Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Beating a dead horse.

This book Feminine Mistake - Are We Giving Up Too Much? has caused a bit of a stir out there it seems. And so we discuss the stay-home vs. working mom topic again. This is a battle that will never be won because women tend to simplify it when it is really a vastly complex issue. And women like to tell other women what is best for them, based on what has been best personally. Women are really hard on each other.

I found this on a message board and wanted to post it here, because it's funny and sadly, a lot of it is true. It touchs on the double standards between mothers and fathers and the rabid viewpoints of women towards each other with regards to parenting. But, try not to take it too seriously.

I present to you, the 2007 new and improved version of the Script, complete with new additions from the last 2 years worth of Rabids. Keep in mind that many of these items (and all of the most recent additions) are verbatim statements of actual Rabid Mommys on this or other boards.

1. All Moms should stay at home with babies because it's better.
2. Why is it better? Well, it just IS. Because that's what *I am doing, and what *I do is what is best for all.
3. It is ok for a Mom to work for "financial necessity". Necessity as determined by *me. No Coach purses, luxury cars, European vacations or other luxury items are allowed. Working for *luxuries (defined by said Rabid SAHM) may also include, but is not limited to: retirement plans, investments for college, planning ahead for financial stability in the event of a catastrophe (unforeseen divorce, medical condition, death of spouse), and health insurance. Men are allowed to work (even to the extent of being gone for extended periods of time or long hours on a regular basis) for such luxuries -- they are being noble. Working women are not.
  • Working women care so much about material things.
  • Working moms who choose to work for the "mental health" or because the don't want to be home with their babies are sub-standard mothers, and all Rabid Mommys are entitled to feel superior to them.
  • If I took a job outside the home, the cost of day care would take all the money I make. (This one of course applies to all women, because moms couldn't possibly be working in a higher paid professional field -duh!)
4. It is better to be on welfare and stay home with the children than work to support them.
  • The father needs to work 2 or 3 jobs so that the mother can stay home.
5. All families with two parents working outside the home "dump" their children at daycare for 10+ hours per day, spending only one hour a day during the work week with their children.(This is the one that paints the picture that all situations are the same and everyone in the world works the same hours)
  • Once you figure in the typical 3 hours of commuting that working parents do each day, such parents only spend 20 minutes a day with their children.
  • Ok let's look at this - drop child off at daycare by 8 am, pick them up between 5-6 - quality time in the car as you rush home to cook dinner and do other household stuff. Or, stop at the fast-food place to fill them up with fat....then get home, change clothes or eat (whatever), give child a bath, put them to bed - GEE, maybe an hour of quality time? How nice for your child.
6. If you aren't going to stay home with your children you should not have children. Just get a cat. Don't get a dog. You are also required to stay at home with dogs when they are puppies.
7. None of the rules against working outside the home apply to working fathers. *They are still raising their children. Working mothers do not. Working mothers are not "full time mothers" either. Working fathers are still full-time fathers, however. Something about that penis that makes a difference.
8. All Rabid SAHMs have husbands who work shorter hours than anyone else, and therefore spend more time with their children than other working fathers.
9. Rabid SAHMs can send their children to preschool. Preschool is not the same thing as day care, even if they do the exact same things and children spend the same amount of time there.
10. I know daycares are awful because I worked in the Best Daycare in Our State, and children were left to sit in dirty diapers and cry for hours on end while the OTHER teachers took a cigarette break. They spanked and bit the kids and forced them to clean their plates. It just broke my heart. Of course, I never did call CPS or talk to the parents- I just quit."
11. It is ok to send children to school. Teachers are not "raising" children, even if children are in school as much or more than they are in day care. Besides, it is only the first 5 years of life that matter. As children get older, they need less of their parents' time and attention.
12. Kids of SAHM's are much better behaved because they don't feel neglected like those kids of WM's do. You can tell right away who goes to daycare and who doesn't. Plus kids of WM's always seem so "needy."
13. None of the rules against working apply to divorced (abandoned by their husbands) or widowed mothers. And all rabid SAHMs have perfectly healthy husbands and perfect marriages, so there is no need to plan for either of these possibilities.
14. The neighborhood children all get dumped at their house because they're the only ones home and who really care.
15. WM's always assume SAHM's will be home for emergency back-up child care, because of course, they have *nothing else to do.
16.They really don't sit around all day and eat bonbons ya know... and besides *other chocolate is preferred. They don't watch soap operas all day either. Dr. Phil is the show of choice. Or hanging out on AOL message boards.
17. The truly Rabid SAHM is staying home because of a special needs child, and no one else could possibly understand her life.
18. I thought about doing day care from the home, but couldn't stand a second away from my little darlings.
19. There is nothing better to do all day than stare adoringly into my child's eyes.
  • There is something truly special about the bonding a mother experiences when changing her child's diapers. Day care workers don't have the same bonding because they are paid to change diapers.
  • Really special rabid SAHMs use cloth diapers and berate anyone who uses disposables because they are uninformed and don't care about their babies. Those who don't use cloth diapers spend $100s each month on disposable diapers, or let the child set in a wet, dirty diaper for hours at a time. This Cloth Diapering wing of the rabids often spend hundreds on the cloth diapers, but that is different. Somehow.
20 Only a mother can kiss a boo-boo. Children *need their mothers to attend to all boo boos, and all mothers should want to be there for all of them.
21. Don't all you working Moms hate missing out on all the "firsts"? As a SAHM, I *know I have seen EVERY first. And videotaped them all for dh. It is an important part of the bonding experience for a mother to see every first. Even the first tooth. And the first successful deposit in the potty.
22. I stay at home because that is how nature meant it to be. Throughout history, women have stayed at home. Those that didn't would have if they could. {Rabids don't seem to have any explanation for the use of Governesses and Nannies among the elite thru history}23. Babies don't keep.
23 A. Being a SAHM is the Hardest Job in the World, but it is worth it because you are paid in peanut butter kisses (or butterfly kisses).
24 I may go back to work when my kids are in school, because they won't need me as much then. But I will only work during school hours. I know there are plenty of jobs out there that will allow me to have those hours plus summers and all school vacations off. Or I can be a teacher, so I can leave at the same time as my kids.
24 A. The most critical years in a child's life are from birth to age 5.
25. I am willing to sacrifice everything because my babies NEED me.
26. When writing a goodbye post, rabids include this: "Now that I see that even the sahm's here do not express their opinions and beliefs openly here towards the op , for fear of conflict & disagreement, and to perhaps it seems, to 'preserve unity'"
27. When a rabid doesn't like what's going on in this folder she complains that the posters aren't posting the way she wants them to.
28. A. At the time of leaving the board, the rabid will complain that she was only in search of like-minded friends and can't believe how mean we were to her to disagree with her.
29. Some Rabids like to leave and come back under other names, pretending that they don't care what we say here.
30 Day care workers get rich off of mothers who dump their kids in child care.
31 I feel sorry for those poor women who work because their loser husbands don't make enough money to support them.
32. Children of today have so many problems because mothers no longer stay at home. Day care is the reason for all the problems with children we hear about in the news. Of course, none of those things ever happened before women entered the work force. (this is known as "rampant BeaverCleaver-itis")
33. If a fire breaks out in a day care, who will grab your child to make sure they are safe? Mothers should not work to avoid this oh-so-likely scenario.
34. I had my child in a day care that provided inadequate care, therefore all day care is inadequate care.
35 When confronted with the fact that Andrea Yates was a SAHM, Rabids protest that it just isn't fair to use such an extreme example.
36 It is so sad when WM's can't attend their child's kindergarten graduation. They should move heaven and earth to be at every such event. If a SAHM can't attend this event, it is because the school is uncaring about her need for care for other children.
37. Working moms doing chores around the house with their children are NEGLECTFUL. SAHMs doing chores around the house with their children are spending QUALITY TIME and TEACHING their children useful skills.
38. My kids are more to me than just a cute picture in my wallet.
39. When FATHERS travel for work, it's an unavoidable part of life, but whenMOTHERS travel for work, it means that they love their job more than theirchildren. No real mother would choose a career that could take her away from her child.
40. There are plenty of women who haven't yet had children or whose children are grown and out of the home who can be doctors and lawyers. If you spent tons of money on an education-great! Use it on teaching your kids and when they are grown get a job in your chosen field. Or don't get married and have kids. Or postpone having them until you can be available to take care of them.
41 Even single mothers can get assistance so that they can stay home with their kids at least when they are babies. I have much more respect for a woman receiving public assistance and raising her own kids than going to work and leaving them everyday. There's plenty of time for that when they are older and in school.


At 7:18 AM, Anonymous Alison said...

Well, that's...uh...interesting. I don't recall anyone, including me, saying anything like that. In fact, I said repeatedly that I understood the reasons why women work. You said my friend's reason to work, for a nice home and stuff, was 'asinine'. Yet, that's on this list! SAHM supposedly decide what is/isn't appropriate use of money. I was going to respond to you that their reason isn't asinine. Any more than your reason is to work. None of it's asinine.
I just hate hearing women say: 'I'd love to stay home but...' Fill in the blank. That my friend is fear.
I also said, which you seemed to miss, that I'm sick of the mommy wars too. We were talking about our reasons for staying home because we have been labeled naive idiots for trusting our husbands and staying home with our kids. And then I come over here and see this. Nice work. I notice you didn't include ANYTHING that we said--including the numerous examples of women who worked when their children where little or after they got older. Our opinions or life experiences don't matter obviously. No one said anything about the effects of childcare on children--no one. I even talked about what a great daycare I sent my son to.
How awful to come over here and read this. I really enjoyed debating with you at the other site. Sad this is what you choose to post.

At 9:39 AM, Blogger Smoov said...

Well, I see that Alison didn't get the post. She didn't hear the sarcasm. Oh well, what can you do?

At 9:57 AM, Blogger Smoov said...

Dear Alison,
The post you are commenting on isn't related to what we were commenting on. This is a "script" pulled from a debate board where they often see what they call rabid stay-at-home moms who come there and tell them all about what terrible mothers they are. It was meant in humor. I'm sorry you didn't get it. Don't be sad for me, there is no reason to be.

At 10:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A retirement fund is not a luxury. Its a necessity.

Wake up and smell the coffee.

Most women outlive their husbands. Their husband dies in his 50s or 60s, and often the woman lives to be in her 90s. Just go to any nursing home -the women outnumber the men by 10 to 1. If you want to retire at age 65, you will need enough money socked away to last 30 years. And if you are a widow with no retirement and your life insurance benefits are used up - good luck. You will be a charity case at that point. Maybe then you will realize all those "career women" were on to something. That it wasn't about ego for thgem - it was about creating a secure financial future.

I've seen too many sahms resent the money that working women earn -they are jealous. The fact, is a lot of the money I earn, goes into retirement funds. No, I am not shopping at neiman's every weekend - that's for teenage girls. I am putting my money in savings and retirement funds. I also know sahms who don't even know what a 401k is. That is just sad.

At 10:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Also, things like Pampered Chef, Mary Kay, Silpada Jewelry, Southern Living, etc. are NOT going to fund your retirement or provide any health insurance benefits for SAHMs. At best you might earn a few nickels and dimes from these multi level marketing schemes, and at worst, alienate all your friends and neighbors by pestering them (begging) them to buy from you.


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