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Old June 17th, 2018, 05:15 AM
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The other end of the mommy wars!

I wasn't sure where I wanted to put this, but I think it belongs here!

I was at a retirement party yesterday for a friend I met at work many, many years ago. We both had children. I left the job to be a SAHM. She continued to work full-time. Our friendship survived the "mommy wars," the big fight over mother's working in and/or out of the home. We both did the best we could with what we had to work with.

And so, now, she's retiring, and I'm starting full-time work. This transition could also be stressful. Now I'm the one with limited time, and she's the one who has all day!

The most interesting observation I can make is that I was home with my own children, but most likely won't be available to help on a regular basis with any grandchildren some day in the future. My retired friend is looking forward to being with her grandchildren. Other retired friends do the same thing.

So, now, the question becomes, "Was it better to stay at home with your own children, sacrificing money and requiring longer working years? Or was it better to work all those years, and save money for retirement to enjoy those later years and help with grandchildren?"

The answer is... Aren't we blessed if we have the choice???
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Old June 17th, 2018, 09:30 AM
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Re: The other end of the mommy wars!

Exactly.

I was caught up in the Mommy Wars too - not that I ever felt the need to argue about it, but I had a lot of friends (and sisters, LOL) who were openly disgusted with me for not returning to work (wasting my education!) or defensive about the fact that they did. I was one of the lucky ones who was able to work from home, but my hours were minimal and balanced around caring for my kids.

I don't think there's a right or wrong. Everyone should do what works best for them and their family. The only thing I get stuck on is the idea that one will be asked to help with grandchildren. That, imo, is a risky assumption.

Another interesting thing is the perception of the upcoming generation about it. My kids had a SAHM but most of their friends didn't. Some of the people my DD has befriended at college (okay, just one ex-boyfriend) are actually quite derogatory about the fact that I was a SAHM, as though it's a sign that I'm lazy or not intelligent. I explained the Mommy Wars to my DD, but I don't think she believed me. LOL.
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Old June 21st, 2018, 12:46 AM
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Re: The other end of the mommy wars!

From what I see some people try to live through what they missed as mum's through their new grandchildren and put their kids noses out of joint! So I'd be blessed with having been able to bring my kids up fully, hope they are financially able to have a choice to do it either way and enjoy investing in your grand kids when you can.

My grandma practically raise me up to the age of 4 so my mum could work full time which she did from age 15 to 65. I remember my grandma doing far more with me than my mum could ever have the energy or inclination to do with any of my kids.

Also as a much older mum 3rd time round I can confirm it's exhausting so your friend may not appreciate her grand kids as much as she'd like to believe! 😉
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Old June 23rd, 2018, 05:10 AM
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Re: The other end of the mommy wars!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Annsdil View Post
From what I see some people try to live through what they missed as mum's through their new grandchildren and put their kids noses out of joint! So I'd be blessed with having been able to bring my kids up fully, hope they are financially able to have a choice to do it either way and enjoy investing in your grand kids when you can.

My grandma practically raise me up to the age of 4 so my mum could work full time which she did from age 15 to 65. I remember my grandma doing far more with me than my mum could ever have the energy or inclination to do with any of my kids.

Also as a much older mum 3rd time round I can confirm it's exhausting so your friend may not appreciate her grand kids as much as she'd like to believe! 😉
That last line may be the truest one! She won't know until she tries it, I think.

But the rest is also true. Some grandmothers do act like grandchildren are a "do-over" without taking parents' thoughts into consideration. Or they just ignore it. I haven't forgotten that side of the mommy wars.
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Old July 2nd, 2018, 06:41 PM
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Re: The other end of the mommy wars!

I was a SAHM for most of the years I was married to my ex-H. I did not go to college until it became evident that our M was not going well and I wanted a different plan. I do not regret that I was home with them. I learned to be frugal and my bills were always paid, kids had food, clothes, shelter, and toys. I should rephrase that since I grew up poor and I had already learned to stretch money and make the most of things from my mother, in my own childhood.

I did start working soon after marrying my current H (by then I had earned my BS degree). I continued to earn a Master's and I was very busy in those days, and part of me regrets the time I did not spend with the kids in those years, but really I think it was the only way we could afford to get by.

Then my kids started to grow up and leave one by one and I earned a Ph.D. Now I work fully from home (ironic) make a good living, and I am also able to spend lots of time with my grandkids because of my flexible schedule working from home.
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Old July 4th, 2018, 08:48 AM
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Re: The other end of the mommy wars!

This is very interesting. Like many of you I was a SAHM for great parts of my kids baby-childhood. Loved it, too, but I did not realize how ready I was to work outside the home. I am now in my second year of an actual career, and I just love the job. My youngest is a freshman in h.s., middle child is in college, and our oldest is a newly-wed, but no grand kids yet. My husband is now the one with a work-from-home vocation and the home keeper. Funny how life turns.

I think what you said about doing the best you can..that's the crux. We each have the things that are our priorities and, for various reasons, the things that are so important for us as we plan and navigate our family life. I look back and have no regrets about the sacrifices I/we made with money and career choices. But I know the jury is still out on some things like an adequate retirement nest egg and being an energetic hands-on grandparent...so I'll have to get back to you on that. :-D
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