Moms are battling it out over who’s the better parent: the working or non-working mom? But the truth is, life isn’t easy for any parent – whether they’re staying at home or spending the day at work. But unfortunately, they get criticized either way. Moms who balance a job and their family deserve major respect (as do SAHM), especially since their job doesn’t end when they get home. We asked the mom.life community what myths they’d like to bust about working moms, and here is what they had to say about it.
1. No, we don’t work to get away from our children.
“One myth that drives me nuts is when stay at home moms say ‘well, you work only to get away from your children.’ Well I don't get away from children! In fact I work with children who are far more demanding than my son. I work with special needs children.”
“I personally think everyone should work only because it's something for YOU. I do hair and I absolutely love it and it is a way for me to worry about just me and focus on my goals for the three days out of the week. Every mom should have their own thing for sure.”
“People think it's a break from being around my baby 24/7 but really all I want is to be home with her.”
“That being at work is a like a break because we get away from the baby/kids for a while. I am working 24/7. I work 9 hours Monday thru Thursday and when I'm not at work I'm at home doing laundry, dishes, cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, paying bills, and taking care of the baby. I don't get much sleep because my baby is always hungry and or needs changed and attention. Working moms never get a break! Especially EBF moms because not just anyone can feed the baby. If I don't have milk pumped and ready it’s all on me to stop what I'm doing and nurse him. Moms are super heroes!”
2. We can work and still have time for our kids.
“I'm a freelance translator (in Russia) and I worked till delivery and got back to work when my LO was just two months old. I only work when my baby's asleep or when they're spending time together with his dad. The pros of my work is that I don't need to get away from the baby or pump and that I can choose my workload (being a workaholic, I usually choose heavy). And yes, I get quite a good wage for those hours I do work. As for the cons, I work at nights (till 1 am most often), don't get to spend much time with BOTH the baby and my husband, and my house is quite often a mess (my husband helps me keep it in order but he works full day and I prefer him spending time with the baby to cleaning the house). Well, anyway, I don't do it just for money but because I love my work and self-improvement. And I still find time to play with the baby and do some activities for his development. And btw I'm trying to raise a bilingual child (we speak Russian one day and English the next), so my work helps with this, too.”
“Myth: That working moms don't have time to spend with their child(ren). I work 8-12 hour shifts and I STILL find the time to play and snuggle with my son.”
“It's really multitasking at its finest and I'm proud to be a working mother.”
3. We do this for our kids.
“That we didn't have a choice to work or stay home… I'm excited to be a mom but I've always put a big emphasis on being successful in my career. It is very important for my daughter to know that she can be successful beyond just an identity of being a wife and mother and I love to be able to lead by example.”
4. Yes, we worry about them while we’re at work.
“When we are at work, we constantly worry!!! My child is in day care and he was crying when I left him telling me that he misses me! I hold on to my tears till I get in the car! Later: How long was he crying for? Did he eat at lunch? Is he getting enough attention? Etc…In the meantime I have to focus at work and be there for 8-9 hours! Staying at home is not easy either, but your child is always under your watch! Staying at home it's definitely a full time job (unpaid and unappreciated) but as working mom I have 2 full time jobs and I have to make it work because none are optional!”
“I cried the day I went back to work. I worried she would refuse her bottle (filled with liquid gold) and scream until I got there on my lunch. I worry about running out of my milk stash even though I have about a month saved. I worry every day about her and I pump at work so I know I can give her the best I can.”
5. It’s definitely not as easy as people think.
“I’m currently a stay at home mom but I worked 40+ hours when I first had my son, and its hard waking up early to make sure you have everything packed for you and the baby to drop them off at the sitters. Then I worked 12 hour shifts of hard hospital work – on my feet all day just to get off work and then pick the baby up if my husband hasn’t gotten off work yet. Then its fixing dinner and trying to enjoy the little bit of time I have with my baby boy before he went to bed and I would have to stay up late to do house work just to wake up the next morning and do it all over. Yes I am very lucky to have a man that helped me with cooking and cleaning since we both worked long days but now it’s so much easier on us both because I can do all the house work and take care of our son while he works to support us.”
“Myth: It’s easy to drop baby off for the day and let someone else do the work. Fact: I start planning my day the night before. I get up by 4 am every morning so I can get an extra pumping in and still feed the baby, get ready and packed so I can get to work on time at 8. I also drive to daycare every day, but more importantly so I can see her beautiful face and smile every day and remember why I have to work.
6. There’s a lot of pressure placed on us.
“I just went back to work last week and I’m truly struggling juggling a demanding career, ebf, the house, husband, and baby. I feel like I don't have enough time to give my best at any of these tasks. Not to mention my daughter doesn't sleep. I think as moms we all feel pulled in a thousand directions. I just wish the pressures of career wasn’t so hard as balancing the mommy guilt for not being able to be there all day. We need to unite as moms! It’s hard no matter what you do!”
7. We don’t like to be compared to non-working moms.
“Life isn't easy for any parent, and just like shaming moms who bf/formula feed, I believe moms should stop shaming for working/staying home.”
“I don't like to hear that working moms don't understand the struggle that stay at home moms face every day. We do understand because we have to fit in what you have all day to do in just a few hours before/after work. I will still have to feed my baby breakfast and get him/her dressed in the am but I can't take my time doing it because I have a job to go to. I still have to get the house clean and cook meals because if I left that up to my bf, we'd be eating fast food every day and the house would be dusty and dirty as all heck. I still will be spending time with my baby but I have to fit all the enjoyment of watching him/her grow in a few short hours and hope I don't miss anything. Also, we don't get to nap when our baby naps because we're at work. A girl once told me that my man must not be reliable because he can't provide enough for us that I could stay home. That's not true, he could. But we want to know we can always be able to financially provide for our baby and that's just not possible with us if only one person has a job. I just don't ever want to hear that working and having a nanny watch your baby is an easy way out, because it's definitely not.”
8. We can still do work that non-pregnant women can.
“I’m in the medical field. I work 40+ hours a week and I’m 26 weeks pregnant. They say you can’t do lifts or transfers, which is not entirely true. As long as your body is used to it before you got pregnant, you can still do it while pregnant. But you have to be a bit cautious… you can’t fully lift a person on your own but you can assist and do transfers and such. Your body will tell you then if it's had enough.”
“When I was pregnant, I was a corrections officer at the county jail and I honestly worked up until my son was born. And little did I know, he came 2 weeks early. At first my future in-laws weren't as excited about me working in a dangerous environment and being pregnant. But they always supported me and so did my fiancé. I understood completely from where they were coming from. But I needed to work and pay my bills. And believe me it was hard since I was 4'11 and having a belly was a lot harder to frisk search the inmates and serve meals but I did it. I was on my feet all the time for 8 hours straight. I guess a myth is you can work anywhere and anytime however long you want. As long as you feel comfortable and safe! I had my co-workers help me a lot and had my back. We are trained to do a good job and keep each other safe. I am now a stay at home and love being with my son even he is a challenge at times but I'm also glad I have the opportunity to take care of him and build a beautiful bond with him.”
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