As I write this, there is a media malay going on about a topic near and dear to my heart : stay at home moms.
I’m glad this has come up. And I feel I must say something about being a stay at home mom.
There are many stereo-types about SAHMs. We eat bon-bons and watch soap operas all day. We are subservient to our husbands. We are uneducated. We contribute nothing outside our home, nothing to society. We live in bubbles and are ignorant to issues in the world. Our husbands have six-figure jobs. We have it easy. Yet, we are repressed.
Ugh. Where do I begin?
First, I believe that the feminist movement has vilified and minimized the role of the SAHM. They had to do that to promote their cause. I also believe that God has given all mothers the desire to maintain a household and raise children. I cannot tell you how many times I have heard working moms say that they really wish they could be home with their little ones. With that said, I understand that many women have no choice but to work, and I understand that a job is nice to have. I still look in the paper for part time work from time to time, just for the fun of it. So I do not look down on or disagree with working moms by any stretch of the imagination.
Now on to the stereotypes.
I work all day and often into the night. Cleaning, cooking, managing finances, running errands, teaching my children, keeping them busy, calming concerns, chasing, dressing, bathing, laundry… need I go on? I hop on the computer now and then for a few minutes for some me-time. I watch TV while folding laundry and maybe, MAYBE one show after the kids are in bed… if I can manage to stay awake through it. Rosie the Riveter has nothing on me. And I personally find soap operas trashy.
My husband did not demand me to stay at home with my children. Actually, I had to insist on it. We are partners in everything. There isn’t much that doesn’t go through me as well. We have mutual love and respect for each other. He never gives me to-do lists: he knows I am too busy to do them. But I do give him the freedom to make the final decisions in our home. Not only is it his God-given role, but I don’t want that responsibility anyways.
I have one year left in my history degree. I can go back and get it whenever I want. Because of what I learned in my education classes in college, I am convinced that me being a SAHM is the best thing I can do for them. I know how to research and use my almost-degree every day.
I am my husband’s right hand. He helps run our family business, and I have to do things all the time to help out. I also am active in my church. Plus with my flexible schedule, I can and do do many things that working moms just can’t fit into their schedule. Most volunteer work is probably done by SAHMs because they have the flexibility for it.
The internet is a marvel. And something that most SAHMs use. Every day. Sometimes too much. We know things that are going on around us. They affect us. We care about the issues because we are keen on how they will affect our children. I care how they will affect our business. Just trust me on this one.
Me staying at home is a sacrifice. We are not wealthy. And if we were, so what? It’s wonderful and a blessing for those who have wealth to be able to let the mom stay home and take care of her children. The whole wealth argument is really not relevant to the discussion. But I can tell you that most SAHMs do not have a lot of expendable income. They shop at Wal-Mart. Their kids wear hand-me-downs. They buy everything on sale.
And the big argument about repression. Is being a SAHM always fun and enjoyable? No. Does it get boring sometimes? Yup. But I have the freedom to change things up when it gets that way. That’s right, I used the word “freedom”. This is not the 1950’s. There are so many more options available to today’s housewife. If you are a repressed SAHM today, you make the choice to be that way. Besides, the so-called “repression” of yesteryear was not as widespread as feminists would have everyone believe. They define it as any unfulfilled dreams or desires. The funny thing is, most feminists are always looking for more and never satisfied with their state. I think it is called life.
Above all these things, though, I see Scriptures that show me that I am where I belong. It sounds archaic and offensive to some, but I know it is the right thing. The Proverbs 31 woman was a housewife, and an excellent one. Yet she was enterprising and a great influence wherever she went. And was esteemed more valuable then rubies. Rubies cost a pretty penny. I know that God holds SAHMs in high esteem, and frankly that is all the esteem I need.