Stay-at-Home or Working Mom

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Wifey's Weekly Q and A

Dear Wifey:

My husband and I have been planning our family since we got engaged. We agree on everything except whether I will stay home with our children and for how long. He’s very supportive and says ultimately the decision is mine, but he would like me to stay home. I just don’t know if I am stay-at-home mom material. I have a lot of respect for stay-at-home moms, but I’m not ready to walk away from my career yet. We’ve been married nine months and are planning to get pregnant around our first anniversary. I feel like I should figure this out before we start trying to get pregnant. I just don’t know what to do. Any suggestions?

- Mrs. Stay-at-Home or Working Mom

Dear Mrs. Stay-at-Home or Working Mom:

Kudos to you both for being proactive and planning together one of the most important decisions of your marriage. It’s important to have conversations about children before you get married so that you both are on the same page – or are working toward it – and there are no surprises about how many kids you both would like and when you would like to have them. Planning is great and necessary, but you also need to understand that even the most well thought-out plans can change – especially when it comes to children.

Staying at home with your children or keeping your career in tact are both challenging and rewarding paths. You should make a tentative plan, but be open to the idea of changing your mind once your little bundle of joy is born. You might decide to stay home now, but find that you crave the working world after a year without the water cooler; or you might plan to return to your job three months after your baby is born but can’t bear to leave her once it’s time to go back. The truth is only you will know how you feel once you are actually in the situation. It’s wonderful that your husband is supportive and is not pressuring you into doing something that you’re not comfortable with doing. Talk to him and come up with Plan A and Plan B; then relax and enjoy the baby making!

Winks & Smiles,

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How about you? When did you decide to work or stay home? Did you change your mind? Moms and moms-to-be want to know …

The advice on this site is intended to be helpful, but is not meant to take the place of marital counseling, legal advice, financial advice or any other professional service. If you feel you need professional help, it is encouraged for you to get some.


MOMSWEB July 2, 2009 at 9:45 AM  

I'm retired military, but two years before I retired, my heart changed and I couldn't wait to be home with my sons. I don't think it's something we decide, but life happens and we just go with the flow. Personally, I can't stand the titles...just be the best mother you can be - whether in the home or outside the home, we all work our butts off!

Unknown July 2, 2009 at 10:09 AM  

I agree, MOMSWEB! Work is the common factor for either route chosen. Being a mom is a full-time job in itself!

Ms. Wanda July 2, 2009 at 11:14 AM  

Well, I'm a stay home mom, but a stay at home mom doesn't mean you don't work. You work even harder. Thank God for blogging and social networking because I'm home but, now I feel really connected to the outside world:)

Also, I'm thankful I was able to stay home for the kids and now that they are approaching Middle School I'm thinking of taking a job Subbing at their school:) I can keep an eye on them and be on their schedule as well!

Felicia - I complete Me July 2, 2009 at 12:26 PM  

I could not have said it better myself. I am a worker. I enjoy working staying home all day everyday drives me up a wall. However, I miss my baby and I want to be home so bad. So definitely make a Plan A and Plan B and be ready to change your mind. Great Answer!!!

Melanie Evans,  July 2, 2009 at 9:39 PM  

It is a blessing to have that option. I would definitely wait to decide until you lay eyes on that beautiful miracle. You will know what's right for you, follow your instincts. I got superpowers when my girls were born and I found that my intuition became razor'll know what's right! Good luck!

Tonya July 3, 2009 at 2:21 PM  

There may be an option in which you can have the best of both worlds. Some moms work from home and also have their kids home with them. Maybe that would work for her?

I was a working mom, but now I'm a stay at home mom. Just like Ms. Wanda said, it is plenty of work, but it is very fulfilling.

Funkidivagirl July 5, 2009 at 11:40 AM  

I am a Stay-At-Home mom and luckily this is an area that my husband and I agreed upon before we got married. I wouldn't have it any other way.

I wish more people would think about this situation before getting married and having kids--just like you are now. Because I think if you go into marriage knowing that you want to have kids and how you want to raise them, then you make certain career choices based on that. For instance, if you know that you want to stay home, but also have income, then you can work towards setting up a consulting gig, working part time, starting your own business, etc--there are many thing that you can do to be flexible enough to be available for your kids--if you just plan enough in advance.

MsTypo July 7, 2009 at 9:08 AM  

I'm impressed with people who discuss these things and plan so proactively. Far too many couples wait to have this discussion until the last minute.

Sandra Winn July 9, 2009 at 3:45 AM  

Wifey, you're a terrific writer but I found this post one of your best--and not because I happen to agree with you! :-)

You wrote on a controversial subject (why it is I don't know, but more women like the posters here get lost in the 'Mommy Wars') and remained neutral by providing sound advice. I "WUV" YOU! :-)

My husband and I decided I would stay home when we had children and neither of us have looked back. It was discussed long before we even said our, "I dos."

Hugs Sweet Lady ~ Sandy

Milk and Honey Mommy July 22, 2009 at 11:13 PM  

My husband and I agreed before we were married that I would stay home w/our children. We also discussed how we were going to educate (we homeschool) them during this time.

I was laid off from my job before we were married (a survivor of the era) and didn’t seek further employment because of the plans we made. I will say that the transition from making an income to not, was difficult at first, but being paid w/poop diapers, wet kisses anytime of the day, and being able to watch my children grow and learn has been enough to make me not regret the decisions we made.

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