I think how you feel about it depends on your SO - if he/she doesn't appreciate what you do, it makes it so much harder to do. Since most people don't seem to think that raising your children is a "real job".
I stayed home for 8 years with my kids. I agree with you that the after school time sitting at the kitchen table were some of the best times ever. I had some amazing conversations with my kids over that table.
I did go back to work and then I quit again to take care of my Dad.
At this point, the youngest is in high school and I'm trying to re-invent what I'm going to do as my 3rd???? career?
Originally Posted by ezduzit
OP, you have a very jaded view of the stay at home wife/mom. Taking your opinion out a little farther: an employed wife/mother is STILL the unpaid slave of the husband because most women do the bulk of the housework and child care. The only difference that she has a second job which pays her money.
I never considered myself unpaid. My husband had a talent for going out and making money...not a lot, but enough. He paid all the bills AND recreation. I mean, after all, his was the only money coming in. He was generous to a fault. This is what he did FOR our family.
My contribution was that I made it EASY for him to go to work. I cared for our home, the children, made sure he had clean clothes to wear, made sure there were healthy meals for everyone, made his breakfast and lunch (he always brown bagged it). These were the things I did FOR our family.
I always felt I was a very important part of making it all work smoothly. I NEVER saw myself as a second-class citizen or an unpaid slave. I saw myself as a vibrant, creative woman who happily spent my days doing whatever I wanted to do...including going trail riding with the kids after school. And sitting down to cookies and milk after school. That interim between the school bus and going out to play provided the kids and me with an intimate time to talk about the day, school, kids, plans, hopes, dreams. I wouldn't have missed that 30 minutes for all the world. I was able to be intune to them and notice when things were off; to question them gently to understand whether there were serious problems going on or just kid stuff. I think that is missing for today's kids. There's nobody to talk to or to listen to them. It's no wonder they behave the way they do.
I wouldn't have missed having that time at home for all the money in the world, awards, promotions or anything.
Remember the next time you go to work...you're just a slave to your employer. The only you get in return for your effort is money.
I am with you on the letting the kids be semi-feral. I try to instill that same in ours by not responding to his every request and sending him outside.
That and chores - we had urban chickens so he would have chores. My DH does work at home and it has been great to have that someone knows what your up to parent. Not in the hovery way, but just that someone is around.
With that, to each their own, and the parental involvment may or may not mean that the kids lack social skills and a sense of place.