This seems to be the debate or the century. I would like to preface this by saying I use the term “working out of the home” because I do believe that being a stay at home mom is a job and I also know that a lot of moms have careers where they work from home. I aspire to be one of these two types of moms one day. This is one of the most difficult decisions of mommyhood and it always comes with great scrutiny. Even though it is not necessary, I always find myself needing to defend my family’s decision to have a working (out of the home) mom.
The number one reason why I work outside the home is well, because I have to. My husband is an insurance agent who is doing a phenomenal job but it is hard. We have had to deal with a lot of obstacles over the course of his career; changing companies, opening an office, closing an office, etc. It is difficult to not receive a base salary and be 100% commission. In addition to not having a steady paycheck, this is a career that does not provide health benefits and paid time off to name a few. I am so proud of my husband and he truly is amazing at what he does but it is hard to get the rest of the world to see that. Due to this our family needs a steady paycheck, health benefits, and stock options to survive. I am fortunate enough that I have a great job that provides these things. My job is also amazing because since I have been there for 6 years, I have earned flexibility. This is a feature that would be impossible to give up given all the balls I have in the air at once.
Aside from this, I sometimes think if I could stay home full-time, would I?
I personally have fears of not being able to support my family if something were to ever happen. I take great pride in the fact that I have completely supported myself for many years. I worry that if I were to lose my business skills by not working and god forbid something were to happen to the bread-winner, I would be stranded. Even though we have plenty of life insurance, I just like to know that I would be able to take care of my family just fine.
As much as I don’t like to admit this, it is also nice to go to work and spend time with other adults talking about adult things. I also really enjoy learning and challenging myself.
One of our family goals is to eventually get to a point where I can work part-time. We think it would be best if I could continue to work to some capacity to contribute to the household. Part time would be perfect, a little bit of everything always makes everyone happy. I should also mention that if you think the mom gets a lot of flack for working outside the home, the dad gets it just as bad. People are always asking my husband if “he feels bad that his wife can’t stay at home” or “don’t you want your wife to stay home and raise your children?” Comments like this are probably just as hurtful to him as they are when I get them. We are doing the best we can for our family and it’s working. I think this contributes to it being important to him that I eventually stay home part-time.
One of my personal life goals is to start my own business. I have been dreaming up ideas for my own business since I was a little girl. True story. I have several really good ideas but I just have a hard time finding the time or the place to get them started. Hopefully one day I will be able to report on here of a business started by Laura. That would be my perfect world. Then I could stay home with SJ and have a business I could be proud of.
Until then, this girl will continue to dream and love her family.