I read an article on MSNBC yesterday that, quite frankly, ticked me off. Well, not the article so much as the reader comments.
The article itself was about how during a child’s early years, working moms tend to have better physical and mental health than stay-at-home moms. Now let me be clear. I take “studies” like this with a grain of salt. For every article touting the benefits of working, there’s another proclaiming the benefits of staying at home. I’m not joining the debate. I was just browsing the internet and, because I happen to be a working mom, clicked on a link that piqued my interest. And then…wow.
Enjoy a small sampling of the comments, won’t you?
[W]hat about their kids? Are they happy and healthy? Do they get home cooked meals? I despise selfish working mothers!
I despise self-righteous stay at home moms who think they do a better job because they stay home. And yet, it’s stay at home moms that I hear the most complaining about ordinary things like a child’s meltdown in a store and then feel a need to tell the rest of us how ‘overwhelmed’ they feel but at the end of they realize their kids are just kids and aren’t they such great moms for staying home.
Add up all the time it normally takes to make 3 meals and you’ve done an hour and half’s worth of work. Get off your high horse.
[I]t is a fact that many children in daycare suffer emotional harm … if not worse.
I believe women should not have babies if they are not committed to raising those children at least until school-age.
Most working moms I know are absolutely exhausted, sleep deprived nervous wrecks. Mostly because the husband still isn’t doing his share most of the time, mom still has to come home and do it all and pretend to be happy.
[Y]ou resent being a sahm and hate us working moms for doing more than you’d ever be able to do.
[Y]ou got the time to sit there on your most likely very fat butt, and TELL me I’m a bad mother because I work?
They want us all to believe that they’re selflessly baking whole hams and knitting new outfits for their lil’ darlings all day instead of just sleeping, shopping or lunching with the girls until it’s time to pick them up from school (I know a few SAHMs so please just stop the BS). Then they pretend that all day long they’ve been doings things it only takes me a couple of hours to do when I get home from work (laundry, dinner, dishes, homework,housework etc). Just enjoy your sweet cushy stay-at-home life and stop pretending it’s such a huge sacrifice already.
Did your blood pressure just go up 30 points?
Let’s ignore the fact that I wouldn’t mind kicking some of those commenters in the face. Let’s also pretend that I don’t want to crawl under a rock out of embarrassment that some people might lump me in the same category as the judgemental working moms. My most prevalent thought as I read through the comments? DEAR GOD, THESE PEOPLE ARE RAISING CHILDREN!
SERIOUSLY??? Let’s all stop whining and get over ourselves. Yes, some women are down-right bad mothers. But the vast majority of mothers do their very best. And love their children. And not in a “love-is-a-competitive-sport-and-I-am-the-champion-because-clearly-I-love-my-kid-more-than-you-love-yours” kind of way.
On any given Tuesday, you might find Monday’s Super-Mom floundering hopelessly. Or maybe the typically short-tempered woman will extend an inexplicable grace to her children. Good days come, bad days come.
There are lots of ways to be a good mom, and lots of ways to be a bad mom. Staying at home or working is just one choice in a long list of parenting options.
I mean, come on, there are LOTS of other ways to fail at mothering.
- Did you have an epidural? (weak mom)
- Did you let your baby sleep with you? (reckless mom)
- Did you put baby in the crib right away? (clearly your baby will have attachment problems)
- Did you breastfeed? (tree-hugging mom)
- Did you use formula? (geez, how could you poison your baby like that?)
- Did you make your own baby food? (perfectionist mom, you probably have people-pleasing issues)
- Did you give your baby store-bought food? (lazy mom)
- Did you let your baby cry it out? (heartless mom)
- Do you let your kid watch TV? (your kid will be stupid and probably have ADD)
- Will you send your kid to public school? (prepare to be a grandparent when your kid turns 16)
- Do you stay at home? (God help you)
- Do you work outside the home? (God help your kids)
GOD HELP US ALL!!!
Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to engage in some deep breathing and see if we have any Xanax around here.