I am not a mother myself, but I have many friends and clients who are and my heart goes out to them with all of the pressures they face. I think dads definitely face judgment and pressure as well, and I will focus on those pressures in another post. There is so much information out there on how to parent “the right away” that it is enough to make any mother question every decision and action they take. Internet sites like Pinterest are both a blessing and a curse as they give some great parenting tips and activity ideas, but can also make moms feel like a failure if they don’t make the perfect birthday cake.
As part of the pressure to give kids the ‘perfect’ childhood, many moms are torn about whether to work outside of the home. To make matters worse, it seems that everyone has an opinion on whether or not that is the best thing for kids. Some moms financially do not have a choice. In order to provide for their kids an outside income is a must. Other moms have the choice to work outside of the home and it seems that it is these moms that draw the most scrutiny.
What a mother’s role looks like is really up to each individual mother and their partner. There might be several reasons a mother chooses to work outside of the home including; additional income for family extras, because she enjoys her job and wants to, to set an example for her child, to get a break from parenting, and social contact. I would argue that working outside of the home doesn’t take away from parenting, but can add to it. I think the best parent for any child is a parent who is happy and feels fulfilled on their own.
There is no tougher job in the world than parenting and imagine what could be accomplished if moms felt encouraged rather than judged by their decisions. Rather than focusing on other people’s decisions, let’s all reflect the spotlight back on to ourselves and focus on our own lives and choices.