How the Kids View SAH and WOH

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Registered: 07-31-2008
How the Kids View SAH and WOH
653
Wed, 08-06-2008 - 10:09am

Something I heard yesterday in reference to my decision to return to work: "Well, the good thing is you'll be showing your kids that it's okay for a mom to have a career."


This threw me. I've never felt that my children weren't proud of me no matter what

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-31-2003
Wed, 08-06-2008 - 10:17am

I think that most kids hardly miss a beat, especially little ones.


My kids have never known Mommy not to have a job.

suzjuly6.jpg picture by LadyCaribou

Avatar for mkatherine
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Registered: 03-27-2003
Wed, 08-06-2008 - 10:24am

This is interesting.

 

Yes. We. Did.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-07-2007
Wed, 08-06-2008 - 10:30am
I don't think a parent has to WOH to teach their children that women do in fact WOH.
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Registered: 03-27-2003
Wed, 08-06-2008 - 10:35am

and I think conversely a woman doesn't have to SAH to teach her children that parenting is alot of work either way.

 

Yes. We. Did.

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-31-2008
Wed, 08-06-2008 - 10:38am

When DH (mortgage broker)

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Registered: 01-05-2000
Wed, 08-06-2008 - 10:39am

Dylan's take on my work status (he's 10 1/2, going into 5th grade): He's very happy I work. But if I didn't work, his world wouldn't change much (assuming that our income stayed the same). He'd just go to the Boys and Girls Club every afternoon during the school year instead of just in the summer. In fact, with Joy and her family living with us right now, Dylan doesn't have to go to the Boys and Girls Club but has the option of staying home with her all day. He prefers going to the Club.

I'll ask Joy when she wakes up what her take on my work status was while she was growing up since I was a sah/wahm during a large part of her childhood before I went back to work when she was a teen.

Chris

The truth may be out there but lies are in your head. Terry Pratchett

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-19-2008
Wed, 08-06-2008 - 10:45am
I watched an episode of Oprah one day and the episode was something along the lines of a family where the dad somehow all of a sudden died I think and the mother was a SAHM. Somehow the conversation turned to the fact that kids (girls more so) should always be taught to have their own source of income, whether it be a job or by secretly putting money aside for events such as a husband/fiance/bf's sudden death or if the 2 of you break up for whatever reason. I do agree with this, growing up my mom always had a job, she was a single mom and had no choice but to work, she taught me how to handle my money, never go into debt (never have) and to always be dependent on myself and never a man. Those were good lessons to learn for me, although my fiance is a good guy and I don't foresee him leaving me, and although if he did I would get child support that would not be enough to survive. If my mom had been a SAHM I guess I could have gotten that example from my friends mom's, or my mom could've taught me what it was like for her to work before she had me. I think there is a lesson there to learn, but am in no way putting down a SAHM, just going by what my mom has taught me and what works for my family.
iVillage Member
Registered: 01-07-2007
Wed, 08-06-2008 - 10:47am

I absolutely agree and I've said that before, a parent who WOH actually has two jobs (this typically pertains to mom) because *working* doesn't end at 5pm when she goes home from her job.


I also wanted to add that your Liza sounds like a pretty smart young lady.

Avatar for mkatherine
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Wed, 08-06-2008 - 10:50am
She's a funny kid. I think that Liza definitley suffers from the "only child with single parents" syndrome b/c she is the moST comfortable around adults and prefers adult conversations to hanging with kids her own age most of the time.

 

Yes. We. Did.

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Registered: 11-20-2003
Wed, 08-06-2008 - 10:50am

I've heard that said, and while I understand the sentiment, I think it - like many other phrases - really reduces a complex set of issues to a single dimensional phrase. Presumably most people are teaching their children ideas about gender roles and relationship equity based on what they themselves live and believe. That phrase tends to imply that, if you weren't working, your kids would automatically grow up to think that a woman's place is in the home, that women are somehow incapable of handling a 'real' job, yadda, yadda, yadda. I think those attitudes are much fewer and farther in between now days, and regardless of a family's SAH/WOH set-up, most families would not be conveying those stereotypes anyway.

For my kids, the issue has never come up - both of us WOH is just what it is. Now, in response to questions about why we work (and not why do *you* work instead of SAH, just why do you work), I've discussed the basic concepts of money and earning income and that both daddy and I work to get paid to afford our home, our food, their clothes and school, etc. I know that with Kindergarten last year, my oldest probably first became truly aware that there are parents that do not work outside the home - the ones that picked up their kids when school let out. He has yet to ask me about that, but I assume he will sometime. I intend to give an answer that different families do things differently and that in those cases his friends moms and dads have decided that one person in the home will work for income while the other one supports the family in other ways.


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