Oooh, do I dare even tackle a post like this. Is there even a reason to tackle a post like this.
First off, let me say, I'm not writing this to change anyone's minds about their decisions, this is just thoughts that led me to make my decision. I write these posts not expecting that anyone will see them, I write them because I feel led to write them as a kind of journal for my own growth. Apparently I'm going to need this as reminder for myself at some point, so here we go.
When it comes to stay at home moms vs working moms, those involved usually have their minds quite made up about it, and there is no changing their views (likely because we're all women and stubborn). We won't allow anyone to change our minds for us, but if we come to a new realization, and change our minds ourselves, well, that's just fine right? ;) I am the queen of stubborn, but, like everything else God is working on "cleaning up" that part of my life too.
So why SAHM's vs Working Mom's?
I've been reading A LOT of blogs lately and I'll fully admit that my taste leans towards the sahm, homeschooling, submitting christian woman type blogs. I do however run across a lot of different ones, including working mom blogs, which at other times in my life would have been my pick.
I was a working mom. In fact, I've been a lot of different moms. Through my life, I've gone through these:
*A first time mom
*A stay at home mom
*A Single sahm mom
*A Single working mom
*A married working mom
*A married sole income providing mom
*A sahm of two
*A stay at home work at home mom
And right now, a stay at home, work at home (babysitting), homeschooling, mom of three and one on the way.
See, I've been a lot of moms, so I can say for a lot of different kinds of moms what the pro's and con's of each mothering situation is.
Some SAHM's argue their point but have never worked outside the home, so can't say for sure it's better. Some working moms have never stayed at home and so can't tell you their way is better either. Regardless, we can all agree that we all want what's best for our kids.
I do wholeheartedly believe in staying home with your kids, though I am not one to push it on anyone, I will give you a few reasons why this is my choice.
THE MONEY MYTH
I've seen the effects of leaving my child to go to work. I know who she was when I was home with her, and I know who she became as a result of my working. They were two completely different children, and I regret now having to do it to her, but I was a single mom and needed to work.
Sometimes this is unavoidable I know, but if you are married, and still insist you would stay at home if only financially you could, let me tell you, you can! I made it with a child on $800 a month, and if I could have kept doing that she would have been much better off to have me home with next to no money, than having someone else care for her so we could have more stuff.
Bottom line: We work because as adults WE want to feel more secure, but would our children feel more secure with more money or with knowing we are right there beside them if they need us?
THE FREEDOM MYTH
Oh boy, did I fall into this one. At the end of my single working mother days, work seemed almost more relaxing than having to look after the kiddo. Why, because at work I could be with grown ups, have grown up conversations, and even think about ME every now and then (and there were a LOT of now and thens at this point). Work took me out of focusing mostly on my child, and took me into a world that promoted selfishness, and materialism. Work did not make me a better mother, it made me a better consumer, and a more selfish human being.
Nothing has been more freeing than staying home with my kids. Yes it's a hard job, no the constant shrieks and odd ramblings do not mirror those of adult conversation, but how often do you find yourself calling the grandparents or your friends to tell them what funny thing Sally at the office said today. Trust me, the entertainment of staying home with kids is priceless! No, maybe it's not the best choice for "you" personally, but what you need to ask is what's best for your kids.
Bottom Line: What's more free? Not having to deal with the wants and demands of a young child all day? Or, not having to be a follower of what society says is normal, and what ads and movies say you must have to be a happy and successful family.
THE I'LL GET BORED AT HOME MYTH:
I'm not even going to justify that one, trust me, there is more than enough at home to keep you busy, and if you really feel like you need a little something extra, you can always start to blog!! ;)
I have run into a lot of moms who used to work, who now stay home with their kids and rave about the changes they've seen in them, and how happy they are with their choice to return home.
Never have a met one who returned home only to wish and pray they could return to work, and how much better their kids and their life would be if they could.
I've run into moms who work and long to be home with their children, but feel it's just not a possibility for them. Again, never do I find ones who've returned home, now longing for work.
Either way, these are some of the reasons I've made my choice, my main reason though, I believe it's what God wants me to do, and if I'm going to do anything right it's going to have to be by following His will.
If you were to find out tomorrow that you had 1 year left to live, would you regret your decision? Would you wish you had taken the other road? Would you use that last year to work and make money for your family, or spend time with them before you were gone?
I'm sure you ALL have reasons for making your choice, and I'd love to hear them.