I read an article today called Out of the closet as a happy working mom. In it the author, a fellow working mother, scandalously declares that she does NOT feeling guilty for going back to work.
She states, “It is great to be back. If that sounds insufficiently guilt-ridden, sorry. I’m happy to be back at work. No ambivalence, no self-flagellation. It’s great to earn a paycheck again. It’s magnificent to get coffee, use the bathroom by myself and be around grownups. Even meetings are fun, though that feeling will surely pass. So today I’m outing myself as a happy working mom, despite the pressure women with kids often feel to sound miserable and conflicted about the “choice” to work…. Work is fun. Even with the crazy plate-spinning necessary to hold down a full-time job, it’s fun. “
I applaud her.
I’ve long been disgusted with the whole working mom vs. stay at home mom guilt trip. Every woman is different. Every situation is different. Judging is pointless.
Much to my own mother’s chagrin (another blog post all together), I have always been a working mother. As cliche as this may sound, I’ve just never had a choice. As I guilt ridden young mother, I tried oddball schedules (magazine night shift, anyone?), made tough decisions and major sacrifices and to keep my family functioning well. Nonetheless, I’ve always held a job.
I’ve had many conversations over the years where I have worked hard to convince others, not to mention myself, that if I didn’t have to work… I wouldn’t.
It is how I am wired.
I may not need to work for money but I most definitely would end up finding a committee to run. Or a gala to chair or a blog or magazine to write for or SOMETHING.
But that is just me. My mind is never still. I’ve never been a talented homemaker. (Ask my husband, he will confirm. Oh boy will he confirm.)
My calling to be in the working world most certainly does not make me a bad mother. My children are fed, clothed, loved and coddled. They are challenged and nurtured and attended to. And sometimes even spoiled. I love them dearly.
Do I feel guilty? Of course. All moms feel guilt, it comes with the territory.
Do I wince when others to judge me? Most certainly. (Don’t they have something more constructive to do with their time?)
Working moms in todays society feel a tremendous amount of pressure. It goes without saying that if we could all start trying to support each other in our choices, everyone would be better off.
Even our kids.