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Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Don't Tell Me it's a Choice

As I’ve mentioned before – I run a mommy group on Facebook. It covers a pretty wide geographic area and has many mom’s that are very likeminded to my parenting style and others who aren’t. I’m fine with that. We have moms who breastfeed, moms who don’t vaccinate, moms who do. Cosleeping, cry it out etc.

 

For the most part – we all get along.

 

Until this past weekend. When a post went up that seemed innocent enough but it quickly upset quite a few of us.  (I got the PM’s to prove it!)

 

One of the members posted asking how to handle the “What do you do all day?” question for a SAHM.

 

Then she quickly shoved her foot so far in her mouth I hope she choked on it.

 

She stated that she has friends who CHOOSE to continue their career after having kids but they decided to make sacrifices so she could stay at home.

 

I flipped my shit.

 

Continuing to work has not been a CHOICE for myself or any of my friends. It is a necessity. I don’t know a single one of us who CHOOSES to work three full time jobs. I am awake by 5:30 most mornings and may finally lay down at 11pm at night.

 

Trust me – it’s not by choice.

 

Her child is in preschool 5 days a week. She has numerous check-ins at spas, nail salons, Botox treatments, restaurants etc. They take vacations all the time.

 

Yet she speaks of the sacrifices they make.

 

I get a haircut every six months. I hot glued my sneakers when they started to fall apart and finally bought a new pair for $25 on clearance at Christmas when I couldn’t fix them any longer. Our last vacation involved staying in a KOA cabin and walking around Savannah just sightseeing as that was the extent of our budget.

 

Half my home didn’t have lights for two months because we couldn’t afford to fix them.

 

Tell me again about your sacrifices.

 

I don’t resent anyone the things they have. I really don’t. As long as my children are happy and well taken care of – I’m happy. I find joy in small things. A beautiful sunrise on the way to work. Meeting up with some girlfriends to walk around the park. I don’t NEED the other stuff.

 

Our reality though is that we need to work two jobs – to pay the bills, to have health insurance, to feed and clothe our kids. If circumstances change somewhere down the road then we may reevaluate our situation but for now – this is it. I would gladly sacrifice even more if I had to.

 

A choice though? Choosing to drop my child off with someone else for 50 hours every week? Choosing to have my husband only see him on the weekends since he has to travel for work so much? Choosing to spend my weekends cooking, cleaning and running errands when I’d rather play with the booger? No – it’s not a choice.

 

80% of my friends are SAHM’s – I know that their job is equally hard. Many of them homeschool, they have side businesses they do from home and try to juggle it all. Its catching a bite to eat during nap time and being on call and meeting demands 16 hours a day at the very least. It’s not glamorous. It’s exhausting, draining and the hardest job you will ever do. I know I am way more exhausted after a weekend at home with Jellybean then I ever am after a day at work. At least at work I can pee alone and eat a full meal. So yes – I respect every SAHM and truly think they have a difficult job.

 

It is a choice though. A choice I would gladly make if I could.

 

I can’t though so don’t tell me I’m making a choice.

 

Linking up with Shell for Pour Your Heart Out.

 

4 comments:

Sara @ Domestically Challenged said...

I hate that shit. Sorry, no other way to put it. She should never assume that HER situation or "sacrifices" are better than anothers. Dumb, dumb, dumb. good for you for sticking up for all the working mamas out there.

Shell said...

Oh, that's so frustrating. Some people really don't get it.

Sorta Southern Single Mom said...

I work because I have to as well, but I do have friends that chose to work and didn't have to.

Sara S said...

I am slowly but surely catching up on everyone's blogs! I love this post! I love how you can defend both sides. I feel like sometimes people forget that being a SAHM isn't super easy. I feel so blessed to be able to stay home with A (& Miss M when she gets here)and know that there are so many other mommies out there that wish they could spend their days at home with their babies! Oh and I hope that your honey can find a great job soon so you can be a SAHM too!

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