Newest Review: ... mothers working all day and only seeing their children at night. Yes, I hate the thought of leaving my child, yes I worry about her becomi... more
Choice is they key
Working Mums vs. Stay at Home Mums
Member Name: GlasgowMum
Working Mums vs. Stay at Home Mums
Advantages: It's 2010. We can CHOOSE
Disadvantages: the guilt, whatever you choose
The very idea of a 'versus' for working or stay at home option immediately gets my back up. Why should it be 'versus'? It's not two football teams competing, these are peoples lives.
I find the whole thing incredibly frustrating, and ultimately the most frustrating thing is that once you become a parents, the world seems to feel they have an opinion on your life and how you raise your child.
Breast feeding or bottle feeding
Co sleeping or independent.
Dummy, thumb or nothing
jars or home-made
nursery or child-minder. The list goes on and on. Everyone has an opinion. Fairly often it's an opinion, followed a 'but it's your choice' which does nothing but make one feel judged anyway.
Becoming a mum is something that no books can really tell you about. They can't explain the sheer utter joy or the sudden loneliness and isolation a mum can feel.
So, once a mum has navigated the stressful choices above, and the maternity leave suddenly begins to count down towards the end, the choice has to be made. The points to be taken into account are endless. Money, time, childcare etc.. It's entirely mind-boggling.
Personally, I went back to work. I worked compressed hours to have more time off with my son. We put him in a nursery setting and he also spent time with Grandparents. For us, this was the right option.
Even setting aside money, I wanted to work. Not that I didn't want to spend time with my son, I did but I have a need to work. Does that make me selfish? Possibly it does.
However, in my mind, no. For me to be the best mum I can be, I need to be me as well. I do not see why women should lose their own identity when they become mum. Being a mum is amazing, but should I pretend it's all toddler groups and coffee mornings? Because it's not.
Reality is, there are chores to be done. Regardless of how you agree to split things with your other half, the person who stays at home becomes responsible for the bulk of housework.
This is fairly mixed I know, the problem is it's an emotive topic. Do I feel guilty? Of course I do! Even though I know my son thrives at nursery I feel guilty. I feel guilty for not wanting to spend every waking moment with him. I feel guilty that I go in to work and immerse myself in it. I feel guilty that I actually enjoy my job.
And yet, I feel proud. I feel proud that my shy little boy has become a sociable being. I feel proud that I can add to the family pot. I actually do feel a little pride that my income is about half of the family income. I feel proud that I can balance the two, regardless of how stressful it is sometimes.
Whatever a woman chooses, she should celebrate the fact that she CAN choose. That we now live in a country where choice is our own.
We shouldn't be sniping at other peoples choices. We shouldn't have to feel guilty. We all want what is best for our own family, we all do what is best. If that's staying at home with the kid(s), perfect. If it's going out to work, perfect.
Who cares, really?
Surely the biggest problem around parenting today is more the bad parents, the ones who don't/can't love, who don't care, who abuse children. Those with no intention of contributing to society. To me, they are the ones we should focus on, not whether a woman should be at home or working. Have we not moved on from that in 2010?
Whatever your choice, good luck to you. Find what fits for your family, and try not to feel guilty. Guaranteed you will feel some sort of guilt regardless.
Summary: Come on ladies, stop caring what other people think!