Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Grass is Always Greener on the Other Side

Having seen both sides of the fence as both a full-time working mom and a stay at home mom, I've learned that there is no happy winner. BOTH types of moms feel guilt, anxiety, and wish for more at times.

After talking with many working moms and stay at home moms, I've noticed that each tends to crave some of the perks that the other one has. It just goes to show you, the grass is always greener on the other side!

Here are some of the most common things that I have heard from other moms and that I have experienced myself, as both a working mom and a stay at home mom.

SAHM (stay at home mom): I wish I had a half- hour drive to work each morning to just drink my coffee and sit in silence.
WM (working mom): I wish I could sit in my pjs at 8am and play with my baby while I have my coffee.

SAHM: I wish I could wear a nice dress and heels once in awhile instead of mom clothes every day.
WM: I wish I could wear sweats to work; I'm too tired to dress this nicely every day!

SAHM: I miss adult conversation.
WM: I miss hearing my baby babble.

SAHM: I would love to do something for ME each day, something that makes me feel like more than just "Mom".
WM: I would love to have more time with my baby each day, something to make me feel more like I'm a "Mom".

SAHM: I wish I had more money to spend.
WM: I wish I had more time to enjoy the money I'm working for.

SAHM: Sometimes the days drag on and on when it's just me and the baby.
WM: My evenings with the baby go way too quickly.

SAHM: There are days when I wish I was working.
WM: There are days when I wish I could be home with my baby.

I'm not saying all SAHMs and WMs feel like this, or that they feel like this all the time. My point is, ALL moms have days when they may wish to be on the other side. Having done both, I can tell you that they are equally hard, just for different reasons.

The hardest parts of being a working mom (for me) were being so incredibly busy after I got home from work and not being able to spend nearly as much time was I wanted to with my baby.

As far as being a stay at home mom, the hardest parts for me are missing the adult interaction everyday and getting to do something each day that was separate from being "Mom".

There is no perfect answer. It's just the way life is--you have to take the good with the bad, no matter what situation you find yourself in. And the fact is, there is no perfect situation. The important thing is that we all are trying our very hardest to be the best moms and women we can be!


  1. I'm 4 weeks into my maternity leave and this is my first baby, so I'm struggling w/ the decision to go back to work or not. I think you're right - there are pluses & minuses to each. It's a hard decision!

  2. Christie you are so right! I have to admit... being home now for about 9 months there are days when I am a little excited about going back to work in September. But, I'm afraid when the novelty of the working world wears off I'll wish to be in my pjs with Peyton again instead of with a classroom of other people's kids!

  3. Marcie--in a perfect world, I would work part- time. But financially, the high cost of daycare doesn't make the part-time pay worth it!

    Corinne--I won't lie, the first two weeks of work were like a vacation! The work day felt like a breeze compared to being home. It was the coming home from work part that was more stressful because I felt so drained and rushed.