Monday, January 28, 2013

How to be a Stay at Home Wife or Mother

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Did you see how I used the stylish name and not the one most of us are used  to put up our noses at. Yeah, the H-word. I mean housewife. Another way to describe staying at home as a wife or mother is as a Homemaker, this I think is the best description. But whichever way it is put, a housewife usually does not have an external income, or she just does not earn as much as she would if she worked outside the home.

For this reason, a lot of stay at home wives and mothers will tell you, "I did not plan to be a housewife", but in my case I actually did. I mean we did, Atala and I. Let me start from the beginning. I am one of those never say never kind of people, I try to remain adaptable, and not to think in absolutes. For instance, it was never taboo in my mind for a woman to choose to be a housewife, the key word being choice. If a woman gets married and decides to stay home, either for the husband or the children, who was I to judge? Especially if it is working for their family?

Having a career or not is one of those topics that can get educated and socially-aware women up in arms, the debate being whether career women can be good mothers, and how much housewives contribute to the economy. I remember when Michelle Obama said at the DNC last year, “... my most important title is still ‘mom-in-chief.’” Some people were not happy about that, and feel that with all her degrees she should be out building on her career and not staying home.


Being a feminist, I see where such talk comes from. Some of our grandmothers and mothers did not have the opportunity to get education to the extent we have now, and most times, they were coerced to stop working after marriage or pregnancy, either by their husband, or male bosses. In those days, a woman is expected to focus fully on her home and nothing more. The argument now is that since we are not so disadvantaged, why not use our freedom to the full extent? I believe that freedom should depend on individual choice rather than collective mandate.

From personal experience, I would say if you and your husband are fine with you staying home, then it shouldn't matter what outsiders think. A couple can either agree for a woman to stay home from immediately after the wedding, or from when she becomes pregnant, or takes her first maternity leave. As a stay at home wife or mother, I will suggest a hobby, cause, or charity work, or you may choose to find a job you can do from home.

Let's discuss, my part two is coming soon :)






17 comments:

  1. So true Myne, as with so many other things in life..."To each her own".

    The hubby and I have actually discussed this recently and its an idea I'm willing to embrace.

    The bit I dislike though is having a man "insist" on his wife being a stay-at-home, especially if he never brought it up before they exchanged their vows.

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    1. Totally agree. If the man feels he would want his wife to stay home, he should make it plain and discuss before marriage. Such things need to be discussed before marriage.

      However, as a woman, we should be prepared for such eventualities. At any stage in a marriage, it could come up either stay home completely or cut back on your job. Either ways, I believe such discussions are a must for couples before marriage. If you have a career oriented babe, it might pay you in the long run to end the relationship before marriage.

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  2. There is no problem with it if the woman can get herself busy with some work she loves doing at home, and if the hubby's earnings can take care of the family. It's a matter of agreement really!

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  3. Can I just say I don't wish to be a stay-at-home, but if I have to make understandable sacrifices, then so be it.

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  4. I agree with you Myne, if the partners are fine with the whole idea of staying at home, it doesn't really matter what others think... It was a nice reading...

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  5. I am actually considering been a stay at home mom once I give birth to my first child...but then I would have to make sure I get busy doing something I love...till then, I can't say for sure if I would go ahead and do that or not.

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  6. As long as it is a decision the woman made on her own without coercion, then I don't mind. To each his/her own

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  7. I choose to be a working wife and mom, because I can't stay for more than 2 years without work. I need to meet up with people and I love to be busy with work!

    http://www.finest-in-internet.com/

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  8. I love this Myne, can't wait to read your Part 2. Feminists, a group which I am a member of, forget that feminism is about women having the CHOICE. Given education and career advancement and options, feminism is about being FREE to choose what one wants and if that choice is being barefoot and pregnant (gross exaggeration of course), that is a woman's [& her partner] choice to make. :)

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  9. I've never enjoyed working, not sure if I'm lazy or it comes from having hated every job I have had. But from the onset of our relationship, I told my hubby, that since he earned well from his job, I'd rather not work. which worked until he lost his job, and I had to join the workforce again.Though, I work from home, I still hate it, and would rather indulge in activities that I love rather than working. Ok i think I'm venting, rather than commenting. my bad:)

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  10. I am not a fan of daily commute to work especially when it takes up to an hour. I would rather a job close to home. And with all the work from home jobs either self made or online available these days this is a choice i embrace wholely. What i always say is even if i am a stay at home mom/wife i will still need to keep my mind busy and occupied and relate with other adults other than my husband this is where volunteering and other activ ites going back toschool included come in or maybe even a business preferably an online one. It's not about not wanting to work rather being able to work on my own schedule.

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  11. Afropolitaine took the words out of my mouth. That's all. Is it your choice and defendable? Yes. Then get on with it.
    When it is a choice imposed on you by husband and society then it becomes a problem.

    I don't think of you as a Stay at Home wife though. I think you exaggerate. The work you put into this website isn't beans.

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  12. Myne, housewife no be work o!

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  13. I'm liking that picture of you, I guess Atala took it? Sweet!

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  14. I totally enjoyed reading this and I totally agree with the points you raised. Doing what works for your family is key.I used to be a working mom but for the past 2 years I have been a home maker and was I wrong about some perceptions I had about stay at home parents. Waiting to read your Part2

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  16. my friends call me 'busy bee' because I love occupying myself with something i love doing. I never thought I'd be a stay at home mum because I thought it'll be boring for me but the last 8 months has changed my mind. I'm up to my neck with just caring for my girl, and that's because I believe in doing anything and everything right. When I eventually start working (I still look forward to it, all the time), I would want to say to myself, 'I was the best stay at home mum ever!'

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