I learned from you that there is substance in, and pride with, being a stay-at-home mother. After long and loud days at home with three boys, I didn’t fully understand the benefits of all this insanity and lack of “me” time. To be successful, I had been told that a woman had to go to work every day and make something of herself, so I assumed that stay-at-home moms were stupid, lazy lowlifes. My mom was a workaholic. My brother and I were sent to a babysitter every day, and my mother was always late picking us up. The babysitter finally got so fed up that she left us outside on the swing-set while she and her family went indoors to eat dinner. I felt unimportant, unloved, neglected and “second” in my mother’s life. Some days, my dad was able to sneak away from work and pick us up for lunch. They were the greatest, because there was a sense of warmth and comfort that came from knowing he’d be there for us.
I didn’t realize that this early lack of belonging was turning me into an emotional wreck. At college, I developed a passion for “Women’s Studies,” which introduced me to feminist theory. From this, I grasped that all men were out to get “us;” that a strong woman would never let a man tell her what to do, and that you had to make a name for yourself in the workplace. Staying home all day with your children was equivalent to being behind bars!
I finally discarded that thinking with your help. Women are MEANT to raise their children. It’s in our DNA to be present for them. I’d never want my kids to feel as I did after being left with a babysitter for over nine hours a day. No stranger could ever match the amount of love I feel for them. THIS is the most important work I can ever do in my life.
The Emotional Toll of Having a Working Mom
The Dr. Laura Call of the Day Podcast