Dear Stay At Home Mum

Dear stay at home Mum,

This is a letter that’s been roaming around in my head for a while and I just want to get it out of my system once and for all.

Recently, I wrote a post about how being a working mother makes me a better mother. When I wrote said post, it was clear in my head that I meant that working makes ME a better mother. Obviously it didn’t read that way for some of you.

I’m, quite frankly a bit of a shit stay at home mother. I get cabin fever, I feel unfulfilled and I get very demotivated and dare I say it, a bit depressed. I’d love to be great at it, to be more giving, more selfless, maybe even a bit more of a Pinterest mum!! However, I’m not that person and I’ve made my peace with it.

As you might expect, after writing what was considered a controversial post, I came under a fair bit of criticism. There were several stay at home mum’s who felt I was belittling their lifestyle and choices. One even went so far as to say I made them feel really down about themselves.

I’m pretty thick skinned (think rhino hide) but those comments stung. Clearly the sentiment that I thought I was writing with was touching a raw nerve in some of you. I hate that I made anyone feel bad about themselves because honestly that’s not who I am.

Opinionated? Yes but mean? I hope not.

Dear stay at home mum

I hate the divide that women place upon themselves over how and when they look after their children. I honestly don’t really understand it. I’m happy with my choices and opinions but I never think less of someone who doesn’t share them. Variety is the spice of life and we all are different.

So to set the record straight, I don’t think working mothers are better than you and I don’t think if you stay at home with your kids then you are any better a mother than me. My choice isn’t better or worse than yours. It’s just my choice, my point of view and the angle that I write from.

Motherhood is full of contradictions and heightened emotions and for this reason, it seems to be endlessly divisive. The truth is that I have been both stay at home mother and working mother and my only opinion is that I personally, prefer to work. It makes ME a better mother. That should not touch a raw nerve with you if you feel differently.

I have many friends who are stay at home mothers. I have many friends who are working mothers. Some make the choice. Some have no choice. It’s difficult any which way you mother the little buggers and that’s the reality. We all have good and bad days and we are all just doing what we can to wing it through the sleep deprivation, tantrums and all consuming love.

This blog is not and never will be written from the point of view of a stay at home Mum because I am not one. It does not mean I don’t respect you if that’s your way of mothering.

I do.

If you do choose to visit my blog (and I hope you will) and you don’t like or relate to what I’m saying in a given post, then before you feel personally attacked, I want you to refer back to this letter. I want you to remember that a different opinion is not the same thing as a disrespectful opinion.

We are all mothers. No better or worse. Just mothers doing the best we can.

Yours as ever,

Fi

x

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinmail
Follow:
Share:

15 Comments

  1. February 9, 2017 / 10:55 pm

    Well said lovely. I think you have it spot on – some choose to work, some choose to stay at home, some have no choice, and some hover around in the middle. The similarity is that we’re all doing what we can for our own family and our own set of requirements. You and I are quite similar, I’m not cut out for SAHM life. But that doesn’t make me any less of a mum or more of a hard grafter than X down the road. Such a good read as always xx

  2. February 10, 2017 / 7:41 am

    Well said. It’s infuriating how people read about your own parenting choices and take personal offence by them – we’ve had this with breastfeeding many a time! Our boy is lucky in that we are a same sex couple he has one working mum and one stay at home mum. There are pros and cons to each, but ultimately people have different personalities so are suited to different things. My wife was changing careers anyway so in the interim is a SAHM – she researches the best toys, best baby led weaning recipes, and takes him to endless baby classes, whereas as I would get bored at home, and baby groups are my worst nightmare! However, I believe as a working mum I provide another aspect of example for my son, which you pretty much summed up in your post – I often felt guilt or sadness at working full time, but your post made me feel a lot better about, and actually proud, of myself. So thank you, and ignore the silly comments!

  3. February 10, 2017 / 2:58 pm

    Well said. We all make choices and people need to OWN theirs and not feel threatened by others opinions. Great bog x

  4. February 10, 2017 / 8:48 pm

    Very well written Fi, you should not have to defend your choices whichever ones you make as a parent. I work 4 hours a day and that gives me the balance I want, doesn’t mean that’s right for everyone! x
    Happy Mummy recently posted…Capturing Moments Linky #16My Profile

  5. February 11, 2017 / 12:21 pm

    Very well said! As a newly decided stay-at-home Mum, I definitely don’t feel any resentment towards working mums. Surely it’s logical that each of us do what works best for us? You’re so right that everything becomes so devisive. Brilliant post.

  6. February 11, 2017 / 3:07 pm

    I have been both a stay at home mum and working mum as well, and staying at home really doesn’t agree with me either. There are pros and cons of both and I have missed some aspects of staying at home since coming back to work. Ultimately, it’s down to what is best for us as individuals like you said. What is best for me may not be for others!
    Emma recently posted…5 Tips for making going back to work easierMy Profile

  7. Julia
    February 11, 2017 / 5:26 pm

    Well written post, you are right, I think, to point out that wether we stay at home, work from home, go out to a full or part time job, by choice or necessity, mothers always come in for criticism. Sometimes we can be too hard on ourselves & other people, aren’t we! Support, empathy & a bit of humour towards ourselves as fellow mothers goes a long way in my book!

  8. February 13, 2017 / 6:43 pm

    Obviously we’ve spoken privately about this and you know I’m a massive fan of your blog and never could think you mean! It’s true, we are all different and aspects of parenting will always be divisive – feeding/sleeping/childcare etc – especially when we share our views online. I’ve had differences of opinions from readers on some subjects I’ve written about – that’s what happens when you publish your thoughts I guess. But your blog, your opinion. I know you write from a working mum perspective and having been a working mum I’ll continue to read because I love your writing, even if I’m not one at the moment xx
    Susie at This Is Me Now recently posted…JORD men’s wooden watch reviewMy Profile

  9. February 15, 2017 / 7:33 am

    I think some people are always going to take someone taking a different decision to there’s as a criticism. I equally have been hurt by people declaring that working Mum’s damage their kids – your post was positive rather than negative though. And as a working Mum myself it’s so nice to know that there’s a positive forum here! Xx

  10. February 17, 2017 / 9:05 am

    Well said. I am a stay at home mum but feel all the emotions you felt before you went back to work. The only difference is I don’t have the balls to start over (I have no job to go back to). Instead, I’m trying to make the most of it and retraining when my youngest goes to school.

  11. May 3, 2017 / 8:35 pm

    I think kits a shame you had to defend your position as all opinions should be respected. It’s a shame that us parents (mainly women, unfortunately) find this topic so devisive as after all we all parent just in a different way. I was a sahm for five years and am now a working mum and labels are certain put on you for your choices. It’s hard either way but as a human being/ person in our own right we all should do what’s right for us, as this in turn will make us better parents.
    #twitter

  12. June 4, 2017 / 5:57 am

    I find myself constantly thinking ‘why oh why is no one entitled to an opinion anymore?!’ We all walk on eggshells for fear of offending someone! Variety is absolutely the spice of life! In my honest opinion perhaps the people offended by what you wrote have a problem with themselves rather than you. I worked as a solicitor but am now a Sahm (looong story) but it took me a long time to be ok with being a sahm and until I made my peace with it, I was SO touchy about comments from mums that worked etc. But the problem was me not them. You’re totally right that it’s hard being a mum whatever way you look at it, I’ve done the full-time working thing, part-time thing and sahm thing and NONE of the aforementioned are easy. Thinking of trying the ‘working abroad’ thing next and leaving hubby with the chaos haha. Great post #blogcrush

    • June 5, 2017 / 9:41 pm

      Ah thank you so much Jemma. I think we have all gone a bit PC mad haven’t we but you might be right I think 🙂 x

  13. June 5, 2017 / 6:47 pm

    I think you’re so right – we each need to do what works best for us. The problem is, as mums, we all feel judged all the time. Whether we feel judged for working and “abandoning our kids” or we feel judged for being at home and ” sitting on our backsides all day”. And so whenever we hear someone talking about a particular point of view, we instantly jump to the conclusion that they are judging our position. It’s clear that this wasn’t what you intended, and I think it very big and gracious of you writing a follow-up post like this to clarify your position. It’s a shame that mums are so beaten down by society that they automatically assume they are being judged again and need to defend themselves.

    Congratulations, though, because someone loved this post so much, they added it to the #blogcrush linky. Feel free to grab your “featured” badge if you’d like to #blogcrush

    • June 5, 2017 / 9:43 pm

      Thank you so much Lucy! It absolutely wasn’t my intention to upset anyone but I guess being opinionated it was bound to happen. I will head over and check out your linky!

Leave a Reply

You have to agree to the comment policy.

CommentLuv badge