There is a certain social pressure on women with children, to work hard for their families, to provide, while simultaneously staying at home and nurturing their children. This obviously is difficult and so it seems that socially we are divided between the two options; in one hand we have mothers who work their forty (or sixty) hours a week to put food on the table and women who are in the position to stay at home with their children.
A popular opinion is that one group of moms is superior to the other group of moms. What a huge misconception that is. Especially since I’ve personally been both of these moms.
This is where things begin to deteriorate. Working parents occasionally feel that they are superior because they need to justify leaving their children to go to work. “It is not a crime to provide for my children, even though I can’t be with them all the time. I’m doing the right thing,” they say.
Parents that stay at home tend to feel the same regard. “I am doing the right thing because I am ensured that my children are safe and well taken care of.”
Then the war starts about not doing enough. A long-standing opinion is that women who stay at home to raise children do not work. While another is that women in the workplace do not take care of their children. Neither of these opinions is true, so in the error of our youth, we don’t understand that sometimes parenting is a shit-dipped coin and that it’s hard either way you go. Let’s break a few stereotypes down:
Working mothers don’t spend enough time with their kids.
This is where we learn about quality over quantity. It’s important to understand that 30 minutes with your children at dinner is equal to an hour at a playground or that 15 minutes picking books at a library equals a time where you might leave them at home to go to the grocery store. It’s not how long it takes, it’s how you connect with your kids.
Stay at home moms don’t work.
Excuse me? Do you even know what you’re saying? Ask any daycare worker what they do all day, then add the responsibility of appointments, managing the household finances and provisions – without the benefits of having an extra income. You know what doesn’t work 100% of the time? The line of thinking that anyone is better or worse because raising children is hard work!
Working moms have cleaner houses because the kids aren’t home.
Myth! NONE of our houses are clean ALL the time! I don’t care how many hours you work, the crumb snatcher’s still live there. Who is it you are comparing yourself to anyhow and why does it have to be a competition?
Stay at home moms spend all their time cooking and cleaning, so they should have perfect, shining children and homes because hey, they are home all day right?
No one should have to tell you why that doesn’t make sense, although it IS totally true that the average SAHM spends a lot of time cooking and cleaning. But also…supervising, planning, chauffeuring, hosting, budgeting, caring, and generally adulting – again without the benefit of an extra income.
In this age, it is mothers against the world. Against starvation, and poverty, brutal judgment from the most shocking places, federal agencies, our adult personal health problems, and anyone else that could mean to separate us from our children or cause harm!
Working parents have it hard! Stay at home parents have it hard! Being a parent is hard!! Comparatively, we are the same, and would you know that if you could peer into the real lives of women, you might find a small longing to experience just a taste of what the other side has…some women aren’t able, while some would much rather be at home, but they have no choice. Yet we bicker on social media, trash each other in chats and comments, and then expect our children to be the next great generation of children, bred for love and respect.
The battlefield of Supermom VS Supermom is in our heads, something society has tried to force us into a box and become. Instead of engaging in the mommy wars of it all, we should be uplifting each other, encouraging each other, but mostly embracing our differences and loving our children with a passion that only mothers know.
Go to sleep with that folks.
Drop a comment if you’ve ever been harassed for choosing to work away from home or because you stay at home with the kids.