It’s funny how we are all asked as children what we want to be when we grow up. Rarely do you expect to hear a 5 year old spouting “I want to be a ‘stay-at-home mom’.” In fact, now-a-days, in most circles, a child who gets it into her head that this is a viable career option, will likely get an earful about how women can do “anything” they put their minds to, and she should “dream big.”
Somehow, being a stay-at-home mother stopped being a viable career option after the first American women burned their bras, it seems. Interestingly, just like that seemingly wasteful and aggressive act towards a support system failed to consider the consequences to those who were in need of it, failing to recognize the benefits of mothers who choose the “home life,” has put an entire generation at risk.
With this article, I hope to address some of the rumors and lies that are being perpetrated about stay-at-home motherhood. Although, I am not a stay-at-home mother, some of my friends are and these points are made from observation. So, here I present the lies that are being perpetrated against stay-at-home mothers.
- Stay-at-home mothers “set women back.” This lie comes from the idea that to be a stay-at-home mother negates all that the women’s liberation movement fought for. The problem with this way of thinking which I have mentioned in other articles is that it goes from one extreme to another extreme that is just as dangerous. The point I made int he article linked above is that not all women desire or should be required to be employed in positions comparable to those of men. Some do, and that liberty should not be kept from them. However, we should not deny a woman the right and freedom to do what she, by biological design, may feel driven to (i.e. care for her young). This is not setting women back, when children grow up in a love, support and nurturing environment, because at least one parent is not absent.
- Stay at home mothers don’t do work. I’m probably not saying here what you think I’m going to say. There are a lot of people who usually say “Oh! Stay at home mothering is a full time job too!” But they say so in a patronizing way. That is to say, “Scooping poop sucks too, and I wouldn’t trade places with you for the world!” In actuality, the sentiment raised by me in pointing out this lie is not the same as the patronizing one I called out. The work, stay-at-home mothers do, which I will discuss more in the next point is so much more than cooking, cleaning, shopping and feeding her family. Many stay at home mothers balance the family checkbooks, design home improvement projects and do a lot of other extremely fulfilling tasks that improve the quality of their family’s life to far reaching levels.
- The only work stay-at-home moms do is take care of children. I have touched on this point a little in the previous point. Further, a lot of stay-at-home mothers also have full-time jobs which they do out of the home. Being without a source of income is just not an option for most women in today’s world. For a lot of women, even if the husband makes such a sizable income that she is not required to remain employed, she may still choose to be employed as a means to let out some of that natural energy that all humans possess. Fortunately, now-a-days, employment does not necessarily mean, putting on a pant suit, taking long commutes and punching a clock in some faceless corporation. Many stay-at-home mothers, now-a-days start home businesses. The awesome thing about it is that with the internet being what it is, stay-at-home moms have more options than ever before to make money at home in many creative ways!
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Author: African Femininity
African Femininity is a first generation American-born Nigerian. That basically means, her parents were immigrants and raised her with a mix of selective cultural values from both traditions. Needless to say, this left her with a very dissonant understanding of what being a “lady” meant. Now, as an un-married 30 year old woman, she is on a mission to delve to the root of being a woman in a world where conflicting cultural values and traditions are leaving many confused and disillusioned. She use the power of the pen to defend a woman’s right to choose her own lifestyle: be it housewife, social climber or being conventionally employed. Check out her Amazon author page for books written by her at http://amazon.com/author/shadowjackson