to be fuming at these comments re me not working?

(114 Posts)
halveit Fri 02-Aug-13 16:04:34

I went out on our annual end of term mums' night out last night. Lovely evening as usual - food, wine, pub garden.
But why do done people insist on judging - telling me I should be working now the kids are at school? I don't want to work - I didn't ever see the rationale of paying someone to look after my kids when I can do an adequate job for free. It always seemed nonsense to me for me to go out to earn money to pay that money over for someone to watch my kids.
I know its an old chestnut, and yes I've name changed (think one of the other mummies is on here), but why should I be spoken to with snide comments about my life choices?

Bowlersarm Fri 02-Aug-13 16:06:02

Why do you think it was snide? Are you on the defensive? Maybe it was just people chatting, and taking an interest.

halveit Fri 02-Aug-13 16:06:03

In fact I was so upset about these so-called friends attitudes that I cried when I got home. Aibu?

purrpurr Fri 02-Aug-13 16:06:33

Either you can be cross at what other people will say or can fix your reaction to it.

halveit Fri 02-Aug-13 16:07:08

"I wouldn't be able to stay at home all day - my brain would turn to mush".

halveit Fri 02-Aug-13 16:08:47

Why do people think it's an invalid choice though? I really was made to feel ashamed. I want to be there for my kids.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Fri 02-Aug-13 16:08:56

I used to just tough it out. Big smile and say I really enjoying it - how's you job going?

Bowlersarm

I think it's unrealistic to suggest SAHMs will never feel a bit defensive - everyone has some ambivalence about their choices, working or not.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Fri 02-Aug-13 16:09:34

I'm really enjoying it.

Bowlersarm Fri 02-Aug-13 16:10:21

Jamie I have never felt defensive about it.

Crinkle77 Fri 02-Aug-13 16:10:25

They are probably envious and wish they could afford to stay at home too.

HRHMargeSimpsonOfCornwall Fri 02-Aug-13 16:12:01

I have had a lot of this over the years. It's really draining. Had a child with an SN and what I could have earned wouldn't have covered childcare for one never mind two, and it would have made life pretty tough, and life wasn't feeling easy to be honest.

After years of it though, now I will just openly tell people I would like a part time job, maybe, no more. It's all I personally can cope with.

ps, re the brain turning to must type of comments! I had one of those from somebody at a school reunion and I'd had a glass of wine and my tongue ran away with me. I was saying 'seriously, do you think if I could find a job it would be 'challllllenging' or 'stimmmmmmulating' and I guess I sounded pretty pissed off as I was saying it!!! but seriously I do wonder what planet people are on that they think a stimulating rewarding challenging job is at my fingertips!?!?!? if I could get that kind of job and be paid enough to afford childcare and a cleaner then yeh, I'd do that. But working in a telesales centre or whatever job I could get, please! I'd rather be at home painting, working out, reading.

I kind of pity people who are so restless and bored in their own homes, but I never say that.

MintyChops Fri 02-Aug-13 16:12:23

Just say "How very unimaginative of you" to the "brain-mush" person then talk to someone else. Or do the "Did you mean to be so rude" thing. I am a SAHM too and I am very happy with my choice so as far as I'm concerned someone like that can just fuck right off....

JamieandtheMagicTorch Fri 02-Aug-13 16:12:55

Bowlersarm

OK,. That's good. But I think there are a lot of messages about whether women should or shouldn't work, as well as our own insecurities. People do occasionally say slightly "pointed" things depending on how they are feeling about what they are doing.

Wibblypiglikesbananas Fri 02-Aug-13 16:13:38

Agree with Crinkle - the green eyed monster has reared it's ugly head. I'm a SAHM too - its amazing what people think they can get away with saying to you, just because they define themselves by what they do for a living. Think no more of it and enjoy the time with your children.

HRHMargeSimpsonOfCornwall Fri 02-Aug-13 16:13:38

Jamie, bowlersarm, that really is the way to handle it!! I had dinner with three school friends recently and the three of them did was give out about work. I felt sorry for them (two of the three are mothers)

Allegrogirl Fri 02-Aug-13 16:13:58

"I wouldn't be able to stay at home all day - my brain would turn to mush".

"I want to be there for my kids."

Both could be seen as insulting. Maybe they are jealous that you have the choice.

hesterton Fri 02-Aug-13 16:14:00

If her brain would turn to mush if she had total autonomy of her day and full charge of her little ones then she can't be a very enterprising and interesting person. The potential for creativity as a sahm is massive. Not easy maybe but it's there.

cushtie335 Fri 02-Aug-13 16:14:23

I was a SAHM for a year and then worked part time, not so much because I wanted to, more because I needed the money. I wouldn't have said my brain was turning to mush, more that I felt a bit isolated and lonely and enjoyed the company and craic I got at work. It saddens and disappoints me that some working mums feel the need to goad SAHMs but I've seen it from the other side too. One horror made a horrible snidey remark at the school gates to me about not knowing anything about my DS "because you work". Women can be really horrible to each other, and none more so than the working/non working mother divide.

mindgone Fri 02-Aug-13 16:15:20

Remind them that we all do what works for our families! Wouldn't it be SO boring if we all did the same thing?!

lisad123everybodydancenow Fri 02-Aug-13 16:15:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Roshbegosh Fri 02-Aug-13 16:15:51

It is a decision that is personal and no one's business, unless you are on benefits. Then it is tax-payers' business.

Bowlersarm Fri 02-Aug-13 16:17:35

Jamie ok then, clearly it happens to other people. I can honestly say I have never experienced anyone making snide comments about my being a SAHM. And my children are teens now so I have been doing it for a while. Maybe I just haven't noticed comments as being snidey and just taken them as chatty!

To the OP then. I don't know. Just be confident about your choice not to work.

Bowlersarm Fri 02-Aug-13 16:18:20

......oops sorry, work for payment.

vj32 Fri 02-Aug-13 16:18:38

Was it really intended to be horrible?

I know I couldn't stay at home full time because I am prone to get depressed and need the structured interaction of work. I have been constantly tired for over two years (DS is 2!) so my brain is mush anyway.

I don't think a statement that they wouldn't haven't made the same choice as you is necessarily nasty - I guess its about the tone and way its said.

Lots of things you CAN say in reply, like "I like to think that my brain is more like fudge than mush, actually" or "I find that studying for a degree with the Open University solves that issue for me", but I also think that some mothers who go out to work have to validify that decision to themselves, in a similar way to SAHM who feel the need to justify their decision. Sometimes, they turn it round to make themselves feel better about a decision that they are not 100% happy about. Don't let it get to you, you are doing the very best that you can do for your children in the situation that you are in, as are they.

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