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is staying at home a real luxury??

(131 Posts)
btfly2 Tue 03-Feb-15 23:42:46

and why many women feel the obligation to justify that they are stay at home mums. Im sorry, just feel very curious about your opinions and if aibu? Thank you!

FitzgeraldProtagonist Tue 03-Feb-15 23:43:57

Sure it's a luxury. Unless you can't afford childcare-but that's what tax credits are for.

SoonToBeSix Tue 03-Feb-15 23:46:48

Not always I am a sahm , I am disabled couldn't hold down a job. Also I am my dd's carer.

angeleyes72 Tue 03-Feb-15 23:48:32

If you are married to a high earner though you don't get tax credits. With 3 dc we would have less money if I worked.

Cleanbean Tue 03-Feb-15 23:49:17

It's not a luxury at all. I would like to go back to work but by the time I have paid for two lots of childcare as well as fuel and parking expenses it would not be worth it. Most jobs I see advertised need you to be flexible with the days you work or don't fit in with 8am-6pm childcare. Dh works long hours and is frequently away and I don't have any family nearby.

Tzibeleh Tue 03-Feb-15 23:50:50

Because its not seen as 'work' and there are no obvious 'earnings' from it.

In dh's and my opinions, my earnings during my SAHM years were the childcare costs we'd not paid to get someone else to look after our dc.

angeleyes72 Tue 03-Feb-15 23:53:16

In a way though it is a luxury for both parties. wohm knows they have childcare on tap. They get away with doing less housework, laundry etc. Have someone to sort out prescriptions, car services, repairs etc. Do all the parents evenings, hospital appointments. Without a sahm these and lots more tasks would have to be divided equally.

HyperThread Tue 03-Feb-15 23:53:28

Not a luxury at all. DH earns around 50K, so no tax credits, no child benefit and the cost of living in London is ridiculously expensive. Every single penny I earn goes towards childcare. No holidays or time off work for us.

Mrsfrumble Tue 03-Feb-15 23:54:11

YANBU to ask why people feel obliged to justify it. No one should feel obliged to justify worKing outside the home either.

angeleyes72 Tue 03-Feb-15 23:58:34

O and op they feel the need to justify it because of the constant sahm/wohm bashing/threads on here.

Everydayaschoolday Wed 04-Feb-15 00:00:47

I don't feel the need to justify it, but I understand that some people might.

Is it a luxury? It depends on circumstances - we can afford it, so to us it's a luxury. However, I think my DH benefits more than I do from me being at home. That was not necessarily the plan when I left work wink.

I'm not sure what the AIBU question is. AYBU because you do or because you don't think it's a luxury? Can I ask why you're asking - it's a similar theme to your Q on Saturday?

WaitingForMe Wed 04-Feb-15 00:01:16

Surely it depends on lots of factors. One SAHM friend has a successful husband and they have decided she should stay at home. That is arguably a luxury. Another friend would earn less than childcare so for them it's financial common sense. I work around DS (toddler) so it's a mix. My life means I earn reasonable money without paying out for childcare but I'd probably earn more if I got some formal childcare. I have the luxury of time with DS but it comes at a fairly major cost to early mornings, evenings and weekends.

Philoslothy Wed 04-Feb-15 00:03:24

If it is a genuine choice it is a luxury. I consider myself very fortunate to be able to spend my time pottering about and socialising.

Latara Wed 04-Feb-15 00:06:18

I think staying at home with children is a luxury now for many people - it didn't used to be in the 70s & 80s when the cost of living was cheaper (or so I have heard from older people).

All of my friends & colleagues & relatives with children work part time or full time. A friend with a 3 month old baby is having to rtw because her husband works at B&Q and earns less full time than she will earn part time..
For all my friends tax credits are not for child care - they go towards food.

zzzzz Wed 04-Feb-15 00:08:47

Well I care for my ds 24/7, so going to work would be a luxury for me. The luxury bit is entirely dependent on how much work there is to do at home surely?

HopeClearwater Wed 04-Feb-15 00:10:20

It's not seen as work to do your own children's childcare because this government doesn't value anyone who is not an economic unit earning money, paying tax and NI.

It's a dangerous luxury to have in other senses though - who knows what the other earner is going to get up to while you grow that hole in your CV...

ANewMein2015 Wed 04-Feb-15 00:17:47

I'm not sure its a luxury to be home in our case - I'd far rather we had a secure economic future, a profession I could continue, adult time, using brain etc.

However my husband works odd hours, often away - the cost of childcare and the practicalities wouldn't work at all and wed be no better off.

Massively envious in a way of those who earn enough to pay a nanny/have family to help out etc! I do wish I'd qualified in the profession I'd like to have done pre-kids. I can't now.

Madmum24 Wed 04-Feb-15 00:18:03

Horses for courses really.

I have been a SAHM since my children were born, was able to up and go anywhere at anytime. Everyday was spent in parks, museums, meeting friends etc. I was able to study part time at night. Fast forward 10 years and I undertook a research project lasting for 6 months. Despite the fact that I am only out of the house for 2 full days a week, i have a very heavy workload at home. It is great to be involved in something academic and earn some money and get some recognition I am hating balancing the work/home life.

Although it hasn't always been a bed of roses I feel like I have had the life of Riley. If I had had to work FT then I doubt I would even had a second child. The stress of work just seems to be sucking the joy out of everything for me at the moment. For the early years I would definitely have chosen to have less money and been at home.

NoraRobertsismyguiltypleasure Wed 04-Feb-15 00:18:55

I feel lucky to be a sham, I love being with my dd. We don't have a particularly large income, but we also don't have any massive expenses which is why we can afford it. I would have to work a lot of hours to make it worthwhile after paying for childcare.

wobblyweebles Wed 04-Feb-15 00:21:08

The only place I'm asked to justify it is on Mumsnet...

missingmumxox Wed 04-Feb-15 00:22:23

For me mum of twins, high earning partner and me on a good wage also, definitely a luxury, as is my part time working now, my 2 cousins also with twins well paid jobs both them and partners staying at home because, childcare, transport to work and other care and work expenses wiped out their wages plus some.
I work part time as I was made redundant from a full time position 2 years ago, I got 6 months garden leave before the redundancy was paid, I realised how much money I suddenly had, couldn't spend my wages, so calculated and I was paying £900 a month on breakfast club, after school club, petrol, uniforms for every day rather than cleaning during the week, take out as exhausted twice a week, and come the holidays it went up to £1200 a month on out of school care alone, working 2 days and not working School holidays, I am actually earning more...

FishWithABicycle Wed 04-Feb-15 00:28:43

It's a luxury for it to be a genuine choice.

Many women effectively don't have a choice because their earning power is so low relative tthe minimum cost for acceptable childcare in their area that they would lose money if they worked.

Some women feel they don't have a choice because they do have a higher earning power that means work does pay properly more than their childcare costs and they don't feel able to live on the significantly reduced income that would go with being a sahp.

Being able to make a genuine choice because life would be reasonably comfortable either way is indeed a rare and precious luxury.

itsveryyou Wed 04-Feb-15 00:50:00

It was a lifestyle choice for us, but not a luxury. We're not eligible for tax credits, DH works overseas regularly, we wouldn't ask family to look after DC and my job had me working 9 hour shifts with 1hr30 commute either way. So in our case, it made sense for me to stay at home...and it's I really wanted. Yes, we cut back on 'luxuries' but have always managed financially and have never felt that we've gone without. DC are older primary age now and for the past few years I've worked from home, maintaining and developing my career on a flexible basis to fit in with them, and I will perhaps go back to part time/full time work when they're at secondary school. I don't justify my decisions to anyone; it works for us, for now.

Writerwannabe83 Wed 04-Feb-15 06:29:37

I definitely didn't class maternity leave as a luxury!

I found being a SAHP for months on end was boring and repetitive and I hated having to do the majority of the housework because "I was at home all day".

It was mind numbing and I hated thinking of myself as just a mom, cook and cleaner.

Even if me and DH could afford for me to be a SAHM I wouldn't choose to be one. I would only work part time but I would do it because I need something else in my life.

whattheseithakasmean Wed 04-Feb-15 06:37:45

Not a luxury for me, unless DH was super rich & we had oodles of money & could employ a home help/cleaner/babysitter & I could keep my horses....

I find being at home an utter drudge - for me the luxury is having a DH who is prepared to work PT & flexibly so I can have an interesting & absorbing career.

Mind, my children are older. The baby/toddler years are just a blur of DH & I both clinging on desperately trying to survive grin

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