Both stay at home and working moms have probably come across hostile postings on blogs and message boards attacking each others’ decision. But statistics indicate that the silent majority may very well be a core group of women supporting each other as moms in whatever choice they’ve made.
Working vs. Staying at Home
In a poll offered by Oprah website, over 15,000 moms responded to questions about their choice to stay at home or in the workplace. The show based on the poll’s results had the usual sniping and snide remarks, but apparently when moms take time to examine their choices without feeling pressure, the battle lines are far less clear.
For starters, many moms actually admitted to dreaming about switching teams. Of the stay at home moms polled, 36% said they wished they worked. Of the working moms polled, 66% said they would quit to stay home with their kids if they could.
Stay at Home and Working Moms Feeling Guilty and Judged
Where guilt’s concerned, moms share a united front. When asked whether they felt selfish for considering personal or professional needs, 54% of stay at home moms said yes as did 55% of working mothers.
Many moms in both camps also have a common ground of feeling judged by family, friends, or other moms. Those who say they experience this on a regular basis include 56% of the stay at home moms along with 43% of the working moms polled.
What Working and Stay at Home Moms Think about Each Other
Believe it or not, more stay at home moms feel it is possible to give one’s all to motherhood and a career – 71% to be exact. Only 61% of working moms who took the poll agreed.
72% of stay at home moms who responded to the poll claimed they believed staying home with the kids was more difficult than going into the office. In a show of support, 52% of working moms agreed.
On one very important thing both 85% of stay at home moms and 83% of working moms agree. Both say stay at home moms don’t get the respect they deserve.
As moms know, the decision to stay at home or work is not an easy one. Women may be interested to read about parenting help for emotional and financial budgeting adjustments that go along with the choice to stay home with kids.
So, the next time a mom sees a tactless comment on a message board from another mom slamming her choice to stay home or work, she can remember that those abrasive opinions are decidedly in the minority and certainly not a shared sentiment of all working or stay at home moms. If she resists the temptation to strike back, she’ll chalk up one less battle in this pointless war.
How Singles Can be Stay-at-Home Parents
The desire to be a stay-at-home mom or dad may seem like an impossible dream for many single parents. The good news is, though it is challenging, it is not impossible for single moms and dads to be stay-at-home parents.
Below are ways for single parents to make the dream of being home full time a reality.
Explore Work From Home Options
Inadequate income is one of the biggest hindrances for single parents who want to be home with their children. The good news is, today more than ever there are tremendous work from home opportunities for stay-at-home parents.
Some good work from home options include:
- Freelance work such as writing, editing and graphic design
- Online affiliate marketing
- Online sales such as eBay, Etsy, and selling used books through companies such as Amazon
- Mystery shopping and merchandising
- Home daycare
- Home-based call center services
Some companies allow employees to telecommute. Such an arrangement can be the best of all worlds because though work is done at home, there is a support system and benefits that go with being an employee rather than being self employed.
Working from home is a challenge and often has many ups and downs, but it is one of the best ways for a single parent to be a stay-at-home mom or dad.
Work Around Joint Custody Schedules
If the child’s other parent lives in the area and is involved in the child’s life, it may be possible to work a traditional job around the other parent’s work schedule. For instance, if the child can spend the night at the other parent’s home, a single parent who desires to stay home with the children during the day can work the graveyard shift in a hospital, at a grocery store, or in a company offering 24-hour technical support.
Though graveyard shifts are not necessarily pleasant and take some getting used to, an added bonus of working a graveyard shift is that the pay is often higher compared to the same work done during the day.
Temporary jobs may be taken on during summer and other long school breaks if the child stays with the other parent during these times.
Some jobs, such as nursing, pay full time wages when two 12-hour shifts are worked on weekends. If the child’s other parent can provide care on weekends, such an arrangement can work well for the single parent who desires to be home full time with the children.
Rely on a Good Support System
All parents need a good support system in place, but single parents especially need help from others, particularly if they choose to be stay-at-home parents.
It’s important for single parents who are stay-at-home moms or dads to get a break from the children occasionally, no matter how much they love them. Having a good support system in place that is made up of both family and friends can provide the single parent with some alone time when needed or desired.
Extended family can be especially helpful for single parents who desire to stay home with the children. In some cases, if there is room in the home and relationships are smooth, single parents may opt to move in with family members in order to make it financially as well as to have multiple people who can assist in providing care for the children.
Single moms and dads who want to be stay-at-home parents definitely have a tough road ahead of them, but through exploring work from home opportunities, working around the other parent’s schedule, and relying on a good support system made up of friends and families, single parents can realize their dream of being home with their children full time.