A New Series Reaching Beyond Stereotypes
I Hope the SAHMs Don’t Make Me Cry Next!
Catty, overdramatic, mean! Are they always like this?
Last week we explored the question of whether or not stay-at-home and working moms can be friends. This week we hear from one working mom who doesn’t seem to think so!
Every morning I get dressed for work while feeling sorry for myself for having to wake up at the crack of dawn. I usually walk past Babboo’s bedroom on my way out of the house to make sure he’s still sleeping. My gut starts to hurt at this point it the day. This is the time of day when I’m reminded that I won’t see my kid for another nine hours. I’m always tempted to wake him up, just so I can get a hug or a “bye Mommy” from him. But it’s too early for him to wake up. I know he needs to stay asleep.
Every other morning I walk to the bus stop and dream about what it would be like if we could afford for me to stay home. I think about all my lady friends from my church congregation and about the fun things they have planned that I’ll be missing while slaving away at the office. I missed their trip to the pumpkin patch last week. I’ve never been able to go to their Thursday morning playgroups. I can’t join their 9 a.m. book club. I’ve yet to attend one of their Ladies Luncheons. I am left out of their little club 100 percent of the time. All because I work and they don’t.
Most of them don’t know my kid’s name and they really have no idea who I am.
And most mornings, I feel sorry for myself about this. I feel left out. I feel like the world is working against me, all because I have a career and they don’t. I know it’s wrong, but I’m typically jealous of them. I know The King and I don’t have a lot of money and that’s why I work. I know it’s the best thing for our family right now. And yet, why do these SAHMs have nicer clothes than I do? Why do they all drive better cars? How is it that their kids dress so nice? And dude, really, how do they afford those new DVD players in their van? How can they afford to go to the museums and the zoo every week? Why do they get to put their kids down for their naps everyday and potty train their own toddlers?
And why am I so darn jealous?
Until last night.
Today is the first day – in a very long time – that I was happy about being a full-time working mom.
I hung out with some of the SAHMs from church last night. It was their monthly Girl’s Night Out. I hadn’t even planned on going. I only get a few hours a night with Babboo and The King so to give that up is a hard choice to make. But this night out was scheduled late in the evening, so I would still have a little bit of time with Babboo. And so I decided to join the ladies.
And dude, was it a mistake.
I had no idea that these SAHMs could be so catty. And overly dramatic. And just plain mean to each other. In the first thirty seconds of the evening, unnecessary drama was introduced to the party. I’m talking about scathing e-mails, mean words about people’s kids, family secrets (of women not in attendance) shared and tears. Actual tears.
These women are all adults. They are married and have kids and families and they were acting like we were all back in high school or junior high. Apparently this type of drama is uber common in their SAHM group.
And I felt like an outsider. But this time I was OK with being the outsider.
I didn’t want any part of this drama. I didn’t want to know why they all hate Rebecca’s son. I didn’t want to know why Ginny’s family all hate each other. I didn’t want to read the e-mail Samantha sent Amy before the party. I felt like all eyes were on me and that I needed to choose sides and make alliances right that second. But I don’t want to make any alliances. I don’t want to be on one side and not the other.
I just wanted to go home.
But I couldn’t. I was stuck there for the rest of the evening until my ride was ready to go home.
I finally got out of there and returned home. I started to recount my unbelievable evening to The King. I told him I didn’t know what to do or how I was going to keep peace with all of these ladies. I mean, I have to serve with them at church. And I like them. I do. I just don’t want to be around this negativity.
So today, I’m thankful to be sitting in my quiet cubicle busily working on my tasks while listening to my iPod. There are no sides to choose and no one is talking bad about my kid, my husband or me. Nobody is judging my outfit or my kid’s clothes. And I don’t have to prove that my husband is the most romantic husband in the world.
And so what if I can’t go with them to see High School Musical 3 today because I’m at work. And who cares that I’m missing the luncheon.
This is where I’d rather be today.
So tell me, you SAHMs out there, is it like this for you? And if so, then I’m sorry.
Isabel is a pseudonym for this Seattle-based blogger. She’s been working since the day she realized soda and lip gloss weren’t free. Isabel became a mom in 2006 and continues to work full time, outside the home, since diapers and mortgages aren’t free either. You can read far too much about her personal life at holaisabel.com.