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Article - Do Stay at Home Moms Give Up Too Much?

I have always been the sole earner of my family's finances (my daughter and myself). What I have given up by being a out-of-home-working mom is being in the battle front between ill-mannered management and stake-holders (with my name attached) and being the whipping child of many bad juju practices that blame has rolled downhill, while at the same time worried if my daughter is being cared for adequately. I remember going home crying many times wondering if I even had a job, just to be laid off because of budget cuts and misdirected blame. I remember picking up my daughter with a red puffy face, and then had to finish by getting house work done and fixing dinner with nerves rattles. So many times I wished that I could have just said that I was a Stay-At-Home-Mom instead of answering what my former boss would say about me during job hunt interviews (and for the sake of sanity). My life goal as a young girl was to have a large family and be the picturesque mom hugging her children, but not to be dodging critical interview questions in this tough competitive economy. Currently, I am working again in finance and am writing a journal about occupational and economical survival. But I still don't feel that I'm any better off than any other mom who's returning to the work world. I feel many times that I am actually in a worse state, actually.
Just seems to me that the article, Do Stay at Home Moms Give Up Too Much?, suggests that working-out-of-home moms have it better than SAHM moms.
Why does this assumption prevails so much in articles and in CafeMom?
I use facebook with my real name for networking. I don't need my personal life publicized on facebook.

Answer Question

Asked by BlueSaphire at 2:31 PM on Jan. 10, 2011 in Parenting Debate

Level 21 (11,698 Credits)
Answers (20)
  • I think both sides of the fence give up just as much.
    Take me, I stay home, and this, right here, is my social life. Other than that, I talk to toddlers all day, every day. I don't get real life adult interaction except when my husband isn't at work. Don't go out, because we can't afford to. I feel isolated pretty much all the time. These are some of the prices I pay to stay home with my kids.

    Unlike what seems to be a lot of women in my shoes, I fully realize that working moms pay a price, too.
    I mean, seriously... I don't understand any person who thinks they are better because of their working status while raising kids.

    Answer by SpaceToast at 2:40 PM on Jan. 10, 2011

  • By working status, I mean whether they work or not.
    Just thought I'd clear that up for the nice ladies out there who like to twist what others say...

    Answer by SpaceToast at 2:40 PM on Jan. 10, 2011

  • I don't think it's a matter of who has it better, I think it's a matter of those who have choices and those who don't. Some SAHM's don't have a choice to work because daycare costs more than a job in their area will pay... vice versa for WM's, some don't have a choice because they cannot sustain a family on one income. Some mom's who can be SAHM choose to work because they love their career and it is fulfilling to them. They find quality childcare and feel comfortable with the choice to be WM. Some SAHM's choose to be SAHM because that it what makes them happy. So IMO, its not that SAHM or WM give up too much, it's the ladies (and men) who don't have a choice in the matter, who seem to sacrifice the most.

    Answer by kenzie07 at 2:43 PM on Jan. 10, 2011

  • As long as there have been working moms there has been this debate.

    Answer by scout_mom at 2:45 PM on Jan. 10, 2011

  • I am a working mom and don't feel I have given up anything. I didn't feel that way when I was a stay at home mom either. I make choices in my life that work for my family. I don't spend my time thinking about what I don't have I spend it enjoying all I do have. I think too many women are looking for validation in life for what they do. If your a mom look at your kids and how great and healthy they are and be glad you get to be a part of that period. Life isn't always easy and the mommy battles over SAHM and Working mom is silly.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:52 PM on Jan. 10, 2011

  • I, too, am a mom who works outside the home. I understand the struggles you face. I also recognize that no matter what choice we, as women make, we sacrifice a lot for each choice. Mom who stay home have the benefit of ensuring their children are cared for by them, and be available to their children as soon as they are needed. However, they give up their place in the career line, social connections, the stimulation of the outside workforce, and are left by laws and social perceptions as "not contributing" to the betterment of the economy and society.

    Working moms have the benefit of a paying job, but spend all their free time "catching up," and often relationships suffer for it. We don't get to see our friends as often, having personal time is rare, if at all, and we're constantly worried about the care that our children get, even if they are with their fathers!

    In the end, we're all moms-- the hardest job of all!

    Answer by Busimommi at 3:10 PM on Jan. 10, 2011

  • It depends on the family, the woman, the husband, and so on. There is no one-size-fits-all family. I have been a stay at home mom since the beginning, and when my kids were younger, it was so much harder. They needed more and my husband worked at a different job and was gone a lot. Now, I really have it pretty easy. The kids are a little older, my husband is around more and is always helping out. Also some women really love what they do at their jobs, and I hated my last job. I don't miss it. I don't think it helps anyone to make sweeping statements about every family or every working or stay at home mom. Everyone should do what is best for their own family and what they are most comfortable with.

    Answer by JulieJacobKyle at 3:23 PM on Jan. 10, 2011

  • I'm a sahm and I don't feel I have given up anything. I wouldn't change a thing about my life as a sahm.

    Answer by buzymamaof3 at 3:47 PM on Jan. 10, 2011

  • My kids are grown now, and I have always worked part time, and often off hours so DC needs were minimal. I would say that many SAHMs have been deluded in to thinking that they would be able to jump right back in the workforce when their kids were a bit older. Sadly, that is just not the case. We have moved around quite a bit for my husband's job and the first question I have always been asked is about my recent job experience and if I had had any employment lapses. I am a nurse and have been told that any lapse of greater than 1 year makes you an unattractive candidate; someone who would probably need retraining. Kids are little for a short period and then you're an unattractive candidate-not worth it, IMO. I loved working half time and it only benefited me, our kids and or family. Every family is different-


    Answer by Sisteract at 3:49 PM on Jan. 10, 2011

  • I think that being a woman and wanting children means we will have to give up a matter what we choose. Men never have to consider ending their career, even for a short time, when children are born. Women carry the children, bear the children, and are naturally expected to care for the children.
    I'm trying to go back to school now, so that I can get a job. We don't "need" the income, but I need to get away from being "mommy" all the time. Being a SAHM straight up SUCKS sometimes! I have to ask for money, I don't have a car, and so I have almost no social life, and my world has to revolve around what I can do for everyone else. No one expects that from a man.
    Those of you ladies, working moms or SAHMs, that have husbands that help you around the house...count yourself lucky. Many of us do it all, and more.

    Answer by brandyj at 3:49 PM on Jan. 10, 2011

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