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Should Moms Stay At -Home Or Work Outside The Home

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Initial post: Oct 22, 2008 8:34:10 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 22, 2008 9:13:47 PM PDT
Mia Redrick says:
I recently read an article about moms who felt tremendous guilt because they made the decision to be working instead of be stay-at-home moms. These mothers felt that they missed their children's most precious moments.

On the other hand, stay-at-home moms are often scrutinized for not being intelligent and sacrificing their lives for their children.

I have always felt that how a mother decides to express her work, whether inside or outside the home is her choice. Both stay-at-home mothers and working mothers are moms. What is different about these women is how they choose to express their work. Some choose to explore careers outside the home that may take them to the boardrooms across the country. Others have chosen the experience of every moment, having a desire or value to see every wink and smile, crawl and toddle.

Since when did a mother have to justify what she valued? Who said that she could not choose both as viable options? The big concern that both of these mothers face is being exhausted, drained and overwhelmed. All mothers struggle with the same issues that result from doing to much.
If our society valued moms more, there would be greater options on both sides of the scale to allow more flexibility without judgment, better options to enter the workforce and understanding that just because you take time away doesn't mean that you have forgotten all that you know.

What do you think about this issue? Has this happened to you? Do you feel that woman should work out side of the home? Or, do you believe that it is best for a mom to stay-at-home with the children. Weigh In.

Live fully,
Author, Time for mom-Me:5 Essential Strategies for A Mother's Self-Care

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 22, 2008 9:27:57 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 22, 2008 9:29:25 PM PDT
"On the other hand, stay-at-home moms are often scrutinized for not being intelligent and sacrificing their lives for their children."

By who? The media? Who even cares about what they have to say anymore.
By someone with no children? I'm sorry but as intelligent as someone is, they can't understand the attachment a parent has to a child if they have never felt it.
By working mothers? Most likely there is a lot of envy there. I'm sure if they hit the lottery their quest for intelligence would change and they would stay home with their children.

Point is, parents know whats best for them and I'd be willing to bet a nickel that most moms would stay home if they could reguardless of what anyones opinion is.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 23, 2008 10:25:25 AM PDT
Strange how this came full circle isn't it? Now the luxury is to stay at home with children and going to work is what is expected of us (women). I don't see myself wanting to work if I have children in the future. Maybe part time, but that's it.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 23, 2008 1:49:45 PM PDT
James King says:
I used to work in the fast-paced, energetic world of high tech. It was wonderful to have my income and be DINKS (dual income no kids) I knew that there was no way that I could sustain the level of energy required to succeed at my job and have children. The thing I wasn't counting on was how much *more* exhausting it is to be at home with children all day. At work, you're getting something done, you can go to the bathroom, have a cup of coffee, respond to emails, cross off your list of accomplishments for the day *and* you get a paycheck. At home, you'll be lucky if you get a shower. For me, having children was a very conscious choice and one that we had planned for a long time. We saved as much money as we could so I could stay home and then amended our spending to make it on one income. It would be nice to have the money, but I don't think I could leave home while the kids are small. That would require hiring help and, really, it doesn't make sense financially to pay someone else to raise my kids. It's a dilemma for lots of parents out there. It's especially difficult for women because there are statistics that indicate that women lose a substantial amount of earning power every year they are 'not working' outside of the home. I'm not sure if that follows for stay at home dads. Many of my friends have literally sprinted back to work to get away from the work-a-day drugery of homemaking. They'll readily admit it too. They just need out of the house or they'll go mad. There are days I feel that way too for sure. I know this is just a very short period of my life when the kids are small. I don't want to rush it.
Interesting discussion.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 23, 2008 5:00:18 PM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Oct 23, 2008 5:01:19 PM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 23, 2008 5:00:21 PM PDT
Mia Redrick says:
I agree with you 100%. We all have to make choices to make our lives work. Sometimes we make short-term sacrifices for long-term gains other times we seize the moment of opportunity. This is tough stuff.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 24, 2008 8:06:58 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 24, 2008 8:14:37 PM PDT
anna smith says:
I stayed at home to raise four children. I was under tremendous pressure from friends and even from my husband to find a paying job; I was made to feel like some kind of welfare recipient. I did work off and on at a few part time jobs but with four kids it was nearly impossible. Only my mother was supportive of my staying home. She reminded me that those years would pass too quickly.

Fast forward to now; all my children are grown. I am very close to them, and I did not have any of the "typical" problems my friends faced with their teenagers. They ask for my advice, and even their friends still come around to see me.

Each of my children graduated with at least a Bachelor's degree. All are very successful in their chosen field. My daughter stays at home to raise her child, and she is a wonderful mother.

I now have a job, but it is just part time because my children still need me and want me around a lot. My grandchildren and I enjoy each other tremendously. I would recommend that every mom look closely at ways to cut corners so she can stay home with her children. We did without a lot, but my children didn't even notice. There is a lot you can do to make ends meet without that extra income. I have never been sorry that I was a full time mother, and neither are any of my children!

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 25, 2008 1:24:05 PM PDT
Mother Hen says:
"Live fully,
Really, you got something published? Go figure.

In your shallow query (is it fodder for a new book, or just a commercial plug for your existing one?), you tackle the stay-at-home versus working mom issues with skin-deep stereotypes. At no point do you actually address the needs of the children.

Do you believe that a woman should perhaps sit down with her husband and consider the needs and best interests of their children, or should she just contemplate what she wants, maybe read a vacuous book or two about motherhood and Me-Time, and then do whatever "feels" best to her? Perhaps mothers should have more concern about their children's well-being, and less concern about how others may be judging them.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 25, 2008 2:10:19 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 25, 2008 2:10:54 PM PDT
Mia Redrick says:
Our children are very important but,so are mother's feelings. They are not non-exclusive and it is healthy to discuss your feelings as a mother.
Women often act,attack or criticize one another for discussing the imperfections of motherhood.
I have been an at home mother and working from home mom. The sterotypes are real and many times extremly hurtful.
This is such an important issue and we all are entitled to our opinions. Hopefully, we can agree to respectfully disagree.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 27, 2008 2:20:00 PM PDT
J. Spence says:
You two play nice.

On another note; I would love to be a stay at home Dad, if my wife made enough money that is... My kids and I could play all day and I'd be able to cook dinner so it would be ready for my wife when she gets home. Then I could also try and keep the house someone neat. Notice I said try; kids are wonderful aren't they?

It's the mom's choice whether or not to work or stay at home. What everyone else thinks about here is none of their business. She's doing what she thinks she needs to do. If she regrets it later her decision later, well, it her choice.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 2, 2008 8:47:06 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 2, 2008 8:50:15 PM PST
i1der says:
I'm writing on my husband's profile, hence the name.
I have done both. I currently work part-time, but overtime during tax season. My kids are 9. 12 and 17. I started working three years ago (much fewer hours to begin with). The kids sometimes act like its bothering them, but my husband offices in our home, so he is here. I think each person has to make this decision. Womens libbers think it is insulting to the entire female population to stay at home with your kids. Who cares what they think. I think they want to be what they originally thought was the worst about men. So, that is not something I care about. My family is what I care about. I like working some now, but I'm glad I don't have to work more. It can work fine if you have to though! I think kids should be taught that if you need the money you should not be made to feel guilty about it. Ask them if they want to have food on the table, or movie money or whatever. Communicate with them with things they value (usually self focused for kids!). Good luck!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 2, 2008 8:48:50 PM PST
i1der says:
Anna Smith, bravo to you!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 2, 2008 9:04:02 PM PST
Mia Redrick says:
I think that as we become older we become more sure of our choices. If we are lucky we stop questioning ourselves.
I agree with your comments completely.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 9, 2008 3:00:45 PM PST
[Deleted by the author on Nov 9, 2008 3:03:09 PM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 9, 2008 11:56:09 PM PST
[Deleted by the author on Nov 14, 2008 10:11:36 AM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 11, 2008 12:53:00 PM PST
Each individual person has to make their own decision. If married, the two adults must decide what is best for their family. What other people think is not your concern. Everyone has an opinion, but only yours is important. I was a stay-at-home grandpa. As I state in my book, my wife and I sat down and worked out the important issues so we knew what to expect from both. Being a stay-at-home parent is a hard, yet important job. Once you make the decision to be at home, or outside the home, it is not something that is irreversible. If you enjoy what you are doing, and it is working, don't second guess your decision.
Robert Koger
Author: The Ultimate Guide for Stay-at-home Parents

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2008 7:07:41 PM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2008 7:11:36 PM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2008 7:16:50 PM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2008 11:57:10 PM PST
C. T. says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Nov 13, 2008 1:30:01 AM PST
[Deleted by the author on Nov 14, 2008 9:53:46 AM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 13, 2008 8:07:50 AM PST
M. Bryant says:
I think everyone's post has been about what they feel is important for their child. It's just that people have different opinions and feelings for what works best for them. Do you just interpret any mother that works outside the home as not doing what they feel is best for their child? Many people (men and women) work to make ends meet, that's really what work is all about. Of course I miss my daughter when I go to work, and so does my husband, just as much as I do. But, I know she is in a great place with people that love her. Plus, we have a great extended family and I love that my daughter is a part of this. Just like all parents, working or not, we try to do what we feel is best for our child. I enjoy what I do, and feel this makes me a better mommy. And actually, your last post stated that you were "ready to soon! Augh!" work outside the home. Does this mean your situation is really the best?

I really appreciate what Gina Marie had to say. I think there are many women that feel that way, but many aren't going to say anything, because of the guilt associated with working and the MYTH that you're doing your children a disservice by doing so. I have total strangers make comments to me about working and being away from my daughter. I'm not sure if stay at home moms get this or not... It's times like those when I tell my husband that it's the only time I'm jealous of men. He doesn't feel that extra guilt as a father working.

But ultimately, I don't feel at all that my daughter is in a less than optimal position. And we could probably make do with one of us not working, we choose not to do this for ourselves AND our daughter. BoogieCat, What do you mean when you say "actual" mother, are you insinuating that mothers that work outside the home are not mothers? What are "actual" fathers? Do you just subscribe to the narrow view that only good mothers stay at home all day and good fathers work all day outside the home?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 13, 2008 12:35:45 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 13, 2008 12:39:21 PM PST
Gina asked why women are posting under their husbands name. I posted under my wife's name. When you register your computer you have to put in your name. My wife and I each have our own laptop. I used hers so the register name showed at the top and I signed so my name was at the bottom. I am using my own computer now so my name will be at the top and bottom.

There are two sides to a coin, but in the 50's the coin had two distinct sides, male and female. Having lived through the 50's I can tell you things were very different. Women couldn't take jobs that would deny a man the opportunity to support his family. As a result women held menial, low paying jobs. Even women teachers were paid less than the men working next to them. That was the times. The glass ceiling hasn't been totally broken, but there are cracks in it.

Sometimes tough decisions have to be made. It's not as simple as just deciding to work or stay-at-home. My wife and I took custody of our grandson. He is MR and his condition overwhelmed his single mother. He was eight years old when we got him. He couldn't read, write, speak clear enough to be understood, ride a bike, run, or many other things. I had enough time to retire early, my wife didn't. I became the stay-at-home parent. I did the cleaning, cooking, laundry, yard work, shopping, medical appointments and everything else any other stay-at-home parent does. My day started at 5:30 AM and ended when I got our grandson to bed. Because he was in school I was able to still do some work. I wrote my first two books during this time. If working full time I could have finished each in about three months rather than over a year for both. But my primary role was maintaining the home and taking care of the grandson and my wife. He was with us five years. When he went back to his mother he was able to read, write, speak clearly, participated in youth and school sports, skate with inline skates, and everything else a boy of his age could do. Do I regret being a stay-at-home parent? Not in the least. My wife and I both feel we made the right decision and would do it again.
Robert Koger

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 14, 2008 1:35:25 AM PST
[Deleted by Amazon on Nov 18, 2009 12:39:00 PM PST]
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Discussion in:  Parenting forum
Participants:  170
Total posts:  762
Initial post:  Oct 22, 2008
Latest post:  Sep 18, 2012

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