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To feel slightly ashamed telling people I'm a 'housewife' but also really enjoy being a 'housewife'?

(88 Posts)
DarlingDuck Sat 10-Sep-11 11:38:00

Not sure what the term is nowadays, housewife/homemaker/stay at home mum, but anyway I don't want this thread to turn into a sahm vs working mum row!

Basically I was brought up by very liberal feminist parents, I was always exepcted to go to uni, get a degree and have a good career, marriage and kids where never really mentioned.

I left school quite young with no qualifications, worked low paid jobs, travelled the world, got married and had three wonderful DC's.

I'm a housewife/homemaker/SAHM and am very happy doing this but I feel a real deep seated sense of shame when telling people I'm a housewife/homemaker/SAHM, aibu and does anyone have similar feelings?

missmogwi Sat 10-Sep-11 11:41:45

YABU to feel ashamed. If you are happy and fulfilled in your life good for you. smile
It's probably because you were brought up to do the opposite that you feel this way?

needaliedownnow Sat 10-Sep-11 11:42:47


Don't feel ashamed.

MrsRobertDuvall Sat 10-Sep-11 11:44:42

God no.
I loved being at home for about 5 years, as I didn't want to go to work, and was lucky not to have to.
I had lots of friends who kept me sane, had time off at weekends .
Once they were At school I was bored and went back Term time which is great. Wouldn't like to be at home now.

DarlingDuck Sat 10-Sep-11 11:45:06

I just feel like a bit of a failure tbh, I know logically I'm not and that I am incredibly content with my life but I feel that I somehow 'less than' women with degrees and good careers.

Kladdkaka Sat 10-Sep-11 11:45:23

I tell people I'm a lady of leisure.grin

BlowHole Sat 10-Sep-11 11:47:02

Say it loud "I'm a housewife and I'm proud"
Please don't start using one of those wanky terms like "domestic engineer" though wink

DarlingDuck Sat 10-Sep-11 11:51:07

It's sad how there is a sense of shame attatched to whatever you decide to do as a woman!

DarlingDuck Sat 10-Sep-11 11:51:29

I mean in the home/work sense

worraliberty Sat 10-Sep-11 11:54:39

YABVU to be ashamed of looking after your own children and home

Would you be ashamed if you were a child minder and paid to look after other people's children? There's no real difference except you're paid an hourly rate confused

glitterkitten Sat 10-Sep-11 11:55:26

Darling I agree.

Feminism peddles guilt. Be proud of being happy.

Firawla Sat 10-Sep-11 11:55:43

dont be ashamed, you are happy doing it so why feel bad?
i am like you a housewife with 3 dc, i am proud of it as there is not any job i would prefer than this. i have got a degree but im prouder of the dcs than of the degree, i've never used it as only thing ive done since graduating is keep having babies grin

worraliberty Sat 10-Sep-11 11:57:37

It's sad how there is a sense of shame attatched to whatever you decide to do as a woman!

I mean in the home/work sense

And do you think it's not the same for men? To some men it's even more 'shameful' to be a stay at home Dad or a Nurse...or to do other roles that have been traditionally thought of as 'Women's work' by society.

thebeansmum Sat 10-Sep-11 12:00:02

DarlingDuck I feel the same as you. I have a good education, strong work ethic and loved going to work. Recently we made the decision for me to stop work as childcare just wasn't working out and parents have full and busy lives but luckily we can manage without my salary.

However, I feel ashamed when people ask what I do. I feel like I should tell them the whole story, you know, a bit like my first paragraph but with more detail - who I worked for, for how long, etc. I know I shouldn't care, I am fulfilled and it's not forever!

So, YANBU feeling that way - that's the way you feel! I understand EXACTLY how it makes you feel.

Chandon Sat 10-Sep-11 12:00:33

I know just what you mean.

cleanteeth Sat 10-Sep-11 12:04:13

I love being a SAHM but I do feel ashamed when I have to fill in forms saying unemployed.

ihatecbeebies Sat 10-Sep-11 12:05:58

I felt the same being a SAHM OP, so I volunteered in a charity shop when DS was about 10 months old, then got a job a while later just so I didn't feel so embarrassed. Before I did that people would always ask me when I was getting a job (DS wasn't even 6 months old by this point!) or if DP gave me a night off people would say 'aw that's a shame you have him babysitting he works all week you should give him a rest' angry

PublicHair Sat 10-Sep-11 12:15:51

i am at home with my kids, there are a lot of us 'modern day housewives about. I had a good career, i was made redundant, one day i will go back to work. i don't think you need to apologise or make excuses about what i am doing with my life,other than to dp!

MargeryDaw Sat 10-Sep-11 12:18:14

There was a piece in the Evening Standard magazine about this yesterday, by Lily Allen, talking about being proud to be a housewife. If you're not in London you can probably find it online.

I wish my DH and I could afford for me to stay at home with our son but our circumstances mean I'll have to go back to work when he's 9 months.

DarlingDuck Sat 10-Sep-11 12:19:25

I'm surprised (judging by this thread) how common it is to feel this way! Yes the form filling is always a bit blush for me too...

Meglet Sat 10-Sep-11 12:24:15

yabu for being ashamed. I wish I was a housewife!

amicissima Sat 10-Sep-11 12:25:38

YABVU to feel ashamed; YANBat all U to enjoying being a housewife/SAHM.

I am a graduate and I had a good career for two decades. I have been a SAHM for many years. I've enjoyed being a SAHM more than the career and have made it an interesting and educational experience. That wasn't always easy and I derive a certain satisfaction from having achieved that.

People work for many reasons: money, sense of identity, entertainment, routine, sense of worth, etc. If you don't have those reasons to work, don't take other people's needs on board.

For me, and DH, my being physically present during my DCs' early years and, later, before and after school, and having a home life that didn't involve constant juggling of arrangments and the associated stress, was more important than the positives of me working. I guess if we had needed more of something work provides, I would have made a different decision, but mine has been right for me and my family in our circumstances. How can anyone do more than that?

TrillianAstra Sat 10-Sep-11 12:26:30

Feminism does not peddle guilt. Don't be ridiculous.

sleepywombat Sat 10-Sep-11 12:26:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

inmysparetime Sat 10-Sep-11 12:36:01

I wouldn't get hung up on what other people might think, you can't have any control over that. What you can control is how you decide to feel about it IYSWIM. Work can wait, your kids are only kids for a short while, you are privileged to get that time with them. Pity the judgey pants people, they don't understand what a great job it is keeping a household happy, healthy and amused year in year out.

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