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My family strongly disapproves of SAHms... and let's me know it.

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

This is a vent mostly. I know my family is less than thrilled that I chose to be a SAHM for the first few years of my childrens' lives (it will be 6 years overall of not "working"). I'm glad that we can afford it, and I feel it is important to me that I can be there for the kids and do not think I'm wasting my time nor education (their thoughts on it). They think pretty lowly of moms and homemakers as those lower kinds of work should be left to... uneducated or unsmart people. They never say it directly, but I get the drift, plus when I was growing up my mom constantly complained about those lazy dumb housewives who are only that, and don't have a real job or education and hence cannot realize themselves and so on and on and on. Oh here's another gem, only oppressed housewivies stay at home, a rationally thinking woman goes out to work. Sigh.

 

I bring it up today as I got a Christmas call from my sister and she's a very unhappy person. She went to med school and now teaches at the university but cannot find a specialty she likes so she's been in residency limbo for 6 years and complains that her contracts are only ever 12 months and she has to work overtime all the time blablabla. she could have chosen to just do one specialty already and be in her own practice by now... But the point is, she has a son as old as mine and she complains how she works and is a mom, so she has it so much harder than me. Btw, what do I do all day anyways? Do I ever do something intellectual? No? Don't I get bored? Are you sure you don't regret that second child (she asked that like 5 times, and no I don't regret my lovely daughter)? I asked her if her husband helps her out when they come home from work, and the answer was yes. I don't get help for the record cause my DH is gone for about 70% of the month, but it is what it is. She then proceeded to tell me that next Saturday her hubbie won't be home but she would never want to be alone at home with her son so of course as every weekend she'll crash at my parent's house. Which means she will do whatever and my parents watch her son all day long. All of that sounds so unhealthy and unhappy to me, and I know she is just trying to make me feel bad because she feels bad, but it still sucks. I hate how polarized this view is, and I was tempted to say oh all day long I sit on the couch and watch talkshows with the kids, and then I order pizza. And I think my IQ fell by 85 points in the last week, hm. Why can't she/they let me live like I want? What is it with families not accepting choices? At least my paretns stopped saying anything to me, they really did, but my sister has to be all negative and such. Again, I know it is because she's unhappy and unstable, but I have to vent somewhere.... Thinkign about this I actually feel bad and concerned for her very unstable emotional life - and it sounds like she doesn't even want to be with her son, and hearing her asking me if I regret my daughter makes me think she regrets being a mom at all. Thanks for listening. 

post #2 of 7

Ouch, that would really piss me off too!  I don't have any advice, but that would infuriate me.  I consider it a privilege to be a SAHM and I am fortunate that both my mom and MIL were SAHMs (though would probably give me endless guilt trips if I did work!).

post #3 of 7
Repeat after me.... "our family is our main priority right now". Thank them for their concern and then try to shrug it off. I've been home 15 years now but I keep up with current events, science topics I'm interested in and I belong to two brainy book clubs. Just live a good life.. that's the best revenge of all sometimes.
post #4 of 7

I like this quote:  "Nothing in life can compensate for failure in the home." That usually shuts people up! ;)  I've personally worked full time and been a SAHM on and off with both my kids. You do what you have to do and what you need to do. I feel blessed to have had my mother at home when I was little and we are very, very close. So are all 3 of my other siblings... even though a couple of hit rock bottom in their lives. They always end up turning to my mother and wanting the lives they had a small children for their own. Her example of sacrifice, love, and affection brought them back. I've never heard anyone say, "Oh, I wish sooo much I worked when my children were little...I feel like that time was wasted." I think the more time you're able to spend with your children when they are young lays the foundation for security and a knowledge of who they are for the rest of their lives. 

post #5 of 7

Just wanted to say that I am a university professor who CHOOSES to be a SAHM :) Take that close minded family! So much for us all being uneducated and oppressed!

 

Your sister sounds miserable and unhappy, don't let that rub off on your family. Pity her and leave it at that. It sounds like you are a wonderful momma and love staying at home.

post #6 of 7

We still hear it about DH staying home and me having to work only half the month.  How can you survive?  Shouldn't a man work?  HA!  If they knew how little I did and how much he does they would totally take a dump on me.   He loves his home life/job.  I love mine.  And we show it.  We're happy and we love our life.  Just show it.  Let them know how happy you are and how much you love your life.  Raising your own children is a lot of fun.   Though we played a nasty trick on them and told them daddy was getting a full time job.  Little DD was so worried about her after school snack and who would brush her hair and spray her sparkle spray in her hair every morning?  We couldn't even laugh she sounded so sad. 

post #7 of 7

I'm so sorry to hear your family dump on you like that OP.  My family did the same to me the first few years I SAH.  I went to post secondary, got a degree, was told I had a high IQ, and had a very well paying job.  My family thought that I was throwing that all away to have a family and to stay at home taking care of them.

 

However, my kids are a bit older and we homeschool while Dh works full time, so I HAVE to be here for the kids.  I pointed out to my parents how much daycare/after school care would be for 2 kids, and the fact that Dh's and my work hours would have meant that we would have had problems finding someone to look after the kids in the late evenings and weekends.  My entire salary would have gone towards childcare, not to mention that the kids would have been miserable.

 

Our lives are so much simpler once we made the decision for me to stay home. 

 

Perhaps the OP should practice the "Bean dip" routine... Keep saying "We're happy with our situation.  So how's Dear Nephew doing?"  "We're happy with life right now, how's work been?".

 

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