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to think children don't really care about 'work ethics' and would prefer to have a SAHP?

(608 Posts)
Mingnion Wed 20-Nov-13 23:13:53

Well aware I'm probably going to get mightily flamed for this but here goes...

I have a 6.5 year old and an 18 month old. My husband that supported us sadly died last year and I plan to stay at home and on benefits until my youngest is at school. I have a degree from Cambridge and will put in what I take out a hundred times over in the future no doubt. We do not have a lavish lifestyle but my children are adequately fed, dressed and are very happy which is more important IMO. Six months ago I found a part-time job and the impact on my children was massive. They were miserable at having to go to nursery and after school clubs and I was miserable as I missed them. Now they are inexplicably happy. I know it is a common opinion that single parents must work so as to teach their children about work ethics but realistically, do you really think children will care? I'd say most children would much rather have a SAHP and in retrospect I'd have preferred my mum to have been home so her work ethics obviously didn't rub off on me. AIBU to think this way and plan to stay at home with my children until my youngest is school age?

josephinebruce Wed 20-Nov-13 23:18:30

I'm so sorry to hear about your husband - it is incredibly hard to be left alone like that. It's early days for all of you and you should do what's best for your dc and yourself and no pay any attention to what others say. In time, you may feel differently. It's 6 years since my DP died and it took me a good 2 years to even start to heal. Good luck xxxx

Procrastinating Wed 20-Nov-13 23:19:17

In your situation I would do the same.

UrethraFranklin Wed 20-Nov-13 23:19:52

YANBU IMO. So sorry about your husband thanks

I know of many people who have taken this stance and I don't see it as a problem. The first few years in a child's life are much more important than showing them a work ethic they won't remember (I only know my DM worked from when I was a young baby because she told me)

Do what makes you and your children happy, not everyone else.

gordyslovesheep Wed 20-Nov-13 23:19:55

my children prefer a roof over their heads

my husband left us - if I didn't work we would have lost our home

mumofbeautys Wed 20-Nov-13 23:19:56

YANBU in your own choices of lifestyle
YABU to make overall assumptions on others choices and their children.

I will explain ,
you are not unreasonable to want to stay at home with your youngest until they are at school, the government allow this for a reason.
I am sorry about your husband and I can understand why you want be at home sad xx

you are being unreasonable in thinking that other children will be miserable because you deem your children to be when you worked and that also these parent shave made the choice to work rather than had to work .. hope that came across mutual as it was meant to be

Procrastinating Wed 20-Nov-13 23:20:37

It sounds like you feel guilty for not working. You really shouldn't, there's plenty of time for that.

bellybuttonfairy Wed 20-Nov-13 23:21:25

Oooh. This will kick off. I think generally a role model with a work ethic is good. But, as a child, I hated my mum working and Im sure given the choice - my young children would prefer me staying at home with them (I work p/t).

But, it isnt a choice for lots of women (financially,emotionally or career reasons).

I think when they are tiny it is nice to be with them but when they get to school, if you can work, you should.

apachepony Wed 20-Nov-13 23:22:30

Certainly don't think such young children would care about work ethics. However later on they might do, and they might also care about lack of money so I guess just make sure you stay employable? Sorry about your husband

BackforGood Wed 20-Nov-13 23:23:41

What Josephine said.

Also, YABU to make such massive generalisations about what 'children prefer'. There are all sorts of holes in the argument if it were a hypothetical one. However, in your circumstances you need to look after yourselves and do what you believe is best for the 3 of you at the present time.

FreudiansSlipper Wed 20-Nov-13 23:23:42

sorry to hear about your husband dying, must be incredibly difficult for you.

In some situations it is the right thing to do, othes not. It is better to judge individually rather than make a sweeping statement I am sure for myslef my ds would not be too happy seeing mummy grumpy all the time as I would have been if I were at home all the time he was happy at nursery I was happy studying and working p/t. Your family has gone through a terrible time your children's needs will be different to most I hope you being at home makes it easier for your all

Fairylea Wed 20-Nov-13 23:23:47

Yanbu. But sadly for a lot of people being a sahm or dad just isn't an option. .. but...

I completely agree with you... and I have seen both sides of it too, as a single parent working full time earning £££ and now as a married sahm with a husband earning minimum wage.

I would never return to work unless our lives literally depended on it. I'd rather be poor and at home than work.

But I am lucky in that we do have a small mortgage due to my many years of working in marketing management. I appreciate that's helped get us to this point.

Writerwannabe83 Wed 20-Nov-13 23:24:56

I was pretty scared of my mum growing up, she wasn't the most maternal person - if I'd been at home with her all the time it would probably have ruined my childhood smile Me and my sister went to various child minders between the ages of 5 and 12 and we absolutely loved it.

On a serious note however - I'm very sorry to hear about your husband and you are clearly doing a wonderful job in keeping things together for the children x x

mumofbeautys Wed 20-Nov-13 23:25:28

what its worth just to double check I came across as right .... you do whats best for your children right now. I think maybe the thread title is a bit off though.

mrsmalcolmreynolds Wed 20-Nov-13 23:26:05

YANBU to do what you feel is right for your family. However the tone of some of your OP is sliding towards "all small children with WOHPs must be secretly miserable/deprived". That might not be your intention but it's how it read to me. You have the right to make decisions that suit your own family without being judged and YWBU to judge anyone else for doing the same just because their decision diffets from your own.

bellybuttonfairy Wed 20-Nov-13 23:26:48

I skim read op post. Im so sorry about your loss. You should take this time to do what you think is best for you and your children. I think its completely justifiable to take this time to stay with them and claim benefits. I think they need you around and you really shouldnt have any more stress after the terrible year you must have had.

Mingnion Wed 20-Nov-13 23:26:56

I don't think all children in childcare are miserable but do think the vast majority would prefer to have a parent at home instead. I don't feel guilty about not working, I feel irritated that people imply you're doing your children a disservice by not doing so re: work ethics.

mrsmalcolmreynolds Wed 20-Nov-13 23:27:30

differs, even

mumofbeautys Wed 20-Nov-13 23:27:35

there you go , you put it so much better than I did mrsmacolm lol

MrsHowardRoark Wed 20-Nov-13 23:27:41

I would just like to point out that a SAHP can have a good work ethic too hmm

mumofbeautys Wed 20-Nov-13 23:29:03

see I honestly do believe minus the loss of the husband in the post if that hadn't been mentioned this thread would be going a very different way.

not all parents that work do it to provide their children with work ethics.

Mingnion Wed 20-Nov-13 23:32:09

I agree, mumofbeautys, that if we'd simply separated I'drreceive completely different responses. If a marriageends for wwhatever reason childrens lives are turned upside down and they'd benefit from a SAHP rather than working parent if at all possible. Which I appreciate is not always the case.

PacificDogwood Wed 20-Nov-13 23:32:43


I cannot think that any child actively prefers their parents being at work so they can be with somebody else/in nursery.
I am saying this as a working mother in a professional job.
I know my children would prefer me to be at home.

But their needs are not the only needs to be considered.

You sound happy in your choices - surely that is what is important??

Scarletbanner Wed 20-Nov-13 23:33:29

YANBU for doing what is right for your family.

YABU to be so judgmental.

Worried3 Wed 20-Nov-13 23:34:13

YANBU regarding your own choices. YABU to assume that your choices will suit everyone else.

I doubt small children will "care about work ethics". Might be a useful example as they get older though.

Some children would prefer to have a SAHP, others will not be particularly affected either way- depends on the child. Not only that, but most children will be a lot happier if their parent is happy- if what makes their parent(s) happy is working, then that may well be better. Likewise, if they are happier being a SAH parent, then that will work out better. Other parents have little choice but to work due to financial constraints.

Sorry about your loss OP, must be really hard on you all.

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