The majority of articles take a hard stance to one side or the other. Choosing to stay at home apparently means you’ll have a tough time being your working spouse’s equal, and finding a job later on is next to impossible. Working means you have guilt about childcare, and are subjected to constant updates on why America’s childcare is so awful when you’re not around.
No one catches a break.
What I find interesting about all of these articles is that they are usually written by women, about women, for women. Working dads are rarely mentioned, never chastised. We are the only gender that continually picks apart and beats up our own choices, or just what life has handed us. I’ve yet to read something written by a man who repeatedly asks why men choose work over diapers or what stay at home dads plan to do when their children are teens.
I love at the end of the Huffington Post article how Melinda states, ” When moms said it was better for mothers to stay home with their kids, and these mothers did stay home with their kids, their children fared very well. When moms felt that it is OK to work and put kids in child care, and these moms did work and put their kids in child care, their kids did great too.”
This is something to think about, not just read and nod and move on. We hear it again and again, but when is it ever going to sink in? The choices we make that we are ok with – they benefit our children. I’ve been a nanny, a daycare supervisor, a teacher, and a mom. I work from home and employ a part-time sitter. I believe day care is an amazing setting for parents who view it with a positive attitude. I’ve seen stay at home moms who give up a high-ranking job and could care less. And I’ve seen the opposite; the effect that an unhappy, discontent parent has on their children and families.
I think the best thing we can do as women is to try to accept and love where we are now. Yes, think about the future and make some plans. But make it so that if you look back, you know that in those years you loved what you did. Working, staying at home, whatever. Nothing is for certain, no plans are concrete. Even if you chose something to guarantee a future or a family, it could all change in a split second.
Since you know your children benefit the most from a happy, content parent, then choose to love where you are now. Regardless of another article that questions your valid choices.