Do you refer to yourself as a WAHM for H/Unschooling? - Mothering Forums

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Old 05-06-2005, 07:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I was recently asked if I work.
I said yes,that I am a homeschool teacher.
Next question was, do I get paid.
No, not collecting S.S. we are a one-income family.
The person said she didn't consider HSing to mean that I *work at home*.

I know there are many of you that earn an income and teach. So, my question isn't really for you.

Does anyone else have an opinion about this. Just curious.

mp
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Old 05-06-2005, 08:14 PM
 
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I don't consider home educating our children as a WAHM job. I consider it being a parent doing her job. When I think of WAHM I think of an income earning mom. If you consider yourself as a working mom, that's really what matters.

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Old 05-06-2005, 08:15 PM
 
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I don't really have an opinion. I try not to get caught up in the labeling re: moms and where/how they conduct their activities. I don't feel it's really useful in helping to create a dynamic that's supportive of *every* mother.

That said, I wonder who is asking you if you work and whether or not you get paid. That person needs a serious manners lesson. If someone were to ask me those things they would likely get an earful unrelated to mothers, unschooling, working, earnings, or really anything other than what they were hoping or assuming they'd hear.
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Old 05-06-2005, 08:36 PM
 
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No. I refer to myself as a SAHM. To *me* , (meaning for MYSELF), I feel referring to myself as a WAHM is taking away from the HARD work I do as a SAHM. It's like I'm trying to measure up or something. But that's my personal take on it.
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Old 05-06-2005, 08:46 PM
 
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I consider myself a SAHM, and sometimes refer to myself as a homeschooling mom, but not a WAHM. The WAHM label implies employment, imo.

As an aside, I also never call myself a teacher.

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Old 05-07-2005, 01:56 AM
 
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Ditto what Joan said.

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Old 05-07-2005, 02:03 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joan
I consider myself a SAHM, and sometimes refer to myself as a homeschooling mom, but not a WAHM. The WAHM label implies employment, imo.

As an aside, I also never call myself a teacher.
What she said

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Old 05-07-2005, 07:35 AM
 
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EVERY mother is a wahm, if you're going to talk about it from the work pov.

Why bother with the term sahm at all?


But, if you did want to get across to the person who asked that of course what you do is still work, you could have said something like, "of course I work; it's just not for pay."
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Old 05-07-2005, 10:16 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umbrella
EVERY mother is a wahm, if you're going to talk about it from the work pov.

Why bother with the term sahm at all?
I understand your point, but when a term is already in use, and has been defined by the popular culture, you can't just start using it in another way and not expect confusion. (The whole charter-homeschool disaster began when a term was co-opted, yk? How long will THAT arguement go on?!)

"WAHM" has been used to describe an employed someone with their own business or with a home office. "SAHM" is used to describe a mother who is home ft with her kids, rather than employed. I'm not suggesting that definitions can't be changed, but 1) it's a slow evolution, 2) we should think seriously about the possible consequences and 3) we should expect to create confusion and misunderstanding if we start to use a term differently than the way most people define it.

Personally, I just stick with the terms as they're already known--it doesn't seem worth the trouble to mess with it.

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Old 05-07-2005, 12:18 PM
 
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I refer to myself as a mom. if asked further, I mention that I'm also a helpmeet. I do have other things that I do, but to me those are my two most important roles...
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Old 05-07-2005, 12:55 PM
 
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I haven't been asked this in a long time, but I just say 'I'm at home with the kids right now". I don't feel the need to explain or even define my life.
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Old 05-07-2005, 04:22 PM
 
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It wouldn't even occur to me to identy myself as a WAHM.

 

 

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Old 05-07-2005, 06:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This conversation happened when I was asking for assistance for medical bills.
After I got off the phone, I started thinking that what I do *feels*like more work to me. Pre-HSing, I was working hard to be a SAHM. Now, my days are so full with HSing a 3rd grader, that I felt maybe I deserved a new "title".

I've been answering people when asked what I do, that I am a SAH/HSINGM. I mean, why leave out what consumes much of my day?

I don't really get caught up with labels....but I like to answer people that I do *something*.

And thus was curious about others opinions.

However, I absolutely get annoyed when called a "homemaker". Making my home is the least favorite part of my day.

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Old 05-07-2005, 06:52 PM
 
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When people casually ask me "what I do", I tell them that I homeschool dd. It doesn't bother me at all. Or I have written down "home educator" before.

But I've always been uncomfortable with that question when it comes from the doctor, dentist, or other professional that is filling out a form on me. I was also uncomfortable with it when I was working outside of the home. It seems to be another way of asking me what my social status and income level is and I don't know why but I just don't like it.

I once had my dentist ask me what I've been doing lately, this was when I was home with my dd when she was a toddler. He followed it up with something like "Being lazy, kicking back at home?". I replied "No, raising my daughter". As if it was any of his business. Another doctor once asked me my occupation and I said I am raising my daughter, then he said as he wrote down "Housewife". :

I think a lot of people equate SAHM with housewife. Or as a mother who isolates herself at home to clean and watch soap operas while her kids are at school.

I just don't like labels and never have. And I probably will not be comfortable with "SAHM" until it is respected and highly regarded like it should be. We are, after all, raising the future.

:LOL
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Old 05-07-2005, 09:08 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mother_sunshine
But I've always been uncomfortable with that question when it comes from the doctor, dentist, or other professional that is filling out a form on me.

Yeah, a few years back, I was taking a college course and the professor had us fill out a card with some info on it--mostly, a "getting to know you" type of thing. She'd asked about the students' jobs and hours--I couldn't stand to leave it empty, so I wrote "Mother" and "24/7." Honestly, when I was employed, it was a lot harder--what I do now doesn't seem like work, but I still don't want to give the impression that I do nothing, of course.

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