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Which Is Harder: Being A Stay-At-Home Parent or A Working Parent?

Updated on March 19, 2013


Having done both, I would say being a stay-at-home parent is harder (though SO worth it!).

Here's the thing.

Stay-at-home parents:

- Are always "on", answering a million questions all day long (there's no down-time for the brain!)

- Don't get sick/vacation days

-Don't get to play hooky.

-People seem to think that you actually have time to cook and clean every day just because you're home with the kids!

Although I love what I do, sometime it's nice to have a conversation with someone who's over three-and-a-half feet tall and that doesn't resort to whining or tantrums when you can't read their mind!

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Which Is Harder: Being A Stay-At-Home Parent or A Working Parent?

Yes, you're right!

Yes, you're right!

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    • vanidiana24 7 years ago

      Being a stay at home Mom definitely is harder than a Mom working outside the house. It's even harder when you have to accompany your kid while working Squidoo lenses out or your other hobbies to help you earn income from home. But it's more fun to be home!

    • lakern26 lm 7 years ago

      I've done both also and I have to agree that being at home is harder, at least in my opinion. I used to be able to leave work at work, but at home I'm surrounded by kids 24/7 and fulfilling constant demands, while trying to do laundry, prepare meals, check homework, etc... Both situations are tough, but I feel like a lot of people underestimate how hard it is to be a stay-at-home parent.

    • happynutritionist 7 years ago

      I was both, worked from home when my children were young, and part time out of the home as they got older, to me that made it a win-win. I was always home when they were, that was important to me.

    No way, Monkeybrain!

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      • anonymous 4 years ago

        The truth is, staying at home or going to work are two different things that arenât really comparable. The difficulties and rewards of each are different, but both valuable. For many working mothers, the pay check provides some of the extras in life, whether a regular dinner out, nice vacations or extracurricular activities for the kids. And even those in the most loving marriage recognize that earning money puts them on equal footing with their husbands -- and protects them in case that marriage ends.

      • jordanmilesbask 5 years ago

        I can say working parent because you do a lot more work and you get more stress at work..

      • Lorelei Cohen 7 years ago from Canada


      • jbarnhart41 7 years ago

        I have worked while my kids were in daycare and stayed home with them so I'm going to play devil's advocate on this one. Being a full-time mommy is the best job ever! But, leaving your kids in daycare and turning off mommy mode to perform a full-time job is difficult. I always hated leaving my kids and I worried what they were doing. Also, you sometimes end up bringing your work problems home with you. Not to mention, when you get sick (or a child gets sick) you have to deal with calling in sick to work one day and trying to make up for it the next work day. Let's just say that from an emotional stand point, working parents have it rough.

      Case In Point:

      I just created this lens earlier today. My husband is, as I write this, on his way home from work because he's so sick. I've been struggling today because I'm sick and both kiddos (ages 1 and 4) are sick.

      His sick (vomiting) trumps my sick (exhaustion and general cold stuff), so I'm still on the job.

      Let me just say, for the record, that my husband is great with the kids, and helps out whenever he can. If this had been a weekend where he was feeling fine, I would have hung up my mom hat and crawled into bed for a little bit and he would have been fine with the kids. That doesn't help me today, of course!

      I'd love to hear it!

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        • jordanmilesbask profile image

          jordanmilesbask 5 years ago

          This is a great topic...I guessed its hard when the family are sick and your sick as well because you still have to take care of them no matter what!

          Great lens!

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          amorarchy 6 years ago

          I love your point JoyfulPamela, I feel so blessed to be able to stay home and help other parent do the same! And to think of the benefits for our children, the stability and stong bond needed for their good development, it's worth it...


        • JoyfulPamela2 profile image

          JoyfulPamela2 7 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

          As a mom who has done both, it's a hard call. They both have their advantages and disadvantages. I would much rather be with my babies though even on those insane days! :)

        • lakern26 lm profile image

          lakern26 lm 7 years ago

          This is a very good topic for a lens. There are valid arguments on both sides and pros and cons of each. As to the perks of working outside the home, though, I say this: In addition to my two boys, I also have my nephew during the day ... and on days when his parents are sick ... and usually when they take a vacation day as well. Believe me, I hear what you're saying!

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          happynutritionist 7 years ago

          Good question about a timely issue - 5 stars ~claudia