I’ve noticed a disheartening trend in the mommy blogosphere lately, with the whole “just a mom” phrase. The phrase itself is nothing new. I’ve heard it many times over the last 5 years. It’s the perpetuators that are surprising. Because the comment hasn’t come from working moms toward SAHM’s…the comment has come from fellow SAHM’s, who refer to themselves as “‘just’ a mom.” So, to all my fellow SAHM’s out there, I want to say…
You ARE NOT “just” a mom!!!
As I was reading one of these blog posts recently something occurred to me…Maybe if we stop acting like we are “just” a mom, people will stop treating us like we are “just” a mom.
Yes, there may be people who are going to try and make you feel less than. Don’t let them. And certainly don’t encourage them by starting off that conversation yourself!
Back to the blog post I was reading. A SAHM mentioned that she ran into suzy-put-together-career-woman. After the litany of responsibilities and accomplishments from said career woman, SAHM blogger could only look down and, sheepfaced, stutter, “I’m…just home.”
Can you see how that attitude actually invites judgment? Yes, I am “just” a mom, in that I don’t have another career, but it’s all in the attitude. If you say “I’m ‘just’ home” like you’re ashamed of it, like you realize and recognize that what you’re doing isn’t worthwhile, you are inviting others to agree with you.
Are you second guessing your own choice? Do you think you should be doing something else instead? Most of us would say “no.” So stop acting like it!
When someone asks me the once dreaded question of “What do you do?” I look them straight in the eyes, and tell them that I stay home to raise my boys. Be proud of what you do!
You are NOT “just” a mom! I am choosing to be a full-time mother to my children. There is nothing “just” about that, or I wouldn’t be doing it. It is so easy to start internalizing the value judgments from other people, but I would argue that it creates a cycle! When we internalize that and start referring to ourselves as “just a mom,” then we invite others to do the same. When we answer the dreaded “What do you do?” question with a shamefaced, “oh, I’m just a mom.” We imply that there is something wrong with that, something lacking. And there isn’t.
If you are a stay-at-home mom, you are making a choice to raise your children full time, because that’s what God has put on your heart, or that’s what your mommy’s heart says is best. There is nothing to be ashamed of in that, and I’m so tired of my fellow stay-at-home moms perpetuating the stigma that being a SAHM isn’t enough.
Be confident in your choices! The more confidence you express in your choice, the less likely you are to find people being critical of it. It’s just like bullies on the playground…they can sense that feeling of inferiority. When someone senses that you are already insecure about your choices, they feed off it.
SAHM’s…be proud of what you do!
(ps–this is a message to my fellow SAHM’s and has absolutely nothing to do with working moms, so if you are a working mom, please don’t read a dichotomy where none exists…you, too, can be proud of your choices!)