20 AM drinking coffee (when I was returning from my run) and talking with the other ladies on the street, and then at 9:40 AM when I left to bring my daughter to the Drs (which she is always the first one to tell me how my daughter is sick because of ‘filthy’ daycare), she was still there sipping her coffee. Or, how in the same conversation, she will tell me how busy she is, but then ask if I saw what was on Kathy Lee and Hoda and if I saw the new Maury that comes on at 4 PM. When I hear this I admit, I have a hard time refraining from judgement. I know, I should rise above it…

    But what about the acquaintance who is a SAHM with no children left in the house, who always complains to me how busy and exhausted she is, and is quick to remind me that she “will never return to work, so long as she has her husbands credit card.” I know, I know…

    I hear your message, and it is right, and it is valid. Women should be able to choose what is best for them and what is best for their families. I guess I’m just asking for a little perspective. I’m trying to be less cynical, I will try harder to refrain from judgement, but I must admit, I am a work in progress.

  3. Well said Danielle! We should support women’s choices, whether they are stay-at-home moms, work-at-home moms or go back to their offices. We’re glad to have you as a blogger here to help shead light on issues like this.

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