As a SAHM of 2 grown “kids,” I have often been faced with statements sounding a lot like “Motherhood isn’t a career” or the more common and more subtle, “Oh, she’s JUST staying at home.” I have always responded enthusiastically with something that shuts them up instantly every time. It’s always an appropriate variation of this:
“You are so right about that. Motherhood is so much more than a career. It’s a vocation…or even a higher calling. And no one’s allowed to ease into it from the ground floor. You start as CEO with foot to the floor. What a rush.”
No. Motherhood is NOT a career. It’s a responsibility of life if you have kids. That’s it.
If someone said to me “Motherhood isn’t a career” I would have to say I agree with them. Motherhood is a RELATIONSHIP. One that will largely determine what kind of people one’s children turn out to be. It is a relationship that requires a long and devoted commitment if one is to be successful at doing it. So is it a “job” or “career”? No. Is it work? Most emphatically YES! Hopefully a labor of love – no pun intended – that one chooses and jumps into wholeheartedly. If women aren’t prepared to sacrifice for bearing and raising children, I wish they wouldn’t do it. Stick to a job or career…leave the real work of raising children to people who REALLY want to do it. In other words, please do the RIGHT thing.
If someone told me motherhood was not a career, I’d say, “You’re right – it’s not A career – it’s about 12 of them, all at the same time!” And then I would add the person who said it to my mental, “not worth the time” file.
I am 45 and was raised in the Gloria Steinem era, when SAHM’s were denigrated and made to feel unworthy. My mother sent me and my sisters to day care and I hated every second I was there. We were the last to be picked up. I was always hungry. And I was very uncomfortable because I was not in my loving sanctuary with my mom – I was in a STRANGER’S HOME. I tried to voice concerns numerous times, but they were dismissed. So to all of you who think day care is just great, I would argue you are deluding yourself. Being a stay-at-home mother is the most important job there is. How dare someone who isn’t even a mother herself criticize the choice of a stay-at-home mother!