Sunday, 4 August 2013

Should I apologize for being a Stay At Home Mother?

I am a stay at home mother of 2 boys; just this statement is lending me into so much trouble these days. It is like there is something wrong with me being at home with my kids. Everything that I am saying is being judged with the context of being a stay at home mother...I am doing something grossly wrong; something that would affect my and my family’s future very badly?

Yes that is what I was told!

Funny thing is I decided to stay at home not for my child but for other reasons; some other responsibilities. This decision was taken 2.5 years back but I continue to live with the decision. Yes I have an option of going back to my professional life right now but I don’t want to.

My younger one is 1 year old; when my elder one was one year old I was already in office. Working from 9-10; yes I was putting in that many hours to overcome the gap that my maternity leave of few months had created. But it went on; I continued to work like this. I loved my job. In process I had climbed the stairs of success in my career quite quickly but I had missed my son’s first steps; first words and first almost everything.

This is what I am enjoying right now with my younger one. I am there; there to experience this wonderful stage. And is there any other place I would rather be?

No absolutely not!

But my decision to be a stay at home mother; is it a judgement on working mothers? No ofcourse not!

It is my decision and it is my life. If another mother is working; it is her decision and her life. There will be ten thousand reasons for me to be at home and there would be ten thousand reasons for you to be in office. Not each reason is justified but who am I to judge and question?

I have said it again and again; I believe every mother is a good mother. Situations can be different; people can be different; children can be different but a mother will always be a mother (I am excluding exceptions here).

I really really dislike being judged and commented on for being a stay at home mother. And I dislike when people say it has no merits. Ofcourse it has merits; I have been on both sides and I can say with 100% confidence it has merits.

Please don’t take away the merits by calling them logistics. They are not logistics. These so called logistics can be managed by others; I agree but saying that there is no merit when a mother does them; I disagree.
I am educated, independent and have an open mind and I am sure all the time that my kids are spending with me is helping them and creating a better base for them. I am teaching them things that I know others can also teach but I am their mother and ofcourse I am doing it better than others.

Don’t take away my efforts by calling them worthless. They are not!

Please don’t look down upon me and tell me I have done injustice to myself; my education and my career. Being a stay at home mother doesn’t make me a better mother and similarly being a working mother doesn’t give an upper hand to any one.

A mother is a mother. When did it become Working vs. Stay at home?? And Why?? What is the constant need to prove superiority over the other section?? Is this the only way we know how to rise; by looking down on others?? Is this a way a working mother justifies her decision; but why is there a justification needed? And stay at home mothers; why do we call ourselves “not just a mom”; why should we clarify? What is the need for clarifications?

Yes that is why I am just a mom. I don’t see the need of any other clarification and I don’t see the need of any tags to add to my role. My role is a job definition in itself.

Have you ever heard anyone say “Not just a manager? Or Not just a CA? Or not just a lawyer etc?” No right?

Then why should I define my role any further. I am a mother and if I have any other qualification to share; I may share or I may not but I will not justify my role as a mother.

One of the other things that I have been told again and again since I quit my job is that my kids will never learn to be independent because I am at home. I beg to differ!

I was brought up by a stay at home mother and I am furiously independent since as long as I can remember. My mother taught us the value of hard work and being independent and I am passing on the same values to my children inspite of being at home.

I am independent inspite of being mostly home bound and my 4 year old is independent inspite of me being stay at home. I do not want to brag about him and the things he can do on his own because it is not important. What is important is to understand that same values can be taught by being at home and not being at home also. But the amount of time and effort each will take would be different. And ofcourse being at home makes my journey more colourful and filled with more memories.


At the end of the day I am just a mom.....why should anyone care if I am working or not?

Disclaimer: The above writeup is my personal opinion. It is not targeted to any individual; working or not working. I request everyone to read it in the same context.

42 comments:

  1. Sfurti - I think a lot of your readers (me included) know that you are not 'just a mother' or even 'just a stay at home mom".
    You are much more than that. You are a talented woman who has decided to be there for her kids!

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    1. Hey Ritu thanks so much :). I just wanted to rant a bit. Now done :)

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  2. cant agree with you enough. people have such a sharp opinion about housewives these days. I can bet their own moms may have chosen to stay at home to give them the desired upbringing. a women who stays at home is loaded with lot more responsibility than the working ones. And they dont even have an option to escape by saying "I dont have time to do this household work", how much ever tired they may be.

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    1. Jiggyasa I agree. I am not taking sides but I am really loathing the fact that my education and its worth is being questioned. I know people always talk and comment whatever you do....but there are times when I cannot be zen about it. I was brought up by a stay at home mother and I turned out to be fine. And I am sure my kids will be fine inspite of me being there in the house 24/7!!!!

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  3. I think the decision to work or not should be left only to the mother as I’m sure everyone has his/her own limitations, own compulsions and no one has a right to judge. I am a working mother and my daughter is now 1.5 years old. I have my own anxieties as I want to be there when she starts going to daycare, I want to be there when she comes back but my work may not allow it. Don’t let it bother you too much, Sfurti. We know what we are and the sacrifices that we do to keep a happy home.

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    1. Hey Prasanna. I agree.Normally it doesn't bother me too much but lately it was getting on my nerves a lot and I am glad I shared it here. Feeling better already. Thanks for reading out my rant dear :)

      And best of luck for the day care. Just remember that it may be the day care right now but very soon it will be the school. They don't remain conjoint to us Alas!!! And the mommy guilt never leaves us, it may go and hide but will soon come up for something else. :)

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  4. Don't worry Sfurti! No matter on which side of the table you are, people will always find ways to belittle you or make you feel small just to feel a little superior themselves. As much as it irks, just don't let them get to you. Who cares a shit about what they think?

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    1. Rachna I agree. It never ends. And you are right..I shouldn't care and normally I don't but it just got to me this time and I wanted to write it down and get over with it. But I am learning with time,hope I am more zen the next time :)

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    2. Middle finger works very well in upsetting the judgemental freak's calm :).

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    3. I strongly recommend the middle finger salute too Sfurti. Glad you wrote it. Love the furious passion of this. This had to be said. People are going hog wild over things they have no business having an opinion about.

      Morons abound. Isn't that good? We'll never get bored. :D

      Dagny

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    4. Rachna Haha Yes Middle finger may shut them forever!

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    5. Dagny yes I am seriously considering the middle finger route :) and Yes I felt so much better after writing this.

      Haha yes morons do make life more colorful :))

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  5. Hi Sfurti...
    If I've to take any side I'll surely preach against staying at home considering the relative inferiority of the same in my view but certainly I'm in no position to tell you that what you're doing is silly... to tell you that at first I've to walk on your shoes... as simple as that.
    As long as you're enjoying your stay at home taking care of your 'army' why to bother what others say, unless your very close ones are really bothered with what you're doing...
    So, happy patrolling with your cubs :-))

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    1. AS thanks dear. To each his/her own and I respect every one's decision. I am enjoying being with the army a lot and yes I normally don't bother but sometimes it does get to me and I am glad I shared it. Though I did sit on the publish button for several minutes. It is a debatable topic and I didn't want to hurt anyone.

      PS:Not really close ones..its more general people :)

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  6. I myself is one and I choose to be one because juggling between the two needs a lot of compromise and adjustments life is all about living blissfully with your near and dear ones be it working at office or working at home.
    So let the world think whatever,you are nurturing your best resources and that's the great thing. It's a personal choice...just do what makes you happy and ur family:)

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    1. Ronita I agree. It is a personal choice but it really irks me that most people don't get it. But I will try my best to not get hassled this much again. Thanks dear :)

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  7. Being a Mom..The effort you are putting in bringing up your child is way more than anyone else can take..As they say "God can't be everywhere,so he created Mom" and It stands very true..

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    1. Thanks so much dear for the encouragement!! Means a lot!!

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  8. Sfurti, Rock on!
    Since when do you care what others think or say?
    To each his/her own.
    Hugs!

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    1. Madhu Yaa you are right, I normally don't care but this time I think I got too hassled over it, don't know what triggered it. Thanks sooooo much dear :) Hugs right back at you :)

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  9. Sfurti, SAHMs or career moms, all they are and will be are Moms...good moms. There can never be a bad mom...I am not sure if you read my piece on the guilt factor on http://rekspoursout.wordpress.com, 'The Guilt Remains'. You're doing absolutely right by being at home with the kids. They indeed are blessed to have you by their side. God bless!

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    1. Hey Rekha. Thanks so much.I agree, all moms are good moms!!!

      I tried looking for that post but couldn't search it on your blog. Pleaseeeee share the link here if possible. Thanks again :)

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  10. People will talk what ever you do. Let that not effect you.
    Nice post, I like how well you put your arguments. :)

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    1. Hey Indrani. I agree. Thanks dear :)

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  11. Staying at home is not an easy thing Sfurti, you have got to compromise a lot of things for that. You really must be brave to leave a good paying job and the Independence,recognition and further development it gives to stay at home. all the best for your future...

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    1. Hey Menaka. I won't say it is easy but professional life was also was not easy. What makes this different is that it is born out of love and I am enjoying it thoroughly. Thanks dear and all the best to you also :)

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  12. Sfurti I can understand and appreciate being a stay at home mom. Stay at Home mom by choice. Here's three cheers for Us!

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  13. I was raised by a working mother and we have both missed a lot of things due to that… she often thinks about it but does not regret it because those were the need of the hour…

    but when you can, why not stay at home and ensure a proper upbringing for your kids… every mother wishes for it… and there will always be loads to of time to get back to work once the kids grow up.

    I have seen my mother, and even other stay at home moms… all moms are moms… and no one, especially mothers themselves, should be judgemental about it.

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    1. Aersh I agree, all moms are moms and no one should be judgmental!! Thanks dear :)

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  14. I always get amazed when I hear people devaluing someone for being a stay at home mom! Personally, I feel it is easier to go out and work rather than stay at home and be in charge of the house as well as bring up your kids! You did what you felt was right for your family and no one else should ever have the right to judge you!
    {{hugs}}

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    1. Roshni I know!! I always thought this side would be easier atleast there won't be people putting me on a guilt trip. But I was so wrong...it is more tough and those people are still there. It never ends!!!

      Thanks dear for the love, right back at you!

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  15. Sfurti, yes, you are right. You have the right to decide whether you should be a working mom or stay-at-home mom. Nobody can tell you otherwise. Also, when you are talking about stay-at-home moms hindering their kids' independence, I have seen those cases. However, it can also happen with a working mom if she gets into the habit of pampering her kid when she's around. So according to me, independence doesn't relate directly with the mom's career. As long as the mother is aware of these issues, it shouldn't be a problem; and I think you are aware of problems relating to too much of pampering. :D Best of luck for your future adventures with the army :D

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    1. Pankti yes, it is not related to a mother being at home or not. Same values can be taught in any situation.Thanks so much dear :)

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  16. Sfurti - you are a good mum, how does it matter whether your working outside or not? You are still working the whole i guess ... I am sure something like 6-10 ... how can that be any less .. I am not saying because even I am a stay at home mom .. But what really sums up is what you earlier said "I believe every mother is a good mother" ..

    There you said it yourself .. You are a good mother ..

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    1. Sangeeta thanks so much dear. I agree every mother is a good mother.Much relieved now after sharing it :)

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  17. I am not a mother yet but I have quit my job for reasons which I Know. THERE REALLY is no need to clarify to any. I AM Damn sure U r smarter than many who r stuck in mundane jobs and cant take out for themselves but for sure take time to judge others.
    U have my vote. do wat u want Sfruti . U r truly a yummy mummy !!! Above all U have the talent to pen down ur thoughts. Half of the people in their sedentary jobs cant type anything beyond
    Hello

    Hi

    Regards kinda mails
    so chill and enjoy ! :)
    good write up

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    1. Afshan that is so sweet and kind of you. Thank you sooo much!! I really needed this!! Muah!!!!

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  18. I meant take out time *
    Ignore if there r any more typos :P I am hasty always when I type

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    1. Naah who cares of typos...you are here for me, that is what matters! Thanks again :)

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  19. I am proud to be a stay at home mom...I did at one point feel the need to work but, my blogging is satisfying enough for me. It is always a choice and people will judge no matter what.

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    1. Hey,I agree. We are always judged whatever we do. For some reason I thought this side would be easier but ofcourse not. I said what I wanted to say, it was long overdue. I love being a stay at home mother, very proud of my choice and no one has a right to judge!!!

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