Tell me what you do. Are you a Police Officer? A Firefighter? A Doctor? No?!
That must mean what you do isn’t very important. Does your job make a difference? To whom? I need to know that in order to form an opinion of your worth.
Furthermore, do you do your job well? Do you just show up, or are you innovative and motivated the entire time you are ‘on the clock’? Afterall, you must be top notch and worth the company’s time to be considered a valuable employee.
Do we ask these things of one another when we meet? Do we ask all of those questions?
No. Not usually. We ask what the other does, professionally, and from that we assume the choice is one based in value. Value to the individual. Value to the family – if applicable – at the very least, a value to oneself. Afterall, we do not practice slavery. Most people choose the job they have be it white collar/blue collar/no collar (Magic Mike) for whatever reasons that individual has.
Now take a woman. Does she have children, and does she work? For some reason the standards change based on this knowledge. Her worth is judged based on the answers to those questions. Not by herself, mind you, but by others.
My question is why? Why do women, specifically mothers, have to justify their jobs? Why do we feel this is okay? Do people judge men based on the same criteria? No. Not as a rule. A man is seen as responsible and doing his duty as a father holding down a job. But a woman? The rules are socially separate.
I’m a stay at home mom.
Does my value as a member of my own family change?
Do you think differently of me if I said I graduated college?
How about high school?
I had a career before kids. Does it matter what I did? It matters to me. I miss it and loved my job and nearly all the people I worked with! Things changed after I had kids and I made choices for my family. That choice happens to be becoming a stay at home mom. (SAHM)
Where is my value now? My children find this reality invaluable. (if i’ve done my job right!)
My husband finds value in a household where our children are cared for by their mom, and not a caretaker. I find value in knowing the people i am shaping for society are given a foundation by me directly.
Does this mean I judge those who don’t make the same choice I did? Absolutely not.
I find these days that is a huge difference between SAHMs and other people. I have had the privilege of meeting some amazing women who happen to be SAHMs. I also know incredible working moms and not once did I question their value as a contributing member of their own families.
It is imperative that people stop judging others based on presumptions and ignorance. Women worked hard (and continue to do so) to prove their equality (and superiority) in the workplace be it McDonalds, IBM, JPL, Target, Mattel, etc. It sure would be a shame to discount the choice we now have and the headway that has been made for parents everywhere. The choice to work or stay home.
At the end of the day my value is found in the happiness, safety, well being, and spirit of my children and spouse. If that is good enough for me, it is certainly sufficient for you.