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To think mums have a more socially acceptable reason not to work

(31 Posts)
ciceroscribe Mon 02-May-16 07:48:54

And a lot of the time, having children means mums can retrain or take work in a different direction.

Lilaclily Mon 02-May-16 07:50:26

As opposed to men or childless people do you mean ?

My sil retrained as a teacher at 45, no kids , so I don't think that's the case really

curren Mon 02-May-16 07:52:17

More acceptable compared to what?

I don't agree they have more chance to retrain. When a parent goes back to work, they usually need childcare. Retraining or entry level jobs in new careers often don't carry the wage required.

It's all about circumstances.

BendydickCuminsnatch Mon 02-May-16 07:53:05

I don't really think it's the case. I career changed pre-DC, trained on the job. Would have been MUCH more difficult and I'd have been much less flexible if I'd had to factor kids into the equation.

Not working - do you mean wives who have no kids and choose not to work? I think a lot of people would choose not to work if they could! Inc men. I wouldn't judge!!

AtSea1979 Mon 02-May-16 07:54:43

Having children does mean you can retrain. It means a lot of the time you NEED to retrain because workplaces aren't flexible enough.

ollieplimsoles Mon 02-May-16 07:56:08

You mean its more socially acceptable for a mum to not have a paid job?

Duckdeamon Mon 02-May-16 07:58:18


Further and especially higher education for adults is now very expensive. Parents who do it need childcare, making it even more expensive.

LittleRedRiding Mon 02-May-16 07:58:45

You mean it's socially acceptable for mums to raise kids rather than go to a day job? Of course that's acceptable, would you rather wolves raised our children? It's also socially acceptable for mums to have a day job and use childcare. Free country!

ciceroscribe Mon 02-May-16 08:08:29

But if you're single then you would struggle to retrain and pay mortgage and bills whereas most people with children have a partner.

I'm not saying 'every person with children can' but it just seems that having children can be a useful way for a woman to regather herself and retrain or take her career somewhere else.

GrinAndTonic Mon 02-May-16 08:09:26

I agree somewhat. I left my previous career and have returned to university full time. By moving somewhere cheaper and DH transferring to a much better paid position we could financially afford for me NOT to work. However, I get so many snide comments from people as they assume I do not work and have it easy as we don't have DC. I do work part time though. So yes I think it is more acceptable.

Duckdeamon Mon 02-May-16 08:12:30

Why do you keep talking about mums and women?

People with savings and/or a partner willing to support them but without DC could retrain much more easily than parents.

Duckdeamon Mon 02-May-16 08:13:53

IMO anyone who thinks having children make "gathering herself" and "take her career somewhere else" easier has no clue and/or some kind of negative agenda.

ciceroscribe Mon 02-May-16 08:15:53

Unfortunately Duck I don't think the same is true for men. I wish it was but IME a man staying at home to raise his children is viewed as lazy whereas a woman doing the same wouldn't be.

For instance my mum retrained: she had my brother and I, then spent some years at home hating every second and retrained as a teacher then. If she'd retrained as a teacher without children I don't think she would have.

TychosNose Mon 02-May-16 08:16:29

Having children is a useful way for a woman to regather herself?
Since having children I've totally lost myself!
Op you're being ridiculous.

FlyingElbows Mon 02-May-16 08:17:20

I'd love to be able to "retrain" but I have no family to provide childcare and we can't afford the extra cost. If I got a minimum wage job I wouldn't earn enough to cover the cost of childcare. So I'm stuck. I'm not lucky to get to stay at home, women like me are like ghosts and very much looked down on by some other women.

GetAHaircutCarl Mon 02-May-16 08:19:38

Lots of women have no choice but to rethink their working lives post DC due to the prohibitive costs of childcare and the fact that their partners either can't or won't change their own working lives to share domestic responsibilities.

ThursdayLastWeek Mon 02-May-16 08:20:41

I don't think it's about social acceptability really. I wouldn't ever dream of judging or looking down upon someone who made a career change that wasn't catalysed by having children.

You can't earn less money if you've already stopped worked to become a parent! so for many that's a good time financially at least, to make the change.

Duckdeamon Mon 02-May-16 08:23:02

Women who SAH get negativity too, and often pay long term work and financial penalties.

In past generations it was FAR harder for women who had DC to retain an existing job, work part time etc, but retraining was cheaper.

Scarydinosaurs Mon 02-May-16 08:23:27

Do you view a man as lazy? I wouldn't.

If a person WAS lazy, then I would consider them to be lazy. Gender certainly doesn't come into it.

treaclesoda Mon 02-May-16 08:25:19

What you are describing isn't mother's. It is people who are fortunate to have a partner who can financially support them if they wish to retrain. Being a mother has nothing to do with it.

I could probably afford to retrain now if we made huge sacrifices (I'm 40) but the fact that it would impact so badly on my DC (having to give up their hobbies etc because we couldn't afford them) means I am reluctant to do it.

But the single biggest factor that would make it possible for us is that when we were in our early 20s we were able to afford to buy a house. As the years have gone by, the proportion of our income that goes towards the mortgage has gone down as our income has risen. There will be lots of women in their 40s who are in a similar position. (Sadly not something that will happen so frequently for women who are ten or fifteen years younger than us).

treaclesoda Mon 02-May-16 08:26:00

Gah, autocorrect put a rogue apostrophe in my first sentence. angry

PurpleDaisies Mon 02-May-16 08:27:27

I wish it was but IME a man staying at home to raise his children is viewed as lazy whereas a woman doing the same wouldn't be.

I don't agree with this at all. It's far more normal now for men to be stay at home dads while their partner works outside the home. I'm not sure what point you're trying to make but I think you'd be far better focussing on your career rather than judging others on theirs.

BrandNewAndImproved Mon 02-May-16 08:27:29

My personal view is that actually op. I do see sahDs as lazy. In rl the women I know who's husbands sah whilst they work do have it easy and my friends still do the majority of the wife work as well as working full-time. Then they're trapped as they can't leave the useless idiot as he'd have the dc the majority of the time as he's been the sahp. So the woman is working all the time, paying the bills, still doing the majority of the cooking cleaning and other kids birthday parties ect and can't leave as she'll lose her dc.

With a sahm they run their household, do all the kids clubs and stuff and make it easier on the man to work.

(my view will be shot down now but seeing it irl and quite a few posts of women stuck with useless sahds on MN I do feel I'm right but will accept there will be the odd situation where this isn't the case)

honkinghaddock Mon 02-May-16 08:28:10

I have the time ( in term time) and to some extent the money to retrain but the difficulty is finding a career that would give me the level of flexibility that I would need (have a disabled child who will always need very specialist childcare plus I wouldn't do something that would make our family life harder.)

treaclesoda Mon 02-May-16 08:29:36

I don't think a sahd is viewed as any lazier than a sahm. But society certainly looks down on a stay at home parent in general.

I've been a sahm. I went back to work because I was so worn out. My work days are a whole lot easier than my at home days.

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