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Motherhood is a beautiful journey often filled with hardships, of making really tough decisions, some of which can really matter for the future of the kids and of the family. Mothering is a non stop job that is rather under appreciated whether you decide to be a stay at home mom or a working mom. Nobody has gotten it any easier but the journey, whichever way you pick, is for sure very much rewarding.
This article focuses on some solid points that you might need to consider before you make a decision to choose between the two. It is not in anyway a comparison between the two, because if you ask me, these are apples and oranges and a comparison between them is an unattainable and inconclusive argument. There are rewards for every mom on the journey of motherhood! Some rewards come in money while some in hugs and kisses and love!
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Staying at home:
What to expect: You will be seeing all your baby's firsts, you will be there to guide him, to shape his personality, to teach your values and to just be 'present' in everything! But it won't come easy. Often SAHMs are under valued for the efforts they put in to raise a family. You might feel guilty of not contributing to the family earnings. There is constant physical and mental stress from demands, tantrums, screaming and every break you take will be out someone's generosity of watching your kids.
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What to expect: You will contributing to the family's income and working hard for your babys' future. Your baby will grow up to see a hard working, determined woman with a shining career of her own. But it won't come easy either. You will be missing your baby's firsts and often struggle with your decisions. You will always feel guilty about leaving your baby and your baby crying and wanting you to hold him, will not make it any easier. There is a constant emotional stress and physical one too as you try to balance work and mom life. You will often also be over compensating with your baby after work for all the hours you miss with him and you will often be p.
1. Finance: The most important factor in making this tough decision. Does staying at home affect your way of living considerably? Will you be able to manage paying bills and also make savings? If you are working already, it can be a huge shift from how you were doing financially versus how it will work if you stay home. You can also look for some side hustle if that becomes manageable staying home.
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If finance works out well, it is a great way of achieving goals as a family. You distribute responsibilities between you and your partner. The father brings income while you take care of the primary needs of the family and baby at home.
2. Career: Becoming a SAHM will require to sacrifice the career you have build in all these years. However, SAHM is in no way a small job to do. If you see fit, career can be a small cost compared to the big rewards and things you will be doing for your family. If you have acquired skills that you could use, you might be able to manage a side hustle when you can. Many many SAHMs work independently or as a free lancer in their spare time and earn a decent income.
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3. Child care facility: Day care or nannies or any kind of child care facilities can be pretty expensive. You will have to weigh between your income and the expenses that come with child care and see if that is worth. If you don't have any family near you, child care can be difficult to manage if you have to work long hours on some days.
4. Number of children: This can make a huge impact on all of the above points. Finance and child care costs can differ greatly depending on how many kids you have. And if you have more kids, a side gig can be harder to manage as well. On the other hand, more the kids, your job as a SAHM will also be harder and more challenging.
5. Mental health: Often ignored, women suffering with mental health issues has become significantly common over years. It is important that you give a solid weight to this one. Whether you decide to work or to stay at home, do what helps you bring mental piece. There is no one way to have a mental sanity. Both jobs can be differently challenging to different moms. If working for any reason keeps you mentally healthy, do it, even if it doesn't bring you significant income. If staying home with kids sound more promising for your mental health, do it. I do want to highlight that, mental health issues arising from staying home with kids are pretty common in moms. There are other ways to tackle and avoid mental health issues like taking frequent breaks and making time for self care but they can be temporary if you are really struggling. So make a decision that can bring more joy, peace and sanity to you.
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It is a tough decision and it doesn't come easy to anyone. A small strategy that helped me make a decision was to take a pen and a paper and literally write my pros and cons for each side of it. In the end, also note that whatever decision you make, know that it for your family and your baby and you will never go wrong. The fact you are here reading this and struggling to make a decision is a proof enough.