The Daycare Dilemma: Why I’m Not a Stay-At-Home Mom

workAs many of you know, I quit my full-time job in May in order to pursue my freelance writing and blogging career.  And ever since then, people have just assumed that my kids are staying home with me.  They often ask things like “aren’t you having a blast staying home with the kids?”  Or, they say, “Greg must be relieved that you’re staying home with the kids now.”  One older woman even told me that I would never regret leaving work to stay home with my kids.  “They grow up so fast,” she said.  “You’ll be so glad that you stayed home with them when you’re my age.”  Ummmm…….okay.  When this first started happening, I would just nod and smile and change the subject.  However, I’ve finally gotten to the point where I’ve decided that I am going to tell people the cold, hard truth.

My kids go to daycare.” 

Of course, I realize that people must find it really strange that my kids go to daycare while I work from home.  After all, I should be able to watch them while I work, right?  Isn’t that what all of the adorable stay-at-home moms in affluent communities do?  You know, they’re watching the kids, working, making recipes straight off Pinterest, and scrapbooking…or something.  At least that’s what they say on Facebook.  And if that’s the truth, then it’s f#C*king amazing!

I’m Inadequate at Multi-Tasking

Unfortunately, I wasn’t made to multi-task at fembot level.  And, I have found that I can only do a really good job when I do one thing at a time.  I can’t work on a serious project while making snacks every 20 minutes, trying to keep my kids from hitting each other, and answering at least 25 questions per hour.  So, I send my kids to daycare.  And, although I miss them during the day occasionally, I don’t feel bad about it.  Here’s why:

  • I can earn more money if they’re at daycare- I could probably get some writing done if my kids stayed home.  However, there is no way that I could complete anywhere near the number of projects that I work on during full-time hours.  Since my kids go to daycare, I’m able to take on a lot of paid work and use that money to pay the bills.  Working also allows me to save a lot of money for the future.  As my kids get older, I know that they’re going to want things – big things – like cars, college degrees, and weddings.  I want to be prepared when that day comes.
  • I am able to get mundane chores done- Do you know what’s hard to do at my house?  Laundry.  My four-year-old enjoys unfolding clothes and my two-year-old thinks it’s fun to throw them in the air.  The good news is that I’m now able to do dishes and laundry during the day when it’s much, much easier.
  • I’m able to exercise- One of the best things about working from home is that I’m able to exercise on a daily basis.  When I worked at my old 9-5 job, it was nearly impossible to get a reasonable amount of exercise in…if any at all.  Working from home means that I’m able to drop what I’m doing and go on a brisk walk or jog at any time that I need a break.
  • I have no desire to be a stay-at-home mom- I like working during the day and doing the “mom” thing on the evenings and weekends.  Why?  It allows me time to just…be me.  I like having my own interests and time to pursue those interests.  And while I do think that some women are naturally equipped to be with their children 24/7, I know that I’m not one of them.  And, I’m okay with that.
  • I love earning money- Life is so unpredictable and I love knowing that I would be able to make a living if something were to happen to Greg.  There are so many things on my bucket list….and most of them cost a ton of cash.  But, I have to start somewhere, right?

Choosing to stay at home with the kids or work is an entirely personal decision.  And, there’s no “wrong” or “right” answer.  Everyone just has to do what works best for their unique situation.  And while the thought of staying home with my kids does sound rather appealing, I know from experience that the reality is quite different.  A lot different.  I sure do love my kiddos but I just don’t want to be with them 24/7, and that’s why I’m not a stay-at-home mom.

Have you ever wanted to be a stay-at-home parent?  If so, why?  If not, why not?

 
About Holly

Holly Johnson is a wife, mother of two, and frugal lifestyle enthusiast. She is the co-founder of Club Thrifty and a staff writer at Get Rich Slowly, Frugal Travel Guy, and U.S. News and World Report's "My Money Blog." Holly has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Kiplinger Personal Finance, Fox Business, and Daily Finance.

Comments

  1. I have not personally wanted to be a stat at home parent. That said, I don’t have any kids. I have spent time around them however, and find them to be sometimes fun and mostly a lot of work. I can hardly get work done at my office some days due to coworkers constantly bugging me. I think I would have a similar set up to yours.

  2. Holly, I think it’s awesome that you know what you want and that you’ve chosen to do things the best way for your family, even if it’s not what everyone might agree with. Working from home with the kids home is a super difficult thing to balance. The one problem I come across most often is trying to find balance b/t being with the kids and doing my work. Lots of guilt there, when I allow it to be.

  3. Our goal is to be stay at home parents. We hope to both be at home with out kids once we’re financially independent, at least for 5-6yrs until they’re in school. We actually hope to do some extended travel during this time, since once they’re in school it’ll be more difficult to go live somewhere else for 1-2 months. This is a very personal choice of course and we don’t have kids yet, so this could all change in the future. But thats the plan for now and we’re putting in a lot of hard work to make it happen!

  4. I think your decision totally makes sense. While I’ve said many times before that I would like to work from home full-time, that wouldn’t include taking care of the (future) kids. I wouldn’t be able to get nearly as much done and it would be incredibly frustrating, so I definitely understand where you are coming from!

    • I would rather work during the day and be with the kids at night. That way, no one is getting 50%. Work gets 100% during the day and the kids get 100% at night!

  5. I am here with you on that one Holly. As much as I love my little Twinkie I just wont get WORK done if she is home. Between her waking up, crying, getting off schedule, and me playing with her nothing would ever get done. I work a lot of hours and just because I am home doesnt mean im not working and making money. By the time my little one and wifey gets home I am done with almost everything.

  6. I’m with you 100%. I love my child but I have no desire to be a stay at home mom. What you do (freelance) isn’t easy and I know it requires attention, kids are a diatraction! If I was ever fortunate enough to do what you do kiddo would remain in daycarefor the same reasons you listed!

  7. I totally agree with you Holly. If we have left our full time job and started working from home does not necessary make us full time stay at home mom. It is a good idea to send your kids to daycare while you peacefully finish your work as well as daily household chores. This also gives some space to yourself which is very much needed

  8. I don’t have kids, but I know 100% that I wouldn’t want to be a stay at home parent. Fortunately, my husband would be an excellent stay at home Dad, so if we could afford for one parent to stay at home, he’d be the best choice, not me.

    • Ha! Greg would be a really great stay-at-home parent as well. Unfortunately, that wouldn’t work for my work situation either. They would be too noisy!

  9. We’re in a similar situation here with Baby Romanian and we’ll clearly send him to day care. In our case the shock will be even greater, probably, because I am self employed since 2008 and I convinced my wife to take this step too a couple of months before giving birth, just to see how things go. Things went well so she plans to never return to her old job… I can only imagine the shock on people’s faces when they will hear that it’s 2 of us staying at home and unable to look after the kid. If it were that simple doing both, the companies would allow us to come to work with our kids and both work and take care of them, right?

    • Exactly! People just assume that you can take care of your kids while working. The reality is that it’s very difficult to do that…unless your “job” is making cupcakes or something!

  10. I really want to be a work-at-home-mom, but I still see us sending our kids to daycare or a nanny occasionally in order to efficiently get work done.

  11. Doing the laundry is the worst! It just grows exponentially with each little one and they get some crazy sense of joy by making an absolute mess out of it. That said, I could not agree more that it’s a personal decision and you have to do what works best for you and your family. Many don’t know and choose one direction or another and end up regretting it in the long run.

    • Yes, and the grass is always greener. Sometimes I want to say “screw work” and cuddle with the kids all day. Unfortunately, that doesn’t generate any income!

  12. No, SAHP would not work for us as a family. We both spent yesterday with our adorable one-year old who either has roseola or a mild case of non-contagious measles from the vaccine. That means that she was feeling just fine– her normal adorable active destructive self. She got up at 7am, took a 30 min nap during the day, another 2 hour nap at 9pm, and then finally dropped off for good well after midnight. We’re both grateful that she was ok’d for daycare tomorrow, and not just because it means she’s healthy and non-contagious.

    I understand that most kids sleep more than ours do, so there’s more of a push to spend hours with them during the day. But ours need the stimulation of daycare just to get to sleep by 10pm each night and to keep from destroying the house. We love them deeply, but man can they be exhausting.

    • Yes, they are exhausting and that’s another reason that I don’t want to be with them 24/7. But, if I wasn’t working at all I might feel differently.

      • I wouldn’t! I need a vacation from my weekends and evenings.

        It will get better once DC2 learns how to read. We hope.

        • LOL. Have you ever gone on vacation with your kids and came back feeling like you needed a vacation from your vacation? That happens to me EVERY TIME.

          Honestly, there are some days when I can be with them all day and love every minute. But, there are other days when I want to get away from them at 10:00 a.m. It just depends on their mood!

          • DH: Today is a day of wet poos
            DC2: Poo!

            DC1 has been pretty easy to spend time with since he was 4… which is about when we starting thinking about having a second. So in theory in 3 years we’d be able to handle SAHP… but at that point it’s time for kids to start kindergarten. Actually, DC1 didn’t become manageable until he started kindergarten… I’m remembering now that that’s one of the reasons we started him early.

            Honestly my kids are delightful and mostly happy, but they’re just so busy and so energetic and so never taking a rest. They’re too much for any one person. Even the college kids we had couldn’t keep up on their own.

          • DH: Guess who I just found three rungs up on the spice cabinet? She was reaching for the rose water with one hand and holding on with the other. We’re going to have to take the spice rack down. Oops, there she goes again, better catch her.

          • While we were working on the spice rack just now, our son was keeping an eye on her, when DH went to find her again, she was sitting in the middle of our son’s room, naked, with her diaper in one hand clapping her hands together, “yay”. “What happened to her diaper?” DH asked. “I dunno,” my son replied, “she took it off”.

            Oops, now she’s sticking something in her mouth, has big brother’s pants in her other hand, and is loudly complaining that we’d promised her a bath last night and it’s bath time. Better supervise that.

        • Sounds like it’s time for bed time at your house! I can relate. I feel like my kids get into EVERYTHING. It’s so fun and I enjoy them so much….but I also love when they’re asleep.

          You know what they say…”everything’s great after eight!”

  13. This article is perfect timing. Mrs. Warrior, an acupuncturist, is working at a new office. She started her own business and was able to work whatever hours she wanted and be home with baby warrior all the time. However when this opportunity came up, she didn’t want to pass it up as it will help us out financially a ton, but she’ll loss about 20 hours per week with the little guy. She feels “bad” for having our son at daycare or with a nanny when she could theoretically continue her practice and be home all of the time. After all was decided, she realized that missing out on 20 hours per week of his life won’t be the end of the world seeing as some of those hours he will be with me and not the nanny and the money will definitely help us start saving a lot more.

    Realize that you’re not alone on this. We feel the tug and pull and guilt of each way over the other.

    The Warrior
    NetWorthWarrior.com

  14. Holly, do you think you’d change your mind if the daycare options in your area were considerably more expensive? For example, where I live it’d be roughly $2,000 per month to send two kids to daycare. I believe I remember you stating you pay $125 per week (not sure if that’s for both kids or not). In any case, that’s still a sizable difference and I’m curious to know if you think that’d make things different.

    • Yes, perhaps. If I had to pay $2,000 per month for daycare, I would probably go down to writing part-time and keep the kids home part of the time or some variation of that.

      Or, better yet, I would probably move.

  15. You don’t need to justify it to anybody. It’s perfectly find that you need to .. you know, work during the day. After all you are a freelancer! Nobody would question a father if he stayed at home and his kids went to daycare.

  16. i have 2 kids in full tme daycare, though my 5 year old is just in b/a care now as she’s in kindergarten. When i went back to work after my mat leave with her, i was heartbroken. when i went back to work after my second, after having a year off (1 year mat leaves in Canada) with 2 kids under 2, i was not so heartbroken, lol. It’s tough, tough work being at home. Sure, i feel guilty a lot of days when i drop them off, sure i wish i had more time with them. But i feel we provide a very great home life for them and part of that is that i work. Daycare is crazy expensive here, but my job pays very well and job security is never a given, so i work to stay in the market, and bring in a good income. As they get older our costs are dropping and once my son is in school full time next fall, our costs will go down by half, i’ll still have my well paying job, that will allow us good opportunities for the future. People get VERY judgemental about the whole SAH thing, the thing that bugs me the most is ‘why would you let strangers raise your kids’. Um, i’m not letting strangers ‘raise’ my kids anymore than sending my child to school is letting a teacher raise her. They attend a very good, licensed child care centre and what they learn is truly remarkable. I don’t judge those who stay home and make that choice, i wish others wouldn’t judge us working moms either. Every family needs to do what works best for them.

  17. I don’t have kids but when I do, I don’t think I would want to be a stay at home parent. At the same time, I would like a career that gives me the flexibility to be with my kids when I need/want to.

  18. Holly,
    I’m impressed that you can buck the ridiculous societal norms and say this honestly!
    My wife is a stay-at-home mom and I think we had this idealized sense of how amazing it would be, and honestly it’s incredibly difficult for her. Being a parent 24-7 is the single most difficult job that exists, and it just never ends.
    She also gave up a promising and lucrative career as a CPA, so the decision for her to stay at home for 9 years in total will cost us easily $500,000+ extra that would have been sitting in our bank account at the end of that period that now will not (since we are saving significatly with just my salary, I know all her after-tax money would have gone straight to savings).
    Anyone who thinks it’s an easy decision, or the only decision, to stay at home with the kids is absolutely fooling themselves!

    • That’s a ton of cash! But, only you guys can make that decision!

      • Yeah, it absolutely was a personal decision that we wanted her to stay home with the kids. But honestly, if we had considered the ramifications ($500K!!), who knows if the decision would have been different?

        You always hear those ridiculous things like “it costs $1 million to raise a child to 18″, which I usually think is absurd, but I guess in our case it’s somewhat true when considering the opportunity cost of my wife not working…

  19. I don’t have kids, but I do know I won’t be a stay at home mom if we ever have kids. I have been a nanny before, and kids are crazy energetic. They drive my crazy after a couple of hours. The only reason I last through my nanny shifts if thinking about how much money I would get paid.

  20. I’m honestly not sure what I’d try to do. Luckily not kids as of yet, so I don’t have to divide anytime soon. I hope that we’d be able to make the decision based on a want instead of a financial need.

  21. My wife is staying home for now…not sure of the future though. Well the baby is only 5 weeks old! As for going back to her old job, it doesn’t make sense financially and because of her hours (she was a preschool/daycare teacher! But they don’t take babies under 2). My wife thinks it’s good for kids to socialize with other kids so daycare/preschool provides that. As for working at home and watching the kids…I think that’s 2 full time jobs done concurrently…pretty difficult!

  22. I think it’s important to have work-life balance. If you truly could be a stay at home parent without the need of your freelance income, then that could be an option. But working is working, whether it’s at home or not and you can’t work a job and take care of your kids at the same time.

    Plus I think it’s important for kids to spend time with friends at daycare. I spent my life in daycare/after-school care and I had a blast with all the kids I was with.

  23. My wife is a stay at home Mom for Thing 1 and Thing 2 and she works a whole helluvalot harder than I do.

    But it’s what she wants to do, and that’s what it comes down to in the end. If she chose a different path, I would support her in that too.

    Making the right choice for you and your family is what matters.

  24. Freelancing with kids sure isn’t easy. My wife has been doing that for the past couple of years and she’s halved her hours, because she’s only able to work when our little one has her naps (which doesn’t always happen) and at nights, when I can help her out. Daycare’s expensive in our area, but she’s begun dropping off our little one at grandma’s for a couple of days a week, so she can get a little more work in, so we’re not spending so many night hours working, after our little one goes to bed. It’s definitely a tough balance!

  25. I like how you’re able to own and be honest about your reasons for your kids being in daycare, especially with pursuing your interests and still being your own person. If I worked at home, I would do the same thing as you, and I have some friends who even have nannies with their kids while they work at home. I think it would be overwhelming to juggle all those things on your own!

  26. It is next to impossible to get anything done when I’m home with my kids. Cleaning the house, laundry, dishes, cooking…all of them take 10 times longer when the kids are there.

  27. It’s impossible to write with a kid around. I can do easy chores without too much problem. It’s a little game for our guy to run around and help out. Yes, it takes longer to do laundry and vacuum, but it’s not too bad.
    Now that he’s two, it’s really difficult though. He drives me nuts and I really need some help.
    He’s starting preschool (3 days/week) next September. :)

  28. While I’m at home and so are Nick and Autumn, I’m so glad they’re 18. I couldn’t imagine trying to get anything done in my career and take care of children. I’m not cut out for the huge job of being stay-at-home dad (which is what many of my friends thought I was becoming when I sold my biz!).

  29. I’m really glad you wrote on this subject! I have wondered how, if I had kids, could write, manage, etc while having kids running around, needing food, screaming, napping at different times, etc.

    I am curious, do you have the kids at daycare during a typical workday hours (8-5) or a different amount of time?

    • Yes! They typically go to daycare 9-5. I usually work a split shift, 7-3 then 8-10 pm after they go to bed. This means that I usually have 3-5 pm to myself to get other things done.

  30. I think it’s a problem with the way society views women. As much as things have changed, everyone wants to keep lumping us all into the same categories, as if we’re all the same person, and what works for one should work for all:

    -If you want to be a stay at home mom, you’re seen as lacking motivation, or being lazy.
    -If you work, you’re seen as uncaring, less maternal, or materialistic.
    -If you don’t get married and have children before 30, you’re seen as selfish and career obsessive.
    -If you get married young and have children, you’re seen as immature and unstable.

    And on and on. What works for one woman/family, isn’t what works for others. There is a lot that goes into the choices we make. Some women make great stay at home moms, while others are better mothers when they can work. And there’s nothing wrong with not having children at all. Some people meet their soul-mate at a young age, and some of us are still waiting. We aren’t all the same person, living the same experiences. People should do what works best for them. There’s no right way to live life!

    Good for you Holly for being honest about what works best for your family! You’re a better mother for it, and your children will benefit from the social interactions with other children and adults. There’s nothing wrong with that!

    • PREACH!

      So true….we all have to create life that we’re happy living…and that means entirely different things to different people.

  31. I think it makes perfect sense because that’s what we did too. :D My business is not out of my home but my husband does work from home and our children were in daycare. I think there is a huge difference between working from home and being a stay at home Mom.

  32. Anytime I work from home with my son, I can’t get much done. I only can get it done when he is napping and at night when he is asleep. It just doesn’t work very well. I understand your decision completely and think it was the right one for you.

  33. I love this article and the comments. Hooray for being honest about parenting issues, despite social pressures to love every aspect of parenting 24/7.

    On a broader level, I think some degree of outsourcing is good financially (and as you noted, good for our peace of mind, too). This is one of the tricky aspects of personal finance: figuring out what really ought to be performed in house and what can be outsourced. If you have side hustles with no set ceiling on income, are you better off outsourcing daycare, home cleaning, yardwork, etc. etc.?

    I can appreciate those who follow the MMM approach and insource just about everything, but there have to be areas where specialization wins out.

    • I agree. I make enough money that it makes more sense to outsource some things ( yard work, daycare) so that I can continue to earn. This is especially true since I’m self-employed. The more I work, the more I earn.

  34. Holly–I like this blog more and more! I work full-time (not from home) and my son has been in daycare since he was 6 months old. My husband works (also not from home), and his salary is a 1/3 of mine. He stayed home with our son (month 5-6) and made the decision it was not for him. I find it ironic that no one faults _him_ for that decision, don’t you?

    • Yep, totally!

      As women, we’re supposed to “want” to stay home for some reason, while men would generally be looked down up for staying home with the kids. It’s very strange.

  35. It’s interesting that people assume you can do real work at home with kids. I only have one so far, and I DEFINITELY couldn’t do my job if I was in charge of him too. I can barely even do it when I’m home and I’m not in charge of him. I have to go hide in our room. Do people think that kids just sit on the floor and stare at the wall all day?

    • Ha! I don’t know. My kids are 2 and 4 so they’re all over the place. It’s adorable when I’m not working, but makes it very hard to concentrate when I’m actually trying to get things done!

  36. I’ve been a stay at home mom for nearly 7 years. I liked parts of it enough–though in retrospect, I realize I was always looking for something to do– trying on different “hats” trying to figure out what kind of mom I wanted to be. But now? I’m going slightly crazy. Because we still have the toddler, I’ve started to look for a daycare that I can place him in part-time while my middle one is also in preschool. I can’t get anything done that involves….well, pretty much anything –with kids in the house. Let alone have time to be me. Like you said, it’s a constant shuffle of cleaning up after a mess, getting someone food, breaking up an argument or…laundry. Dishes. Grocery shopping. None of which can be done productively or in the manner they need to be addressed. And when school is in session!? Ugh. Forget about it. I’m a much happier mama when things are neat and orderly…and when I have some time to be me. And, no, I don’t scrapbook. I do bake and cook an awful lot– though that is a money saving strategy and personal hobby. :) While I’m in transition, my husband gives me a evenings “off” to do what I please and to get a much needed break.

  37. Holly, great post! I would LOVE to work from home, but I don’t think I want to be a stay-at-home mom. I enjoy “me time” and time alone in general. Plus, like you were saying, how much work can you ACTUALLY get done with the kids there?

    I’m wondering, for someone who would like to eventually work from home, do you have any specific posts about your journey and how you actually made the switch?

  38. Hey Holly and good for you :) You’re able to provide for them at a greater level when they get older AND you can give them tons of quality time now when they get home from daycare. Plus, daycare provides a varied and social environment than the home so they probably appreciate having both environments in their lives…even if they can’t figure that out just yet :)

    I bet you that June Cleaver would do exactly what you are doing if she was a real person and living in the Internet Age!

    Take care and all the best.

    Lyle

  39. I enjoyed taking care of our children when my wife worked on Saturdays or evenings, but not enough to stay home. I will look forward to visit future grandchildren, but then go home.

  40. I don’t have the patience for kids to begin with, so if I did have them, I would probably send them off to day-care as well. Plus, you said day care is pretty affordable for you. It may be a different story if I found the costs were outlandish. I am sure having them around can be a constant distraction and you bring up a good point that you’re probably making way more money without them there. Also, “me time” is always a good thing. I am not sure if I would want to be around my hypothetical kids 24/7. It is probably easier to be a stay-at-home parent without having another full-time job to attend to.

  41. If you are working from home, having your kids there would be like taking them to work if you had a traditional job. No one would expect that. I think people assume that if you aren’t at an establishment of some sort for work, you must be watching soap operas and doing your nails at home. Some people were meant to be a 24/7 stay at home parent, but I’m not one of them either. I would never judge someone for whatever choice they make, unless of course, you are the one with your 2 year old out shopping at WalMart at 11 PM.

  42. I think I would be a sah parent, but that may change when I actually have kids haha. Between naps and them sleeping super early I would squeeze a bit of work but think I’d be happy living on less and just enjoying them. I even think about homeschooling, but completely understand it’s not for everyone.

  43. I’m like you Holly. My kids are the most important thing to me but there is no possible way that I could ever work from home with them. I don’t start working at night until they go to bed. I may have just landed the freelance job that will allow me to work at home but the kids will still be going to the babysitter. I also think it’s good for them to be with other kids their age everyday.

    I never went to daycare or a babysitter and I was always so shy and timid in school. I like that my kids are getting plenty of social interaction at a young age.

  44. You’re really brave for putting it out there. And I have to agree, not all women are cut up to become stay at home moms. While some find the ultimate bliss doing exactly that, there are also those who feels more of value by working for the family and earning extra money. To be honest your current set up is quite like a compromise to do a little of both. So good for you! :)

  45. I have a friend who does full-time online writing, which makes her work from home. What I hear from her often is even though the job makes it possible to work from home and look after kids, sometimes it’s more difficult because she can’t concentrate especially when her kids are noisy and not in the mood.

  46. Sounds like you know what you like and don’t like which is great. I totally agree that I’m not sure I’d be able to stay home full-time with my kids. My wife on the other hand thinks that she’ll want to and be totally fine with it. To each their own. You just need to find out what works for you.

  47. Holly, I love your honesty and how you are doing what is right for you and your family. We do not have children, but we do a lot of work from home. If we did have children, next to none of that would get done. I would feel guilty for saying, “Just a minute!” and “Mommy’s busy!”

    I think one of the best things a parent can do for a child is have their own passions. Your children are very fortunate to have you showing them that it’s ok to do your own thing and not cave to what others think you should do…because you’ll be much better off in life if you do what is right for you rather than jump through hoops trying to figure out what’s “right” based on some random people out “there” – wherever there is!

  48. Thank you for your honesty. It is hard to find on the topic of working / child care. I have been a Stay at Home mom for many, many years. I would not change that decision. It was right for me. However, it was really, really hard. People want to act like you are having fun and being on vacation every minute.

  49. I’m no where near the “stay at home mom” phase of my life because I don’t even have kids. I think I might want to stay at home with them (if/when I have them) for at least a few years, but that might change given my financial situation, career progression etc. I guess right now the judgement from others is around “Well don’t you want to have kids?”

  50. Wait, only 25 questions an hour? I think I’m up to 180! ;) Great post – I’ve been struggling with guilt over not wanting to stay home anymore with my 2.5yo and 7mo. I have a business that recently took off, and trying to manage that along with the kids is driving me insane. I’m seriously considering upping my daughter’s preschool to full-time (she is 3 days/week now) and putting my son in daycare. Maybe it sounds selfish, but I can’t bear the thought of my entire 30s being dedicated to babies, bad hair days and sweatpants.

  51. Betsy Vara says:

    After reading most of your thoughts its 100% clear that you do not want to be a full time mother. You really care about what YOU want and all your choices revolve exactly around what you want and what makes you happy. I hate to break your happy bubble but putting kids on daycare is not the best for them. But clearly, your comfort and happiness and money bring you more satisfaction than taking care of your kids. Its terribly exhausting to be a sahm and theres no money, so your heart has to be in a place of self sacrifice and you must give everything of yourself to be patient and loving when you want them gone to relax. I just dont agree that getting rid of your kids full or part time each day is right. Please do not disrespect sahm mothers who make cupcakes because they are practicing and are developing qualities of a good mother. Someone who is patient, loving and giving not someone who pushes them away because she cant stand them. Being a good sahm is hard. You have to exercise serious discipline to not blow up all the time. But if you never practice you never develop it. Notice i say a Good sahm. I dont agree that doing whats best for You translates into whats also best for everyone.

    • Just because YOU love being a stay-at-home mom doesn’t mean that everyone does. My choices don’t revolve around what makes me happy. All of my family’s choices are OUR CHOICES and they revolve around what makes our family work, and what’s best for all of us. My kids love daycare and they’re happy to go there every day. They get to play with other kids and do things that they wouldn’t be able to do if they were here with me all day.

      There is no “right way” to be a mother. Millions of mothers around the country send their kids to daycare so that they can provide. Are you really saying that all of those mothers are “wrong” and your way is the only right way?

      Your comment is incredibly misinformed and reminds me why I don’t get along with most women in the first place. This isn’t a mothering contest. You’re not “winning.” We all want different things in life and it’s okay for different people to reach different conclusions on what is best for them.

      I’m an independent woman and I also like to earn my own money. I’m not beholden to anyone, including my husband, and I don’t want to make him shoulder the entire burden of our family’s expenses either. I like contributing.

  52. Reading this just makes me glad I had a mom that chose to be with us 24/7, and that I am choosing the same. I really do feel sorry for your children. I really do :,(

    • Well, if it makes you feel better to feel bad for children you’ve never met because their mom has a job, then good for you. I feel sorry for your kids that their mother is so incredibly quick to judge other people she doesn’t even know. Hopefully they will learn to be more open-minded than you are.

      • I’m sorry if I’ve offended you, I truly am. I just wish your little ones had you with them throughout the day. Maybe I’m projecting my experiences on you – I just know I loved having my mom around growing up, and it just mad me sad for your kids. If they’re happy with it, as you are, you know that better than any random internet stranger… although I like to think of myself as a normal person ;)

        • I’m not offended.
          The world is made up of all kinds of different people, and not everyone is cut out to be a stay-at-home parent. I honestly have no desire to be with my kids 24/7. I love being a mom, but I have never been ready to give up my career or my personal interests. You cannot possibly believe that any mother who chooses to work is doing a disservice to their children. Women make up 47% of the workforce!

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