I read this great blog post last night about 13 Things You Should Never Say to a Working Mother!
I thought it was really good and I could relate to many things on the list. BUT I should have known from just the very title of this post that it would have some interesting comments.
Here's the thing. People write about the whole "mommy war" topic (NOTE: that post was NOT about the mommy wars) and how ridiculous it is . I have too. And yes, I do think it's ridiculous. We should all just support each other...we are all doing our best...yada, yada, yada. But the cold hard truth is that it really exists...to some extent. In a perfect world, no one would judge anyone. We would all empathize with each other and get along. But that's not reality, folks.
The reality is that everyone has their own reality. And many people think that their reality is SO much harder than yours. And they feel the need to tell anyone who will listen.
So where am I going with this?
Like I said, I really liked the article and I could relate. Why? Because I am mom with 3 children who works out of the home.
So as I started to read the comments it dawned on me that NO MATTER WHAT, some people make everything about them.
For example, many comments went like this (I'm paraphrasing but you get the idea):
~"I have heard way worse than this as a stay at home mom."
~"You need to put the time in with your children. No job or amount of money is worth it. If you work to buy fancy things for your kids, then don't buy those things." (This made me laugh and laugh. I didn't know paying the bills and mortgage were so fancy. Damn.)
~"Staying home is so much worse. You get judged way more than working moms."
It was right about then that I had to stop reading. Because EVERYTHING IS NOT ABOUT YOU, PEOPLE.
The woman who wrote this (Jennifer from www.proudworkingmom.com) wrote about what she knows...being a working mom. She did not say, "Don't say these things to working moms but say whatever you want to stay at home moms." She simply wrote about things not to say to working mothers. Period.
The bottom line here is that there sadly is some level of a mommy war. There always has been..and always will be.
It isn't necessarily a war waged between working moms and stay at home moms. It might be between the mom with 4 kids and the mom with 1 or the mom with a nanny and the mom who goes it all alone each day. It might be between the mom who works long hours and the mom who leaves right at quitting time. As much as we want to act like we are all in the same boat, everyone's boat is different and everyone judges each other's boat from time to time. We all do it from time to time. I do it. You do it (admit it, you probably do).
But let's try to be nice and realize, again, that everything is not about you.
If you work because you love it, then be grateful that you are lucky enough to have a job you love.
If you work for financial reasons, then be grateful that you have a job to help pay the bills.
If you stay home with your children because that is your choice, be grateful that you could make that choice to be home.
If you stay home with your children because that is the only way you can make it work, be grateful that you can make it work.
Just be grateful. After all, it's almost Thanksgiving, DAMMIT.