If I were a SAHM…

My kid would be doing calculus instead of triple digit subtraction.

Ze would be reading at an 8th grade level rather than a 4th grade level.

Hir handwriting would be atrocious.

Ze would not know how to put away toys.

Hir mediation skills and interaction with other kids would not be as good.

Ze wouldn’t have had as large a vocabulary.

Ze would be much better at video games.

Ze would be an even better cook.

Ze would not know much art beyond scribbles.

Ze would be playing piano already.

Anyhow, not better or worse, just different.  Blah blah, it takes a village, blah blah.  I need to stop reading GRS.  Judgmental SAHM apparently spend a lot of time not paying attention to their children while posting on there about how WOHM don’t pay enough attention to their children… something one thought one got away from by not being on mommy forums.

(Standard disclaimer:  We know that by far the majority of SAHM are not judgmental bitches.  But there’s a small number who take it upon themselves to be so.  Sometimes their kids turn out ok anyway!  Also we’re sure there’s an equally small number of judgmental bitchy WOHM whose kids may also turn out ok anyway, as well as child-free by choice judgmental bitches, and judgmental bitchy dads… basically we’re saying judgmental bitchiness is orthogonal to parenting status, work status, and gender.  This rant only covers one type of judgmental bitch, however.)

How would your kid(s) be different if hir/their parenting situation(s) were different?  Or how would you be different if your parents’ situations had been different?

17 Responses to “If I were a SAHM…”

  1. First Gen American Says:

    I am not as good at keeping a schedule and discipline as my daycare person. If I were home, the activities would be more varied but I also think there would be more days of the video game babysitter.

  2. Alyssa Says:

    The daycare definitely gets the kids to be more active, and the whole day is planned with activities and outings. We just can’t keep that kind of schedule up at home, especially when there are chores and errands to run. One of the best things about it though is teaching him how to socialize and play with other kids!

  3. mareserinitatis Says:

    If at home, less physical activity, less structure, more fun. :-) Probably more travel, too…

  4. Cloud Says:

    Hmmm. My kids would do a lot less crafty stuff, and wouldn’t be nearly so good at saying please and thank you. And either they would watch even more educational TV/DVDs than they do now or I would be insane from the constant “Mommy, mommy, mommy….”

  5. becca Says:

    If I were a SAHM…
    my kid would be writing by now. in calligraphy. And Chinese.
    he would know fewer songs, but there would be more “blowing in the wind” and less “5 green and speckled frogs”
    he’d be doing cartwheels on the beam instead of forward rolls on the floor
    he’d be going off the diving board on his own
    he’d be able to recite ‘father william’ while standing on his head
    he would know every episode of Dora available on netflix by memory
    he’d be doing 500 piece jigsaw puzzles
    we’d have read 500 books/month and a half instead of 100 books

    HOWEVER, he and I would both have even fewer skills at emotional self-control and executive functions, and I’d probably be completely insane before very long.

  6. hush Says:

    I’ve been a WOHM, a SAHM, and a WAHM, and my DH has been a SAHD, and a WOHD. We won’t even have the first clue which of these 5 categories, if any, will be to blame for any shortcomings or benefits!

  7. Dr. Virago Says:

    If my mom hadn’t been a SAHM, I think I would have spent less time in museums and libraries in the summer and during school vacations, and that might have changed my career path dramatically.

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      Possibly… though man, we spent (growing up with working parents) and spend a lot of time in museums and libraries throughout the year, not just on vacation. And travel/moving for work also means/meant a lot of variety in museums.

  8. bogart Says:

    I’m a little too close to this one right now, as we are on a reduced preschool schedule for the duration of summer and one short answer is that apparently DS and I would have something approximating a blowout after yesterday’s supper when he refused to put on his own shoes and then after several iterations of refusal disappeared into his room and dumped everything everywhere and we had it out concerning whether he would or wouldn’t put his books all back on the shelves in an orderly fashion and I, in a fit of pique, dismantled some of the fort that he had made on his bunk bed and he later subsequently dismantled the rest (though I imagine/hope he is rebuilding it today while he is home with DH — I wouldn’t let him last night). Plus to his and my disappointment he didn’t get to help me change the oil in my car, which I was doing while he dismantled his room, barefoot.

    Or, maybe that’s just one of those parenting moments that happens every now and then. I was walking a line between disciplining bad behavior and being gentle/patient with a tired kid, and I may (or may not) have gotten too close to the first of those endpoints. Everyone survived, and before bedtime we — as we usually do — watched one of the 24 classic Scooby Doo cartoons he has memorized %).

  9. MomWithaDot Says:

    My response turned into a post, so here it is http://momwithadot.blogspot.com/2012/07/my-reasons.html

    However, I do feel that if my mom hadn’t been a SAHM, my perspective would be different. I know, I would have been a more confident student. Knowing my parents could afford the opportunities I wanted to pursue then, would have made a world of difference. Certainly different. Certainly more successful; But better? Can’t tell.

  10. Anandi Raman Creath (@anandi) Says:

    I struggle with this one all the time, esp since I think T’s preschool schedule is too demanding for a 2.5 year old (3 days a week, 9-4). (She’s still a hot mess by pickup time.)

    OTOH being a full time SAHM right now, with the challenges of age 2.5, would probably be bad for both of us and I’d still like her to go to preschool because she’s learning so much about being with other kids (we don’t hang out with a lot of other families with small kids.). She’s got a tendency to be a little shy in new situations/people/activities and I think preschool helps immensely with that.

  11. darchole Says:

    My mother was a SAHM and I didn’t walk/read/whatever early or better than the other kids. I was good as school, but not because of my mother being at home (and she stopped being able to help with homework by the time I started alegebra, which was in the 7th grade). Of course until I moved out I didn’t cook, clean house or do laundry either.

    My mother wasn’t a helicopter parent, maybe if she was I’d either be a doctor right now or completely neurotic? /sarcasm

  12. mom2boy Says:

    I don’t remember anything before the age of 5 and not anything super clearly until 7ish. I have no idea if my mom was a SAHM while I was a baby/toddler/pre-schooler. I know she didn’t finish her degree until after my younger brother was born and worked a part-time 9-2 M-F job all of my later elementary, middle and high school years. It hasn’t come up but what a shame if she struggled mightily with some guilt over whether or not she should SAH or WOH while I was little. I knew growing up that we depended on both my mom’s and my step-dad’s salaries. She never took sick days unless it was for one of us. Money was tight, not the lights might not be on tight, but no extras like trips to movies or theme parks or shopping for name brand clothes.

    I only want to be a SAHM, and my kid would only be all the more amazing for it, if I didn’t have to actually spend much time At Home during the week.

  13. J Liedl Says:

    I was in daycare when I was a preschooler and I’m pushing 50. I don’t see what’s so hot to trot about stay-at-home parenting and never have, both because of my background and my druthers. Although I do spend a lot more time with my kids than many full-time employed parents because of working to match up my teaching schedule with special-needs Youngest’s out-of-school time, I am not a SAHM and will never be (because I’d go stir crazy without my work) but I don’t suffer under the delusion that one style or another is better. I wish people would stop seeing this as a war to win and just agree that different families can have different but perfectly workable solutions.

  14. PQA Says:

    My mother was a SAHM, she made no effort at any kind of intellectual stimulation, her idea of an activity was to go shopping and search every clearance rack in Macy’s. She made sure I was fed and clothed but other then that I think she held me back mentally in every regard. I wish she worked so I would have had the opportunity to go to an after-school program that allowed me to do something other then watch TV or shop. I think if my mom had worked I would have done much better in school, developed better social skills, had more friends, and been less depressed and angry.

    I am smart and successful despite her, not because of her, and I resent her taking credit for my successes as if her ‘parenting’ is what did it. The parent that made a difference and continues to make a difference in my life is my father, who worked long hours but also had thoughtful deep discussions with me as a child, went to movies, took me to the library, and played with me in the park. So I don’t think it matters much if a parent stays at home or works, I think what matters is the kind of parent they are and the love they show there child.

  15. MutantSupermodel Says:

    I cannot answer this because if I were a SAHM there’d be many other possible alternate realities to ponder and I’d get all lost in them.


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