Moms, Stop Being Catty

Uh oh.

I’m dusting off that old wooden soapbox and taking my place atop it, fired up about a topic that really, really gets my goat every time.

Totally off topic, where do those random phrases come from? “Gets my goat, stuck in my craw, etc…” Yeah, I guess I need to research that.

Anywho, back to my soapbox issue.

I’m a stay-at-home mom and I know that many of you are, too.

So, SAHMs of the world, unite with me in screaming from the rooftops:

WHAT I DO IS A FULL TIME JOB!!

It’s a full time job and then some, right?

So where do people get off, especially women who work, in assuming that stay at home moms have tons of time on their hands, and maybe (dare I say it?) don’t actually DO anything?

Grrrr.

I’m annoyed. Can you tell?

More than once this week I’ve had different women make offhanded comments about me having tons of time, eating bon-bons, taking naps, and not having to “work” because I’m a SAHM.

Ye-ouch. Yeah, that gets me fighting mad because you know as well as I do that their idea of what a stay-at-home mom does is far from reality.

Because not only am I a full time mom, maid, cook, laundress, teacher, babysitter, nurse, shopper, imagination leader, disciplinarian, tutor, housekeeper, chauffeur, coach, and wife (yeah, that’s a whole other set of duties), I’m also a full time writer, bookkeeper, volunteer, room mom, and yeah, occasionally I like to work in a few hobbies, like reading.

I’ve been a working mom. I DO have the experience to compare the two worlds and I will tell you that without a doubt, I had far more time for things when I had a paying job.

SAHMs- have you ever noticed that because you stay home, the people who assume you have tons of time actually call on you MORE in order to get stuff done? More positions at church need filling. More school functions need desserts and bodies to man tables. More volunteer organizations want you.

Wonderful. I’ve had to learn how to say no, because if I didn’t, I’d never actually get to see my family.

Yeah, I’m ranting. I’m ranting on behalf of the zillions of women who are stay-at-home moms.

The moral of the story: It’s not a competition.

The vast majority of moms that I know work really hard, whether they stay home with their kids or only get to see their kids after work and on weekends. It’s not a contest. Being a woman is an over-worked, under appreciated position, but one that has more joy in it than we women often take advantage of.

So ladies, instead of looking down on each other for our career choices and positions in life, why not build each other up?

Have you told a SAHM you know how much her kids will appreciate her? Have you told a working mom you know how much her kids will appreciate her? Have you told either of them what a good job she is doing?

Reach across the aisle, SAHMs and Working Moms. Unite under the banner of motherhood, because it’s a great place to be.

Share with me: Do you have hot-button issues that really make you nuts?

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11 Comments

Filed under Parenting

11 responses to “Moms, Stop Being Catty

  1. Catherine Johnson

    I agree, but they won’t be told will they? I had friends in the Uk who worked the morning and picked their kids up at 1.00 and they admitted it was a nice break. Not many would admit that though.

    I went out to dinner with my husband and his workmates the other night and there were some new faces there. I had to endure lots of taunts about spoiled stay at home mums, his wife was one too, it was awful. Somehow I managed to talk about Pinterest and I thought it might swing round to writing, but he just blurted out that his wife goes on Facebook a lot. I don’t think I even want to tell him I write now, yikes! I wonder how much of that attitude my husband has, I don’t think I dare ask. Happy Mother’s Day!

  2. wendypainemiller

    Not a competition. I hear ya on that. Oh yes, certainly have hot button issues. Get super protective when children are treated poorly in any respect.
    Happy Mother’s Day.
    ~ Wendy

  3. cynthiaherron

    Jennifer, I faced this more when our children were younger, but you’re absolutely right-on-the-money with this issue. The other “hot-button” topic that’s more than a wee bit disconcerting? When folks discover we’re writers. The remark I like the best is: “Oh. Well, what do you do for a REAL job?”

  4. Everything we do as mothers seems to be up for attack. I just wrote on a similar topic (the need for moms to stop competing) yesterday.

  5. Heather Sunseri

    I’m actually a seasonal worker – full time job parts of the year, stay-at-home mom other parts – and I could go on and on about the comments I get at work about how lazy I am and how much time I must have since I have so much time “off.”

    You’re right. It’s not a competition. We all must find a way to make our mark on this world with the same amount of time in the day and overwhelming responsibilities at times.

  6. My hope is to be a SAHM who works from home writing and teaching. But you’re totally right–all moms are stressed and overworked no matter there situation. We can’t judge others for their choices; there’s no cause for it! Moms in general work hard and sacrifice.

  7. bethkvogt

    Brava.
    Brava.
    Brava.

  8. I’m glad both SAHMs and working moms are agreeing with me on this. 🙂 It’s a touchy subject for many, and to be honest, I’m just tired of being looked down on for staying home. Remember the olden days when working moms were looked down on? I think we’ve had enough on both sides.

  9. I’ve been both a SAHM (now) and a working mom (before having my second) and both are hard but in different ways. Great post!

  10. Oh!!I It’s so offensive when people look at me with pity and ask me, “Don’t you feel like you’ve wasted your education being a stay at home mom?”

    As if my intelligence automatically vanishes the moment I decided to be a stay at home mom!

    Yes, I graduated with Honors from UCLA. Yes, I was once a corporate paralegal at a prestigious law firm, but my life’s calling as a stay at home mom is infinitely more important and fulfilling.

    People who accuse us stay at home mothers of being lazy and unmotivated are just rude. Don’t pay mind to them.

    Jennifer, your family needs you more at home. In the long run, I believe your contributions are much more needed and will yield more meaningful rewards for your family as a stay at home mom, than if you were to work outside the home. Caring for our home and family is our first and most important ministry as women and we should be proud to be stay at home moms : )

    Stay at home mothers are sadly devalued in our society. This is what prompted me to create my blog which aims to celebrate stay at home mothers like you. I think my post titled “My Non-Financial Contributions” will especially resonate with you.

    Thank you for this post. God bless you and your family.

  11. Katie Ganshert

    Up until this year, I’ve been a working mom. What’s funny is that I had the summers off. And I was thinking that as soon as I was an official stay-at-home mom, my life would be one looooong glorious summer. But it’s SO much different. Busy, busy. In fact, I have no idea how I would be able to work and launch my writing career at the same time without completely neglecting my family.

    I love, love, love being a stay-at-home mom. Wouldn’t trade it for the world. Even though it’s not quite what I expected.

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