Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Stay at Home vs. Working Parents; Can't We All Just Get Along??

I grew up in a dual-income family.  My mom and dad both worked an enormous amount of hours to provide us with the necessities of life.  During my childhood, I was left in the hands of very capable child care professionals between the hours of 9am-5pm.

I am now 34 years old, and my husband and I are both employed.  Our youngest attends full-time daycare, and our oldest spent his first 5 years in full-time daycare before entering elementary school.   Up until a year ago, being a dual-income family was NOT AN OPTION for us.  It was a necessity.  We are very fortunate to now be in a place where becoming a stay-at-home mom is an option, and I’ve been giving it very serious thought.

Today, Yahoo published this story written by Brian Reed, an author from investigatinganswers.com: 

A quote from the article: “How many people do you know who get to the end of their life and wish they had spent more time working and less time with their families? You can't pin a dollar sign on the value of spending time with your children.”

Whoa.  Hey Brian Reed, why don’t you just kick me in the stomach and call me a shitty, uncaring parent while you’re at it??!?

Let me reiterate- my husband and I have just gotten to a place where becoming a single-income family is possible.  For many people, this isn’t a choice.  It disturbs me that frowning upon the working parent’s “decision” to remain employed is so… well… ACCEPTED in today’s society.  Here is a comment left on the article referenced above:

”Money was NOT a concern for whether I stayed home. I did NOT want someone else raising my children. I learned how to budget, scrimp, and do without ... but I'll NEVER regret being home for my children. It's too bad more people don't feel that way.” –Debbie

Oh dear, judgmental Debbie.  It’s great that you were able to raise your children.  Too bad your husband didn’t raise your children (I’m assuming that you have a husband with a job because if you didn’t, staying home with your children WOULDN’T BE AN OPTION).  The fact that he is employed makes him part of the collective of uncaring parents who have other people raise their children, correct?  You can’t BOTH raise your children according to your definition of “raising” unless you are BOTH stay-at-home parents, right?!

While I’m SURE Debbie McJudgerson is a fine person, it’s tough as a working mom to see comments like this.

There are PLENTY of reasons to stay home, which is why I’m very seriously considering it.  Of COURSE I want to spend more time with my boys.  I’ve always been envious of people who had this option.  As I said before, up until last year staying home with my children wasn't an option.  Even if it HAD been an option, why judge people for having “other people raise their children”?  Some men and women are better mothers and fathers because they are employed outside of the house.  THAT IS OK.  It’s OK to want a career!!  And it most certainly doesn’t mean that daycare providers are raising their kids. 

So what IS raising a child?  To me, raising a child is instilling values, teaching them right from wrong, putting their needs ahead of your own. It means DOING WHAT IS RIGHT FOR THEM.  Sometimes doing what is right for them involves childcare. "Childcare" and "raising a child" are not interchangeable terms.  Raising children is so much more than that. 

Being a stay-at-home parent is the hardest, most demanding, most underpaid job that anyone could ever have.  But it is also extremely rewarding.  I am SO thankful that this is a possibility for me, because I know this isn’t the case for many people.  If I choose to take this path, it’ll be because it is the right thing to do for me and my family.  The thing that may be right for MY family may not be the right thing for YOUR family. 

I grew up in a dual-income family.  My mom and dad both worked an enormous amount of hours to provide us with the necessities of life.  During my childhood, I was left in the hands of very capable child care professionals between the hours of 9am-5pm.  And you know what?

My parents raised me. 

 I happen to think they did a pretty decent job.


Monday, January 2, 2012


Oh hey, it’s 2012!  You know what that means?  I’ve been writing this blog for an entire year.  ONE WHOLE YEAR.  Well, minus the 3 months I didn’t write anything.  Shut up.

To celebrate my anniversary, I thought I’d do the obligatory “Ten lessons learned /review of 2011” post. 
Join me, will you?

1. I am able to run 13 miles without dying.  Sure, I’ve permanently damaged my knee, but I have an awesome medal!

2. My ex-boyfriend William Shatner is an a**hole.  But his fans are hilarious.  Also, where the f**k is my High Council membership card??  Klingon slackers.

3. I became addicted to Words with Friends in 2011.  Seriously, its nerd crack.  I knew I had a problem when I tried to start a new game and got denied because I had too many games open.   Next year’s 2012 review will most likely contain something about my WWF intervention.  

4.  I foiled the Mini-Assassin’s plans to kill me for an entire year, HOORAY!

5.  There are people in the world who do not like me (GASP!).  I know, you're SHOCKED.  I mean, who wouldn't like me?  I'm a mother f**king princess!?!  Alas, it is true. I've learned that people who talk about others simply do not have enough to do in their own lives.  To these people, may I suggest doing something more productive with your time- like playing Words with Friends? It’s cracktastic!

6.  Great news, the government didn’t shut down and the world didn’t come to an end.  PHEW.  I apologize to all who have still not received their Pegasuarases (Thank you Jillsmo for confirming that ‘Pagasaurauses’ is indeed the plural form of ‘Pegasus’).  You wouldn’t BELIEVE the cost of shipping mythical beasts these days.  

7. If Edward from Twilight, Ming-Ming, DJ Lance, and Dora’s backpack entered into a battle to the death, Kevin Bacon would win.  I wrote this post while watching the movie “Footloose” for the first time ever.  Kevin Bacon’s got moves you’ve never seen.

8.  If you dress up a Craig’s List posting, you can sell ANYTHING.  Someone offered me not only full price for my fancy black pleather couches- they were willing to throw their husband in for free.  Hooray plural marriage!

 9. I’ve got nothing.  Come on, did you really expect me to finish this list?!  I didn’t blog ANYTHING for months; you know I’m a quitter!  Shut up.

10. Um, why are you still looking at this list?  Don’t you have anything better to do? Apparently you’ve listened to nothing I've said about Words with Friends.  

TTFN Blog Universe.  I haven’t taken a shower yet this year, I suppose I should do something about that.  Happy anniversary to me.


PS I apologize to all who have left comments over the last few months, I had to remove them to rid myself of Intense Debate.  I've said it once, I'll say it again- if Intense Debate were a person, I'd punch it in the face.

PPS I (heart) Al Gore.  I just thought you should know.