Stay-at-home moms: you don’t owe the world an explanation

To stay-at-home moms:

Once, several months ago, I wrote this post about you. It was a simple expression of gratitude for stay-at-home moms, particularly my wife.

It got some attention. It was viewed around three million times in two days, in fact.

Truth be told, I never intended to be an official spokesman for SAHMS across the nation. You do not require my services, nor am I equipped to provide them. Plenty of you can eloquently defend your vocation, and because you have experience in the arena, you can do so more richly and convincingly than I ever could.

I’m just a guy who loves his wife and appreciates the sacrifices she makes for the family. That’s really the entirety of my insight into this subject.

So it’s with appropriate hesitancy that I offer just one suggestion to all of you.

Here it is: don’t pay any attention to people like this.

In fact, don’t even click on the link. It’s a blog post, from a website called Thought Catalogue, entitled, “I Look Down On Young Women With Husbands And Kids And I’m Not Sorry.”

It’s about as enlightening as it sounds. The gist: this woman has no kids, she’s never been married, she has zero understanding of what goes into raising children or maintaining a healthy marriage, yet she’s decided to degrade you because, presumably, the poor girl is hard up for cash and needs to get a ton of cheap hits so she can collect on the ad revenue.

I don’t usually take to reading incoherent, half baked, inflammatory trash [insert requisite troll-comment about how my blog is nothing but incoherent, half baked, inflammatory trash] so I wasn’t aware of this “writer” or her site until an hour ago. I only became aware when dozens of my own readers, mostly stay-at-home moms, sent the article to me, asking for my take.

And what is my take? Well, she raises some interesting points and we should all pause for a moment to reflect upon her observations.

Just kidding. She’s an obnoxious cretin begging for attention.

I’m giving it to her, mostly because I’m a hothead and I’m easily baited.

But also because my one experience with wading unwittingly into the “Mommy Wars” taught me something. It taught me that our broken, confused society has convinced many stay-at-home moms that they need to justify or apologize for their choice to opt out of the hallowed “job force” in favor of full-time mothering.

But they don’t.

You don’t. You really, really don’t.

If you read the comments under that ridiculous article, you’ll see women expressing outrage (understandably), but also offering explanations as to why they decided not to outsource their mom-duties. It pained me to see this. You’re raising your kids, it’s as simple as that. You shouldn’t have to give a reason, anymore than you should have to give your reasoning for drinking water or walking on two legs.

I think motherhood should be promoted, and the institution of the family should be defended, but you do an excellent job of that simply by being moms.

The disrespect for SAHMs stems from ignorance. The only cure for ignorance is truth, and there are two ways to administer a dose of it: you can say it, or you can demonstrate it.

All I do with this blog is say it. As moms — out in the world, against the odds, against the grain, giving of yourself, dedicating your lives to you children — you are demonstrating it. You are living it.

Many of your critics just haven’t done it. They haven’t been in the trenches all day, every day, shaping children into respectable adults, and doing it themselves, by hand, with sweat and tears and heartache. They haven’t sacrificed everything for another person. They don’t know what that is — what it feels like. They don’t know what it’s like to be in charge of another human being’s entire life. All day. Every day. They don’t know what goes into running a house. They’ve never been there. They live in a civilization built by people who put in the sort of work and made the sort of sacrifices that they themselves would never be willing to make. And, in their comfort, in their arrogance, in their brokenness, they mock.

They mock you.

But they don’t know what they’re saying. They just don’t know.

And what is this argument about, really? Is it better to have a job or take care of your family full time? Is that the controversy? What a twisted point of view we have in this culture. This is what happens when you buy into the notion that mankind, and especially womankind, achieved emancipation through industrialization. The Industrial Age and the advent of consumerism gave birth to the modern idea of a “job,” and the pinnacle of freedom and self fulfillment is to have one of them.

Or so we’re told. Ironically, this is a traditionally left-wing point of view, but hating capitalism is also a traditionally left-wing point of view. The free market is evil, they say, but the ultimate expression of female liberation is to participate in it.

What a dizzying philosophy these people profess.

And with this philosophy we haven’t just put the cart before the horse, we’ve severed the cart from the horse completely, and now we’re sitting in the cart waiting for it to gallop off into the sunset. The point is, jobs exist as a means to care for your family. Some jobs are meaningful in their own right, but most, when separated from family, serve no great purpose other than as vehicles for personal advancement.

What’s the point of personal advancement? The answer is either A) to amass wealth and material possessions for your own enjoyment or B) to be in a better position to use your abilities to serve others.

You, stay-at-home moms, are using your abilities to serve others, and you’re doing it in the most direct, purest way possible: motherhood.

Beyond all of this, the worst thing about trying to convince women that there’s something wrong with “staying home” is that it fools young girls into being ashamed of their feminine instincts. Most girls are not naturally competitive and ambitious — at least not competitive and ambitious in the sort of way that men tend to be, the sort of way that has always made men into fighters and hunters and conquerors.

It is a very good thing that women are not this way.

Women naturally desire to love others and sacrifice themselves. They care about relationships. They aren’t as concerned with getting ahead as they are with elevating those around them.

None of those characteristics will serve you well in many jobs. They won’t help your “career advancement.” They will only make you vulnerable, and put you at the mercy of your less scrupulous competitors. This is why it is dangerous to see “the professional world” as an end in and of itself.

But you know all of this. The people who don’t know probably won’t be convinced by anything I have to say.

Pay no attention to them. They don’t deserve to be taken seriously.

Besides, you’ve got better things to do with your time.


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998 Responses to Stay-at-home moms: you don’t owe the world an explanation

  1. A thinking mom says:

    One more comment… The criticism goes both ways. I’ve been asked NUMEROUS times by stay at home moms how I can stand “having someone else raise my children,” “leaving my children with a stranger,” and similar questions. Honestly, this is all personal choice and I can’t stand the mommy wars.

    • Nate says:

      I don’t think it does go both ways. Using child care while you work is certainly a choice, but it isn’t “personal” in the sense that it is no one’s business. Having a child carries with it a number of responsibilities. Among those is the obligation to ensure that the child grows up to be a contribution to society, or at the very least, not a hindrance. As someone whose children will have to interact with you children in social settings, and will later rely on them to be responsible members of the community, I have every right to ask why you, and presumably your spouse/partner, have decided to “outsource” parental responsibilities so that you can both work. I think those of us who have sacrificed extra income and personal accomplishment in order to raise our children ourselves can certainly ask for an explanation.

      • Jo says:

        No you don’t! You have no idea how their kids will turn out any more than you know how your own children will turn out. The common denominator to success is NOT whether you stay at home with your kids or not. More than anything it is whether you concern yourself with how your kids turn out.

        So sure, when they have adult children that are complete failures and yours are actually successful then you can say, do you regret that decision. Now, you have no right, well you have every right to say what ever you want but you may want to understand your attitude makes you sound ignorant and I have the right to say that as well.

        By the way I have two successful, mentally healthy adult children and two comparable teenagers. I think I have the ability to say I know how to raise my kids. Can you say the same?

        • Jessica says:

          I’m on both ends of this mommy war, and it makes me sick to my stomach that people can judge so fiercely about how another women (man/family) raises their children. I have worked when my kids were young, I am currently staying home with them. I have helped raise other people’s children while they worked. Most of the parents that I worked with are intelligent, loving, compassionate and caring parents. They raised their children, with me, jointly, as a team. We worked together, which is why it’s so important to people who do work to have a trusting and open relationship with the people who watch their children. They are not uninvolved or indifferent. They care very deeply about their children. We all make choices, every day, about what is good and healthy for our families, husbands, wives, children, jobs, household. Every day! That’s being an adult. It makes my stomach flip every time someone, innocently I’m sure, says that they are a stay at home mom because they wouldn’t want anyone else to raise their children, as if that was the inferior way to raise them. 100 years ago, parents didn’t parent by themselves. They had grandparents, friends, neighbors, churches. People they could count on help them raise their children to be contributing members of society. Why is childcare any different? Why are nannies any different? Why are working moms shamed for choosing a route that we have no business asking them why they chose that route. Same with stay at home moms, why are we shamed for choosing to stay home with our children? It’s not any lesser than those who work, and those who work aren’t any lesser than those who stay home. Stop asking the demeaning questions, and stop dishing out the fierce judgment. We, as parents, were charged with the responsible to raise another life, be it to stay home with them, or to enlist the help of society, we are raising our children, and loving them fiercely.

        • mommyx4boys says:

          I agree with you completely i am a stay at home mom i have four boys and i always knew that this is what i wanted to do. i do not judge anyone though if they want or need to work that is their choice but i really hate it when a woman who works asks me what i do and when i tell them they act like i just said hi I’m a big fat failure and you know that’s what they think cause they say stuff like ohh well that’s ok and I’m just standing there with my mouth open like ummm yeah i know its ok but my family has been the worst they have said stuff like so u just wanna lay around and get knocked up and that is such a stupid comment it is really hard work to be a sahm

        • Jo says:

          Don’t you think part of the problem is Gen Me lives to be offended? What do you do all day? Is that really an offensive question or just asking what someone does? I mean if you actually thought they did nothing why would you ask what they do? You would just say how do the bon bons taste or something ignorant like that.

          I actually read somewhere here a woman offended because someone said they would lose their minds if they had to watch their kids all day. Offended! because someone said they are not strong enough to do it! Offended because someone said they are strong! This is why I feel people just look to be offended, twist everyone’s words. Odd

          I have been asked what I do all day because I have a really unusual job. No one finds that offensive and yet there is nothing more unusual than raising kids. I can assure you not many raise their like I raise mine, like you do, like anyone does. We all have our thing and with any luck it works for our kids. With any intelligence if it doesn’t work we change things up a bit.

          So other than someone looking to be offended what is offensive about being asked what you do all day? When I was a stay at home I was asked that very question from other stay at home moms. Were they looking down on me? From what I gathered talking to them they liked how well behaved my kids were and wanted to know the secret. Duct tape by the way! 🙂

          I don’t know, people need to stop feeding this war. It is so stupid.

        • Jen says:

          Bottom line here ladies is regardless of what choice you make it is your choice. I chose to be a SAHM because I wanted to be there for my kids. I wanted them to have the security of my heart. I have friends who chose the work force with daycare and it didn’t make them any less a a parent.. The most important thing is “what works for you/” Who cares what others think. There is always going to be the one person who is not compassionate and asks the ignorant question. I had a woman once ask me if I was handicapped because I chose not to work. Of course, this was coming from a professional , divorced, single mom who had no choice but to work. So, I saw her question as jealousy because she had no choice. When she divorced it took that freedom away. So, like I said in the beginning it is your choice. When we make a decision to do something we have to make it knowing it will affect your future. Everything else will fall into place. So, go and enjoy the lives you chose for you and your family (or not family).

        • Erin says:

          He isn’t saying that people who raise their children in public schools are terrible! It’s so annoying how you people take his stuff completely out of context! He is saying that SAHM’S shouldn’t have to explain themselves to society! If you guys just want to pick an argument, you did it on the wrong blog post.

        • Erin says:

          He’s not saying that people who send their kids to public schools are making terrible decisions! He IS saying that SAHM’s shouldn’t have to explain themselves to society! I love how people like you take his stuff completely out of context.

        • Jo says:

          Could you kindly explain what the hell you are talking about? I never mentioned public schools, I haven’t twisted anything. For that matter I was a stay at home mom for 18 years until my youngest was six and I divorced. My kids, sans my son with autism, have attended private schools! Oddly all that time no one asked me to explain my choice or what I do all day, go figure.

          So either you are on some sort of drugs or you didn’t mean to quote me but I was the last name that had a reply link. If that is the case kindly say hey (who you really meant to reply to) because it makes you look a bit off.

      • Rose says:

        You are being unfair. A person’s choice to work outside of the house after children or to work inside of the house is not for the public to make. It’s a decision that needs to be made based on a person’s abilities and discussed thoroughly with their spouse. Some people are able to stay at home because they have the skills to do so and the financial stability to do so. Others have skills that are stronger outside of childcare and that’s fine. Others don’t have a chance to because they need that extra income and it’s a shame. Maybe the one who “outsourced” parental responsibilities and refuses to sacrifice extra income and personal accomplishments would much rather feed her child while sacrificing the time she desires to take care of her child one on one.

      • Oh, you can ask, but no one has to answer to you. You are the epitome of what is wrong with the imaginary Mommy Wars. You are not entitled to know anything of how other parents are raising their children. And if a child fails your test of being a “contribution to society, or at the very least, not a hindrance”, that isn’t Mom’s fault, either.

        Now, if you want to start instituting a parent test to determine who can and cannot have children, we’re all for that. Self entitlement people, like yourself, would be at the top of the list for a state mandated vasectomy. You see, we blame your Mom for raising a hindrance to society and we’d rather stop the cycle of raising hindrances before you have a chance to raise your children. Doesn’t sound so nice, does it?

      • SAHMs do not “=” Good moms. I saw plenty of moms with their kids in Macy’s shopping hundreds dollar worth handbags, or some moms letting their kids sitting in front of TV watching Disney channels. I don’t know how much time those moms teaching the kids. My son went to a high quality daycare. They taught him read and write and no TVs at all in the school. By the time he went to kindergarten, he can read chapter books all by himself. In my son’s daycare, some SAHMs also “outsource” their kids because they believe they couldn’t do the same good work as those daycare teachers.

        • Jillian says:

          I apologize if English is your second language, but I have to agree that for you, it seems your child was much better off learning how to read and write from someone other than yourself. As for your other points, how exactly does taking your child shopping make someone a bad parent? And how does allowing them a bit of leisure time watching educational programs on tv make them a bad parent? Although I invest a lot of energy into working with my child on traditional methods of learning and growing, that does not mean that the times we spend in non traditional ways are not educational. Taking her shopping with me provides the opportunity to teach her math and the value of goods in addition to explaining the difference between wants and needs. And the shows she has watched on disney junior have helped reinforce important social concepts like sharing, helping others, and working together. They helped her pick up other educational things like how to say “fast” and “slow” in Italian. Just because something does not meet the standards of a typical school style teaching method doesn’t mean it has no educational value.

      • If you have the right to question my choice in working when I’m a single mother who went to college after my ex husband left me. Do I have the right to come visit you and see how your children are acting? Can I ensure that your wife is treating your children correctly and taking care of them. Not every stay at home mother is a good one and since I have to interact with your children and count on them to be productive citizens I should have same rights, correct. I can ensure you that my children how to overcome difficult situations, not to depend on government assistance, and that my daughter doesn’t need a man. My children at 7 and 9 have aspirations that require college so they both study and work hard. They also have huge hearts and have an outstanding knowledge of true Christianity. Not bad for two children who have been outsourced,

        • hazelmwheeler says:

          I agree, Danielle. And what bugs me so much about these ‘outsourcing’ comments is that it is a blanket judgment– everyone who doesn’t raise their own kid and make their child their entire world is doing a disservice to humanity. It also implies that the care a child would receive outside of home is “lesser” care.

          I DARE anyone to argue with me that there are sometimes very optimal child care situations wherein the children are cared (in their home, someone else’s home, a group setting) by caregivers who are, by trade, professional parents. We studied early childhood education, we come to work with NO OTHER AGENDA than to spend time with the children. Chances are, it may even be very high quality time spent. A child at a care facility may even have more focused, better care because the caregivers are not mopping floors, blogging, checking their email, or dealing with other projects. They are there ONLY to take care of the kids.

          I wish people could get this through their thick skulls. To the women who complain that they are doing it ‘right’ by not having a moment to think of themselves all day– No, I’m sorry, you are doing it WRONG. BE IN CHARGE of your families. Do not let them have you being their every.little.thing. It isn’t healthy for anyone involved. If you want a martyr trophy, fine, just say so. If we can support both families whose parents work and use outside caregivers AND families who chose to have a parent who stays home, it’s a win/win socially.

          As someone who has worked in the child care industry, it is stupidity like the naive pronouncements of ONLY one way being better that just galls me. My son has a SAHM mom for now; but in the past, when I worked, I chose wonderful people who have given him experiences and helped him in ways that I simply wouldn’t have known to because I am only one person. I want my son to learn that the world is full of people whom he can depend on, who will expect him to do his best and try his hardest, and who care about him and the person he is becoming. When we can think of it without being defensive, caregivers and loving others can really augment a child’s experience of goodness in the world. Not every caregiver is ideal, nor is every parent really suited to the unselfishness parenthood requires. But within all this, we must strive for balance. It’s up to parents to be smart, assess the whole picture, find a good situation with quality players and go from there. I commend the parents who are intelligent enough to do what works best for their family in a healthy way and don’t make choices just because it’s what their dogmatic beliefs tell them to do.

      • Jen says:

        Nate, They do not need to give an explanation anymore than the SAHP does. (Stay at home parent)
        Jo, take a chill. No one said anything specifically about being a bad mom. It is the chip on your shoulder taking a blanket statement and making it about just you.

        Whether you parent with your kids at home or you work outside the home and share the responsibilities with a daycare. It is whether you love your children and whether your children know you love them. We are all heroes to them through the elementary stages and then become something different to them in middle school and love or hate us in high school. But the most important thing through all of it is if they know we love them (our kids). They are going to try drugs, sex, alcohol. They will put you through a series of unwanted tests. They just want to know that you love them and will be there for them. So, how open you keep your communication with your child from the beginning regardless of stay home or not choice will be your success in raising healthy (mentally and physically), successful adults. Remember success comes in many forms.

        • Jo says:

          Jen stop projecting your chip on me. I have always been able to do as I choose and I have always chose to do what is best for my kids. He very clearly said that working parents should answer to him because their bad parenting choices effect him. I only pointed out putting a child in daycare is not in itself a bad parenting choice and whether it is or not will not be realized until your children are adults.

      • Jaisee says:


        “As someone whose children will have to interact with you children in social settings, and will later rely on them to be responsible members of the community, I have every right to ask why you, and presumably your spouse/partner, have decided to “outsource” parental responsibilities so that you can both work. I think those of us who have sacrificed extra income and personal accomplishment in order to raise our children ourselves can certainly ask for an explanation.”

        You’re kidding, right? In case you’re not, then by your own logic, it’s only fair that I have every right to ask you if your spouse/partner is up to the job of stay-at-home mom. I mean, my children are going to be interacting with yours, too, and as a responsible mom, it’s up to me to make sure that your wife is not an alcoholic, or a druggy, or addicted to soap operas, or an insane wackadoo.

        I can go further and ask what her future plans are, if she is going to go back to work when they’re in school so you are financially prepared to help them go to college, assisting them in becoming “responsible members of the community,” because again, my children are going to have to interact with yours.

        So by your logic, I too can certainly ask for an explanation.

    • Edward Zimmer says:

      You are correct. You have every right to choose to live a more comfortable life instead of sacrificing worldly things in order to do what is best for your child.

    • Jamie says:

      I agree. SAHMs are, in my experience, horribly judgmental. Even long-time, good friends started pressuring to stay at home in my first trimester. In all cases, they too had been professional women who loved their professions, were very successful, worked hard, had difficulty getting their husbands to pitch in sufficiently after the first child, and eventually decided to stay home and just do it all themselves. Now, they admit to making up things to keep themselves busy (all-organic diets for their children and teaching their children mandarin after school) and call their schedules “a luxury”. They always ask around for pro bono work on the side to keep themselves busy and “in the game” career-wise and are always working on re-entry plans.

      OTOH, I’m not sure how it will work out when they do try to re-enter full time, when their husbands get laid off, or if their marriage goes south when the kids leave home. SAHM is a great choice for some women, but for others it does seem a bit short-sighted. There is NOT one right answer for every woman, but good luck finding a SAHM who will admit that.

      • Jenn says:

        From my perspective, it is tough when they try to re-enter the workforce. I have two open positions right now – both fall somewhere between entry and mid level. I received over 100 resumes. When going through 100 resumes that start to look exactly the same after a while, you have to come up with a method of cutting them down to a manageable 10. I’m sorry to say that after throwing out poorly written cover letters and irrelevant experience, recent long gaps in resumes is next. And listing out PTA and church volunteer work is not going to put you at the top of the pile when the last job you held was in 2002. There’s just too much competition.

  2. Cory says:

    Can I just say that I am a woman who grew up with a career-oriented mom. How I wish she would have been home to care for us throughout childhood. I applaud you SAHMs for being there to guide, love on, and support your children in all those times when they need it most. You are giving your children something that no amount of money can buy, and it is something they will remember their whole lives.

    • LilyL2182 says:

      And where exactly was your dad?

      • Jenn Twilley says:

        That’s exactly none of your business.

      • LilyL2182 says:

        I just think it’s interesting that she wishes mom would have stayed at home, but is silent as to father. Not just women are parents.

        • Isolde says:

          A father can not replace a mother. Just as a mother can not replace a father. Yeah, he’s a parent, but she’s not talking about parents right now. Just her Mother. It’s rude to ask such a personal question online.

        • Caitlin says:


        • Jen says:

          Lily and Isolde… Sometimes one parents has to do both roles without choice. I am married to a soldier and have had times where I am mom and dad. NO CHOICE! To say it cannot be done is ignorant.

          As for the asking of the rude question, it is NONE of our business online or in private unless she wants to share that herself. You do not ask. This blog was about SAHMs (or parents).

        • LilyL2182 says:

          I’m sorry but when someone so publicly shares her regrets about what she wishes her mother would have done differently, it’s only natural for me to wonder what she thinks about he father and why she’s projecting all that onto her mom alone. She of course can decline to answer.

        • Jenn says:

          I understand what you were asking. Dads don’t get any flak about being career oriented. There’s a strong double standard there. Fathers are expected to work. If they work late into the night, all is forgiven because they are providing for their family. If a woman does the same, she’s horrible and selfish.

        • August says:

          It drives me crazy when people say there is a double standard when a father has a career and a mother stays home. I don’t think it’s a double standard at all. Men are biologically more prone to being career-driven and have that need to provide the means for their families. That is innate. Women carry and bear the children; it’s only natural for them to therefore assume the majority of the child-caring role. I don’t know why people are so offended by this biological, innate instinct that is typical of most men and women. Yes, some women are career-driven and some men are more nurturing, but that doesn’t make it a double standard that my husband works his butt off at work so he can provide a good life for our family and I stay home to care for the kids and run the household.

          It’s a very common thing that when people think of their childhood and who raised them, they naturally think of their mother first (if they had both parents around) even if their dad was home more and their mom worked a lot, simply because that is the way men and women were created. When an adult calls home, usually they want to talk to “Mom” not “Dad” because that is their first instinct. They call it “Mom and Dad’s house” not “Dad and Mom’s” house. Now of course there are deviants from this type of interaction, but generally speaking, that is what I have witnessed over the course of my life in my interactions with other people.

          This is exactly exemplifying what is wrong with the world today…the notion that someone can’t say they wished their mom had stayed home when they were a child without being attacked by people asking why they don’t wish that of their dad. Because they just don’t. It was their mom that they wanted, not their dad. Most people run to their mom when they are children when they are hurt or need help. That doesn’t make Dad less of a parent, but I still believe that a man’s role and a woman’s role in the parenting team have different purposes. It doesn’t mean one is less important than the other.

        • Jenn says:

          That’s a lot of generalizations. So are you saying we should continue to call career driven women selfish and horrible because of biology? Makes perfect sense.

    • Jamie says:

      I grew up with a SAHM who had emotional difficulties and was very unhappy in the SAHM role. I, my siblings, my father, and my mothers all began doing better in school and healthwise when she returned to the workforce and we were dependent on other caretakers during the day. Not every family needs the same arrangement. It’s very arrogant to assume that your answer is everyone’s answer.

  3. Rachelle says:

    I love your post, I don’t usually respond to these but I have to say that I love being a mom! I have 5 wonderful children all of which have their own uniqueness. I have one with Tourette’s, one on the autistic spectrum, one with Duchennes muscular dystrophy, and multiple cases of ADD/ ADHD. Having had many trials in my life I wouldn’t trade them for the world but I wouldn’t wish it upon my worst enemy. In the past 3 years we have spent over $150 000 on equipment and needs for our 1 son. Which has finally taken it’s tole on us financially and I am in the process of looking for work. This is intimidating for me as I haven’t been in the work force for many years and I have to have something flexible as I have to be there for my children and my son who requires full time care, including during the night when he can’t turn himself in bed or get up to use the washroom. If he’s sick we can’t hardly leave his side. I just send this out because being mother, I love it. I also get it when woman have to work. I just pray that people don’t judge and that as a human race we can help love and support others in their choices. We may not always agree but we haven’t walked in their shoes, we don’t know what they have been through. Yet, we have hearts and we can love!

    • Anne says:

      You are a HERO, sister. I hope when I am a mother someday that I am able to love my children with half as much strength, endurance, courage, and grace as you do. Blessings on you and your family.

      • Rachelle says:

        Thank you Anne!

        • Gina says:

          I so agree with Rachelle. Fortunately, I am able to stay at home because my hubby works hard to make it possible.(Physically works hard, not just a 9 to 5 desk job—thank you , dear!) Not everyone has this opportunity and I respect that, so I dont make judgements about other parent’s decisions on this issue . Others should also respect our decision and refrain from making derisive comments. No one knows another’s circumstances, so it really is best to be kind to one another and try to support and encourage rather than tear down each other. I know Matt is proud of his wife and his comments are made to be supportive of his wife and others who make this choice, since so many will make comments that appear to minimize the importance of sahm’s. We ALL love our children and there are many ways of expressing it. No one says you are a bad parent if you choose one option or another.
          PEOPLE, give this issue a REST!

    • Mitzy says:

      Have you looked into help for parent of children with disabilities. I believe you may find some there? I hope I don’t insult by asking.

  4. Pingback: Dear Miss Glass | the Ink Slinger

  5. Stephanie Loza says:

    Thank you for saying this: “The free market is evil, they say, but the ultimate expression of female liberation is to participate in it.” This was my response to her: “thats just because i dont get fullfillment from adding to someone elses bottomline. I get fullfillment from taking care of my family and other people. With that being said, this is what’s wrong with our culture. Why do you have to slam what someone else finds gratifying? Im happy that people that don’t want to get married and have kids don’t get married and have kids. Those things take selflessness. If you know you don’t want to make that commitment and you don’t then I applaud you but don’t put down what I find fulfilling. Stop comparing. We are on two different planets. This woman should be happy that there are women out there who are willing to devote themselves to raising hardworking, intelligent young people. These are the people you are going to want to work with, work for, work around, maybe even hire yourself. I hope that my children don’t have to work closely to someone as ignorant and closed minded as this woman but if and ultimately when they do they will be fine because I will have taught them like my mom taught me that no matter what someone’s beliefs or viewpoint everyone deserves respect and everyone has worth.”

  6. Ashtaroth says:

    Wow, Matt, did you just criticize her for getting “cheap hits” through button-pushing topics? You make a living off it. Notice your innocuous blog posts get practically no comments compared to doozy’s like “Monogomy is unnatural”. Hypocrite!

  7. Jenn says:

    You all are not serious when you talk about how difficult it is to raise kids, right? If you are, you are doing it wrong.
    Disclaimer: barring special needs kids or broods of 4 in diapers, etc.

    • Alison says:

      It’s hard if you do it RIGHT. The days of kids being underfoot while mom plays mahjong are long gone. Nowadays children are very expensive projects and if you miss one dental appointment or your child trips and hurts himself in a “suspicious” manner, you could be facing jail time. I’ve seen this happen.

      • Jenn says:

        If by “right” you mean helicopter parent, sure, I can see how that would be difficult.

        • Alison says:

          If you consider dental appointments and extra tutoring (required by the school) “helicopter parenting,” then you’d lose custody of your children, if you had any.

        • Jenn says:

          No, I just don’t consider any of those daily tasks to be especially difficult. There must be something extremely difficult about raising kids to warrant so many martyrs complaining about it. I just can’t figure out what it is. I’m serious.

        • Jamie says:

          If you hang out with insecure moms eager for a chance to feel better about themselves at your expense, motherhood is going to be a difficult and unhappy road. Otherwise, barring collicky baby time and learning/other disabilities, raising a child or two children spaced a bit apart is not bad at all. Poverty might put a different spin on that, though, or single parenthood. I’m referencing middle/UMC families with two parents.

      • Jo says:

        Ya know, I would gladly risk explaining to a doctor why my kid fell off a piece of playground equipment than meet the same doctor 20 years later to identify my child’s body because I sent them off into the world without the ability to protect themselves.

        Why on earth would anyone want to work so hard to handicap their kids. Very sad, and to be proud of it, sick.

        • Alison says:

          I have no die what you are attempting to say.

        • Jen says:

          Ok…. part of parenting is scheduling appointments. The child cannot do this his or herself. Tutoring is not helicopter parenting. If your kid is unable to play freely at the playground without you running below him or her that is helicopter parenting. If your kid never has any chores because you can do it and get it done faster. That is helicopter parenting. And just because someone does helicopter parent does NOT mean their kid will end up in the morgue. If raising children were easy then everyone would be doing it. SAHP is way more than just raising your kids. Of course, if that is ALL you focus on then yes it is simple. Still it is important and should garner some respect as a job choice and not looked down upon.

        • Jenn – Totally agree! Considering that children were raised in caves and that people have been successfully raising kids for thousands and thousands of years, can you please spare me the “being a SAHM is the hardest job” speech. And to the person complaining about doctors appts and shuttling their kids around – guess what? Working parents ALSO have to do that; they just have to squeeze it in between their real jobs!

        • mommyx4boys says:

          Yeah a lot of people think that raising children is easy. that’s why so many children get kidnapped and murdered and abused because some parents aren’t doing it right and that’s why they think it is easy. being a good parent is not easy

        • Jenn says:

          Look at some statistics. Most abusers/kidnappers are related to the kid in some way. Regardless, making sure my kid doesn’t get kidnapped is hardly a demanding task.

        • mommyx4boys says:

          Yes your right and most of the time those abusers think they are good parents. To be a sahm is incredibly demanding i have four boys who take every second that i have. its hard work plus im lucky if i get two hours of solid sleep every night, i love being a sahm but it really is aggravating when people say its easy

        • Jo says:

          Really because I was a stay at home mom of four including a son with autism and I found nothing hard about raising them. Sorry but something I love to do and chose to do is not hard. I wish I could have had more but there is only one of me.

          So how do you reconcile so many stay at home moms that say it is easy. From my point of view you don’t know how to control your kids, oh yeah, you think I am not doing it right. Well I have adult children living on their own, quite successful, who would say you are wrong.

        • mommyx4boys says:

          I have an adult son to, who has turned out great. Maybe you are just not as emotionally involved as i am that would certainly make it easier. And you say its not hard because you chose that and loved it well people choose to be police officers and fire fighters also that doesn’t make it easy

        • Jo says:

          Its okay, really, not everyone can do things easily. It is just to say the task is hard because it is hard for you is rather pathetic. No need to keep insulting everyone who does it better than you.

        • mommyx4boys says:

          Parenting is at the very least emotionally difficult you can be as sarcastic as you want but if you have never found parenting hard then you are not doing it right, and your children are lucky if they did turn out well !

        • Jo says:

          Ya know what is the beauty of being secure in your parenting? Your bitchy comments don’t effect me one bit. I have actually been laughing my ass off at you all night with your lame attempts to get to.

          I find people like you sad, oh my life is so hard, raising kids is so hard, oh the sacrifices I have made, wahhhh barely two hours of sleep a night. Talking about emotionally jacking with your kids! Making them feel like a burden.

          Done with you, you are just too boring.

        • mommyx4boys says:

          See that’s funny to me because if i wasn’t bothering you, you wouldn’t have started cursing at me anyway my 2 year old just woke up screaming so i must get back to my easy job

        • mommyx4boys says:

          I bet you don’t even have kids. You sound like a lonely self absorbed troll. Happy trolling

        • Jo says:

          Most children are kidnapped and abused by family members, furthermore, and this is just statistically speaking, a stay at home mom (yes this includes the welfare moms) are more likely to abuse their kids than working moms.

        • mommyx4boys says:

          Well those people would qualify as the not good parents duh

        • Jamie says:

          She is trying to say that she deserves pats on the back for all that she does for her children.

          Pat. Pat. Pat.

    • clarejanzen3 says:

      Jenn, you missed part of what he said. You only get to comment on how difficult it is to raise YOUR kids. You don’t know how difficult it is for someone in another social setting or another economic situation. You just don’t know, so don’t tell me I’m doing it wrong if I find it hard–who are you, God? You don’t know my life, please don’t judge it.

      • Jenn says:

        No, I caught all of Matt’s misogyny, don’t worry. I’m just wondering how we all managed to overpopulate this planet if raising kids is such a struggle.

        • Alison says:

          Western countries are quickly DEpopulating. Poor people in the third world have many children due to the high infant mortality rate. Government are instituting programs in Japan, China and almost every European country in an attempt to raise the birth rate.

        • Jen says:

          I am starting to get the feeling you do not have children. But in response to your statement of overpopulation, well not every person who has children parents.

        • Jenn says:

          No, I have kids. I stayed home for a couple of years. I work now. They are in school, so they would not even notice if I stayed home at this point. My dog would love it. I didn’t find either situation particularly difficult and tend to laugh to myself when I hear people say that being a mother is the hardest job. Really? Just take the average, first world country, middle-class, 2 parents, 2 kids household. I get that there are challenges along the way, but it’s really that hard? Ok, I’ll take your word for it.

        • Alison says:

          I got that same feeling. She does not have children. She only mentions “them” in passing and goes on about the dog. Who takes your children to extra-curricular activities? Or do they start driving in kindergarten?

        • Jenn says:

          What? Try to think back to your pre-children days. Did you ever imagine that you would clutch your pearls about someone’s extra curricular activities?

          If you are really asking, I live in a place that is pretty friendly to working parents. My youngest kid goes to homework club and chess club right after school. I pick him up at 4:30. One night a week he has basketball. My husband is the coach, so he takes him while I make dinner. My oldest is in high school and plays sports. He usually gets home after I do. I do outsource (I know you all love that word) his tutoring because neither of us remembered geometry that well. My paycheck helps pay for that. And his college fund and the car we are getting him in 2 years.

          My children are a joy. They are fun to be with. And of course, they are occasionally pains in the ass. None of that equates to difficult in my mind. But like I said, I am willing to concede that it must be really difficult for some.

        • Alison says:

          I’m pretty pretty sure she’s one of those “child-free” free-rider freaks who detest children (and parents even more) and refer to kids as “crotch droppings.” She has no skin in the game. She’s a troll.

        • LilyL2182 says:

          Definitely on board with you Jenn. Raising kids isn’t like constantly running the Barkley Marathon. Plus, a lot of it is fun!

        • Jaisee says:

          I think when people say “raising kids is hard,” they mean emotionally. Physically it is not (except for the first couple of weeks after giving birth when you are adapting to an infant’s schedule while your body is healing).

          After that, I do not find it physically demanding. But it is certainly emotionally demanding. We all love our kids and want to do what’s right by them, and I think at some point we all experience “Mommy guilt,” whether we stay home or work outside the home.

          A few years ago I was talking to a woman who has a flexible work schedule, working from home but also having to go into the office. She said she wakes up every day thinking, “O.k., how am I going to screw up my boys today?” I knew exactly how she felt!

          We’re all doing our best; we’re human and we’re not perfect. We are mothers for the rest of our lives; that is a very emotional thing.

        • Jenn says:

          Sure, it can be emotionally draining. I don’t consider it a job though. Raising my kids is my responsibility. My job is where I go to provide goods or services to people outside my family in exchange for compensation.

          When I stayed home, I knew how privileged I was to even have that choice. I never once said it was my job, and to say it was the hardest job in the world is laughable.

        • August says:

          I’m guessing that you don’t have very high expectations of your kids or they are easy kids and don’t require much then. All six of mine, down to the screaming, super demanding 10-month-old, are super strong-willed and stubborn. That makes for some pretty rough times and times when I have to really think creatively about how to parent them.

        • Jenn says:

          Six kids would fall way outside my example of typical, average household. Good for you, I guess? Six kids sounds like hell.

        • Jamie says:

          I finally found a post that correctly labeled misogyny!!! My faith in humankind is restored.

          I agree with the rest of your post too.

    • Rose says:

      Seriously? Do you have children? Raising a child right doesn’t mean that you’re a helicopter parent. Raising your child right involves teaching things they absolutely want no part of, like safety and responsibility. It means standing back at the right times and letting them fall, then being there for them without having the “I told you so” attitude. Knowing when it’s best to talk and when it’s best to be silent and choke down any lectures burning in your throat. It also means understanding when to step in and keep your child from falling. It means trying multiple ideas and methods for things like getting a child to eat properly, potty training, getting children to sleep, coping with anxiety and depression, or dealing with sensory issues; and even after the first twenty ideas didn’t work out with desirable results, to keep trying until you find the one thing that works to help your child learn or be comforted because every child out there is different. It means that every day you choose between your desires and needs and theirs. You stop basing decisions on what’s in your best interest, and start making decisions based on the best interest of small humans who won’t even appreciate it for another two decades. You can’t just expect your child to change because it would suite you better, you need to change your parenting techniques so that you can guide them to being better people. You are always learning, many times about things that you never would have imagined or wanted to previous to having children.

      • Jamie says:

        Technically, you make a lot of decisions every day that aren’t about your best interest so much as they are what will work for other people and society at large. No one throws you a parade for that either. You can’t expect your non-children to change because it would suit you better, either.

        I guess because I grew up caring extensively for younger sibilings due to my mother’s illness, then working in the nursery all the time because she had a job running the childcare for our large large church … the only shocking, scary thing about parenthood was pregnancy. I had no idea how insanely miserable and hard and long and awful it would feel, although I did have difficult ones. But babies are just babies, and you do love your own kids, so caring for them is easier and better than babysitting other people’s kids, and ultimately, it’s a lot of fun. And you get to see your spouse in a new light, which is fun too. It’s not the easiest thing in the world, but it’s NOT THAT BAD. I think its important to know when to say uncle – whether it’s the number of kids, the amount of work your spouse will need to pick up around the house, etc. Otherwise, I don’t understand the martyrdom. There are a million things harder and less rewarding than being a mom. Ten million. And there are thousands of women dying to have the chance to have a child and experience what you’re experiencing. (And a lot who don’t want that, which is totally legitimate and worthwhile as well.) We have kids for ourselves, no one outside of you and your spouse and maybe the grandparents, is going to throw you a party for doing for yourself something that you wanted to do because it makes you feel fulfilled.

    • August says:

      Wow. Caring for the spiritual, emotional, physical, and mental needs of another person, and in many cases, more than one other person than yourself, is a tough job. If you don’t think it is (and you are actually a mom) than you are not doing enough. I am not a helicopter parent, by all means, my kids have a ton of freedom, but it is a tough job. Am I doing enough? Am I not doing enough? Do I let them have too much freedom? Do I not let them have enough? Am I seeing to all their needs? Each one of my six kids has their own needs and their own set of trials and problems that I am here to guide them through. Every child has special needs because each one is unique and needs help differently than any other child. Parenting is the hardest job emotionally. It’s exhausting. Some days are just brutal.

      I taught school before I was a mom and there were some really tough things to deal with, certain kids who came from terrible home lives, or parents who were horrible to me, or a principal who nit-picked at every little teaching method. But parenting is harder because you and your spouse are the sole responsibility for helping that baby become a well-adjusted, happy, productive person who contributes to society.

      I do think there are some things we make hard for ourselves when it comes to parenting, but overall, there is so much at stake, which is what makes it so hard.

      • mommyx4boys says:

        I completely agree with you i have worked other jobs in the past and none of them were even close to being as hard as being a stay at home mom knowing my children’s future rests solely on my shoulders

    • Jenn says:

      I should clarify. I never said raising kids is easy. I said it doesn’t have to be that hard. Many of the tasks you all listed are things I would consider normal responsibilities that come with the kid package. Everyone does them.

      I don’t know why it seems like some parents appear to make their lives more difficult. Maybe it’s because I actually like parenting that I find it fairly easy. Maybe it was all my years of babysitting. I also think some parents bring themselves misery. They let their kids make the rules, or they have inconsistent discipline, or they helicopter, or the are just easily frazzled people to begin with, or they have no sense of humor, or they hold themselves to impossibly high standards, or they kind of want everyone to think they are martys. That’s what I was getting at anyway.

      I also have no judgements as far as working vs. sahm. I do think it’s unrealistic to tell someone they can surely make the choice to stay home if they sacrifice enough. Some people actually want to work and by extension provide for their families. I get pissed when a woman is called selfish for wanting a career. I just paid $8000 after insurance for my kid’s braces. Not selfish.

      • Jamie says:

        Exactly. I chose to work – we could afford for me to stay home – but it allows us to put our child in the very best school that the area offers when she enters Kindergarten. We’d be far more limited in our choices without my working. We’d also be in a less desirable neighborhood and she’d be forming different friendships.

  8. Kathy Draughon says:

    Thanks for your comments Matt. I did read the original “I look down on…” article. I am a stay at home mom. I love what I do. 2 comments. Those of us who choose to stay at home do not need to justify it, nor should we complain about it. That was one valid point she made-not wanting to listen to moms complain about how hard it is. Yes. It is hard at times. I have 4 kids. But it is the choice we have made and we are blessed to be ABLE to stay home. Nobody wants to hear us whine.
    Second. You are so right about the sacrifice. This woman has no idea what it means to lay down your life for another. She seems to think all there is to being a mother is having sex and getting pregnant. Properly raising a child to adulthood is so much more. Part of the sacrifice we are making IS the ability to have a career during these years of child rearing.

    • Rose says:

      I don’t agree with the not being able to complain part of anyone’s comments. Every day my spouse gets to vent about his job. Every friend I know has a complaint about their work, the job itself, co-workers, bosses, not getting vacation time or a raise…Why should it be any different for a stay at home mom? Even if it’s what she desires to do, there’s still a lot of frustration going on in many cases. If it’s pent up and not discussed, then no problems will get solved. It’s normal for a person to want to vent after a frustrating day whether it’s because a co-worker slowed down production and the goal wasn’t reached or because the youngest one learned how to climb up the bookshelf and you’ve spent all day running to him trying to keep him safe, while the oldest one got into the pantry and ate food for two hours straight before you noticed he wasn’t laying in his bed reading like you thought he was, and the second oldest somehow got the markers off of the fridge and managed to draw a colorful mural on his bedroom wall and the third child has just been walking around behind you all day asking “Why is the sky blue?”, “Why is it called a pumpkin?” “Why…why…why?”.

      Talking out frustrations (aka complaining) is healthy. It allows us to hear similar stories to understand that our children are normal after all, it allows us to vent and eventually find humor in the situations that had you ready to just snap, and it allows you to talk it out and work out possible solutions to things that are threatening to be ongoing problems.

      Complaining is healthy and we have every right to do it.

      If someone comes up to me and says that my job is easy, or that I need to go out and get a real job…I just usually walk away. I don’t have the energy to fight off everyone that calls me lazy. I do get very angry that so many people are misguided, but I just go home and vent to my partner or write for a while. No reason to let another person’s ignorance rile me up, but I do find inspiration from it every now and then.

      • August says:

        I’m with you, Rose. Why does every other person get to complain about what they don’t like about their jobs, jobs they CHOSE to take, and if I complain about some of my more difficult days (cleaning up poop from a potty training child for the third time that day while trying to get my screaming 6-year-old to do her homework and my 10- and 9-year-olds to stop beating up on each other while the 10-month-old wakes up early again from one of her too-short naps and my 7-year-old has a tantrum about not getting to play the Wii on a weekday), I’m told to shut up because I chose this life? That’s a bunch of nonsense.

  9. Julie says:

    Your comments are just as bad as the blogger you refer to. working moms do not “outsource” their child care. I care for my kids, cook, clean, help with homework and drive them around AND work a full time job. I have no cleaning person, driver or chef in my house.

    “Most girls are not naturally competitive and ambitious”. That has to be one of the most demeaning statements I have heard in a long time. Do you think Hilary Clinton would be where she is today if her parents had told her that girls are not generally ambitious and competive? I could go on and on about this piece of garbage, but I have to get back to my job. The job that I while I enjoy, I am not working at by choice. Most SAHMs have the choice to work or not. Many of us working moms do not, and yet we are vilified.

    • Jen says:

      Do you take your child to work with you? More than likely not. Where is your child while you are at work? Daycare? School? If the child is not with you and you are paying someone to watch them, it is considered “outsourcing.” Same thing as in the business world. Does it make you a bad person? NO! If you did not arrange for child care or school then I would say you are a bad parent. We all want our children to be safe, happy, healthy, and responsible adults.

    • Jamie says:

      Thanks for this. You make excellent posts. The entire article manages to be hostile to working moms and condescending to all moms. I’m surprised that so many are eating it up.

  10. ktfritzke says:

    Matt Walsh, thanks for sticking up for arguably the most important job a woman can have: Mommyhood. I am SO thankful to my own mom who stayed home to homeschool and raise my brother and me. It is my hope that SAHMs will never think less of themselves for investing in their kiddos. It’s priceless.

  11. Michelle M says:

    I really needed this today! Thanks so much. I have 3 little boys and a girl. My two older boys are in school and the two “littles” as I call them are home with me all the time. My almost four year son has been so demanding lately. I am emotionally and mentally exhausted! So..I’m so glad I found this today!!

  12. jasondrexler says:

    As the son of one SAHM and as the husband of another, I say … THREE CHEERS FOR STAY-AT-HOME MOMS!!!

  13. LisaL says:

    If you happen to read every single comment left here (though I doubt it! I certainly didn’t!), I would recommend you read Every Good Endeavor by Timothy Keller, which explores the idea that Christians should view every job, whether it’s in church ministry or a “secular” job or a stay-at-home job, as worthwhile. Every job serves a purpose to keeping a community running (think about all the jobs involved just in making the chair I’m sitting in, for instance – not just a woodworker, but the person who cuts down the tree, and the person who makes the tools the woodworker uses, etc., or all the jobs that bring food to your table so that you don’t have to grow every single thing you eat). I say this in response to your comment: “Some jobs are meaningful in their own right, but most, when separated from family, serve no great purpose other than as vehicles for personal advancement.” I agree with Timothy Keller in that God did create work – even He worked when He created the world, and His very design of this world was to keep working (maintaining what He created). So while our jobs in this “industrial age” definitely look a lot different than they did when God created the world, it’s still part of the Design for humans to work, so we shouldn’t belittle anyone (men or women) who work as only working for personal advancement.
    Though I’m no longer a stay-at-home mom, I wish I was, and I absolutely agree with you that SAHMs should not have to defend their decision to serve their family in that way. It is the best/hardest/dirtiest/most important job there is. 🙂

  14. Emily says:

    This was my response on her post, thought I’d share here too:
    You are absolutely correct, in our society where everything is disposable and replaceable, having a husband and kids and doing the “house thing” are completely ordinary, easy and the path of least resistance. Yes, anyone can get “knocked up” as you so elegantly state it.

    Perhaps you should take a breath, while looking around at this big bad world that you managed to conquer with a career, and think of the relationships that last. The children that come from stable homes. The children that will never have to be latch key kids entering an empty house after a tough day of the world knocking them down. The children who will be lead by examples of a strong parents who love and respect each other. Parents who don’t file for divorce the minute something gets tough; teaching kids to work through things in life. While one parent is earning an income for the family, the other is teaching, guiding and providing unconditional love to kids that will are our future.

    When I am old and sitting on my rocker, next to my old husband, and we are looking at the life we built together, and my kids are off being great, perhaps they are doctors, perhaps one of them is the president, perhaps they are garbage men, they will be the best they can be because I raised them that way. And I will not regret one day that I did their laundry or was their to hug them when they walked in the door.

    If we do not raise our children, who will? Teachers? Daycare providers? But why would anyone want those jobs when it is so easy? And anyone can do it, right? So, why have children at all? You know, what? You’re right, don’t.

    • Jamie says:

      A lot of the most influential and well-regarded historical figures in our society come from troubled homes, lost parents in their childhood, or have faced other struggles. A lot of historical monsters came from two-parent or privileged homes.

      If you’re going to take credit for the successes, you’ll have to own your failures as well. It’s what working moms do at work all day. SAHMs will have to step up when their kids drop out of college, get divorced, or can’t hold down a job in their 30s.

  15. meg says:

    I respect mothers who devote their days and lives to their children. I unfortunately work to pay student loans and provide affordable health insurance for my husband with leukemia. I do not think that having a job outside of my home to manage these obstacles makes me some misguided jerk who doesn’t understand sacrificing for my children. I would never belittle any sahm and I know that they have a tough job. I take offense to the notion that I don’t personally spend my time at home molding, guiding and teaching my children. Why is this so prevalent. People should respect people and not throw out blanket generalizations either way. Jeesh!

    • Jules says:

      I agree. How about a little more respect for those of us who have to work outside the home, yet still endeavor to raise our children to the best of our abilities. When I had to go back to work, it was heart wrenching, but a necessity. I enjoy my work and am glad that I am able to contribute in things outside my home in addition to raising my children with my husband and household management.

      • Alison says:

        Perhaps working for a paycheck is important to you, but to many of us our family is the priority. We wouldn’t dream of spending time away from our children unless it was absolutely necessary. To miss those precious first years would be, to many women, a tragedy. Children need to bond with their mothers and daycare has proven to raise stress levels in children (measured by cortisol in blood).

        • Megn says:

          I happen to be a person who is heartbroken about missing out on all the moments I have due to working. I am also never reading anything on this blog again because as I stated above I just respect mothers, all of them, no matter what they do. I would never dream of looking down upon a SAHM and so many of these conversation threads are just laden with judgmental criticisms on both sides of the coin. I was desperate to stay with my children but as stated in my above post, I provide insurance for my husband with Leukemia. No matter how important being with my children is to me, I have to work. The comments here are just so hateful. All the SAHM I know would never dream of being so judgmental and show understanding for my situation, and I am understanding of their lives too. We would never disrespect each other. They don’t need some jerk who wants to get reactions to make them feel good. They are confident and know that they do a hard job with rewards and difficulties. That being said, women should have the choice of what type of life they will live. What works for some does not work for others. WOMEN OUT THERE, STOP SAHM/WORKING MOM CAT FIGHTING. RESPECT EACH OTHER. Ladies, live your own lives and stop putting your feelings, beliefs, emotions on others.
          Understand each other and STOP JUDGING!

        • Jamie says:

          Some mothers have problems or emotional instabilities and their children do better when they spend less time with their mothers and more time with consistent, stable adults who aren’t emotionally over-invested in the child’s every sneeze and finger wiggle.

          There are a lot of broad generalities and self-serving congratulatory statements in your post. There’s also the assumption that what works best for you is also what works best for everyone else. That’s not accurate.

      • Jen says:

        You are forgetting one key ingredient here. No one is disrespecting the working mom. I do see the child care industry and the school system being left out of all the child rearing on this blogs streams.

        You say you and your husband are raising your children, but you are forgetting your child care and the school teachers (if not home schooled). It takes a village to raise a child. This also goes for the SAHM parents as well. If your children do not get socialized and learn outside your home then they will not be rounded. There is many things in your lives that will influence the rearing of your children. I do not think I need to list them. Each of us has different stories and different influences surrounding our children, I personally think this is what will make them a unique individual when they are set out on their own.

        Kudos to parents everywhere that care enough to either stay home with their child or make sure they have someone to care for their child if they cannot stay home. If we get our children to adulthood safely, healthily, and with morals and values of good then we have parented our children regardless.

        • Jamie says:

          Hear hear!!! I completely agree. I think on occasion parents fall prey to the all-too-human impulse to feel that they are mini gods or completely indispensable to their child’s every moment. I speak from experience when i say that my mother’s over-involvement caused a great deal of harm to our family – and she sees that now – and all of my siblings and I have put a great deal of priority on socializing and diversifying our children’s environments and social circles as a result.

    • Alison says:

      meg, I am replying here; your reply to me had no reply link. I responded to Jules’ comment, not yours. Jules is demanding respect for her decision to leave her children with others while she works. I don’t care if other women approve of MY decisions or not, but facts are facts and assuming non-maternal care is just as good as being home with your mother, especially if you are an infant, is disingenuous. At one time, I had to leave my oldest in a home-based daycare for almost 3 years (I, too provided insurance and a much needed financial boost to my family). However, I was under no illusion that I was rearing her. I dropped her off at 7:30 am, picked her up at 5:45 pm, arrived home at 6:30 (on a good day) or 7, made a quick dinner, fed her, bathed her and put her to bed with a quick bedtime story. The only “quality time” I spent with her was during the drive to and from the sitter’s. She was potty trained by the sitter, spoke like the sitter, enjoyed the sitter’s lovingly made food, and was more attached to her than she was to me. My husband was in grad school at the time and came home late, so I did the housework myself. This was not the life I wanted for myself; rushing through my days as with barely any time for my child. When I became pregnant, we structured our lives so that I could stay home. We struggled (REALLY struggled) financially until my husband finished all his schooling, but it was more than worth it.
      If you need to work (truly need) no sane person would criticize that. But we can’t pretend that daycare is just as good as mom (children don’t socialize with each other until they are 3 or 4, they socialize with and are socialized BY their mothers). I understand you are heartbroken by not being with your children, I was too. But it is not a put down to you when I say that I prefer being home with my children. I am entitled to express my preferences as much as anyone else.

    • Jamie says:

      Great post. I agree.

  16. Your Local Computer Tech says:

    Some of those selfless “mommy” characteristics are good for one job – farming! You have to give a LOT to make it work!

  17. Adam says:

    Well written. I would like to see your take on stay at home dads.

    • Jen says:

      I call it SAHP. Stay at home parenting. It is the same for moms and dads. I have spent many years as a military spouse and SAHDs are just as common nowadays as SAHMs.

    • Jamie says:

      I would also!! They face MUCH more judgement and insulting conversation than SAHMs ever have! How would you handle that?

  18. Today my son informed that I am the “best turtle shell maker in the world!” Who says I’m not gaining employable skills by being a SAHM?? 😉 I have three kids, 4 and under, the youngest of whom has Down syndrome and numerous medical issues, and there is nowhere I’d rather be than with them, even when it involves my artistically-challenged self making turtle shells out of cardboard boxes!

    • Jamie says:

      Maybe your son will someday hire you and pay you a living wage when you’re older and find it difficult to gain corporate employment as a result.

  19. Alysha says:

    Bless you… and thank you. It’s not always easy, but so worth it. Thank you for defending us SAHM’s! 🙂

  20. Mackenzie says:

    I only recently realized that I do not owe the world an explanation. I would stand at my kitchen window cleaning up for the billionth time that day and come up with all sorts of responses to all the negative and just plain mean comments I would get (“Well, they both WORK,” “I didn’t have that luxury,” etc etc.) It becomes a lot easier when you just, as much as you can, finally stop caring what people think. I love being home with my kids. I would not go back to work full time for a zillion dollars. Literally: a zillion. And anyone who looks down on that: well, I’ll come up with an appropriate response weeks down the road while standing in my kitchen. If I start caring what you think again.

    • Jaisee says:

      “I would not go back to work full time for a zillion dollars. Literally: a zillion.”

      Not even if your children are in school and your family is struggling financially? Or your husband’s salary isn’t enough to save for college or retirement? Have you asked him how he feels about having to work until he’s 80? Or does your family already have a “zillion” dollars?

      • August says:

        Ah, Jaisee, there are many steps a family can take to keep the mother at home if that is truly what she wants. So many things can be done before she has to step out in the workforce, if that is what is really important to her.

        • Jaisee says:

          August, I’m not saying mothers should never stay home with children. I’m not talking about the stay-at-home moms who want to and are able to stay home with infants and toddlers, stay-at-home moms who homeschool, or stay-at-home moms caring for special needs children. I understand sacrificing in order to have Mom stay home with little ones.

          I meant, what if her situation was one where the family was struggling on one income for years and was just barely keeping up with the bills and not able to set aside funds for college, retirement or emergencies? Once the children are in school for six or seven hours a day, would she stick to her guns and refuse to work to help with finances? No extra income for college or to allow her husband some kind of retirement before he dies?

          It’s a valid question.

      • Jen says:

        It comes back to teaching your children to be responsible adults. Some families have the college fund set up and maybe they had no disasters or other setbacks in life. But, one thing I have learned in watching many others in life is that you REALLY do not appreciate something unless you truly earned it. I believe in helping my kids get through college, but they should have to earn part of that themselves. I have seen too many folks in my lifetime that was given college degrees that to this day they are still not using. Those folks I know who struggled to earn their degrees are making those degrees work for them. Is college for everyone? No, but that is another blog post.

        There comes a point when raising children that you need to let them be responsible for themselves. Because unless they are going to take care of you after they move out then you need to start planning for your retirement especially if you have not already done so.

        And just because someone stays at home with their kids and making ends meet is tough does not mean the stay at home parent has to get a job. It is the families choice and not the outside world. Would a second income help financially? Oh heck yeah. Is having extra money a necessity? NO! It is what each individual family decides and what they find important to them.

        In our case getting a job outside the home was not always easy to do. We are a military family and moved a lot. So yes, we could have used the extra income on the pittance a soldier makes. You look at the soldiers salaries and tell me even with officers ranking where there is room to put money away for the future is. I must have missed it somewhere. On the other hand by the time you got settled and found a job it was time to uproot and move again. So, I have held many part time very short run jobs to put on my resume, but was it really worth it? No, not always. Of course, that is only our situation. Again, each family has a different story line.

  21. A thank you from the UK for your words. Here too we SAHM’s are made to feel worthless, especially by those in government, who only seem to be happy when all adults are employed away from the home and paying their taxes. Those not in work are accused of having no aspirations. My aspirations are to look after my family, run a home and carry out voluntary work in my community, as well as run a book review blog with a friend (also a SAHM). I worked for 17 years and had my children quite late on (37 and 42) and found myself alienated by the corporate world that espoused values which I did not identify with. We should all have a choice (men and women) in how we manage our family life and not feel guilty. It is a terrible shame that women have ended up in this position. 🙂

  22. brittonkw says:

    But what about single moms? It’s unfortunate, but nowadays it seems like most moms can’t afford to stay home and raise their children full-time, even if they wished they could.

    • Jen says:

      Single moms are in their own category and have different stresses. I personally praise single moms that can manage it all on their own. Single moms also fall into the category of working moms. It sucks, but it is what it is.

  23. lynette lamadrid says:

    I was a sahm at first because I was a working mama with my girl ..because my hours were good cause I cleaned others homes but I had my mama to be her sitter..then I was a sahm cause I was a solo parent ..when they went to school cleaning apts and houses gave me opportunity. To drop them off and pick them up ,to see school plays but I heard things that tried to shame me on both spectrums.once my daughter came home from I think first second grade after a career day with parents saying what they do girl says you don’t do anything mommy . What do you do ,this was before I got job my son wasn’t in school yet,mommy you watch t.v.but its I let her forget her statement I didn’t yell or shame ,.i was hurt but didn’t say.on Saturday I woke my princess up and started our day..we prepared breakfast,swept the rugs ,cleaned and had her brother in the room for about five minutes..well we didn’t even do all I do but after my girl said in sorry mommy ..i am pooped ,you do alot she didn’t eat all her dinner,didn’t want story time just sleep.For me that was all worth it that my girl valued her mama.,everything anyone else said always slid off but my girl made me feel like a queen after that day.

  24. Rhiannon says:

    I read this blog often and sometimes I agree and sometimes I don’t, but it always makes me think. I have never felt the need to rely but I have to say I am a strong supporter of sahms, I have so much respect for what they do everyday.On that note I have to say that I did not choose to be a sahm, financially I don’t think my husband and I could do it but we might have been able to work it out, but that’s not the choice we made. I love my job and I get fulfillment from it. As a Christian woman I feel called by God to my profession-I teach elementary school-. I also feel I have the best of both worlds, I have many breaks with my daughter and I also teach outside the home. I work with my child’s daycare and we provide consistent care for her. sahms are wonderful and they do more than most people think they do I think our society didn’t give them a fair break and they should be proud of their choice. But I shouldn’t be treated poorly either because I made a different choice, I do what I feel is best for my family just like the sahm does for hers. In reality we women need to stop fighting ourselves over our choices.

    • Jamie says:

      I love your post. I also feel called to my profession, and have worked hard to have remote working arrangements and other concessions that allow me to fulfill my calling at work and at home. I do feel that there is a lot of judgement from the SAHM crowd. One size parenthood doesn’t fit all. Good for you for doing what is right for you and your family.

  25. Robert Scrivens says:

    This is an absolutely incredible blog; I feel that so much of the downfall of or culture is because of nobody home when the kids come in. I am very thankful that my wife wanted to stay home and be a homemaker which is something she did by her choice even though she has a professional university degree. I want to encourage Stay-At-Home-Moms to never say “I’m just a housewife!”! It is far more important than the executive office.

    • Kimber says:

      Thank you for your comment Mr. Scrivens. As a SAHM it is nice to hear from a husband who saw the value in what women do when they care for the children and the home. You said it so nicely,

    • Jamie says:

      I assume, given the priority you place on having an adult there when the kids come home, that you’d have been a SAHD if your wife had been called to remain a working mother?

  26. jocelyn says:

    i think all moms just need to lay off of eachother we are supposed to be a united force doing the best we can in todays time and society if some moms work then so be it sometimes they dont have a choice about it if others stay home then so be it sometimes they dont have a choice about that, we all need to get over it and get along because all this is not making a good impression on our childern who will in the end carry on this silly fight that really just doesnt make sense in the end. we are all moms and heros to our familes in our own ways.

  27. Reblogged this on TheMidnightSon and commented:
    Spot on, Matt!

  28. Jenn Twilley says:

    This is genius, and I am going to quote you (with credit, of course) in the near future. I work two different part time jobs. I am both a counselor, and a dance teacher. Three days a week, I’m a counselor. One evening per week, I am a dance teacher. The rest of the time, I get to be at home with by beautiful 5-month old baby boy. On the days that I’m working with my teens and building them up, I come home exhausted, fulfilled, and accomplished. On the nights that I teach 3 different disciplines of dance, I come home exhausted, fulfilled, and accomplished. On the days where I get to spend some beautiful time nursing my son, doing laundry, and cleaning my home, I end the day exhausted, fulfilled, and accomplished. It’s not a “better life” to work or to stay at home, in the end, you have to decide that you will be fulfilled in the role you have chosen: to embrace it, and to fill it to its core.

    • Jen says:

      Beautiful Jenn! I do believe the only right way to raise our children is with love. It doesn’t matter if you are and engineer, teacher, nurse, or a SAHM. However you choose the path that is right for your family and your situation, our children only want and need to know they are loved. And the only complaint I had in raising my kids to adulthood was being looked down on by others. I worked outside the home and I did the SAHM thing too. All both my boys said they needed was to know that I loved them.

  29. Pingback: Feminism… You’ve Screwed Us Again. | But By Grace

  30. Val says:

    Speaking of click-bait. Hm, I think I’m going to ask my husband to write a super condescending blog praising working moms. Matt, you are on to something.

    • Alison says:

      It’s done all the time. Ever read The New York Times?

    • Jamie says:

      Don’t miss his post about how chivalry is dead because other husbands didn’t give up their seats next to their wives to accommodate his wife’s late arrival to their church’s Christmas Eve service. Arguably even better click bait than this one!

  31. Penina says:

    Some people have a choice, some people don’t. Some people feel equipped to stay home with their children, some people feel they’d go stark raving mad in 2 days if they had to have 5-hour-long conversations about the benefits of making on a “big girl” toilet. Everyone is different. Know yourself, know your strengths and weaknesses, know your limitations, and do what is best for you and your family.

    Just for those upset with the term, “outsourcing” means to “obtain (goods or a service) from an outside or foreign supplier, esp. in place of an internal source”. No one is using the term as a judgement, so please relax. Working moms do tons for their families, such as making meals, laundry, cleaning, shopping, and everything with/for their children once they are home from day care/school. And in typical mom fashion, no matter if a woman is a SAHM or a working mom, or some combination of both, she will feel guilty either way. In my opinion, once a mom feels that pang of guilt, that’s how she knows she’s doing a great job. It’s not the guilt that’s important, but guilt is borne from a feeling of “should I be doing more”. Don’t feel guilty all the time, but being concerned with doing the most and best for your child(ren) is all that matters.

    Personally, I work part time because I have to for financial reasons (my husband is working low-paying jobs in this horrible economy because no one is hiring in his field) but I chose to have my children come home early from school so I can also spend time with them/mother them during the times I’m not working. I feel like I get both sides – I have to be concerned with my job, the work I need to do for it, the stresses and pressures of my work environment, etc, all right along with making lunches, housework, planning activities and outings, creating a learning environment for my children, etc. Both types of mothering are tough. Both are demanding and emotionally draining. Both are able to raise emotionally healthy and well-adjusted, contributing and meaningful members of society. So lay off the judgement. We mothers are experts at guilting ourselves, we don’t need other people to do it for us.

    Matt is right that SAHMs don’t need to justify themselves. But neither do working mothers.

  32. Red says:

    I have the best and worst if both worlds. I have a home based business. My oldest is in school all week, and we send my son to tak care 3 days a week because it is hard to focus on work when you have a preschooler running around. I find the comment ” outsourcing” my kids to be very offensive. I have him in a place were he can socialize with kids his age, work on Pre K skills, learn, explore. I get annoyed with SAHM moms as well, especially those who have school aged children. I agree there is nothing wrong with being home when your kids are little. Women who leave the workforce to have a family on average lose 18% of pay, if they can even get back in. I think once the youngest child is in school, both parents should be in the workforce, at least part time, just to keep your resume fresh and skills up to date. You never know what could happen to the sole bread winner.

    On another note, as much I respect motherhood and love being a mom, I don’t think we should encourage women to just be a SAHM. My daughter at age 5 wants to be a doctor. I want her to be a doctor or whatever else she may want to do. I want her to take every opportunity she gets and run with it. I don’t her to feel she is only defined as wife and mother like so many SAHM are.

  33. Matt…excellent article…it is way overdue for us to admit, realize and get it…women who WORK [not stay} at Home to raise great kids [who are a lot less likely to ‘raze’ the world— is the most important job on the planet. We don’t need more nike, fufbu,etc adorned people on the planet…we need those who have learned at home the importance of each other and the family and how to use our heads to maximize our lives and our planet in a sustainable way.
    What I think most fail to realize…from lack of experience…is YES it is a lot of work but it is also the most rewarding…if NOT by western society…by loved, happy, healthy, well adjusted, creative, productive and contributing children…our hope for a sustainable future.
    As the old saying goes…
    FIND A JOB YOU LOVE AND YOU NEVER HAVE TO ‘WORK’ a day of your life.
    KUDOS to all who do not outsource or worse— offshore their responsibilities to a future…

    Thanks MOM!…everywhere!

  34. naturalnurture says:

    Matt…excellent article…

    It is way overdue for us to admit, realize and get it…women who WORK [not stay} at Home to raise great kids [who are a lot less likely to ‘raze’ the world]— is the most important job on the planet. We don’t need more nike, fufbu,etc adorned people on the planet…we need those who have learned at home the importance of each other and the family and how to use our heads to maximize our lives and our planet in a sustainable way.
    What I think most fail to realize…from lack of experience…is YES it is a lot of work but it is also the most rewarding…if NOT by western society…by loved, happy, healthy, well adjusted, creative, productive and contributing children…our hope for a sustainable future.
    As the old saying goes…
    FIND A JOB YOU LOVE AND YOU NEVER HAVE TO ‘WORK’ a day of your life.
    KUDOS to all who do not outsource or worse— offshore their responsibilities to a future…

    Thanks MOM!…everywhere!

  35. Megan says:

    I left a well-paid, challenging, and (to me) exciting job as an attorney to stay home full time with my kids. I literally had one climbing on my back and another pulling on my yoga pants as I read this article. I appreciate your defense of this choice. I just would like to add a perspective.

    I don’t agree that my choice to stay home full time was due to a lack of competitive spirit. Competitiveness is competitiveness – there’s no male or female version of it. Some people are just more competitive than others. I’m one of those people. You can ask my law school classmates, my workplace opponents or my husband (poor guy). It’s just that, when I had my baby, my ambitions and opponents changed. Now it’s my ambition to raise three secure, well-educated, God-loving people while maintaing a home that is both a sanctuary for the five of us and a launching place for service to the community. I don’t want to do this mission pretty well, I want to kill it. I’m competing hard against our vulgar, child-hating culture and soulless educational system to prevent my children from becoming senseless little cogs in whatever postmodern wheel greets them at adulthood. I’m competing much harder, for a much worthier goal. But it’s not a reflection that my nature is any less competitive or ambitious than my husbands, or that my “competitiveness” is any different in quality. Other women with these goals might have found other ways to meet them. For me, being home full time is the only way I’ve discovered.

    This sense of mission is part of my every day work and it’s something that brings great joy and energy to the effort. Congratulations on the blessing of beginning of your own family. If I ever see your face across my table with a board game between us, I do not care that you are a man, you will go down. 🙂

  36. Lucky to just be me. says:

    I don’t understand any of the competition at all. I just don’t. It used to take a village, that meant everyone contributed in whatever way they could and we didn’t JUDGE their contributions, we appreciated them. What is difficult for one person is easy for someone else, and vice versa. I don’t understand the need to say someone else isn’t working harder, or defend that we are working harder etc etc. Everyone contributes and I don’t need to compare myself to anyone else to know whether or not its been hard FOR ME. Anyone who is to stupid to acknowledge that something might be difficult for others just because they want to feel superior, isn’t someone who’s judgement I’m prone to trust anyways. The need to tear someone else down – for any reason, let alone for saying being a mom/dad is hard work, or that being a working mother/father is ALSO hard work, or that not having children and just working is ALSO hard work, is infantile. They all have the potential of being HARD WORK, you have got to be totally self absorbed and without empathy to not recognize that. I have friends in all three boats and I know without a doubt they ALL WORK HARD – but its NOT a competition. I value the village and everyone in it that contributes in a positive manner, if that is raising kids to be awesome, if that is working hard at a job and dropping your kids off at daycare and raising them to be awesome, or just going to work and being awesome. The world has enough uphill battles to fight without fighting for the title of “she or he who works hardest”, I mean honestly what’s so great about that anyways?! what a waste of energy. Appreciate the working moms for their contributions, appreciate the SAHM’s for their contributions and appreciate the people who go to work everyday without kids for their contributions and quit being and asshat that needs to make other people feel like less then so you feel more. Such a sad state of affairs when we can’t just be honest that people try their best 95% of the time and THAT is good enough. Jeepers..

  37. niky says:

    i wish i was a stay home mom, really. if only we had enough income to run our home, i would have prefered to stay home and care for my kids………..

  38. Unknown says:

    In terms of the article, his strongest point is when he exposes the hypocrisy in the notion that women gain liberation by participating in the “hated” free market system and he uses the the age of industrialization to trace the advent of the concept of a job…. And what that means…self advancement or to gain to serve…. However there are merits to the age of industrialization and free markets drove massive expansions in science and technology that other nations haven’t been able to accomplish… It’s wasn’t all for consumerism. (Anyway I don’t think he was really critiquing the free market system… But it’s definitely misunderstood and the left owns that argument). However I take issue with his closing statements when he states women aren’t ambitious. He doesn’t need to compare ambitions of men and women to strengthen his arg… I think it weakens his voice for women bc it projects an idea that is not necessarily true. The word ambition has positive connotations and he doesn’t do enough work to redefine it to make it improve his argument and feeds the oppositions classic arguments…. So I’m reading thinking yes, good pt, agree! And then whhy??

  39. Try being a stay at home dad. Then you get REALLY weird looks. 🙂 Doubly so if you also homeschool them and end up out with them on a day kids are normally in school. “Aww, is Mom home sick, so you had to take the kids to the grocery store? Why aren’t you kids in school?” etc etc and so forth.

    • Jamie says:

      Good points. He might have trouble writing the SAHD article because men tend to have a better-honed condescension radar.

  40. Edik415 says:

    I give Matt about three weeks before he posts another “Mommy War” blog. It’s his bread and butter.

  41. mommyx4boys says:

    I am not just a stay at home mom, i am also doctor mommy healing terrible boo boos for my 2 and 4 year old, i am a therapist when my husband needs to vent about frustrations at work, i am an artist when my 10 year old needs help with a school project, i am a private investigator when i need to find out who really broke the xbox 360, i am the best chef in the world when my family is hungry, and i am the most important person in the world to my children. what more could i ask for

    • Jenn says:

      Oh no. I cringe whenever I see that status update. It’s embarrassing.

    • Jamie says:

      Real doctors go to school for over a decade, every wife here is a “therapist” to her partner because it’s what spouses do (I hope your husband is a “therapist” back), there are a lot of artists who can’t sell their work to anyone outside of their immediate family, siblings get lots of practice “investigating” each others’ slip ups, most women and men can cook well enough to keep from starving, and your children are going to be substantially less satisfying ego food during their teen years.

      Comparing a responsibility to influence within a relationship – which is what parenting is, to the ability to earn a living wage and gainfully deploy that wage so as to create a lifestyle acceptable to one’s socio-economic class are two entirely different things. Motherhood is going to lose if we hold if up against the measurements of a “good job” and a career will lose if we hold it up against the measurements of “good parent” because aside from showing up everyday and (in a corporate job, at least) not making yourself the center of the story every second that you’re there, they have nothing in common. Motherhood is an awful job (no pay, no real recognition or reward by anyone with the influence to better your standing / income / wellbeing). And a job is an awful relationship (non-personal, focused on what you can do for it, looking out for the company’s interest over your own, etc.). They’re not meant to be compared.

      I don’t walk around comparing my relationship with my husband to my career – it demeans and minimizes both.

  42. Lisa Nelson says:

    I don’t know about anybody else, but I stay at home and I am working all the time. I get up at 3 AM to blog. at 7 AM-9:30 the kids get up. I get them breakfast then prepare for school. If I have some free time, I blog or do social media stuff. The I teach them. I have 2 in school and 1 toddler. So, teach, blog, stand up eat, blog and repeat. By 5 PM, utterly exhausted, I blog again – as much as a I can during the tantrums, trying to do a bit of laundry so that my son has a pair of pants to wear the next day – or maybe socks, underwear or a combo of everything. I get them all dinner. then play with a playful toddler until midnight and get the kids in the bed by 9 or 9:30 or 10 depending on how cooperative they are at getting to bed. If my husband comes home by 8 PM, and he can take the baby, I’m having a good night – cause then I can finally do some blogging in peace – if I can muster up a coherent thought in my head after being up since 3.

    I get paid for none of this – with the exception of the occassional sponsored post.

    I have no money. If the car broke down, I wouldn’t even have money to pay for a cab.

    I do not go shopping and buy hundreds of handbags.

    My clothes are in shambles.

    No bon bons here.

    No glory.

    No recognition.

    No nothing.

    I do it because I know it’s what is best for the kids. They have better education, they have a parent to be there for them – and that’s what they need. That’s what this world needs. Children should be held close (all the time) by the ones closest to them. This world is out of control – spiriling down the wrong path.

    Nobody could even fathom how tired I am. How hard I try to make things work. It is so very difficult.

    • Jamie says:

      But you don’t HAVE to do a lot of it. It’s voluntary. Working moms don’t have a lot of voluntary line items in their day – even putting on makeup in the morning is pretty much required for a lot of us. We don’t have time to shop either, but wearing schlumpy clothes all day is absolutely not allowed. No one’s throwing me a parade for showing up at the office either.

      Maybe drop the blog for a few days and catch up on sleep if you’re tired. You are the person in control of the three ring circus you’re running. If something needs to be changed, change it.

  43. Unknown says:

    I am college educated, had a wonderful career and am now blessed to be a SAHM of 3. I love it, yes some days are exhausting but it is always worth it. I sometimes may tell my husband about a struggle I had that day or joke with some friends about things the kids do. I do not complain to people about staying home, I do not want a pat on the back for staying home, I don’t think I have the hardest job in the world but I do know I have one of the most important. What bothers me about this topic is the judgment. I don’t care if you work or stay home, if you are a good mom/parent then you are a good mom/parent. I get annoyed when people judge me, pity me or look down on me for staying home. I get annoyed when working moms feel the need to let me know just what they think of my staying home. “I hear you. Raising kids and running a house keeps me busy too. I also have this little gig on the side called a full time job.” Really? Why do you even care or even put the time into judging what it is that I do? Yes being a working mom is lots of work and being a SAHM is lots of work but, they are not the same. They have similarities but, neither makes you a better parent so lets stop comparing ourselves and judging one another. For those who think being a mom (working or SAHM) is easy, or isn’t hard work, either isn’t one or isn’t doing it right. Either way, I feel bad for them. Being a good mom is one of the most gratifying jobs in the world. I don’t think most moms even care if another mom works or stays home, they just want confirmation that what they are doing is right and the best for their kids.

  44. elizabeth says:

    Hey Matt – just new to your blog. I’m picking up what you’re laying down. Ive gone both routes – took a large hiatus in a competitive professional career to be with my young kids. I just think the whole part about natural gender inclinations and roles isn’t really helping your argument. If you took out that whole part about girls having more nurturing, less competitive inclinations, it would be pretty flawless! I (woman) and many of the lady friends I gravitate to are SUPER ambitious and competitive and feisty… and there are so many beautiful men in my life that will bring tears to your eyes with their nurturing, self-sacrificing inclinations… it isnt about gender and woman’s choices, its about the value we place on the role of raising children. Choosing that role doesnt need to be justified or rationalized or defended, whether you’re a mum or dad.

  45. Jillann says:

    I get so tired of people assuming that working moms have made some sort of “choice” to work. This is not the case for me. I do not have a choice. If I want my kids to eat, then I need to work. I love them more than anything and would stay home if I could. No one knows another situation – stop assuming and give support to others. Love your blog Matt!

  46. Pingback: To Look Past Criticism | If Only I Would Have Known

  47. Seriously? Nobody has tried to point out that one of the motivations for denigrating motherhood is hatred of children, and by extension, the human race? It’s not like we’ll survive as a species without children.

  48. Pingback: Advice for Young Stay-at-Home Moms for Avoiding the Guilt Trap that You Aren’t Doing Enough or That You Shouldn’t Need Household and Childcare Help. | This, our task...

  49. Lisa says:

    Thank You…I raised my 3 boys to adulthood and I wouldn’t change it for the world!

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