Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Supporting Mothers

My friend, Jessica, is going to be on today's Dr. Phil show. It is an episode about working mothers vs. stay at home moms.

Apparently it is a bloodbath.

I was going to set my DVR to watch it later, but I forgot. Hell, I don't even know what channel Dr. Phil is on because I am one of those working mothers who is not at home during the day when it airs.

Because I am a working mother who feels the guilt every day that I walk through the doors at the office, I am sympathetic to those who are also like me and a little envious of those who are able to stay at home.

But either way, work or stay home, we are making a choice. Most of the time, our choices are made with the best of intentions and the most personal of reasons. For the most part, we make our choices for the overall good of our families and our children.

About the only time I sit in judgment of a mother who chooses to work instead of be at home are the cases where the following are true:
  • If the mother doesn't "need" to work. In this case, "need" can mean many things. I am referring to financial, marital, and/or psychological need.
  • The the mother puts more value on the job than on the children's needs. I've attended all but two events that my son has had during the day and if I cannot make it, Dr Pop can. Most of the time, we are there together. If the school calls, I will drop everything, no matter how seemingly "important" my superiors have made whatever task I'm currently working on.

I don't have a "career ladder" I'm trying to work my way up. I have a job. A place to go to earn a paycheck. And I'm totally defensive about it. And I'm totally jealous of people like Jessica who found a balance that allowed them to stay at home and thrive.

But the bottom line in all of this is that we really need to support one another and not tear each other apart! You are not in my shoes or living in my house or in my exact situation. And neither am I in yours. And as mothers, we all live with guilt. Guilt that we are not doing enough or being enough for our kids. That we are not raising them the right way. That years from now, our names will come up in therapist sessions as the reason our kids' lives are f-ed up.

We do the best we can with what we have. We show love. We show caring.

And that is quite often enough.


Jessica Gottlieb said...

we are in absolute agreement, be prepared to have it appear as though we are not.

Mrs Pop said...

I'm not going to watch. I'll just get mad. ;)

Jessica Gottlieb said...

that delights me.