I follow a little instagram account called Humans of NY. I use the term little lightly. They also have a tumblr and facebook page, but I've somewhat dropped both those things so instagram is the way I primarily keep up with their posts.
This post ran not too long ago, and I particularly enjoyed it as I applaud any woman who doesn't let having kids stop her from having a career. It's not that I look down upon women who choose to be stay at home moms, but I do look down upon those who shame women who try to juggle the career/kid lifestyle.
I think that if stay at home moms really do enjoy staying home with their kids and cleaning/teaching/loving/cooking and all that jazz, then it's the same as women who continue to pursue their career whilst raising kids. It's when women quit their job that they love and try to make themselves love staying home with kids 24/7 when things get questionable in my eyes. I think that if you're doing what you love, it quantifies as being a career, whether you're a surgeon or a stay at home mom.
But back to the picture.
I did what no (wo)man ever should: read the comments.
Now, the Instagram account has hundreds of thousands of followers. 742 thousand to be exact. That's 742,000 people's ideas and beliefs and thoughts that could potentially be read through the comments of a simple picture.
"You're really going to miss out on a lot of your little girls life."
"You should be at home taking care of her."
"You'll regret that decision."
"She's going to wish you were at home with her."
"That seems like a selfish thing for you to do. Stay home with your girl, believe me you'll regret it."
Those are snippets of comments I read during a thirty second scan through.
And I wasn't sure if I was more angry at the fact that people disapproved of a woman following her dreams or that people still assume a woman's place is in the home. Or maybe that people think this little girl is going to regret her mom working, but not her (presumed) dad. No one ever says "you'll miss seeing your kids grow up because you work" to a dad with a normal 9-5 job trying to provide for his family, yet women have a different story. Granted, I've heard the phrase thrown around to men who work 24/7, but never to a man who works normal hours. The dad's contribution of being home between dinner and breakfast the next morning seems enough to society, yet if a woman doesn't spend every waking moment tending to her kids, some people see that as her being a bad mother?
I don't understand why some people continually push the wagon of "a woman's place is in the home" in this age. I don't understand why people assume that working moms are letting day cares and public schools "raise their kids" (that comment really makes me want to strangle someone). I don't understand why when something goes wrong—in society, in the workplace, in this generation of kids, etc.—the blame is often placed on working moms. (Don't believe me? Look here or here or here for starters.) I don't understand why people say things like "I don't know why a woman wouldn't want to stay home and raise her babies" as if that is all we were made to do—carry and raise babies.
I'm a product of two working parents and I've never regretted my mom or dad working. I've never met a kid who told me they wished their working mom had stayed home with them. I'm not going to be a drug dealer or a serial killer because my mom didn't stay home with me all day and make me organic baby food and handmade clothes. Even if I do become a drug dealer, it'll probably be because college is as expensive as hell and it's either that or selling my left kidney.
But it's just another argument into the pot of the way our society sees women.
Have fabulous day.