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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I don't really know whether to call myself a SAHM or a student mom- thing is, I have decided to take 2½ years maternity leave. So I guess I´m a student SAHM


Anywho... I have been quite shocked at how much negative respons I have gotten due to this decision. Usually students here have 1 years maternity leave and my 2½ seems to make everyone drop their jaw.

I just wondered how the rest of you have been met when you told people about your SAHM choice (especially if you are a student)...???
 

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i would just say i'm a sahm who happens to be in school...if they want to get rude...roll your eyes...it's a shame that when you do the right thing for your child you get looked down upon for it...story of my life
: ...keep doing what you think is best and what you like...you never know people may just be jealous b/c they couldn't take that much time off...good luck and i hope it gets better...
 

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The only negative reactions I've gotten from people are they "I couldn't do that" variety. I can't remember anything negative I've gotten about the fact that I'm doing it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm lucky that my closest family- dh and my parents and SIL- are backing me up 120%, that makes it so much easier. But people from school/work just don't get it at all. I think maybe they are thinking I'm using it as an excuse to drop out or something silly like that- and yes, maybe it hits a nerve with them because they would like to do the same.
 

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I'm stopping work in a month, and taking at least next school year off (I teach). Most everyone's reactions have been positive-- especially the older women are very supportive, like they secretly think it's the best thing to do, and how they did it, and how "you can't get that time back" etc etc. I think some younger folks (men and women) might be a tad envious but they mostly just express that they are impressed (like, by the amount of time-- most teachers try for spring babes and take the end of the year and summer off, but return in late August-- or that we can manage to do it-- this is where I'm picking up on slight undertones of envy). And then there's my MIL-- she talks now about how I have a month left of work and then "18 years off!"
She stayed home all her life (she does help with FIL's business at times) and never had a real "career" so it's very supportive, but I wish I could feel as confident that I really can stay home for good! (which I wil do if we find we can afford it-- right now we're taking it step by step).

So overall that's pretty supportive. Not even any neg comments from fellow teachers/friends who are due the same time as me, or have recently had babes and are having more... everyone has at least been too polite to say anything
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Maybe the US is different on this point, compared to Europe- it sounds wonderful with all the positive reactions. Here most people find it very strange that I would put my education on hold like that and that I will wait until dd is that old (3 yrs
) before putting her in kindergarten. It's as if they picture her locked in the house without contact to anyone but me...
 

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I get mostly support, too, but everyone I know has been/will be a SAHM at some point. Except for one SIL--but her dh was a SAHD for many, many years (their youngest is 14, and he's been back at work maybe 4 years).
 

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I haven't gotten any negative responses at all. I quit working in August and most of my coworkers were jealous.
Even my neighbor who is an office manager for a big lawfirm ($$$$) said that she couldn't do it (likes her toys too much), but she thought it was great that I did.

I'm not on a 2.5 year leave, either. I'm home.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Midwitch View Post
Maybe the US is different on this point, compared to Europe- it sounds wonderful with all the positive reactions. Here most people find it very strange that I would put my education on hold like that and that I will wait until dd is that old (3 yrs
) before putting her in kindergarten. It's as if they picture her locked in the house without contact to anyone but me...
Just out of curiosity, where do you live in Europe? Dh is from Europe and I've lived in two different countries and visited most of the rest of them (in the West) and I've always seen that everywhere in Europe everyone is very supportive (even encouraging) of mothers staying at home. My dh was very supportive (of course all of the women in his family are sahms) even though I was making about 70k/yr. when I quit. I'm just really, very surprised to hear that anywhere in Europe would be less sympathetic to SAHMs than the US. These are generalizations, of course, and every individual situation is different. Does it make a difference there that it's your education and not your career that you are putting on hold?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
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Originally Posted by velochic View Post
Just out of curiosity, where do you live in Europe? Dh is from Europe and I've lived in two different countries and visited most of the rest of them (in the West) and I've always seen that everywhere in Europe everyone is very supportive (even encouraging) of mothers staying at home. My dh was very supportive (of course all of the women in his family are sahms) even though I was making about 70k/yr. when I quit. I'm just really, very surprised to hear that anywhere in Europe would be less sympathetic to SAHMs than the US. These are generalizations, of course, and every individual situation is different. Does it make a difference there that it's your education and not your career that you are putting on hold?
I'm from Denmark. I'm sure that me taking 2.5 yrs leave from my education, has people thinking that the next step will be me dropping out, but I have heard from several SAHMs that people "don't get it"- why would anyone want to do something as boring as staying at home looking after kids for so long... There is more prestige in being a career-woman, SAH is too old fashioned and unambitious in the eyes of most people here.
 

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Both my parents and IL's totally support our choice. They were SAHM's as well. However, they seem to be under the impression that I will one day return to teaching *when the kids are in school*. Um, I am unschooling, so that plan is not even a glimmer in my eye! (they're in for a bit of a surprise!)
 

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Family was all very supportive, but there is always the assumption is it temporary, that I will go back once the kids are in school. I may, but I hate that they assume that I will.

The coworker response when I quit was interesting. Invariably, older coworkers, ones who didn't have young kids, said it was the best thing and you'll never regret it, whether they told me they or their wives stayed home or worked. Younger coworkers whose wives stayed home thought it was great, but the mothers of young kids who had chosen to work rather than stay home just couldn't comprehend my decision, which was natural, given they made the opposite choice. Everyone was nice about it though.
 
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