Pew Research Says Stay At Home Moms On The Rise (VIDEO)
According to new research released yesterday by Pew Research Center, the number of stay at home mothers has risen by six percent over the last decade.
Before you click away from the page, this is NOT about dividing mothers and deciding which kind is better. After all, the best mother is the one who is doing her best. This research is about the facts of growing stay at home motherhood.
There are seven key findings of the research, which you can read here. Not surprisingly, two-thirds are “traditional” married stay at home mothers with working husbands, but a growing share is unmarried. I think the most interesting finding has to do with why more mothers are staying home.
Many women are home because they cannot find a job. “With incomes stagnant in recent years for all but the college-educated, less educated workers in particular may weigh the cost of child care against wages and decide it makes more economic sense to stay home.” The report also shows that 34% of stay at home moms are living in poverty and only 12% of working mothers are below the poverty threshold. Take a look at this news report:
Related: Tales Of A Twin Mom: We Are All Moms
I was a working mother when I had two children. Three years ago, I became pregnant with twins, effectively doubling the number of children we had in one fell swoop. I considered going back to work, but if I had done so after the twins were born, we would have had four children in daycare. As it was, we were paying $168 per week for our oldest to attend preschool. Multiply that times four—$672 every week—and you can see that I would have been going to work just to pay for daycare. That made no sense for us.
Right now, I work from home as managing editor of Good Enough Mother. I didn’t imagine that I would stay home with my children, but I’m glad that it’s a choice I can make. I don’t know what the future holds for me, but I wouldn’t be surprised if in a few short years or even a year from now, my work and family life is completely different from what it is today.
One aspect of the research that I found laughable is that stay at home mothers have more time for leisure and sleep. Theoretically, we could nap because we’re not too far away from a couch or a bed, but reality is something far different. I’d also like for these researchers to define what they mean by “nap” because almost every mother—working outside the home or not—has the potential to fall comatose after a long day. They’re not exactly leisurely siestas.
This new research is interesting, but it doesn’t change anything about my choices—and I’m sure it doesn’t for you either. Ultimately, all of us mothers are doing the best we can and making the best choices for our families at this moment in time.
What’s your family situation? Do you work or stay at home? What are your reasons for your choice? Share your thoughts below.