Can Working Women Be Good Mothers?
Put your doubt to rest: working mothers can absolutely be good parents 1. In fact, working moms are often concerned parents who worry about the effect their choice to continue their career is having on their children 1. Working mothers face a lot of criticism from those who think they should be at home with their little ones, especially if they cannot afford the highest-quality child care arrangements. In most cases, a working mother provides a positive role model for her children.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics 2012 Current Population Survey, over 70 percent of the mothers in the United States are gainfully employed. The American Academy of Pediatrics states that there is no evidence showing that children are damaged by placing them in a day care setting. In fact, many kindergarten teachers say that the children who have attended day care (or preschool) have a better understanding of school structure and are often more ready to learn than children who have spent their previous years at home, according to nonprofit education website GreatSchools.org.
Very few mothers work to "find themselves" or because they are bored at home. Most work because their paycheck makes a very real difference in the household budget and general quality of life for their children and family. Working outside the home also provides a certain satisfaction to some women. Tending to the house, caring for small children and running errands are fulfilling activities for some but not others. Feedback from coworkers, customers and a solid paycheck can give a working mother a sense of accomplishment. A happy, confident mother sets a better example for her children than one who is home all the time but might be unhappy with her choices.
Balancing the Time
Working parents -- not just working moms -- can choose to make it a priority to spend time with their children 1. Just because a parent is in the same house does not necessarily mean that she is paying close attention to her children. Out of necessity, working parents often "make time" to spend with their child, giving the youngster their exclusive attention 1. This type of carved-out one-on-one time, which is not shared with housework or other adults, can mean a lot to a child's self-esteem and personal development.
More Women Working Means Less Pressure
Although there is almost always someone who objects to your parenting style, working women come under fire less often as more women join the workforce. When most of your neighbors and friends are also working parents, they become less critical of your choice 1. Social change and better jobs for women are also making it possible for men to stay at home with their children if they wish to do so -- or if economic circumstances make it the best choice for their families. In families where both parents work, the completion of housework is frequently more evenly divided between both adults, according to findings by PEW Research Center.
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