Should you stay home with the kids and be a good wife and a loving mother? Or go back to work?

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One  hears of people who decided to stay home and be a full time mom as if they’re angels from heaven. Seriously.  The two should not be mutually exclusive.

Let’s talk about this situation. If you decide to stay home with your children does it mean that you love them more than working moms?  Does it mean you want to be a better mother than you could otherwise be?

I say no.  First of all the best way you can set an example for your kids is to do work that you enjoy so they can see you making a difference in the world.  If you decide to stay at home, that’s great and fine, but let’s not pretend that you’re a better person or even a better mother.

If you decide to stay at home, it is first of all because you can afford to do so.  Let’s be very clear you wouldn’t even be thinking about this staying at home business unless you either inherited money or your husband made enough money to support the whole show.  You are not better than the mother who is working at Walmart or Dennys or you’re a doctor, teacher, or clown and you are working to support your family, I would certainly give you more applause than a woman who just gets to stay home and kick it.

When my kids were younger, there were a lot of articles about the “Mommy wars,” and I remember a few moms being disdainful of me for working.  Their husbands made a lot of money.  The accusation is that if you had chosen a better man, he’d be making enough that you could spend all your time doing Pilates and taking your kids to soccer practice.  Are men who make more money better men? I’m thinking no.

Being a parent isn’t easy whether you make a lot of money or not.  Even rich kids get into trouble.  Staying home with your kids doesn’t mean that they won’t get into trouble, it just means that when your kids get older you won’t really have much to do and your identity will be just being a mom.  Is that what you want?

The mommy wars started 25 years ago, just when I was having my children.  But, there is still a sly big of bragging that women do when they realize they can afford to stay home.  “I just want to take care of the children,” they say as if they’re the Virgin Mary or something.  I don’t consider staying home a privilege.  It wouldn’t be my first choice or even my second choice, but it’s never been an option for me so it’s easy to diss. My first choice would be writing, low residency teaching and the press.  But that’s not an option.   My kids would not have turned out better if I’d stayed home.  I think they turned out just fine.  If you decide to stay home for a while, I wouldn’t suggest bragging about it to women who are working.  We’re not impressed.  We’re fine with our lot in life.  We aren’t wishing for a man who could have kept us in Pilates and Botox.  We’re chilling at our job.  We’re cool.

Published in: on September 15, 2014 at 3:55 pm  Comments (1)  

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  1. Hello. In my opinion everybody needs to decide whats best for their family. I am coming from europe and live in the us for severral years now. I am a homestaying mom. And in europe most woman are home with theit children for a couple years until they reaching preeschool age and a mom can work half days. I loved the feeling of raised by my mom at home and will give this sturdy platform to my children. My Husband and i made this desicion together. Even he was raised at home in the us. And no we are not rich but we know how to live and safe our money in a way that we can make it possible. Many people have a house thats to big or the mortage to high, even deep dept or to fancy cars think about what you can to create the right circumstances before having a little human beeing. You are the best caregiver to your baby there is nobody who loves your child the way you do. child care they dont care! in a new study they found a new trend more moms are staying home. I love this. just wanted to share my opinion and let others know how people live in other countrys of the world!
    take care…

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