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  1. #41
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    I haven't read any of the other replies but think I qualify at answering as I'm nearing the end of my SAHM days.

    My feelings are like this...

    I have had very strong views about children's foundations being built within the first 5 years of life. I wanted to be home for them, I wanted them out of the institutions until they have to. I thought that my husbands would be the example and the work ethic and I could be the nurturing example IYKWIM.

    I still feel this way...I really really do...

    BUT....

    Reality has hit me in the face and I'm now facing trying to get back into the workforce with absolutely zero education and formal experience. My own mother has faced this also...she can't even be a grandma because she's slogging her guts out in a menial job so that she can build her super...she also needs to still pay her bills and 'live' on such a small wage. She was a SAHM for years also...she's now paying for it - big time!

    Although I still feel the same way I did then...I do kick myself that I didn't at least do SOMETHING during those years...be it part time work or part time study between kids. I could have done it...and I didn't. Now I face about 4 years of study before I can even do anything of any value workwise! Sure I could become a cleaner or a check out chick...but sorry...no I don't see myself doing that till I retire! I want a career and I only wish that I had been working on this career all this time.

    7 years ago my ex left me for another woman and left me a single mum of 4 children with no money, nor prospects, no means to support myself - nothing! It was that moment that I realised, as wonderful being a SAHM was, the harsh reality is that being a SAHM is a dead end. It really is.

    I don't believe that I was a bad example however...but I do believe my girls see and I have told them that being a full time SAHM, although it is very admirable and important, in the grand scheme of things really isn't a good idea as reality, as it stands, isn't set up for us mums who have been out of the workforce for so long with little or no superannuation etc

    So if anyone was going to ask me my opinion I would say...don't do it FULL TIME. At least be doing something in between, either part time work or study...anything! Because you don't know what's around the corner.
    Last edited by Deserama; 22-10-2012 at 10:49.

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  3. #42
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    Default Stay at home mum vs career mum

    Quote Originally Posted by BlackEyedPea View Post
    Um, and your Dad??
    Lol - I'm not offended at this question. My father decided that he didn't want my mother and I in his life and packed us up and sent mum back to her parents in QLD. They then decided that mum made her bed and she had to fend for herself, so didn't take us in! So he was never around haha - wow putting that in writing seems like a soapie story! Haha

    My mum did the best she could, I know - but always felt she had to do more at her job to keep her in a job... She didn't need to as she was very valued and loved at her workplace... But I think she sometimes got the balance wrong. I am not scarred and don't blame her for anything. But my preference is to be a SAHM, even if DH and I ever broke up.

  4. #43
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    Default Stay at home mum vs career mum

    I am a SAHM. I have two boys aged 7 and 3. I always wanted to be able to stay at home with my kids until the youngest went to school, at which point I planned to get a job within school hours or get a degree.

    My husband and I had a household income of $125k. I had no financial backup or fall back. But he was an ******* and I left him last year. I went from a household income of $125k to $30-$35k. He now pays the minimum child support amount and has left me with a sizable solicitors bill. He also quit his high paying job and his wage halved.

    Money didn't keep me in an unhappy relationship. I am not setting a bad example for my boys at all. I am being a loving, full time parent and if I have a choice, I will REFUSE to pay someone else for the PRIVILEGE of watching my children grow up.

    This is how I feel about MY situation. Each to their own, I don't judge others for their choices, everyone is doing what they feel is best for their family and their circumstances - and that's all any of us can do.

    OP - your first post hasn't insulted me because I find the very notion you have presented is nothing short of laughable. I feel for your mother, I really do, that you don't respect or value the input she had into your development.

    Congratulations on your pregnancy btw, I hope you manage to live up to your child's expectations much better than your own mother did yours.

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  6. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by MissXamA View Post
    Lol - I'm not offended at this question. My father decided that he didn't want my mother and I in his life and packed us up and sent mum back to her parents in QLD. They then decided that mum made her bed and she had to fend for herself, so didn't take us in! So he was never around haha - wow putting that in writing seems like a soapie story! Haha

    My mum did the best she could, I know - but always felt she had to do more at her job to keep her in a job... She didn't need to as she was very valued and loved at her workplace... But I think she sometimes got the balance wrong. I am not scarred and don't blame her for anything. But my preference is to be a SAHM, even if DH and I ever broke up.
    Thus must have been very difficult - but I can say with almost absolute certainty that it would have sucked a whole lot more if your mum didn't work as hard as she did. She sounds amazing to me, and what a role model! She didn't collapse in a heap at her misfortune, she did what she had to do to provide a life for you. You must be inspired by that. Your dad on the other hand, is the one who sounds like the sucky role model.

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    Default Stay at home mum vs career mum

    Quote Originally Posted by BlackEyedPea View Post
    Thus must have been very difficult - but I can say with almost absolute certainty that it would have sucked a whole lot more if your mum didn't work as hard as she did. She sounds amazing to me, and what a role model! She didn't collapse in a heap at her misfortune, she did what she had to do to provide a life for you. You must be inspired by that. Your dad on the other hand, is the one who sounds like the sucky role model.
    She is incredible - I didn't read further and noticed that it sounded like I resented her. I have never had resentment for either parent to be honest with you. That was the situation we were in and we just got on with it. Don't get me wrong, as a 15 year old, watching the other kids get picked up before me and me sitting around waiting around... I was angry. But something clicked inside of me and I just started to ride my bike or walk home! It's all good!

  9. #46
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    I do have to say that the feeling amongst people that stay at home mums are uneducated , cake baking , apron wearing morons does bother me. And it bothers me that working mums are seen as uncaring and money grabbing , take away feeding heartless monsters. Why are we so so so judging of mums.... Far out , we all do out best !! All mums are awesome !!! ( most)

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  11. #47
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    Default Stay at home mum vs career mum

    I haven't read all of the replies yet.
    Firstly until you actually have your child you won't understand how hard it can be to leave them everyday at Childcare or how easily that career driven mentality can slide down the priorities list.
    I went back to work full time when DD was 3 months old. Why? Because its just what I thought I should do so we had enough money to provide for my daughter and our family and to keep continuing my career to be able to provide even more things for my family and so on.my career was important to me and being the 'boss' at work was a status I enjoyed. I didn't actually think it would be THAT hard to work full time and have a baby, I mean after all someone else was looking after her during the day and we had a cleaner. I also admit to being in the group of 'what do stay home mums do all day?' mentality.
    I continued working full time until my DD was 2.5 years and from about 8months I gradually began to hate working because I wanted to be with my child. I hated that she picked up behaviors I didn't like, that her carers were having as much influence on her life and the person she would become as we did (possibly more even).
    So we ended up selling our house, moving somewhere cheaper and we don't have much money for 'extras. DH and I couldn't be happier now I'm a stay home mum and I look back at all the stress and have no idea how we managed it all or why we tried.
    What am I teaching my daughter? To have values, to be a good person, how to use her cognitive skills to solve problems for herself and set her own tasks. I am teaching her the foundations for being able to be a part of society and have the confidence and life skills to make good decisions for her.
    If she wants to be an astronaut I am not going to go role model it directly for her. But I will have taught her how to get there if that's what she wants. I am giving her a safe,secure and loving family that she will grow to know she can always rely on (something I don't have). And if she looks at me and says 'hey my mum worked really hard and achieved a lot then stayed home and cared for her family because that's what she though was most important' then I have no problem of her following in my footsteps to do what she values most in life.
    What I want for my daughter in life is for her to be able to choose her values in life and follow them and be happy. I strongly disagree that having a career and money is the only recipe for happiness. If you are content working just enough to pay the bills and then enjoying life then that does not make you less of a person. In my house we work to live not live to work.
    Lastly you may not mean to offend OP but your post certainly was written in a manner that will stir the pot. I also think you need to educate yourself a little more on how children learn and how they develop, especially in the early years as you seem to have a very narrow view this.

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  13. #48
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    Default Stay at home mum vs career mum

    Quote Originally Posted by babynomad View Post
    I do have to say that the feeling amongst people that stay at home mums are uneducated , cake baking , apron wearing morons does bother me. And it bothers me that working mums are seen as uncaring and money grabbing , take away feeding heartless monsters. Why are we so so so judging of mums.... Far out , we all do out best !! All mums are awesome !!! ( most)
    Because some ppl are stuck in the 'high school' mentality of having to be the best and anyone who does things differently isn't good enough.

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  15. #49
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    I can understand in one way what you are getting at. I had a stay at home mum, she never worked and she was always there for us. She picked us up from school every day, took us to music lessons, was at every school concert, spent time reading to us and playing with us. She just relished being a mum. My only regret (for her) is that once we got older, i would have loved her to have something like a career that was just for her. She sometimes put's her self down and says she isn't smart, when in fact she's one of the smartest people i know.


    I was always encouraged to do anything I wanted to do, and my mum, who was a SAHM always told me to be independent, to have my own career and make my own money. I went to uni, have a career i really enjoy, have travelled and had a lot of fun adventures. I had a wonderful role model for a mum, and I am so grateful that she spent so much time with us when we were young. She enjoyed being with us so much.


    SAHM's sacrifice so much to stay home and they are just as intelligent, creative and interesting as someone with a career. Career mum's are also great mum's, they just have to juggle a few more things to make it work.


    These days, it's much easier to have a balance. I plan on being a SAHM for about 2 years and then going back to work a couple of days a week so i can work and be a mum. You can balance it so you are comfortable. If i end up being half as wonderful as my mum is to us, i'll be very happy.

  16. #50
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    Default Stay at home mum vs career mum

    Quote Originally Posted by JR03 View Post
    Hi ladies,

    Let me preface this post with telling you that I don't wish to offend anyone, I simply want to hear some different perspectives about something I've been thinking about recently.

    A bit of background on me - I'm 23 years old and currently 23 weeks pregnant with my first child and have found out we're expecting a daughter. I have a fantastic job in my chosen career path. I enrolled in my Masters shortly before falling pregnant as I didn't want to put my life on hold whilst TTC however fell pregnant the first month of trying, then the exhaustion took over and I had to defer my studies.

    My mum was a SAHM, so she picked me up from school every day and I could always have friends over after school and would often come home to yummy treats that she'd been baking and a very clean house. Whilst I loved having my mum around and didn't really understand why I could never go to my others friends houses after school (most of their mums worked), I've started to wonder whether SAHM's are providing a good example to their daughters. I was shown that my mum is capable of so much love, and is good at being a homemaker, however didn't have a professional female role model in my life until my sister (who is 12 years older than me) started working in a large bank and worked her way up through the ranks quickly. It got me thinking that SAHM's stay home with their children to love and nurture them which I think is fantastic, but in terms of life skills and employability, is this really the example that we should be setting for our daughters? Also, my mum has and will always be financially dependent on my dad. Luckily they have a beautiful, loving marriage of 30+ years, however if it wasn't so good, would mum feel that she could leave and survive on her own? What example is that setting?

    For me at this stage, financially I can't be a SAHM so will only be taking 6 months off before returning to work (albeit part-time to begin with), but even if I could, I don't think I'd want to be anyway. I want to show my daughter that you can be an intelligent, professional, independent female as well as a mum; the two don't have to be mutually exclusive.

    Looking forward to hearing some thoughts on this... Though again, I don't intend to offend with my post!
    I'm only going to reply to the OP because I can't be bothered reading the rest of the posts, and I'm sure there will be some 'interesting' ones in the mix.

    My mother left my father when I was two and my sister was four.
    She had no financial back up, he took all of her money and refused to return it.
    This, however, did not deter her in any way from leaving him.
    She knew it was for the best so she did it.
    My father payed no child support, I was in and out of hospital for heart surgeries and other related health issues which put a lot of financial strain on my mother.
    She put us in daycare and went out and enrolled herself in uni, and found three jobs.
    She worked nights at pizza hut, days as a nutrimetics salesperson and weekend mornings at BBQ's galore.
    She did this for two years whilst getting a degree in accounting, looking after us both and still being a 'house wife' by baking etc.
    Once she had a degree, she got a normal day job as an accountant, we went to school, all was dandy.

    She is the most hardworking person I have ever met in my life, and to this day I still don't know how she did it.
    We always did after school activities, went on big holidays, played sports, had nice things etc.

    My mum is now one of the top share traders in the world, still works ridiculously hard, writes books, does seminars etc. she is amazing.

    However even with her as a spectacular example of a strong independent woman, I have chosen to be a SAHM. In no way do I think this disappoints her, nor does it disappoint me.

    I have never found the inspiration in my life to know exactly what it is that I want to do as a career.
    I feel that being a mother is the most rewarding option for me.

    What you have to remember is that we are all individuals.
    We will end up doing with our lives whatever it is the WE feel is right for US.

    If your daughter grows up to be just like your mother would that disappoint you?
    Or would you be happy that she is happy?

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