We’ve all heard it. The stereotypes out there about motherhood and the judgmental comments concerning a mother’s working status. Whether you are a stay-at-home mother or a mother who works outside of the home, both are inevitably faced with negative backlash.
“Working mothers are so selfish”
“They only care about their career”
“It must be nice to have someone else watch your kids while you’re out”
“Stay-at-home moms are so lazy”
“They don’t know what it’s like to really work”
“It must be nice to just stay at home all day and not have to do anything”
Like I said before, I’m sure we’ve all heard these ugly comments before, but you know what is worse? The fact that these comments too often come from other women’s mouths- mothers even.
I have personally experienced both sides of the fence, and let me tell you, neither one is a walk in the park. I was a stay-at-home mother for 2 ½ years and I have now been back in the workforce for 3 years, and its tough either way.
I can remember all of the blissful moments of being a stay-at-home mom, as well as the challenges that came with staying home full-time. First and foremost, being able to care for my children 24/7 while they were infants was a wonderful blessing and I was so thankful that I was always around to see all of those precious moments and milestones unfold.
But at the same token, staying home 24/7 definitely took its toll on me, as I’m sure it does on most mothers. While the most common comment you’ll hear about stay-at-home mothers is that they don’t understand what it’s like to “really work”, I’ll just go ahead and completely bust that myth.
Being a stay-at-home mom is HARD work. You’re basically a full-time, round-the-clock caretaker, chef, maid, doctor, teacher, entertainer, and best friend whose payment isn’t in the form of a paycheck. Managing a household is no easy feat and while it may look glamorous from the outside looking in, stay-at-home moms rarely catch a break.
It doesn’t matter if a SAHM is up and down all night with a crying baby, because when morning comes and the other kids are up, she still has to take care of them- ALL day, and usually does this minus help from others. Mouths still need fed, dirty dishes and clothes still need washed, and there are most definitely always errands to run.
On the flip side, the first month I worked full-time outside of the home was one of the most depressing months of my life. I can remember being at work and constantly thinking about my children and all of the wonderful things they were doing that I unfortunately wasn’t witnessing. And of course the dreaded mom guilt made it worst. Crazy and irrational thoughts that my kids were going to forget all about me and stop loving me made me question why I wanted a career outside the home in the first place.
To stay-at-home mothers I’m sure it looks so appealing to get a “break” from it all by going to work, but the fact of the matter is “working” isn’t really a break. Mothers who work outside of the home wake up every day get their kids ready to go wherever they need to go, whether it be school or a babysitter, work all day, pick their kids up, cook, clean, and do whatever they need to do to tackle it again the next day. So glamorous, right? More like tiring.
The point of this post is most definitely not to say that one type of mother is better than the other, because in my opinion all mothers are rock-stars. Yep, you heard me rock-stars. The fact that we as mothers can accomplish the amount of tasks we do on a daily basis is seriously amazing.
Rather, the point of this post is to say that at the end of the day the one thing that we as mothers need is encouragement and support from each other. In the end we all have our struggles and challenges as mothers, and the last thing we need is judgement and negative comments from other people out there on the tough decisions we make as parents.
As mothers, we all make sacrifices for our children. Many women make the sacrifice to stay at home and raise their children, instead of being a two-income household, while others place their trust in others to watch their children while they go out and make a living for their family. In the end, both are honorable sacrifices and are 100% done out of love.
But too often, we as mothers feel that we are in a competition with each other, and I want to tell you today that this isn’t a race.
Today I’m challenging you to put a stop to the mom-judging, and instead I’m asking you to support each other and to remember that all mothers are amazing, regardless of their working status.
I’m asking you to tell the tired-eyed, overworked mother that she’s doing a great job and that what she does everyday matters.
Tell her that even though she feels overwhelmed and is on the verge of a breakdown, that everything is going to be okay, and that you’ve been there before. Tell her that her kids are so lucky and that one day they are going to be so proud of everything she has ever did for them. Tell her that she is so blessed and that no matter what anyone says, she’s a rock-star.
A little encouragement goes a long way, and I know I sure have appreciated all of the times in my life that people have told me these things.
Being a mother is the hardest job I have ever had. But it’s also the best job in the world, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
Thanks for stopping by!-Cara
Linking up on Family Fun Friday, Flaunt it Friday, That Friday Blog Hop, Dare to Share Saturday, Saturday Sparks, and No Rules Weekend Blog Party
This hit me hard. I’m a SAHM and sometimes I wish I could go to work just to get a break. Being a parent is HARD- no matter if you’re a working parent or a SAHP. This is awesome, I love it. I’m sharing! 🙂
Thank-you! I agree it is challenging either way, but we’re all just doing the best we can do. & Share away! 🙂
Having never been a parent, I don’t fully understand the magnitude of motherhood, but I can say that no matter what it looks exhausting. Anyone that does it, and survives, is a saint in my book.
Thank-you, Lana. It definitely has its challenges, but its very rewarding. 🙂
i’m a nanny for a sahm, and let me tell you, even though i am there to help, she is always working. like you said, it’s tough on either side of the coin. idk how y’all do it!
It is tough, definitely. Being a nanny is no walk in the park, though I’m sure 😉
Omg!!! So much yes!!! Judgy moms are the worst!!! I run a playgroup in my town and Ughh… Unfortunately judgy is more in than non -_- I myself lie to stay in the middle! If we can all have fun with our kiddos then nothing else matters 😉
I agree, Courtney!
Good points! Moms tend to be hard on each other and there’s really so many right ways to mother. Each family has to decide what works best for them and I hate feeling looked down on or get condescending remarks about my decision to be a SAHM while my kids are little. We reevaluate yearly as a family and I try to be supportive of all moms. Mothering is a wonderfully hard job no matter how you do it. Thanks for the reminder.
Great points, Whitney. It is a personal decision. Thanks for commenting!
So true! Yes we need to support other mothers- other women as much as we can! Everything in life has it’s pros and cons and most of us are just doing the best we can. 🙂
I agree Melissa! Doing the best we can is all we can really ever do.
So I am not a mother (yet) but what a great post that can be broadened to the spectrum of women just supporting one another in general. Stop judging one another, in general. Every woman has to make her own choices in life and should not have to justify those choices to others. Great post! Also, you’re gorgeous.
Aw, thank-you Daniela! I agree even further than just this topic specifically moms definitely need to support each other. It’s so much easier when you can talk to someone else who has been in your shoes and who can relate to what you are going through. Thanks for commenting! 🙂
Yes!!! This is fantastic! I’m a SAHM (my twins are 7mo), and there are so, so many ways in which we judge… especially each other! And maybe outselves. I’m grateful for what I get to do every day, but I went to the grocery store alone last night and it.was.AMAZING! But I did have a couple flashes of guilt… “what kind of mom am I if I love time away from my babies so much!?” But I have to stop myself in my tracks and remind myself that if a few hours away gives me a mental health break, I’ll be a better mom for it. We’re all just doing what we have to do, the best we can <3
That’s very true Katie, sometimes we are our own worst critic, and mom-guilt doesn’t help. But like you said, we all need mental breaks otherwise we’re too overwhelmed to give our children the love and attention that they need. As long as we’re doing our best, that’s all we can really do. Thanks so much for commenting 🙂
I love this post so much! As a working mom, I hear it all the time.. other moms (not friends) make little comments to me about working. (& I have heard coworkers comment about how easy it must be to stay at home) For me, LOTS of my close friends are stay at home mommas, and I know how much they do and how lonely they feel sometimes. I dont think there is any easier option. They are just different. But we are all just trying to do our best!
Exactly, Lauren. We are all just trying to do our best! Thank-you!
LOVE this! I feel like moms just can’t win, whether they’re a stay at home mom or a working mother people will totally judge. I’m not a mom yet, and I know that whatever I decide to do with working or not when my time comes will be my decision and will be hard work that I’ve never experienced before. Preach it gurlie <3
Thank-you! It’s a hard choice to make either way, but no one should ever judge us for it.
want to know what kills me? those who judge moms ARE OTHER MOMS. wtf, how does that make sense?
i pay no mind to that stupid chatter. the whole SAHM vs working moms is stupid and useless. we all do what we can with what we have. if you can stay at home, great! if you like to work, great! as long as you/your kids/husband are happy, then that’s all that matters and everyone else can suck it.
That’s why I felt something needed to be said because it’s other moms I constantly hear putting others down and I literally think it’s so stupid. If everyone would just worry about their own lives and business, they would be much happier.
A great point! All mommas are great mommas, and we all need to support each other no matter what.
I agree Kelsie!
Such and age old argument, right? I wonder if we will ever get over it? thanks for the post.
I honestly hope so, Heather. Thanks for commenting!
Even though im not a mom, my friend who is working mom has faced everything you say. I guess is pretty easy for outsiders to judge other people. People need to focus on their little lives and leave other people to do the same . Mothers are rockstars!
I completely agree Anna! 🙂
I’ll never understand why people care how other people choose to raise their children. People really need to get a life. I’m a full time attorney with two young kids and I know how hard it was to stay at home on maternity leave the first months after the girls were born. It’s difficult both ways, exactly like you said. Cheers!
Thank-you and well said! 🙂
I have also done both and have now been a SAHM for over 4 years. It is definitely hard both ways and I appreciate you writing both sides. My cousin just posted on Facebook the other day a meme that read:
“I hear you, Raising kids and running a house keep be busy too. I also have this little gig on the side called a full time job.”
I couldn’t believe that she could be so cruel knowing I was a stay at home mom. She wrote “no offense” but I took a huge offense to it! I get so sick of people acting like SAHM’s do nothing! Thanks for the encouragement and for supporting my new blog as well. I look forward to your comments everyday!!
Aw thanks, I enjoy reading your blog! 🙂 And, I think it is so easy for people to pass judgement when they’ve never been in the other position and when all they hear are all these untrue misconceptions. You and I both know it’s tough either way, and at the end of the day words of encouragement are what we all need.
Nadine sent me this post, and it was so perfect. I work outside the house and have since my babe was 12 weeks old! It is so hard to be away from him, and I definitely don’t need the judgment from others! I hate how we all just can’t support each other, especially when we all know how much we need it!
Oh how awesome of Nadine and thanks! As a working mom, it is so hard being away from your kids and I agree it makes it that much worse when people put in their unnecessary comments. Thanks so much for stopping by! 🙂
I 100% love this post! Why is there so much judgement that comes with motherhood??? While I dont have children yet, I cant imagine all the stress and guilt one would feel making the decision to stay home or work. Most households have to remain duel income to stay afloat. No one needs stress on top of all that of being judged by trying to provide a living for your family! Just the same as a stay at home mom isn’t a cake walk either! I wish we would all stop shaming mothers, shaming skinny people, shaming fat people, shaming those who go out and chase their dreams…and just support each other!!!
Beautifully said, Nadine! I’ve seen so many negative comments here lately that I just had to get all of this off my chest. It is so hard being a mom, so rewarding, but hard. And the part that makes it so hard is all of the negative judgement you get from others concerning the decisions you make. And I’m completely with you, the shaming needs to stop.
It is so hard doing both things. I am a SAHM 90% of the time as I work PRN as a nurse, so like 1-2 shifts every 2 weeks or so. I will definitely say that I think staying home is harder than being at work-I think there’s so much more responsibility being at home! However, there should never be judgement, as each family is doing what works best for them, and often times in today’s world, families where the mama stays home are making huge sacrifices to make that happen. Nothing is cheap, and only having one income is hard. On the other side though, families where both parents work are also sacrificing things, maybe not money, but time with their LOs. Its hard either way & being a parent is amazing and commendable no matter what your circumstances are with working or staying home 🙂 I hope other moms and read this and see that support is the most important thing!
I completely agree Jenn! I agree that being a parent is an amazing job and regardless of whether you stay at home or work outside the home, it is commendable either way. Have a great weekend!
Bless your heart, this is what so many mothers feel but don’t really know if they can say! Thank you for saying it so beautifully and thank you for the inspiration and encouragement you give mothers everywhere! Your blog is a bright spot in my day and I hope you have a wonderful weekend beautiful!
Aw thank-you so much!
This post really resonates with me. I always wanted to be a stay at home mum and even though my son is now 14 and out of the house from 8am -4pm I still want to be a stay at home mum. For so many years I felt so judged. I absolutely agree Mums (Moms) need support not judgement. We each do what we feel is the best thing for us and our kids. xx
I’m glad you enjoyed it, Wendy and I can definitely relate. Thank-you for commenting!
I love your blog. This is just what ALL moms need! I’ve only ever been a stay-at-home mom and I agree with all the points you brought up. On the other side, I can only imagine that being a working mom has challenges as well. I think we all need to support each other and lift each other up instead of tearing down. I loved your thoughts. All of them. Thanks so much for sharing. Have a safe snow weekend 🙂 and stay warm!
Aw, thank-you so much! I agree with you completely. Have a great weekend!
I got so tired of people telling me I was lazy because I chose to stay home and raise my kids. Now that they are grown and gone I still get this. I am just as busy now as before.
I completely understand, Candy. People have these preconceived notions about what it’s like to be a SAHM, and it is HARD. It’s also hard being a working mother, and we mothers have to stick together in encouraging each other.
Motherhood has so many challenges yet it’s full of so many incredible moments every single day. I was a mix between the stay-at-home mom and the working mom away from home. I’ve always had my own business working from home, which had it’s own set of unique challenges especially when my daughters (who are now grown) were babies and toddlers. As mothers we all need to support one another and realize that the the grass only looks greener on the other side of the fence until we get there!
I agree with you! Motherhood can be so challenging, and we need to uplift each other instead of putting each other down. Thank-you for commenting!
Great post! Being a parent is hard work, whether you stay at home or go out into the workforce. Judging sucks and I’m so over it. We need a little more kindness in this world!!
Thank-you! I’ve heard so much negativity towards both sides that I felt I needed to share my thoughts on the subject. We definitely need more kindness in the world.
I think being a mother, whether you are a stay at home mom or a working mom, is a hard job. It’s hard juggling all the tasks you are given but seeing your baby smile at the end of the day regardless will make it all worth it I imagine. 🙂
Exactly! Children are the greatest blessings and rewards!
A great reminder. There is no right and wrong, it really is what is best for each mom. I have done working out of the home, working from home and not working- each one brought struggles- but we do our best and try to raise our children the best we can. We all need to remember to be in the no judgment zone!
I completely agree!
I will never understand why people give each other such a hard time for the work outside or inside the home debate. Both are hard and both have their own pros/cons! Makes me sad that people judge so much for people making whatever decision is best for them…you’re definitely right on needing to support instead of judging!
I guess for me in being on both sides of the fence I try to make others realize that the grass isn’t always greener and that one is not better than the other. All mothers are awesome for doing what they are doing and I just want to help them realize that support is something that is definitely needed by all.
This is such a sad truth and it is so hard to hear comments toward mothers no matter what their decision is. Good for you for writing this and sharing some positive vibes!