PSA for all those who want to be a WAHM - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 01-08-2010, 02:11 PM - Thread Starter
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I know a lot of moms, myself included, dream of being a WAHM, thinking, I'll make money and not have to leave my kids or pay for daycare! It will be great.

The reality is different, though. I have found that in order to be successful, I work more than 40 hours a week, and am constantly in a state of irritation b/c 3 little people need me all the time, and the business needs me all the time, and it is completely overwhelming and exhausting. It is definitely NOT the vision of the kids happily playing while I type contentedly. Most of the time, it is absolute mayhem. Don't get me wrong - I like my business and my job and am very grateful for my success - but is is just as much a job as any other, with the addition of tiny, irrational, impatient bosses who cannot be ignored. Sometimes I actually envy my husband's 45 minute commute and passive-aggressive idiot bosses, b/c at least there are no kids there.

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#2 of 11 Old 01-08-2010, 02:25 PM
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When I worked at home, I had to have daycare. For me, personally, and for my job where I talked to clients, it just wouldn't have worked!

When my first was very little, I did try having him home a couple times, and it was super stressful. I was either ignoring my precious baby or slacking off from my job. Not a good feeling!
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#3 of 11 Old 01-08-2010, 08:31 PM
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You are very, very right! I feel like I get way less time off work stuff than my dh does (I envy him his hour-plus commute on the train, at least he gets to read a book!), plus I know my kids have paid a price. Yes, I'm home, but I'm usually trying to multi-task to a degree that means that I'm not fully engaged with them and the simmering irritation is so true.

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#4 of 11 Old 01-08-2010, 08:37 PM
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OMG...I'm so glad I'm not the only one who envy's DP's ability to be in the car by himself and to do his work without also being a jungle gym for a two year old while nursing a baby.

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#5 of 11 Old 01-08-2010, 08:41 PM
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Whenever I work from home because ds is sick, it is incredibly stressful to try to finish anything that requires consistently high levels of concentration. I wouldn't think being a WAHM is a walk in the park in any way shape or form!

Single mama to one active lil pill, aged 6. Getting my Masters in Counseling while playing as much Farmville as possible
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#6 of 11 Old 01-08-2010, 10:06 PM
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I don't even work from home and sometimes I envy DH for being able to get in his truck and have a whole day devoid of whining and full of adult interaction!
I get stir crazy sometimes. I have often thought about trying to start a business from home, but with an 18 month old, there is just no way.....
I don't know how anyone would work at home with kids in the house. Especially toddlers!

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#7 of 11 Old 01-10-2010, 08:01 PM
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I did that for 4 years while I stayed home with the kids. I honestly don't think I've ever worked so hard in my life! On the up side, most of my work could be done at any time of day, so my schedule looked roughly like this: 6:30 up with kids, get DH off to work, spend time with kids. For up to 2 hrs break with naptime for kids, get housework, etc. done, check e-mails, do as much work as I could. Take care of kids, fix dinner, etc. until kids in bed around 8. 8-1am work on work stuff. 1am up with kids. Finish up any remaining work or child events and to bed around 2:30. Now that I'm seriously looking into doing this again, I have both kids old enough to be in elementary school, so I'm hoping it'll be a little easier!
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#8 of 11 Old 01-14-2010, 04:38 PM
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totally true. I've seen business slow down lately, I will confess, because i've opted to hang out with my kids more. I still WOH about 8 hours a week as a physical therapist. I will say that is definately easier and less stressful, but then I miss my kiddos.

I would really advise anyone considering wahm'ing to reeeeeeeeally think about it first!

Christina, Mama to Salvador (3 yr) & Santiago (6 mo)!
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#9 of 11 Old 01-14-2010, 04:59 PM
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Taking calls I can not be watching the children at the same time for the reasons you mentioned. I can't have a little voice asking me to wipe their butt while taking an order for whatever product the call is for. At this point both dh and I work from home, but we have to arrange our schedules so one of us can watch the children while the other is working. Not only does that mean the things you have mentioned, but I also have to try to keep the noise level down while dh is working as we live in a mobile home so basically no sound proofing or insulation in the walls. We also don't have much time together as we all too often seem to pass in the hall while one is finishing work and the other is off to start work. It saves on child care and the costs associated with working outside of the home including the commute, but it can be a huge stress on a relationship.

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#10 of 11 Old 01-14-2010, 04:59 PM
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I totally agree! I was thrilled when my boss offered me the opportunity to do some work from home (my job is almost all on a computer, mostly word & excel, LOTS of typing...and some editing, etc...and I have a laptop anyway) I haven't managed to do more than 2-3 hrs in a day, w/ several starts & stops. And I feel so guilty telling DS "Mommy can't play right now" over and over because I have to work....I hated dropping him off at the sitter's but this is least there he still got one-on-one attention while I was working instead of being "ignored".

And I can't even begin to imagine all the extra challenges that go with running your own business.

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#11 of 11 Old 01-24-2010, 01:07 PM
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The OP is so true. Home businesses, especially when it's your sole income, require many, many hours and for your children to understand that work hours mean you have to be working. It's easier as they get older, but there is still guilt. It is frantic sometimes, can be very stressful, and most of time I think people shouldn't even bother unless they really, really need the money.
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