Social Question

chinchin31's avatar

Should I quit my job to become a housewife ?

Asked by chinchin31 (1838points) February 23rd, 2017

OK I feel guilty about being a working mother. I have a full time job.
My father grew up with a housewife as a mother so tells me that is what I should do. My mother on the other hand believes I should keep my career as you never know what life would be like in the future. I am a bit torn.

Please give me your opinions, especially from your own personal experiences.

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28 Answers

Cruiser's avatar

If you can afford to not work then I would lean towards being a stay at home mom. Being there for your kids is the best gift you can give them especially when they are youngins. Eighteen years flies by and then you can work the next 20 years there on out,

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Is it what you want, is it what your family needs? How is your husband? Is he ok with it and will the finances be ok? Is he the bread winner or are you? Once you have children your responsibility is to them and nobody else. I strongly feel that both parents need to be there for their children, they deserve to have a mother and father who are both providers, role models and there for them. If it makes sense for you to be a stay at home mom then do not feel guilty. My Mother stayed home after she supported the family while my father was completing his degree. He cared for us as infants and studied while she worked. He took on the breadwinner role thereafter while she was a student and mother. They planned every move and brought themselves and us children out of poverty through careful planning. It’s just an equation you and your spouse will have to solve.

chinchin31's avatar

I would prefer to stay at home but my husband doesn’t like it. AT the same time I worry about what would happen if something happened to my husband. I find it a difficult decision to make.

janbb's avatar

Is it an either/or? Can you work at your career part time for now? Or can you plan to stay home for 3 or 4 years and then go back to work? Stay at home doesn’t mean you have to stay at home always.

chinchin31's avatar

No i don’t have the option to work part time. I work in finance. They don’t really cater for that. It is quite rare. If you ask to work part time they assume you don’t really want to work.

Also I don’t think the world of finance sympathizes with anyone that takes a 4 year career break. It is not that easy to get back into the world of work when you do that nowadays. It is quite rare that you get offered a job after such a gap in your employment. Unless maybe you kept yourself up to date or something.

rojo's avatar

What will make you the happiest? Stay at home full time or work or work part time? You must always figure your own well being into these type of calculations. Don’t give too much thought to what worked for your parents. you are not them and their situation is not the same as it was for them.

YARNLADY's avatar

Some people do not do well as a stay-at-home mom, and others love it. I have been both, and I loved my stay-at-home life. There were too many accommodations to make as a working Mom.

Unofficial_Member's avatar

Guess like some men including your father don’t know what gender equality is. Why won’t he suggest your husband to become househusband? Oh because men are supposed to work out there and women stay at home tending the household, how traditional.

I grew up in a family that have both parents working full time and in our culture it’s not uncommon to send your children to your grandparents (grandparents love children anyway) to look after and pick them up after you’ve done with your jobs to contribute your part as a parent to your children. There shouldn’t be a problem once your children have warmed up to your grandparents. In my personal experience growing up with two breadwinner while most family around us were having traditional spousal job structure I can clearly see that those families have struggled with finances (unless the husband is rich or having high-paying job) and unable to buy a lot of thing they need or want. As for myself and my siblings, we can have higher quality life as children, we have better household facilities, can afford better education (my family were semi-tiger parents), and whenever we go out we can eat or buy most of the things we desire as children, while on the other hand, I noticed that other parents struggle to fulfill their children’ wished because they lack the financial capability to do so, and I can also imagine housewives might have conflict with their husbands when they ask for money and don’t get enough.

For those traditional family that I’ve seen, housewives don’t have equal power with their husbands. He earn the money, you need his money, therefore you need to do what he wants to get the money whether you like it or not, this is a sad reality for all those women that ‘work’ as housewives and depend solely on their husbands.

Stinley's avatar

I’ve always worked full time and don’t regret it. I think that all the options benefit children in different ways. So the decision rests with you. It sounds like you want to stay at home. So work on making that happen. Think about your options to return to work, working part time, retraining for a different career, your own business, etc. Make sure that you know what you are letting yourself in for and make contingencies for things going wrong, like your husband losing his job. Good luck.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I loved my stay at home time. I had given up a really good job to do it. However, I didn’t know a divorce would come, and now I rather regret having given up that job.
Do what YOU want to do, not what anyone tells you do to. Either way you’re going to be criticized. Some will look down on you and question your intelligence if you want to stay at home. Others will look down on you for not being home to take care of your kids.

Coloma's avatar

It’s a tough call as a women who was a stay at home mom and then divorced after almost 22 years as a house wife with a little part time job the last couple years of the marriage.
The positives, no regrets, I loved being there for my daughter. The negatives, I have had a very hard time making it the last 12–13 years since the divorce and now, after losing my work during the trickle down effect of the recession, having to file bankruptcy and having no savings left at age 57, well, I am basically completely fucked.
My ex, OTOH is at the peak earning ability of his career and is quite comfortable with a high salary and new luxury home.

I get a modest amount of spousal support but, the alimony laws have shifted greatly in the last number of years and even in long term marriages the courts retain jurisdiction to modify or terminate it at any time.
A person NEEDS 40 years in the workplace to build their earning ability, retirement and social security benefits. If a women is at home for 20 of those years you will never catch up and in the event of a divorce you WILL be royally screwed as you enter your older middle age and old age. I am out of the game now, living a frugal alternative lifestyle but I am gravely concerned about my financial future.

A woman re-entering the work force in her 40’s is going to be very compromised in the long term if not down right destitute in her aging years given the time out of the workforce, the shitty economy and age discrimination. Food for thought even though being a SAHM is a noble and rewarding thing to do.

rojo's avatar

Oh, If only we lived in a paternalistic autocratic country. it would be so much easier if the Government made such moral choices for us…..

stay tuned for further messages…...

jca's avatar

If you can afford it and your husband is ok with it, then go for it.

I’d say it’s not for everyone. When my daughter was a toddler, I used to say “I go to work to rest.” That was a joke, of course. I didn’t really rest at work, but I found whatever I did at work to be more restful than running after and picking up after a toddler.

My mom was a single mom who got her MBA when I was a kid. I am a single mom too (my daughter’s father is deceased so I don’t have much choice). I have a great job with wonderful benefits and a pension. I’ve been here full time over twenty years. When I was first starting out, over twenty years ago, I remember there was a lady taking a typing test who was returning to the work force after staying home with her kids. She was in her early 40’s. She was a nervous wreck. Nervous about the workplace, nervous about the typing test. I remember thinking that her staying home made her less confident than everyone else who’d never left the workplace. It was like “calm down lady, you’ll be fine.”

My daughter enjoys a lot of things that my stay at home friends couldn’t afford for their kids, like camp in the summer, tennis lessons, stuff like that.

Also, if you’re going to be stressed out staying home, that’s not beneficial to your kids.

Not sure if any of these things apply to you (being stressed out from being home with kids, not being able to afford stuff if you can’t work). I know in finance, you may have certain licences (Series 7 or whatever) where you need to work in the field and keep the licensing up annually.

There are definitely advantages to being home, too. I’m not meaning to make it like I’m pointing out negatives only. Times I’m stressed out to get to work on time, or trying to juggle work with doctor’s appointments, or on the weekends trying to do stuff like laundry, get the car maintained, get my hair done, all within two days, I wish I could stay home full time. I wish I could get my daughter off to school, come home, drink my coffee, go to the gym like the other moms around here (affluent area), at 3 o’clock exclaim how the day goes so fast and then pick my daughter up from school.

I feel like us moms who work are on the periphery and the moms who don’t work are all friends wth each other, picking each other’s kids up, seeing each other at soccer games or dance class, and us who work are just maybe seeing each other at a kid’s birthday party or something.

To me, working full time and being a mom is stressful but it’s what I’m used to.

JLeslie's avatar

If you can afford it, and want to do it, go ahead. Do what you want.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Find a way to sock away some money, or investments. The future isn’t always certain.

Sneki95's avatar

How about trying to work from home? That would make it a “middle ground” You’d earn money, but you’d also be at home and ready to take care of the kids better. It has its own pros and cons, though, but if it helps solve the dilemma….

jca's avatar

I met a lady last night who works for my employer (an employer of thousands so it’s not unusual to not know everyone employed by them). She is 54 and just returned to work after raising 3 kids for 20 years. I was talking to her about this question. She said she stayed home but was the go -to mom when someone needed a babysitter or something like that, she’d help out for cash or a gift card or whatever. She said she started thinking that she was not making a good impression for her kids, to see her home every day. She just got hired by my employer (good job, good benefits) and so is back in the work force now.

Coloma's avatar

@jca That’s great! Still the unemployment rate for workers 55 and over is very high and depending on ones geographic location, labor market, skill set and other mitigating factors many older workers are still suffering from un- and underemployment, whether that is finding entry level work or taking huge cuts in salary after decades of retaining a particular position. This women is indeed, very fortunate.

jca's avatar

@Coloma: We work for the government. They are not allowed to age discriminate. Many older workers are hired all the time where I work. I do new employee orientation so I see them all the time. We are fortunate. I started with my employer 24 years ago when I was in my late 20’s.

Coloma's avatar

@jca Yes, I should of gotten that nice, safe, state job too but I was the free spirited type, paying the price for that now. haha
On the upside though, I am creative, resourceful and an entrepreneurish type at heart, my ‘Jill of al trades” is working for me, not to the degree I wish it were, but, I soldier on.

jca's avatar

@Coloma: I’d love to have some kind of bohemian craft store and sell lovely things or make lovely things. On the upside, I’ll be retiring with a pension so that’s a good thing.

Coloma's avatar

@jca I do some jewelry making/beading with my friend, it’s a lot of fun and she sells the necklaces and bracelets in her friends spa shop. In this area you have to be creative as it is mostly retail and we all know retail doesn’t pay. haha

JLeslie's avatar

My friend who was a stay at home mom started to get annoyed that everyone came to her to do all the charity events for her kids school, and other multiple favors.

Coloma's avatar

@JLeslie Oh yeah, I was bus stop mom, I chauffeured home like 4 kids every day. haha

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, she just has to say No @JLeslie. I enjoyed working with the schools though. But if I didn’t want to do it I didn’t.
I did get tapped to be the neighborhood babysitter though. It was a nice bit of pocket money and the kids had someone to play with.

JLeslie's avatar

That’s right. Say no.

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