SAHM: a right or a privilege? - Page 11 - Mothering Forums

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#301 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 07:51 AM
 
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I do not condemn the mamas who work, but do believe that SAHMing should be a right for every mother, at least until her babies are weaned, and would like to see more tax credits and other benefits (such as extended, paid leave like you find in some European countries) to make it economically possible for more mothers to stay home with their babies and blissfullly breast feed and babywear and co-sleep with wild abandon.
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#302 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 07:59 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Godaime View Post


I guess for those sahm who think working moms aren't raising their kids, what do they think when their kid's father aren't raising his own kids...because he has to work...

I totally agree.
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#303 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 08:01 AM
 
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Originally Posted by alisaterry View Post
I do not condemn the mamas who work, but do believe that SAHMing should be a right for every mother, at least until her babies are weaned, and would like to see more tax credits and other benefits (such as extended, paid leave like you find in some European countries) to make it economically possible for more mothers to stay home with their babies and blissfullly breast feed and babywear and co-sleep with wild abandon.
Even if they have several children in a row? How is that fair to those who work? I am not snarking, I am actually curious about your thoughts on this. I mean, it sounds nice in theory, but where should the line be drawn?
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#304 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 08:21 AM
 
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Even if they have several children in a row? How is that fair to those who work? I am not snarking, I am actually curious about your thoughts on this. I mean, it sounds nice in theory, but where should the line be drawn?
I'm not sure that is unfair to people who work. Aside from the many spiritual and emotional joys of raising children, they are important to the perpetuation of the race and continuation of a functional society. If children are valued for their importance, then it will not be seen as a burden or inequality to support mothers in their recovery from birth and their desire to stay home while their babies are tiny. If the raising of little human beings is given the respect and prestige it deserves, then people will not begrudge the mother who takes 9 months off of work after birth and returns with her job status still intact, or the mother who receives tax credits or even social security benefits as a full-time SAHM.
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#305 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 08:49 AM
 
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Originally Posted by alisaterry View Post
I'm not sure that is unfair to people who work. Aside from the many spiritual and emotional joys of raising children, they are important to the perpetuation of the race and continuation of a functional society. If children are valued for their importance, then it will not be seen as a burden or inequality to support mothers in their recovery from birth and their desire to stay home while their babies are tiny. If the raising of little human beings is given the respect and prestige it deserves, then people will not begrudge the mother who takes 9 months off of work after birth and returns with her job status still intact, or the mother who receives tax credits or even social security benefits as a full-time SAHM.

Taking off some time is one thing. I don't know very many people who would expect someone to rush right back to work the hour after giving birth. I have not problem with that whatsoever. I made the mistake of going back to work too soon after #2 and did I ever pay for it. And I worked part time!

What I am talking about is the insinuation by a few, that someone should get to take INDEFINITE time off and everyone else foot the bill. Most people see having children as a choice. Should everyone else have to pay for another person's choice, indefinitely? What if Mom decides since she is not having to foot the bill, that she wants to have another and another, in a row? What about that? Shouldn't there be a cap on this assistance?

Mind you, I am not belittling the importance of raising children to be decent human beings, nor am I belittling SAHPs or WOHPs. I am simply putting some questions out there.
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#306 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 09:45 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Godaime View Post
I guess for those sahm who think working moms aren't raising their kids, what do they think when their kid's father aren't raising his own kids...because he has to work...
I always wonder about that, too......

And also....what about nighttime parenting? Even if a child spends 10-11 hours in daycare (which I submit is not representative of childcare), the child is spending 13-14 hours in the care of the parents--plus the entire weekend. It is really unfair to imply that working parents aren't raising their children
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#307 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 09:50 AM
 
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I apologize for my following statement as I am sure I will be flamed by those who disagree. I do not consider it "raising your own children" to put them in daycare early in the morning and pick them up in the evening only to have maybe one hour of time with time per day and the weekends. I have a family member whose 18 month old child goes to daycare at 7:30am and is picked up at 6:00pm. His family comes home, prepares and eats dinner, then he is put to bed promptly at 8:00pm so the parents can have quality time together. This child is not being raised by his parents, he is being raised by his daycare provider. They work because they enjoy working and having their "wants".

I believe as a pp said, is a right for the child to have a parent stay home with them rather than be shoved into a daycare situation all day everyday. Perhaps my feelings are so strong because I came from a two parent working household with all the "wants" and a mother who spouted about "quality time vs quantity time" while she was working until 6 or 7 everynight--blah, whatever.
: I should probably abstain from saying anything more because it would be against the UA.

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#308 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 10:15 AM
 
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Like I said before, I just believe that one parent has the responsiblity to stay home with the child. One of our friends husband stays home with his children and does a great job while she works. I don't think it necessarily has to be the mother--although in the beginning while BFing it probably would be easier for her to be the one to stay home. Also, in our situation DH wishes he could be home as well. Luckily he is a teacher who only works 180 days a year and is usually home by 4pm--so he actually gets in quite a lot of "fatherly" time!! We also have had friends who both had part time jobs--so one of them could always be home with their children. Their priority was to raise their own child, ours in to raise our own. So what if we only have one car, no extended cable, second hand clothes. We do have time together, candyland, home/unschooling, etc. . .

Barbara:  an always learning SAHM of Ilana (11) and Aiden (8) living in Belgium with my amazing husband.

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#309 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 10:20 AM
 
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I totally hear what you are saying, treemom. I don't think that the working parent scenario you described applies to all families who use child care. But I personally know several families right here in my own social circle to whom this does apply. I don't think it's the end of the world.
I don't think it's the end of the world either. And I don't wish to force anyone to do anything. But I also don't want to see that lifestyle forced on those who would choose otherwise if they could. And it currently is, by deliberate design of the economic powers that be through the tax structure, the social welfare system or lack thereof, etc.

I am pretty astonished by some of the statements people are making about "choosing" to have children and how others shouldn't have to "pay for" your choice. As though it were a choice to adopt a beagle or drive a big SUV. I fear for a society that is no longer capable of recognizing that children are an investment in the future of all of us. WHO DO YOU THINK IS GOING TO PAY YOUR SOCIAL SECURITY, PEOPLE!!??!! :

In reality, it is our children who will be paying for others' choice not to bring future workers/taxpayers/social and civic participants into the world.
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#310 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 10:48 AM
 
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Another reminder.......

From our Forum Guidelines:


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We welcome all mothers to take part in the discussions in this forum, but keep in mind that the focus is on the SAHM lifestyle and all posts to this forum should be issues that are specific to SAHMs. We will ask that the focus be kept on learning and understanding, not debate between SAHM and nonSAH.
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Please stick to specific topics of discussion that apply to your life as a SAHM or future SAHM. Any discussions that are of debate or have demeaning comments about mothers who have other lifestyle choices will be closed and the posters alerted or warned.

Sandy, proud mama and henna artist. :
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#311 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 10:52 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Godaime View Post
I guess for those sahm who think working moms aren't raising their kids, what do they think when their kid's father aren't raising his own kids...because he has to work...
If you follow the idea presented by the PP, a father who spends 10+ hours a day at his job and no time with his children isn't really raising them. The person (or persons) who spends all his/her time with the children raises them. It isn't meant to be snarky. That person(s) is the one most developing the child's values, actions, etc. (OTOH, I've heard that children learn a lot of that stuff from their peers, not their parents, but that's another issue altogether).

Mama to Marcus (1/05) and Arianna (3/10). hbac.gif

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#312 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 10:54 AM
 
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I don't think it's the end of the world either. And I don't wish to force anyone to do anything. But I also don't want to see that lifestyle forced on those who would choose otherwise if they could. And it currently is, by deliberate design of the economic powers that be through the tax structure, the social welfare system or lack thereof, etc.

I am pretty astonished by some of the statements people are making about "choosing" to have children and how others shouldn't have to "pay for" your choice. As though it were a choice to adopt a beagle or drive a big SUV. I fear for a society that is no longer capable of recognizing that children are an investment in the future of all of us. WHO DO YOU THINK IS GOING TO PAY YOUR SOCIAL SECURITY, PEOPLE!!??!! :

In reality, it is our children who will be paying for others' choice not to bring future workers/taxpayers/social and civic participants into the world.

Actually, I am going to pay for my own retirement. I know that SS most likely won't be there when I need it, although I certainly have paid into it, along with everyone else I know.

I don't understand the bewilderment here. Unless you are raped or otherwise forced into it, having children IS a choice in the US. (cannot speak for other areas) I don't think the population is in any danger of drying up anytime soon, so no need to worry about that.

I don't think it would be fair for people to get paid to SAH indefinitely, having child after child, after child. There would have to be SOME limits.
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#313 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 11:24 AM
 
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Very easily. It's as simple as living in a low cost area and not living beyond your means. We have been had one of us SAH for the past 4 years (before that we worked opposite days) and we have not been miserable or gone into debt over it either. Sure we have to drive 10 year old cars and we had to buy a fixer upper home (that we own outright BTW) but it's all worth it in the grand scheme of things, and one thing DH and I never fight about is money.
It's not always possible to live in a low cost area. Some people have family responsibilities other than just spouse and kids that may keep them in a higher cost area.
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#314 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 12:08 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Godaime View Post
There are options to choose from...

option 1: father makes enough money, mother can stay home with kid
option 2: father doesnt make enough money, get govt sponsored aid, mother stay home with kid
option 3: father doesnt make enough money, govt aid isn't enough, mother stay home with kid, ruined credit.
option 4: couple saves $$$ towards kids, mother can stay home with kid
option 5: father works for the most part, mom works when father comes home to supplement income

Or another option: mother makes enough money and father stays home with the kid.

As to other posts -- yes there are fewer SAHD than SAHMs on a long term basis, but I think fathers being primary caregivers at some point in their kids lives is actually much more common and a growing trend, so no discussion can leave them out.
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#315 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 12:15 PM
 
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I don't encounter many mothers willing to work the kind of hours and jobs required to allow their children's fathers to stay at home full time with their children.

There are a lot of dads not willing to do that also, hence why some have two income families. Personally, I don't think any parent should feel obligated to do that, to give up on their time with the kids in the evenings and weekends by taking on an all-encompassing job, if that is what would be required to have one parent at home. At any rate, often times it's not necessary. My dh is a SAHD and I work a job with decent hours and we live fine but more frugally than if I worked at my old job 60-80 hours a week. But if we needed DH to go back to work full time for survival (or to help a family member out that was in dire need), I would rather that than me go back to that kind of job because it would ruin my physical and mental health eventually. And I think fathers have just as much a right to take that position.
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#316 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 12:22 PM
 
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"Until recently, our society wasn't so based on a two-income household. 50 years or so ago, you could raise a family on one income. Now it's very difficult for many families to pay for necessities on one salary (sometimes even two)."

This is a historical fantasy. You are taking a ten to twenty year period (50-60s), looking at what the movies/tv want to tell you about that time and extrapolating as if that was the norm. Historically, during and after the industrial revolution the large majority of women have worked for pay, or in the family business (family farm, family store, etc., etc.) My paternal grandmother was forced to leave school at the 8th grade to work the family farm. My maternal grandmother and step-grandmother started working (at 15 and 16 respectively) as a telephone operator and as a jewelry store clerk (eventually rising to store accountant). It was always a matter of pride to my stepgrandmother that when she retired, the store had to hire two male accountants to take her place. I still have the $5 gold coin that was my grandmother's first pay "check".

Prior to the industrial revolution women were usually involved in cottage or home industries. A woman m: ight have a husband who was a weaver (usually a masculine trade in England before the industrial revolution). Both she and the children would be involved in the preparation of the wool for weaving -- carding, dying, etc. Or she might have a trade of her own -- for example, girls as young as 6 were sent to "lace schools" were they were taught to make handmade lace for sale.
: "A Midwife's Tale" really put the light on that for me when I read it (I note sometimes her income was what kept the family going when her husband's business encountered difficulties). We forget how much children worked in the past when (in most cases)both adults were working nonstop to just keep the family surviving, they were not sitting around playing with, or reading to (most couldnt' read anyway) their kids. With the first kid or two maybe the grandparents were still around to help, or a neighbor, or aunt, or cousin-- and after that the older children stepped in. And those who were rich sent their kids away to be raised in many cases, and used wetnurses.
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#317 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 12:31 PM
 
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Well, in my case, I would consider it a privilege to be a stay at home mom. In our area, there are very few families that can even afford to have one parent at home and I worked full-time until my second child was born due to this. Once she was born, though, I found that I was just working for the cost of daycare, so I moved to part-time and then to being a SAHM. I wish it was a right, but some financial situations just do not allow it.

JMHO
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#318 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 12:48 PM
 
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If you follow the idea presented by the PP, a father who spends 10+ hours a day at his job and no time with his children isn't really raising them. The person (or persons) who spends all his/her time with the children raises them. It isn't meant to be snarky. That person(s) is the one most developing the child's values, actions, etc. .
But, again, even if a child is in daycare 10-11 hours a day, the child is still spending *more* time with the parents. And 10-11 hours a day is more than most children spend with a dcp. I think it is fair to talk about having help raising children--but how is it fair to say that the parents are not raising their children? How is it fair to say that the dad, who spends 14 of 24 hours at home, is not raising his children?

My mother works in the infant room of a commercial daycare facility. She does care for some babies that spend up to 11 hours a day in care. But she observes an interesting phenomenon: many babies tend to sleep *much* better for the dcp than for the parents, lol. They sleep much of the time in daycare, and save their wakeful hours for the parents! Some of the parents are so exhausted that they ask the dcp to *try* to keep the baby awake a little longer--so they can get some sleep at night. But the babies will have nothing of it . Other parent are thrilled that the babies are alert for them in the evening hours, but still wonder why the babies don't take such wonderful naps during the day on the weekends? Even little infants know who is raising them......although they do develop loving with their dcp as well.
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#319 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 12:51 PM
 
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Since everyone seems to agree that mothering involves 'responsibilities', this issue can really be broken down to two fundamental ideas:

When a woman has a baby, she is responsible to 'nurture' that child, and to 'provide' for that child.

If these responsibilities are the 'rights' of the child, is it not also fair to say that a mother has the 'right' to fulfil these responsibilities?

If a mother is unable to fulfil either of these responsibilities, than IMO, she is being deprived of her right to mother.

If *all* mothers were given adequate subsidies to ensure that their children are provided for, then I would agree that SAHM is a "lifestyle choice". As it is, many women are unable to properly 'nurure' their children because the current economy, and the ideology around mothering, forces some women out of the home in order to fulfil the basic right to provide.

SAHM is only a 'lifestyle choice" to those who can afford to SAH. It is only a lifestyle choice for those mothers who are lucky enough to have partners who are 'ready, willing and able' to fulfil the responsiblity to 'provide', so that mothers can fulfil the one to 'nurture'.

If all women were given the opportunity to SAH and nurture their children, and they 'choose' to WOH, than THAT is a lifestyle choice, and one that our culture supports.

I don't see how a mothers' choice to SAH in this instance, affects anyone's choice to WOH?????
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#320 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 01:04 PM
 
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Originally Posted by GalateaDunkel View Post
I fear for a society that is no longer capable of recognizing that children are an investment in the future of all of us. WHO DO YOU THINK IS GOING TO PAY YOUR SOCIAL SECURITY, PEOPLE!!??!! :

In reality, it is our children who will be paying for others' choice not to bring future workers/taxpayers/social and civic participants into the world.
This is so true.

Also, for people who think government assistance for sahm's will increase government's control over families -- what about the current policies of investing in childcare costs rather than simply paying the family the same amount as a stipend? Does it seem more controlling to subsidize childcare or to just let the low-income family use that money in whatever way the parents think is best -- either to help with childcare costs or to supplement husband's income so wife can stay home? Or if the government wants some control of the money, why not let the family choose whether they want the money to go for childcare, food, or housing?

The last option would safeguard the money from being used for things that won't help the kids (i.e. drugs or alcohol), which I don't believe most parents would use it for but there are always those few.

Susan -- married unschoolin' WAHMomma to two lovely girls (born 2000 and 2005).
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#321 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 01:19 PM
 
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I haven't had a chance to read through this whole thread, but I do have some opinions on this issue.

I get frustrated with some friends of mine who work full-time and say "I'd love to stay home, but we just can't afford it." They have nice homes and two nice cars, etc. If they WANT to work, I advocate for their choice. But to say they'd like to SAH, but "can't" is bull, IMO. In my family, we make specific financial sacfirfices to make it work for me to SAH. We share one car, we buy clothes from the thrift shop, we rent our home, etc. It is a sacrifice for us, but we wouldn't have it any other way.

OTOH, my SIL had 2 children before the age of 20 and the father is in/out of their lives, so she does HAVE to work . If she doesn't there is no one (except the gov't, which is already providing her with some assistance) to pay for rent, food, clothing, etc. She considers me a priveleged mom to be able to SAH. I guess agree. It is a privelege, but one that more people can afford if they WANT to make it happen.
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#322 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 01:23 PM
 
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It's not always possible to live in a low cost area. Some people have family responsibilities other than just spouse and kids that may keep them in a higher cost area.
I was speaking as to how a low income family could live off of one income comfortably. We did live in a high COL area on one income but it required that we didn't have ANY extra's, couldn't afford car insurance so we didn't drive, and we were tightly budgeted (getting no assistance as WA requires both parents to work in order to qualify) and forget about saving up to buy a house. Staying there was a dead end, but I can see how a mother with joint custody of a child would have to stay in the area.

Unassisted birthing, atheist, poly, bi WOHM to 4 wonderful, smart homeschooling kids Wes (14) Seth (7) Pandora Moonlilly (2) and Nevermore Stargazer (11/2012)  Married to awesome SAH DH.

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#323 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 10:06 PM
 
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I don't believe there is much historical precedence for women staying at home to raise children with no other responsibilities, so I'd say that paying women to SAH is the real radical social experiment being discussed here.
This is an interesting comment.

I agree that in past eras, mothers participated much more in economic production. But that had much to do with the fact that much more economic production was centered in the home; there was no choice forced between availability to one's children and performance of "other responsibilities."

Production has moved away from the home; but it's not like SAHM's connived to get it set up that way in order to avoid "other responsibilities." It happened for other reasons. So, given the choice between reduced availability to one's children and reduced availability to "other responsibilities,"......

why does the mother-child connection automatically lose?

why do economic considerations trump all?

why not work on moving opportunities to participate in the economy back into the home?

There seems to be an ongoing insinuation that SAHMs are shirkers - getting out of standard adult responsibility - or "privileged" to have another adult bear a double burden. But whether working for money is a universal duty is exactly what we are debating. Don't beg the question.

Also note that the slightest hint of applying this logic (avoiding responsibility) in reverse to wohms brings swift mod action. In fact, I'm willing to bet that if a thread were posted in working mamas with the title WOHM: A right or a privilege? it would be immediately killed based on the title alone. And rightly so. Not saying this isn't a good discussion, but - double standard, much?

Another thing that needs to be clarified: in the government subsidy debate, the proposal (and the reality in other countries) isn't to supply a full income equivalent to what you would make WOH. It's a supplement, to offset the loss of income. No different than the tax deduction you get for medical - or day care! - expenses. There's no need to fear government interference, either, anymore than there is from claiming kids on one's tax return (a provision which, incidentally, many childfree activists object to on the same grounds some here are using against SAHP subsidies).
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#324 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 10:23 PM
 
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I haven't had a chance to read through this whole thread, but I do have some opinions on this issue.

I get frustrated with some friends of mine who work full-time and say "I'd love to stay home, but we just can't afford it." They have nice homes and two nice cars, etc. If they WANT to work, I advocate for their choice. But to say they'd like to SAH, but "can't" is bull, IMO. In my family, we make specific financial sacfirfices to make it work for me to SAH. We share one car, we buy clothes from the thrift shop, we rent our home, etc. It is a sacrifice for us, but we wouldn't have it any other way.

OTOH, my SIL had 2 children before the age of 20 and the father is in/out of their lives, so she does HAVE to work . If she doesn't there is no one (except the gov't, which is already providing her with some assistance) to pay for rent, food, clothing, etc. She considers me a priveleged mom to be able to SAH. I guess agree. It is a privelege, but one that more people can afford if they WANT to make it happen.
I think when people IRL casually say they want to SAH, but they obviously haven't made it a priority, that's way different than people in a focused debate who have it all laid out as to why they really can't and I think it is hurtful to bring it up, because it's really irrelevant. We all know materialistic people and some of them are even SAHMs. For a lot of people, frankly, when they say that, it's just a throwaway comment and........sadly......a lot of the time what's going on is they think it's the nice thing to say. As opposed to "Oh. So you don't have a career." Or (b!tchy, insincere smile) "How nice for you, but when we got married Bob and I agreed that everyone would pull their own weight." That's not what's going on here.

The other day I was at the library, and there was a woman asking about their toddler time so she could arrange to take her lunch break to coincide with it, pick up her kid from daycare, and attend it with him (thereby missing out on her chance to eat lunch or otherwise take a break). Overhearing her, I was but also . Don't make this about evil materialistic WOHMs that don't want to raise their own kids, it is largely inaccurate, and it only adds fuel to the idea that SAHMs who want our rights and dignity are opposed to other women.

And I bet if there was more support, that woman would stay home in a heartbeat.
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#325 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 11:05 PM
 
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What I am talking about is the insinuation by a few, that someone should get to take INDEFINITE time off and everyone else foot the bill.
It isn't time off -- it's a job just like anybody else's (except with less break time and no pay, lol). It's an important job, a very valuable service to our children. Just like being a teacher is a job, one that our taxes pay for because we, as a country, have decided that education is very important for children. So is it really a matter of "footing the bill"? We foot the bill for plenty of things we don't use that other citizens do use. Education is a great example. This whole thing is just a question of priorities for our country, about what we think is worth footing the bill for. Many here would argue that children being cared for full time by one of their parents is at least as valuable as children receiving an education.


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Most people see having children as a choice. Should everyone else have to pay for another person's choice, indefinitely
Again, we all pay for educating children whether or not we have children of our own, and we pay indefinitely. Education used to be a "choice" that only the wealthy made. Still is in many parts of the world. We've chosen to make that different here in the US. It's really just a question of what we think is important.

Personally, I think that people are scared of this issue for the same reason they're scared of welfare... there's some idea out there that individual people can't be trusted with taxpayers' money. A teacher's salary, of course, is not seen as an individual being supported by taxpayers. But really, it's just an adjustment of perspective.

Now, I'm making all these arguments because it bothers me to see an illogical argument made, but in reality I am very uncertain whether I would actually want the government to have any hands in parenting. That feels very dangerous to me. But at the same time, I can't stand to have people argue that it's not worth footing the bill for. Of course it's worth it. It's an extremely valuable gift to our society and its development. Now whether I actually want to get the government involved in any way in my parenting? That's another question,and one I'm not so sure of the answer to.

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#326 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 11:12 PM
 
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Another thing that needs to be clarified: in the government subsidy debate, the proposal (and the reality in other countries) isn't to supply a full income equivalent to what you would make WOH. It's a supplement, to offset the loss of income. No different than the tax deduction you get for medical - or day care! - expenses.
Yes, I was thinking this too. In some European countries where subsidies are done, it works out to about the equivalent of 500 a month.

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There's no need to fear government interference, either, anymore than there is from claiming kids on one's tax return (a provision which, incidentally, many childfree activists object to on the same grounds some here are using against SAHP subsidies).
Thank you for saying this! This addresses some of the fears I have had about government interference, some of which I just posted about. But I think I was thinking of it as a program like TANF, where they give money in exchange for job training, etc. I can't stand the thought of money being offered as long as someone took certain parenting classes and had a caseworker, for example. But a tax deduction-type thing is a better model.

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#327 of 356 Old 11-16-2006, 11:13 PM
 
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I don't think it's a "right" to stay home after a year or two, nor do I think it's always a "privilege" b/c many moms make such enormous sacrifices to do so and the word privilege is thrown around rather loosely. I think it is a PERSONAL CHOICE, dependent on many, many factors and values and conditions that vary from family to family and over time.
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#328 of 356 Old 11-17-2006, 12:22 AM
 
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I think Milton Friedman must have run across this thread and had a heart attack -- the man made it to ninety something and this killed him dead.

Anyway...

I don't think we should be discussing this (paying people to SAH) as something that is "like" welfare. Paying mothers to stay at home IS welfare.

"why does the mother-child connection automatically lose?"

Why does the father-child connection automatically lose? Why should everyone else have to pay your way simply because you got knocked up? Additionally why should we, as taxpayers, pay you to do something you're already doing? The US has the greatest number of children under the age of 5 in the developed world, and (as I recall) is in the top 10 in the world. We're not exactly suffering for up and coming workers.

"why do economic considerations trump all?"

Its called survival and meeting your responsibilities.

"why not work on moving opportunities to participate in the economy back into the home?"

I think that has been going on. But I would argue that there is no real "back" about it. To imply that a WAHM on a small family farm in the 1860s interacted with her children in the manner we expect a current WAHM to do is unrealistic. Heck, my grandfather was driving an 6 horse dredge starting at age 8 -- that's bringing work opportunities back into the home, but not exactly what you're imagining when you use the word "back".

"There seems to be an ongoing insinuation that SAHMs are shirkers - getting out of standard adult responsibility - or "privileged" to have another adult bear a double burden. But whether working for money is a universal duty is exactly what we are debating. Don't beg the question."

Supporting one's children is a legal duty as it currently stands in the US. You are obligated to provide appropriate clothing, food and shelter together in a non-neglectful and non-abusive environment. Adults make sure that both they and their children are provided for. "Universal" duty indeed -- how do we decide who gets out of working and who has the duty to support all those who don't have to? And once again -- I don't believe that you can show me sufficient reliable evidence that the children of SAHM's turn out so very much better than those of WOHM's to justify welfare for SAH's. I mean -- wouldn't it be great if the government subsidized cosmetic dentistry for all citizens? We'd all feel so much more self-confident, and smile so much more and the country would be such a happier place! But is the benefit worth the expenditure? I say NO.

Finally -- implicit in the concept of equal rights for women is women's assumption of equal responsibility. You want the right to own property as a married woman? You want the right to vote? You want to be viewed as an equal to men in the public sphere? Then you have to stand up and take the responsibilities that go along with that. That's why I think its a farce that women don't have to register for the draft.
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#329 of 356 Old 11-17-2006, 12:38 AM
 
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That is absolutely absurd. It is so great that even on Mothering.com I have to come and read that, after a 12 hour day or caring for two very young kids, I'm being anti-feminist, "shirking responsibility" and "getting out of working" BS.

BTW, devaluing childcare is quite sexist actually, and not feminist. The only nonfeminist part about it is giving up financial independence and potential influence in the workforce. And more mothers would work if people like you didn't devalue childcare so much, b/c more parents would have leave and flexible work schedules and wouldn't feel like they had to stay at home full-time to enable balancing. I'm really sick of Americans who will happily take their tax cuts and other benefits but ruffle their effing feathers once the idea of a society financially getting behind supporitve policies for families comes up.
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#330 of 356 Old 11-17-2006, 01:31 AM
 
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Why should everyone else have to pay your way simply because you got knocked up?
I am not OK with you comparing women who get purposefully pregnant to women who get "knocked up," especially on a board dedicated to honoring mothers. I have reported you to the moderators. Shame on you.

If subsidizing others' jobs and lifestyle choices with taxpayer money is that bothersome to you, than I suggest you never avail yourself of a public library, police officer, fire department, politician, disability office or park ranger. Why it seems so farfetched that a mother or father caring for a child receive the same respect and benefits of someone who cares for trees and streams is beyond me. It all comes down to what people see as worth investing in.

However, I did NOT get knocked up when I chose to become a mother.
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