I’ve come to the realisation that we most definitely can’t please everyone and, no matter how hard you work at being a Mom, you will be judged by others. One of the most regular THOUGHTS / DILEMMAS I’m faced with is whether I am being judged for not being a stay-at-home Mom (SAHM).
Is this possible?
I have had numerous instances where I make it known, because I’ve been asked or it’s a topic of conversation, that I am a Mom who works. I have found myself in situations where I have managed in one sentence to offend another Mom who is a SAHM, leaving them with the feeling that I think they are stupid or crazy for staying at home because I choose to work, and I feel I am a better Mom because I work.
Here are a few facts about yours truly:
- I am someone who will be your friend for life. You may not see me often, but I will always be here if you need to talk, share a story, have a shoulder to cry, etc… I’m not perfect and I make mistakes, but that’s the type of person I am. I’m not everyone’s cup of tea either and I’m OK with that too 🙂
- I am very careful about what I say to people. Offending or hurting people is possibly the last thing I would EVER do. One of the things that I live by is that if I do happen to say something about you to someone, it is something I will say directly to your face. You can ask the people who work with me or have been long time friends. We are all guilty of gossiping, but I work very hard to ensure that I watch what I say as I know how I have been affected by people gossiping about me and vice versa. It’s a respect thing at the end of the day.
- I do not judge Moms who work and Moms who do not work. I respect Moms’ choices and will not judge you by them. I have MASSIVE respect for Moms who do stay at home and raise their kids – they have something that I just do not have.
- I have chosen to work. I work because, on most days, it makes me happy. I work so that I can sustain the life my family lives (we like our Woolies meals and the odd take-outs) and I work because it’s what makes me a good Mom. I give my son every hour of every day that I’m not at work and I have a very happy, relaxed son who has the best care I can afford at this point.
Those of you who do not know me personally may not know that I am quite shy when you meet me. Until I get to know you, I can be very quiet and when this 6ft tall BFG lands up in a social gathering of sorts, she withdraws completely. One of my main tricks to getting out of my so-called withdrawal mode is to ask people what they do. I’m genuinely interested and it’s always nice to hear what other people do with their days.
Recently I attended a kiddies’ birthday party. I only knew the parents themselves and their family. I didn’t know any of the other Moms there. Eventually, I started making conversation with my age-old line, “So, what do you do?” The response I got was that the lovely lady was a SAHM. I asked her about her family, her husband, her daughter, etc… Then, she asked me the inevitable… “What do you do?” to which I just answered the same as always “My hubby and I run a business together”. I left it at that and I moved onto the snack table and then outside to play a bit with my son. I asked a few other Moms that morning, just to make conversation, and I pretty much received the same response each time. I was possibly the only working Mom there.
I heard later from my hubby that he overheard one of the Moms saying that someone had asked her what they do and she had said that she was a SAHM. Her next sentence is what blew me away – she apparently stated “Being a Mom is a job too”. What I don’t understand, and perhaps I’m being a bit stupid here, is WHO SAID OTHERWISE?
Here are some questions, and I really would appreciate some input back regarding them:
- Do SAHM feel inferior to or judged by working Moms? If so, why?
- Do working Moms feel judged by SAHM and, if so, why?
- If you work / don’t work, does that make you worse or better as a Mom?
- Why does there seem to be this separation of working Moms to SAHMs?
I have friends with kids who work full time, part time (at an office or at home) or are SAHMs. I love and respect each of them for their choices and how they live their lives.
I think that Moms are under a lot of pressure nowadays, and perhaps judging others is a way to make ourselves feel better. Every Mom raises their children differently and has a right to choose what they want to do.
I hope this blog post will have opened an opportunity for a conversation – I invite you to leave a comment if you have read this blog and share your thoughts / experiences with us.
Join the List
Subscribe to our mailing list and stay informed on what's happening on MomTalk!