I know this is a typical gripe among the SAHM demographic, but being a stay at home mom is a job.
Mom doesn’t have enough arms or time in the day. I suspect, based on my own experiences, many stay at home moms don’t exactly have the energy necessary to fulfill the expectations of mothers who stay home with their children.
But, how often have these stressed out stay at home moms been able to convince their husbands they could use more help?
I’ve expressed my being flattered that my dear husband thinks I’m Super Woman – and there are days I feel like it. But I usually feel so drained after my day, the thought of starting a new one drains me more. There have been several times that my dear husband has made a comment like ‘I have to go to work’ and quickly recovers by adding “I mean getting up and going to work”.
As if the physical act of driving to work makes his job away from home even more significant.
Don’t get me wrong. I understand stay at home moms are blessed with the ability to stay home with their children. Their husbands are providing the income that supports the family lifestyle.
It’s not as though this is something all families can afford to do, nor do all families believe in having a mom stay home is valuable.
Anyway, I know my husband knows I work.
But, sometimes I feel he doesn’t quite grasp the magnitude of what a stay at home mom does and how many busy hours one actually puts in.
Truth be told, being a stay at home mom isn’t just one simple job. It’s a bunch of different jobs and it doesn’t help that sometimes we feel there are unrealistic expectations to be super moms.
Being a Stay at Home Mom is a Job (And More Than Just 1)!
So what is it we SAHMs do? What exactly makes being a stay at home mom hard work?
Meeting Basic Needs
From feeding and bathing, stay at home moms are the primary source of children’s basic needs being met.
And, let’s be honest, wiping butts isn’t exactly something any parent looks forward to! Seriously …. that’s a friggin’ job!
From the moment a baby is alert enough to be entertained, it’s a stay at home mom’s duty to provide it. We also have to try to teach them to eventually entertain themselves, but with some little ones, this is a larger task than for others.
Look, I know that fathers are more fun than moms, but when daddy’s not around, we’ve got to pretend we’re not tired or stressed. We still have to provide appropriate entertainment for our children.
Well … at least try.
Hey, some of it is societal pressure to teach our children a broad range of subjects from the ABCs to childhood lessons at an early age.
And while I was good at fulfilling this responsibility with my first child, doing home preschool with my second has been nearly impossible. I totally feel as though I’m failing at these other expectations with him, but I know he’s just not ready for the same kind of information delivery my first was.
But beyond that, when the kids go to school, who is responsible for the majority of homework help? Yep … stay at home mom.
And, if you have kids in school, you know what a task this can be!
One of the things I love about having two kids is that I can teach my son socially acceptable behaviors through interacting with his big sister. Even still, I know he needs more opportunities to socialize with people he doesn’t know, learn to make friends, and how to treat others outside of our family.
Before him, raising my daughter as a stay at home mom meant scheduling and attending play dates or visiting the library story time for regular interactions with others.
Cooking and Cleaning
Having little ones at home means never ending piles of laundry. Not to mention, regular trips to the kitchen for all those snacks.
But, what you can’t forget is that you’ve got to get cooking and cleaning done with a little one attached at the hip (and probably feel like you’re failing him because you should be educating, entertaining, or socializing).
Otherwise, you can do it when he’s down for nap … most likely when you’re actually needing a few moments to recover from everything else you’ve accomplished to this point. And, if you’ve got a baby at home, you know you’re under-slept and really need the nap yourself.
Managing Stock and Shopping
There’s an insane list of products and food to maintain a home, and having little ones at home just adds to it. Mom’s gotta keep track of the diapers, wipes, and clothing items in addition to all the regular household and food items.
Then, if you’re not using a grocery delivery service, add shopping to your to-do list.
Stay at Home Moms are:
- activity planners
- managers of supplies and schedule
- childcare (because you know your kids are looking at you for their needs, even when daddy’s home)
- chauffeurs back and forth to school and after-school activities
Why do I feel I’m missing things?
A Few Reasons I Still Think Being a Stay at Home Mom is A Job
Do you know why being a stay at home mom is a job?
Despite organizing my family schedule, things aren’t always on schedule!
Your kids are gonna get sick.
Your child’s teacher is going to want a parent teacher meeting.
Hubby’s gonna call and need something done.
Any number of things can happen unexpectedly and it’s probably going to happen during an inopportune time and mess up your schedule. And, you’re likely to still feel as though you’re required to complete your to-do list despite having an unexpected interruption.
Oh yeah, and let’s not forget that your kid is feeling like you’re no fun … and you know you’re certainly not having fun! You’re just getting stuff done.
The simple act of a restroom break must either fall during a nap OR very quickly while your tot’s hopefully entertaining herself with her toys (hoping she hasn’t figured out how to get hold of your cold coffee on the counter).
Eating doesn’t always occur when mom needs food, rather when there’s a free moment. And you may have to learn to eat like a prisoner hoping someone doesn’t steal your food before you get to eat.
Although I love the opportunity I’ve been given to stay home with my children, being a stay at home mom is a job.
This is what I asked for, but I still have to practice being grateful because parenting is hard work, even as a stay at home mom. It’s not a simple job because it’s truly more than one.
Being a stay at home mom isn’t inherently enjoyable even if you did ask for this position. It’s a blessing and a luxury, but that doesn’t mean it’s a luxurious or fun job.Being a stay at home mom is a blessing and a luxury, but that doesn't mean it's a luxurious or fun job #momlife #sahm #motherhood Click To Tweet
The daily life of a stay at home mom is full of more duties than play. You don’t get to just enjoy being with your children because you’re having to multi-task nearly every moment of the day.
Frankly, I don’t believe I could handle a traditional 8 hour job to come home to all these requirements either.
Thankfully, my husband has come to a better understanding in these 7 years that my being a stay at home mom is a job … and that I sometimes need a mom’s night out too!