A word about "Full Time Mothers" - Page 5 - Mothering Forums
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#121 of 130 Old 02-01-2006, 05:16 PM
 
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I definitely agree it is all about what energizes, what motivates you, etc. That is why I odn't think anyone should be forced to be a SAHM or a WOHM. I think everyone should be freel to pursue what will make them happy and what will make them a good parent.

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#122 of 130 Old 02-01-2006, 05:37 PM
 
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Originally Posted by the_lissa
Most of my cowrkers in any job that I've had have been fun. Plus, I need the intellectual stimulation of working. I am a SAHM now because I was too sick with hyperemisis to work and I am not thriving at all.

I don't find kids fun. Of course, DD has fun when we do stuff, but I rarely do. It's just not at my level. I can only sing the same songs, read the same books, play the same games, build the same towers so many times before my brain turns to mush.
I don't understand the idea that one needs paid employment outside of the home in order to be intellectually stimulated. Because you are your own boss when you are home, it might take some initiative to find ways to be intellectually stimulated, but I assure you there are lots of opportunities. I can understand that many people find their careers fulfilling and that's great, but when you say staying home with kids "is just not at my level" it implies a condescending attitude that working moms are somehow smarter than SAHMs. Sadly, I find that lots of people have this idea.
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#123 of 130 Old 02-01-2006, 05:40 PM
 
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I definitely don't think working moms are smarter. I didn't mean being a SAHM is not at my level. I meant my daughter's fun is not at my level of fun.

I volunteer and I am a voracious reader. I would love ideas on how to be more intellectually stimulated while staying at home.

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#124 of 130 Old 02-01-2006, 05:54 PM
 
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Siobhan: I definitely know what you mean about needing to do something and children not understanding "not now". I've got a 2.5 year old, and a 6-month-old...and my dd fell off the counter just couple of hours ago, while I was feeding her brother. Moments like that aren't wonderful. And, going to the bathroom alone is a beautiful luxury.

I guess, to me, that's not a lot different from work, though. I never had a career - never found a field that interested me. So...I worked as a Girl Friday in a packaged office building (would be impossible to describe this job) for years. Since then, I've mostly worked as an accounting assistant and an operations assistant (in a small firm...I was basically the operations department). I've had tenants jump on me for work they needed done while I was washing my hands after using the bathroom. I had a tenant call me at home on Sunday morning to let him into his office, because he'd locked up his keys and my boss had an unlisted number (wonder why?). I've had a tenant try to get me fired (very unsuccessfully - he got evicted) because he didn't like my "attitude" when he wasn't following building rules. I've had another one jump down my throat for being "unprofessional" when I tried to explain that he should give his requirements to the woman who was going to be subbing for me, because I was on my last day before maternity leave, and his work wouldn't be done until Monday (this place was "first come, first served").

Kids are no more unreasonable, imo. And, at least they don't treat me as though I have no brain, because I don't have a degree.

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#125 of 130 Old 02-01-2006, 05:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa
I definitely don't think working moms are smarter. I didn't mean being a SAHM is not at my level. I meant my daughter's fun is not at my level of fun.

I volunteer and I am a voracious reader. I would love ideas on how to be more intellectually stimulated while staying at home.
I feel like this is something many people have to learn on their own - how to get intellectual stimulation outside of a work or school environment.

And to figure out what it is you need to feel satisfied. Me, I need to feel useful, needed, and respected, and I need to have a clear impact - running an event or building a website for me is good - long term bookkeeping or research is bad.

I was just thinking - my mom was at home with us when we were little, and she taught me a lot about how to find activities outside of work.

She volunteered a lot - we were always helping her stuff envelopes for some fundraising event she was organizing. She did a great deal of fundraising work for UNICEF and for our schools. When she went back to paid work, it was as a professional fundraiser for non-profits. All of her previous experience had been as a volunteer.

She took advantage of educational opportunities - she was a brownie leader just so she could take the girl scout leader training programs which were great.

She also found really neat ways to get involved with stuff in her community -like she volunteered with the US consulate to help host visiting VIPs - she would drive these (mainly) men around the city (me in my carseat in the back), telling them about its history, etc, and invite them over to dinner.

She did a lot of mommy and me classes, especially ones in museums, and took me to lots of kids concerts - but the ones SHE liked.

I wish I could ask her more about her experience raising us - she died 7 years ago (before I was married) and I had never thought to ask her how she managed.

I think the other issue, however, is that she didn't expect to be playing with us all day, every day, which I feel is the expectation these days (perhaps I am wrong?). Most of the time, she was in the house doing her thing and we were doing our thing. I personally believe in a little benign neglect now and again... ; )

Siobhan

You know the attributes for a great adult? Initiative, creativity, intellectual curiosity? They make for a helluva kid...
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#126 of 130 Old 02-01-2006, 05:56 PM
 
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the_lissa: Have you looked into online courses? Some of them offer free seminars. They don't really "count" as education credits, but they can be interesting. I spent two evenings studying cetacean songs one week...

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#127 of 130 Old 02-01-2006, 06:07 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Storm Bride
I guess, to me, that's not a lot different from work, though. I never had a career - never found a field that interested me.
...
Kids are no more unreasonable, imo. And, at least they don't treat me as though I have no brain, because I don't have a degree.
Ouch! I feel your pain. I have been in similar jobs - where it was assumed I was a moron for a number of reasons, despite lots of evidence to the contrary. Yeah, I would much rather not work at all than be subjected to that kind of cr*p.

I quit my job when my son was born because I knew my boss was going to continue being unreasonable (oh, I have stories...). I was lucky, though, because I found work as a freelancer.

I am lucky, I found something I am good at, that I enjoy and people respect me for, and that they are willing to pay me money to do.

I also have ambitions - I am passionate about my field (international development) and feel a strong need to contribute. I want to be well known and respected by people I respect (I think that is probably a human universal).

I also think there is a huge difference between a career and a job. A job is something that you do every day. A career is your history of life and work experiences that may or may not be paid - so a career can include volunteer work, hobbies, or personal interests.

Some people are unable to make money from their career - I have a friend who is passionate about role playing games and that is what she does in her free time. She has a job as a lawyer. She says she doesn't have a career because she doesn't particularly love her job and has no interest in progressing further. I say her career is her passion - role playing games. She is the moderator for at least three fora, plus is a known expert.

I have another friend whose passion is music. He has been in a series of bands over the years, made several albums, produces other musicians, etc. He has never made enough money to support himself. His job is help desk technician for a computer company. He defines himself as a musician, not as the help desk guy.

Perhaps I am too much a fan of the phrase *do what you love*.

Siobhan

You know the attributes for a great adult? Initiative, creativity, intellectual curiosity? They make for a helluva kid...
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#128 of 130 Old 02-01-2006, 08:04 PM
 
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Thanks Storm Bride and siobhang.

I do volunteer work as a breastfeeding peer support person. It is really fulfilling, but not intellectually stimulating. I did take classes when dd was a baby and I plan to again. I can't right now because I am too sick (that is why I had to quit) and we don't have money for extras when I am not working.


Storm Bride- I am sorry people treated you poorly or like you had no brain because you don't have a degree. Some people are such jerks.

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#129 of 130 Old 02-01-2006, 08:29 PM
 
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Well, it was fortunately not my boss that treated me that way, and I had her full backing when it came to not putting up with any crap (as in the guy who got evicted after trying to get me fired). But, it did get old. I never went to university, partly because there was nothing I was interested in pursuing, partly because my high school and community college experiences were very negative, and partly because I was much more focussed on my then-boyfriend (my ex). I wish sometimes that I had gone, but...c'est la vie. Maybe I'll go back for fun when I'm in my 40's or something.

Lisa, lucky mama of Kelly (3/93) ribboncesarean.gif, Emma (5/03) ribboncesarean.gif, Evan (7/05) ribboncesarean.gif, & Jenna (6/09) ribboncesarean.gif
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#130 of 130 Old 02-01-2006, 09:09 PM
 
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WOHM, WAHM, SAHM...I think all these labels are pretty bad.

You can call me a SAHM, but there are many days I am out of the home as much as a WOHM. Am I now supposed to be insulted because by calling yourself a WOHM you are implying that I do not work outside of the home? That I just "stay" at home all day. That sounds really useful and productive: "staying", kind of like what you order a dog to do.

And then should I be insulted by mothers who calls themselves WAHMs, because that could imply that since I am a SAHM, the only difference is that I am simply staying at home, while they are actually working?

Just because someone calls themselves a full-time mother, it does not mean they are implying you are not a full-time mother. I think for the most part, these mothers are just trying to convey that they spend what would be considered the standard working hours directly caring for their children. Sure, some snippy people might be trying to make a dig at you. Why not just ignore them? I hope they are not in the majority.

Just trying to point out that none of the labels are good. The WOHM and WAHM labels are not necessarily as clean and pristine and non-judgmental as you want to believe them to be either.

If I was working at something I felt was significant in addition to being a mother, and if mothering was so important that I would be insulted by someone calling herself a full-time mother, then in response I would call myself an artist and a mother, or a lawyer and a full-time mother, or whatever.

Maybe more accurate labels would be Work-With-Children-Mother vs. Work-Without-Children-Mother. Accurate, it simply states whether your children are for the most part physically present with you while you are doing what you consider your primary work or not. Doesn't make any judgements about your degree of mothering. Doesn't even tell you what to consider your primary employment. And it is WWCM either way, so who would even be able to tell the difference. Which is how it should be. We should not be agreeing to be split as mothers into three distinct mother groups. It is ridiculous.

And for the record, I think the above made up WWCM labels are horrible too.
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