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“Should I quit my job and become a stay-at-home mom”?
This question has crossed my mind. Mr. FAF and I have discussed this topic multiple times.
Throughout my life, I’ve met and heard about so many stay-at-home moms (SAHMs) out there. This is what I have gathered:
1) Some women’s goal is to eventually stay at home and take care of their kids no matter how high an education they have achieved.
I once met a Postdoc in Chemistry who quit her job after she had her first baby and decided to experiment with an online candy business mostly for fun.
2) Some moms weigh the pros and cons of going to work versus staying at home with the kids.
They realize that sending their kids to daycare ends up costing more than what they bring in after-tax from their full-time job.
One of my friends have three kids under 5. She decided to be a stay-at-home mom while her husband works full-time.
She does some interpretation and translation on the side when she has time.
3) Some moms stay at home with the kids but plan to return to the workforce after their kids grow up. They want to see their children go through the most vulnerable stage of their lives smoothly before they feel assured enough to start working a gain.
4) Some moms have a medical condition and can’t work at all.
1) Some moms want to be financially independent. They don’t like the feeling of depending on their husband for finances. They would like to have an equal say in every decision in the family.
They want to be in the best financial shape possible to take care of their children should something happen to their husband unexpectedly or should they go through a divorce.
2) Some moms have no choice but to work since their husband’s income alone would not be sufficient to support the whole family.
Dads with SAHMs
1) Some dads want their wives to devote most of their time to taking care of the family. They don’t mind being the sole source of income and appreciate their spouse’s sacrifice.
2) Some men want to be the authority in the family and pressure their wives to give up their career. They want to be the sole decision maker in the family since they bring home the bacon.
Dads with working moms
Some dads want their wives to remain in the workforce .
1) They had a stay-at-home mom who wasn’t treated fairly by their dad just because the mom didn’t have an income and had to ask the husband for money on a regular basis. The husband made all the decisions without asking the wife.
Dads in this camp saw how their moms suffer for not working, so they want their wives to be financially independent.
2) They don’t make enough income to support the whole family and need their wives to contribute to the finances.
3) They want their wives to have a passion and a career. Maybe that’s the reason why they fell in love with their wives to begin with.
Growing up in a low-income family, I saw how hard my parents, especially my mom, work to provide me with enough food, clothes and a good education.
Besides her full-time job, my mom had various side hustles to pull in some extra income for the family. She knit sweaters, hats, and gloves for a small clothes shop. She made yogurt for our neighbor to sell at his food stall. She did many other side jobs that I just can’t remember.
But one thing that will stick with me is the image of her knitting late into the night to finish the order. She was tired and sleepy, but we needed the money, so she kept on going without complaining. All the while, she was taking good care of the whole family.
My parents’ wish is for me to have a good education that will ultimately lead to a good career so that I can take care of myself and my kids.
For me, working is not only to fulfill my passion and to be financially independent. It’s also for me to realize my parents’ wish and to show them gratitude for their sacrifice and hard work all these years.
If one day they’re too old to work or are not financially secure, I want them to know that they will be taken care of. I will support them with my own hard-earned money.
They don’t have to worry about whether Mr. FAF will be ok with that. He will be since we have agreed on this. Even if he doesn’t, it is my responsibility to take care of my parents. If we can’t see eye to eye on this, maybe there’s something wrong with our relationship.
Luckily, Mr. FAF and I are on the same page about me being a working mom and us supporting our parents when they’re older. He wants to up our income and loves the fact that I’m independent and career-driven.
I realized the decision to quit their job to be a stay-at-home mom or continue working after having kids is difficult for a lot of women.
Every family has a story. For us, Mr. FAF and I will continue to pursue our own careers and passion while trying to take care of our family and to achieve financial freedom in the future.
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10 thoughts on “Why I Don’t Plan to Be A Stay-At-Home Mom”
Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this. A very interesting view. I am not currently at the stage of having my own children, but I would love to be able to let my (future) wife be a stay at home mother. I hope our dividend income can cover some expenses in the future.
Thanks for dropping by my blog! It’s great you’re open to the idea of your wife being a stay-at-home mom. It’s important for me to have options and to have my spouse’s support. I think if you and your (future) wife work out a plan that both of you agree on, anything is possible. 🙂
My wife is a SAHM so she can take care of her special needs sister and our son. It makes more financial sense for her to stay at home at this point then it does for her to work. Although she would love to be in the workforce to receive the mental stimulation that the work force provides.
I really admire your wife’s decision to make such a sacrifice for family. I can’t imagine what I would do if I were in her shoe. I’d probably need to do the same thing. And I think it’s great that she has your support. Thank you for sharing. 🙂
I wish there was some kind of pay for staying at home and doing care work. Raising kids contributes to the economy by raising future workers. It’s an economic activity but it’s not treated as one. How much free labor is the government getting from the free labor of (primarily) women who do care work?
I totally agree with you. Economists also struggle with the idea of attributing economic value to women’s work at home. Housework doesn’t create direct pay or is counted as a job in the market, but it creates so much indirect value such as raising future workers like you said, preparing meals, and doing all the chores so that their husband and kids can allocate more energy to work and school.
I myself struggle with the idea of staying at home. On the one hand, I want to make sure that my children can get my full attention and don’t get abused at daycare. On the other hand, I know I don’t get paid for that. I know a lot of moms who can stay at home and start a successful business. I really admire that. I feel that sometimes it’s so difficult being a woman and trying to make everyone, myself included, happy.
We recently gave birth to our now 5-week old Daughter, & we have same concerns (pro/con) are running through our heads. It’s unfortunate that we have to make these tough choices. I admire women who were able to stay at home with their children. I hope to become myself. Great post.
Congratulations on the birth of your daughter! Sometimes I feel like moms have a harder time deciding what’s best your their kids and themselves than dads do. But we will get through this. Best of luck with your plan! 🙂
Thanks for this article, the struggle is real. One thing i did not expect to feel when i became a parent was guilt. My mother in law takes great care of my baby, but I feel guilty for not being her care take during the day. I contemplated quitting my job on a daily basis. Then I made arrangement (prego with 2nd baby, that’s why they agreed :)) with my boss to work a few days from home. even tho i still have to take her to my mil, I get to spend more time with her b.c I didn’t have to waste time on the commute. One thing i do know about myself is that I’ll feel guilty for not working too, guilty for not bringing home and income to provide financial stability for our family.
I indeed felt A LOT of guilt after having birth. On the one hand, I felt like my life was turned upside down, which I hated. On the other hand, I felt guilty because I thought having my baby made me feel depressed about my life. At one point, I also considered quitting my job to take care of Mr. FAF. To me, he was the important important thing in my life. But Mr. FAF was very supportive of me pursuing my career and reaching out to our parents for help with Baby FAF. I also felt guilty about leaving him with my in-laws.
I’m so glad you were able to make arrangements with your employer. That sounds like a great plan.
Sometimes I feel so jealous of men. If a man makes lots of money, he can be seen as a good husband and a good dad since he can provide for his family. If a woman makes lots of money, people will start asking whether she also takes good care of her husband and kids. If she decides to stay at home to take care of her family, people will start asking whether she’s contributing financially. It’s so unfair!