In March of 2021, the social media platform LinkedIn added “Stay-At-Home Mom” as an option for a job title. This was created mostly to help mothers explain a gap in their resume for the time they took off to take care of their growing children. When I read this headline, I was made of feelings.
This headline validated me in a way that I can’t even explain. I am surrounded by a wonderful village of women who support my choice to stay home with my children at this time. However, that has not always been the case. My husband and I met with a financial advisor right before our first child was born. We wanted to consult with someone since we were going down to a one-income household. Everything was going great until he asked when I would be returning to work. I told him it wouldn’t be for a while because we planned to be having multiple children. He told me that I didn’t want to be wasting my “marketable skills.” Who says I won’t be using my “marketable skills” while raising my family? After all, I am a trained educator! Man, it hurt. I had dreamed of being a stay-at-home mom all of my life, and then I get to this point, and not just this man but several other women as well made me feel like staying at home is simply not enough. In their eyes, I need to be a mom and conquer the business world. I need to be a mom and a TikTok influencer. I need to be a mom and something else because simply being a mom is supposedly not enough.
This has also crept into social media mom groups. Women are telling other women in the group that being a stay-at-home mom is not a job and taking care of your children is not work. Why are we cutting each other down? Shouldn’t we as women work our hardest to build each other up? Working outside the home moms, working from home moms, part-time working moms, and stay-at-home moms— we are all moms. We have this huge job in common, and we can’t do it without each other.
Taking care of my children has been the hardest work I have ever done. I love my babies, and I love spending time with them. I am so blessed to be able to stay at home with them. However, being a mom is hard. There is no textbook. There is no degree that you can obtain in college to become an ivy league mom. You work every day, trouble-shooting what could be going on physically and emotionally with your child and then how to appropriately respond to it, only to have applesauce squeezed into your hair. You lose sleep. You are on the clock 24 hours a day. When you take a family vacation, it is not a vacation. It is the same job you always have, but harder. They don’t have their toys or their own beds. I mean, this list could go on forever. Being a mom is hard work.
So, thank you, LinkedIn. Thank you for recognizing that this time where I am pouring my heart and soul into managing my household and my children is something worthy of a spot on my resume.