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Stay Home Mom-versus-The Career Mom
The original title suggested was Stay-Home-Mom versus Working-Mom, which for some reason really sticks in my craw. First and foremost I would like to point out that this article is not a knock at the career Mom. It is only meant to be a glance into choices, a young family has to make, in this day and age.
In my day, the early seventies, when I was a young bride and we decided to start our family it seemed to be a given, I would stay at home and look after the children and the home etc. I don't think it ever entered our minds that it would be any other way. My immediate circle of girlfriends were the same. Don't get me wrong, 'the working out of the house Mom' was an acceptable fact then too but it just didn't seem to be the first and foremost choice. If it had to be, then it was.Today, unfortunately the stay-at-home-Mom seems to have become a minority.
The awesome new subdivision where my daughter and son-in-law chose to put down their roots is mainly filled with the upper twenty to early thirty something couples with young families. After an unofficial survey we realized that less than twenty percent were stay-home-Moms.
My gang made the choice, they were going to be the ones raising their children not the daycare people. As a general manager of a plant my son-in-law makes enough so it's possible for my daughter to stay at home with their two little darlings. Not that it wouldn't be easier with an extra income but... Would it be easier?
Lets peruse that angle. They would need daycare for two. A good car and gas to take the little ones to daycare and to get to work. She'll need a 'working' wardrobe etc. Also fast cooking types of groceries, which cost more. Not to mention, that an extra income would land them in a higher tax bracket too.
A young friend of mine, with a couple of masters degrees, stopped her career to have their family. When the youngest turned three my friend became restless and decided to go back to work. It was quite an eye-opener. She did the calculations, the total breakdown. Naturally having been away from the work force for a little under five years she wouldn't be able to start back with the top wages in her field but still at an above average wage. The bottom line, after all the expenditures etc. she would be working for a whooping five eighty an hour. Time to rehash matters, I think.
For another aspect, my friends daughter had a dilemma. How to select just the right daycare for her young boys? She was not in the position to have a choice, No-matter how little was left at the end of the pay week she needed it. She had to return to work as fast as possible. Yes, there is subsidised daycare but that is not always the best care. A few months ago my friend called all upset. Her eighteen month old grandson had come home with a black eye from daycare. It seems that the subsidized daycare places look after quite a few children of all age groups and the little tyke just got in the way of older kids fighting.... How to choose the right place can get frustrating and naturally every Mom wants the best for their children.
Lets open a different kettle of fish...The stay home Mom faces different challenges. The attitude of the masses, she is at home therefore she doesn't work. I'm sure if any homemakers are reading this article they'd agree these type of comments come their way constantly: "Not to worry, you have all day to do it... You don't work? Must be nice, you can watch soaps all day... Aren't you bored staying home all day? You should volunteer somewhere... You're busy? Doing what? You've got all day... etc. Lets not get into that discussion. Another thought comes to mind. What does the stay-at-home-Mom give up? Her individuality, career, pay, and sometimes sanity etc. To stay at home with the kiddies a Mom surrenders most of herself, but at the same time she gaines so much by being there for the first step, the first word, the first...??? She is also able to give Dad back some of the time, he's missing with his children while at work. My son-in-law loves that. He always says, the next best thing to experiencing every aspect of his girls accomplishments is to at least hear about them at the end of his day. Unfortunately the Career-Mom misses a lot of those firsts, while at work, and then again at the end of the day when she still needs to make dinner, do laundry etc.
It is very hard to decide what to be... The-Stay-Home-Mom versus The-Career-Mom. I'm just glad I don't have to make these choices anymore, who's to know what the right choice is...