Working Mother vs. Stay at Home Momby Martha Scully • January 17, 2009
This week while watching my youngest daughter swing together on the monkey bars, I had a mother say something interesting to me. During idle chit-chat, she asked me what I do and I told her that I work and explained a bit about my business.
This mom was a “stay at home” mom, and she responded by saying “oh well, I stay home because I don’t want someone else raising my children”. Surprisingly this is not the first time I have had this said to me. I have been a mother for 11 years and I have had this exact thing said to me at least 7-8 times. Every time I have heard this I have wanted to explode. I have always felt confident in my decision to work and feel that my daughters have benefited in so many ways from that decision.
On the other hand my friends that are “stay at home moms" have had some pretty interesting things said to them too from “working moms” like “if I stayed home all the time my brain would turn to mush” or “what do you do all day?" My friends that stay home have always felt this was a direct dig and have been upset with the accusation that they do nothing.
Some mothers do not have a choice - they have to work. One income is not enough to support their families. Other mothers really love their career and their job. On the other hand some mothers stay home because they love it and they can. Some mothers it really doesn't make sense financially for them to work and pay for child care.
Women should not make each other feel guilty or less of a person for an important choice that they make. But mothers in general have a wonderful way of feeling guilty about daily things in their lives. We feel guilty if we spend too little time with our children, if we do not cook and clean in a certain fashion, if we spend too much time with one child over the other, go overnight with some friends. It seems endless the amount of guilt we put on ourselves. It is my belief that being with your child is about the quality and not the quantity. A mother that provides her children with a balance of love, affection, and guidance is a good mother. Both stay at home and working mothers carry a heavy load of responsibility and work long hours. We have all made sacrifices for our families and they are so worth it.
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