September 25, 2011 3:49 pm at 3:49 pm #599608
It bothers me when girls/women say they could never sit at home all day with their children even if they had all the money in the world. Isn’t that the way Hashem created women? To stay home and take care of their kids? Then women taynah that they need “intellectual stimulation.” What does that mean? And why do they need it? As a woman, I would be very happy to stay at home and take care of my house and kids while my husband learns. Isn’t that the way Hashem ultimately wanted it? So why do women feel the need to leave their house? Why aren’t we content with the way Hashem created us? I believe its because they are taught they need to stimulate their mind. For 12 years they sit in school and are “intellectually stimulated”. I understand leaving for parnassah. But to say that even if you had all the money in the world you would still be unable to stay at home your kids???? I just can not understand how that is not embarrassing to say? I do understand how it came to be that way, they were taught to want to be “intellectually stimulated” in school. A sad state the future mothers of klal yisroel are in…
(the above is the rant of my friend, not the rant of the user TAB.)September 25, 2011 3:53 pm at 3:53 pm #813181
Tell your friend, that it may be a good point, but she needs to understand where these people are coming from.
These other women, actually have some intellect and intelligence, so they have a desire to stimulate it. Your friend can’t understand that desire without having intellectual capability.
(I can be nasty and mean, since your friend posts through a proxy, and can’t defend herself. Hee hee.)September 25, 2011 3:55 pm at 3:55 pm #813182
There is intellectual stimulation to be had in raising kids, plenty of it, but we are not taught this way. There is a lot of social pressure to believe it is more prestigious to do something other than raise one’s own kids.September 25, 2011 4:01 pm at 4:01 pm #813183
Different people are different. Some women feel the need for a different type of intellectual stimulation and some don’t.September 25, 2011 4:04 pm at 4:04 pm #813184
The Shulchan Aruch and Rambam both say a woman should not leave her house too many times. (Rambam says twice a month; Shulchan Aruch doesn’t specify a number.)September 25, 2011 5:32 pm at 5:32 pm #813185
It just shows how brainwashed our girls are and how far removed they are from the true torah values once taught in Frum Jewish High Schools. Many, many moons ago our High Schools taught young women how to Kasher a Chicken. That is unheard of in today’s schools, utterly ridiculous. But girls in our schools also went on to be doctors and lawyers. But the basis for the Frum Jewish home was emphasized which it no longer is. Today’s emphasis is on careers.
The other huge issue is that young woman in today’s schools are NOT taught that having babies are a gift and one that should NOT be taken lightly. There is nothing as stimulating and intellectual as documenting the nuances of a child. That is not intelligent enough for you, read books, take on-line courses while your baby sleeps. That is so much better than handing her over to a babysitter. If you need to work, then do so, but to foolishly say that you need more stimulation than a baby? Shame on you, go volunteer your time to fertility clinic where hundreds and thousands of couple come in for treatment because they would be more than happy to stay home and raise a baby and be stimulated by every coo, smile and turn. Ask any special ed teacher who does early intervention how little stimulation their students have gotten in their very vulnerable years. Why are they working on colors, shapes, and groups with these 4 and 5 year olds. Isn’t that something mothers normally do with their babies? There is a huge differene in children who’s mothers were home with them verses those children whose mothers were not and care was left to spanish housekeepers or play groups. Mothers who feel their intellectual stimulation is more important than that of their baby’s should take a good hard look in the mirror and remember what motherhood is all about.
Sorry if I offended anyone, I have a very strong opinion on this.September 25, 2011 5:52 pm at 5:52 pm #813186
Queen BeeMemberSeptember 25, 2011 6:13 pm at 6:13 pm #813188
(these are my thoughts, not responses from my friend)
aeries: re kashering chickens, we (me and my friend) learned how to kasher liver in HS so not all was lost.
on a more serious note, you are 100% correct abt not knowing what a gift a baby is. i’m single but for school i had to take anatomy and physiology. even with that basic college level class its possible to see how many things can go wrong CH”V. it takes many things to go “right” (read as help from Above) to have a healthy baby. and this semester i’m taking an OB-Peds course and Wednesday (4 days ago) i spent 5 hours on the L&D floor of a hospital. let me tell you that was an experience. i have a whole new respect for any women who goes through labor. I also have a hard time understanding why a women would leave her child to grow up with a housekeeper. IY”H this situation will turn around and FAST.
QB: *like. well saidSeptember 25, 2011 6:28 pm at 6:28 pm #813189
I really like and agree with what aries and Queen Bee said.
I think the key is for a mother to try to do what’s best for her AND for her children. And depending on each individual situation, there can be many different arrangements to reach the best solution.September 25, 2011 6:44 pm at 6:44 pm #813190
When you think about what is best, one really needs to consider the children first and then what is best for the parents. Parents make the decision to bring the children into the world and not the other way around. If you choose to do so, you are OBLIGATED to those precious beings first and foremost. If that is NOT stimulation enough then let Hashem give those precious neshomas to someone who can appreciate them better. They are not born to be taken for granted. I know, I co-parented many teens who felt utterly neglected for various selfish reasons. It was a very tough job helping them build relationships with their parents.September 25, 2011 7:02 pm at 7:02 pm #813191
Part of the problem is that we don’t realize the potential that our babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers have to learn about their world. If a woman would spend hours to make herself into a good mechanechet for a salary, why would she not understand the parallel at home with her own children? Very young children respond to their mother educating them in amazing ways. Read to your babies, soon they will begin to sit still and be engrossed in the pictures and mommy’s explanation of them. Use educational toys and show the children how to use them. Help develop your little one’s vocabulary by speaking frequently to them and showing you understand what they are trying to say to you. Teaching very young children makes them happy as they master elements of their world, and builds confidence and self-esteem. If we see our little ones as only being capable of doing what we ask them in return for a candy, its understandable that the moms are looking elsewhere.September 25, 2011 7:04 pm at 7:04 pm #813192
If you can’t buy the expensive educational toys, tap your own creativity to engage your kids, they are so amenable to games you make up!September 25, 2011 7:37 pm at 7:37 pm #813193
Here’s something that bothers me about some parents today. It could be that I’m not a parent so I just don’t see it from there point of view and if that’s what it is, then please feel free to correct me.
I dislike when parents during winter break or summer break or yuntif break complain that their children are home and go on and on counting the amount of hours it will be until they are back in school. Shouldn’t we be happy to have our children at home and enjoy them? Afterall, aren’t there many many couples who wish they would have the zechus of playing with their children on these vacations?
Like I said, it could be I’m wrong about this but I see/hear it pretty often and it just frustrates me. But again, please correct me if I’m wrong or only seeing this one-sided.September 25, 2011 8:00 pm at 8:00 pm #813194
am yisrael chaiParticipant
You are not incorrect, happiest.
I’ve even heard this said in front of their poor kids. Which kid wants to hear they are so unwanted that they hear their parent count down the hours till they’re gone?
However, I see this as VASTLY different from mothers who may wish to be in the correct mold and feel all fulfilled while at home with young kids, yet they cannot.
In days of yore when there was extended family around, the young mom had support, adult conversation, and physical help.
Loneliness and isolation can be precursors to worse things ahead. Professionals have studied depression among young moms, a condition which hinders the bonding process.
If you fit this scenario, forget the mold and do what’s best for you and your baby without any guilt of not having “true Torah values” or a victim of “brainwashing.”
If this is not you, then perhaps get together with your friends who are raising young kids themselves for adult stimulation and support.September 26, 2011 1:51 pm at 1:51 pm #813195
How many of you have a child with a disability, who comes home, wrecks your house, steals, breaks things, who literally will not give you a moment of peace? It’s so easy to say what we should be, but how many of you actually know what it is to have a child with issues? So, you might say, we’re not talking about a child like that, we’re talking about the typically developing child. So, what about the parent who desperately wants children, because she loves children and wants to raise them, and then finds that her physical energy and stamina is just insufficient to match the needs of her children? You dream of the ideal woman who has boundless means of energy, when many women that I know struggle just to keep up with their kids and wind up screaming in exasperation? How would a woman know as she’s having her kids that as they grow she’d feel like this? It is true, that once upon a time people had family to turn to to share their responsibilities. No more. Women are expected to do it all on their own. For shame if she hires help. It means she'”less than”. Stop judging people. You don’t know what goes on behind closed doors. In theory I agree, but we don’t live in a theory based world.September 26, 2011 2:19 pm at 2:19 pm #813196
taking a break, aries2756- If you are laying blame on the school, then you cant have a “tayna” on any individual girl. Also, I know for myself that I cannot stay home every day with my kids. Yes, I am a male, but its not entirely a gender issue. Some women dont either have the patience to stay home all day.
And as your friend wrote “I just cannot understand…” thats fine. You dont need to understand, you need to be dan lkaf zchus.
I agree with PBA. The more educated one is, the more the need for intellectual stimulation exists. Women today are a lot more educated than they were prior to the Bais Yakov movement. Do you want to blame Sora Schneirer?!
happiest- You must have been the perfect angel, but most of us as kids were not. On break, kids expect their parent to wine and dine them and go on elaborate and expensive vacations. The sibling bickering and kvetching is at an all time high because everyone is bored. Parents have a hard time running errands and taking care of things when the kids are home. But I do agree that parents should never verbalize the desire for school to start in front of their kids.September 26, 2011 2:53 pm at 2:53 pm #813197
I LOVE looking after my children and home.
(I was raised by a staff of 5 and KNOW you can’t pay someone to care like a parent!)
I take my “job” as a “Soul builder” very seriously ,no nanny can do what I do with the same love and devotion or be trusted to uphold my values and standards .
The ugly truth is that women have been socialized and pressured to look down on our role of full time mothers and the “Lack of intellectual stimulation” is a trusted PC excuse some use to convince themselves that being unhappy at home makes them “superior”. It is hard work but it is the best job.
Everyday I LEARN Torah shiurim while doing my chores and at the end of the day I talk to my husband and compare insights ,It gives me “chat material” beyond the kids.
Keeping Yourself “stimulated” is your task as a mother and should not come at the expense of children raised by goyot so you can feel “smarter”!
* If a woman must work or support a TALENTED Talmid Chacham husband then is a different story and they have my respect and admiration !
But those “ladies of leisure” who simple do it for THEIR intellectual stimulation are abdicating their blessing for ego and risking their long term bond with their children and missing out on the great task of building the world.September 26, 2011 3:00 pm at 3:00 pm #813198
I agree with PBA. The more educated one is, the more the need for intellectual stimulation exists. Women today are a lot more educated than they were prior to the Bais Yakov movement.
?? ??? ???? ?? ??, that when I am making a joke, they take me seriously. (no hocking on this, or I’m calling you joseph)September 26, 2011 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm #813199
Yup, I thought you were serious. Otherwise I would have said the same thing, and meant it.September 26, 2011 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm #813200
yungerman1, the women who are so much more educated than we were when we were young, should KNOW BETTER than to give their children less than what they deserve!!! They should KNOW that their obligation is to the welfare of their children before their own. If they need more stimulation, they can do something from home while raising their children or supervising the appropriate help from home.
As I said, there is a difference when someone HAS to go to work and someone who just WANTS to go to work. Society has made it “cool” for mothers to do so, but as a Frum woman, mother and grandmother who had to go to work after my last child was born. There is a huge difference in the kids that you raise on your own and it is NOT fair to them.September 26, 2011 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm #813201
Intellectual Stimulation has nothing to do with going out.
Our greatest masterminds spent much of their lives indoors
shteiging over the torah.
Maybe social stimulation is what you should call it.
Any woman can be at home and get stimulated intellectually
by thousands of seforim in english, or books, or E’books,
or online in any field. It has nothing to do with being out of the house all day having your children raised by grandmothers, strangers, or goyim, just not by their Mommy.
It is an excuse wrapped in baloney.
Chazal Tell us by Dina
???????? ?????? ????-????? ?????? ??????? ????????? ???????? ????????? ???????
That she was outgoing like her mother. That brought on the story
with She’chem who was M’fateh her.
It goes to teach us that trouble finds those women who roam the streets of the world with excuses of stimulation or enrichment etc.. I’m not knocking anything just stating the Torahs view
on where a Jewish Womens ideal place should be.
If they absolutely Must go out into the world, they should be aware of how Araiy it should be and rush back as soon as their task is over.
Mingling, exploring, roaming, flirting, these actions are dangerous for it is predetermined that it will end up causing pain and shame.
A fishes place is in the ocean.
There are fish that exit the ocean. Usually though, they remain anchored with most of its body in the water.
Even when it leaps out, it is only for a brief few seconds.
For it knows its place is in the ocean and if it does not return immediately, the results are fatal.September 27, 2011 2:05 am at 2:05 am #813202
These are the replies from my friends. NOT THE OPINION OF TAB
popa_bar_abba ~ thanx!! On a more serious note, I am actually going to school as I’m not married and don’t see a point in not having the skills in case I c”v don’t get married soon or don’t have children right away. I don’t believe in being lazy and stupid!
Ezrat Hashem, Aries, devrachel, bein_hasdorim ~ *like!!! Do any of you, by any chance, have a son in shidduchim? 🙂
Sam~ Yes, everyone is different but why has the ideal changed? Shouldn’t women aspire to stay home? Isn’t that the Torah way?
Peacemaker ~ Exactly!
Queen Bee~ Can the Torah make rules? I’m talking about what the Torah wants from us (ie, what we should aspire to)
lesschumras~ Very true. Question is, which way does the Torah want? (parnasah is a different discussion, but what is the ideal?)
Taking A Break~ Thanks for listening to me rant and rave! You’re the best!
Middle Path~ But what should the ideal be. What is the Torah way?
Happiest~ I agree. Some mothers enjoy the time. You have the chance to teach kids sooo much when they are around you. It can be trying. But who cares if your house is messier? Relax and enjoy before they’re in yeshiva/high school and running to do their own things…
am yisrael chai~ Agree!!! Round robins are fun for children and parents. I know 2 ladies that cooked for yontif together. Why not make it fun for their little children, who had each other to play with, and the moms to schmooze?
mommamia~ And you’re telling me it takes less energy to run a house and work????
yungerman~ “some women don’t have the patience to stay at home” if they have a shortcoming aren’t they embarrassed? I wouldn’t want the world to know that I can’t live up to what the Torah wants from me! And yes, I think the schools took it a bit far. As for your answer to happiest, most children are very happy just to have their mothers attention. Yes, children will fight. Its trying. But relax. Bake cookies. Make homemade pizza dough and have each child make their own pizza. Shopping/errands can be a little harder. But with a little planning and forethought vacation can be one of the most special times for a child.
devrachel~ As your kids get older they will really appreciate what an amazing and special mother they have. I’ve never seen it wasted. And as a side point, your listening to shiurim while your kids are around, I believe, is infusing them with such a kavod and ahava for Torah, that I don’t think they can possibly get from anywhere else.
I think a lot of it comes down to patience. Now-a-days people have less patience than in early times. But isn’t that embarrassing? Instead of saying “Well, its not for everyone,” why don’t people say “Its something I need to work on. Unfortunately I’m not able to stay home with my kids”???? Just like I wouldn’t say to a co-worker “I have an anger problem,” I wouldn’t say to co-worker “I can’t stay home with my kids. I need intellectual stimulation” Whats the difference?
To quote aries “Sorry if I offended anyone, I have a very strong opinion on this.”September 27, 2011 3:24 am at 3:24 am #813203
Sorry, I do not have anyone in shidduchim now, but hatzlocha…. One more thought—-children are bashert just as our spouse. Raising children challenges parents to mature, gain wisdom, become more resourceful and practice self-restraint. Most of all raising children is a chesed. The children we are blessed with are the right match to help each of us improve ourselves.September 27, 2011 3:59 am at 3:59 am #813204
Who said women can’t raise a family and have a career? Since when do people do one thing, exclusively, with their life? Don’t men work and learn and father a famliy?September 27, 2011 5:15 am at 5:15 am #813205
TC, it doesn’t take much to “father” a family. The reason men can go out to work and do it well is because they don’t have to worry about the children knowing that their “mommies” are taking care of them.
As for education and working until you are married and until you have children or when your kids are back in school, that is NOT what we are talking about. Go for it. This discussion is about those women who say it is not “intellectually stimulating” to stay home and raise a family. To me that is garbage.September 27, 2011 1:01 pm at 1:01 pm #813206
Taking a break.
Yes, that is what I am saying. It takes much more physical energy to raise kids than work and keep a home. I’ve done all three and I can attest to that. Certainly it depends upon the child/children. I’ve seen parents who can take their kids to the pizza store and enjoy their meal together, and other mothers who are jumping up every second trying to prevent a disaster, who are ar their wits end screaming, threatening consequences…
It can feel like world war III on a constant basis. Thank G-d, none or most of you have never felt this to this degree. I have and have seen countless women struggle with this. Sharing the responsibility so that a person doesn’t feel like their going to “keel over” does not make them “less than”. It means they are aware of their limitations and work with them to the best of their ability. This is different than seeking intellectual stimulation. For those women, I’d say, there’s so much to know about how to raise kids well. You can never read or learn enough, and if you want to learn more, do it when your parenting duties are over for the day, not when your kids are begging for your attention. I think it comes down to why people are looking for a break: because they can’t give enough to the kids so they need supports, or because they yearn for more for themselves. Those are two very different things.September 27, 2011 1:44 pm at 1:44 pm #813207
Uh, what about when finances require a mother to work?September 27, 2011 2:06 pm at 2:06 pm #813208
enlightenedjew, we are not talking about not having a choice. We are talking about when a woman says staying home raising her kids is NOT intellectually stimulating.September 27, 2011 2:38 pm at 2:38 pm #813209
Mommamia: maybe the outcome has to do with the preparation. If a mother approaches child-rearing thinking negatively and assuming she is not valued among her peers for being a full time mother, she is less likely to want to cope well, and will not put out her very best. On the other hand, are the high schools and post-high schools preparing girls well for motherhood? Or is the focus on something else?September 27, 2011 2:56 pm at 2:56 pm #813210
My question is if Hashem only wanted women to stay home, then why would he give them the gift of a “brain” that needs to be stimulated and challenged?
If staying home is what you want, great. But if you need to pursue more, then there is no shame in that either….September 27, 2011 3:09 pm at 3:09 pm #813211
EzratHashem, unfortunately HS’s are not focussed any longer on teaching their students that their first obligation is to be good mothers and good wives and that raising their children is the most important and best job in the world. That is no longer taught. Girls are motivated and pushed to have careers so that they could support their husbands. They are “NOT” motivated to get as much education as possible because as mikehall said Hashem gave them a brain, or because no one knows when they will get married or have children so they should continue their education and be whatever they want to be and then allow their husbands to learn as long as they can.
Did this contribute to the shidduch crisis? Yes it could have because when you have very educated and now sophisticated young women working in the real world, they no longer have anything in common or anything to talk about with their yeshivish male counterparts.September 27, 2011 3:11 pm at 3:11 pm #813212
Mike hall- I’ve got news for you.
Being a wife, mother, running a healthy home, requires quite a nice amount of brains….September 27, 2011 3:17 pm at 3:17 pm #813213
Mikehall: to develop the brain in the pursuit of raising secure, happy and intellectually curious yiddishe neshamas.September 27, 2011 3:21 pm at 3:21 pm #813214
mikehall: and for raising children who undersand the meaning of mesiras nefesh through role modeling: the children see in the mother someone who gives of herself to others who need her, not only looks after her own satisfaction.September 27, 2011 3:22 pm at 3:22 pm #813215
On the other hand, are the high schools and post-high schools preparing girls well for motherhood? Or is the focus on something else?
Of course not. Even you agree there needs to be SOMEONE working to put food on the table.September 27, 2011 3:37 pm at 3:37 pm #813216
“My question is if Hashem only wanted women to stay home, then why would he give them the gift of a “brain” that needs to be stimulated and challenged?
If staying home is what you want, great. But if you need to pursue more, then there is no shame in that either….”
Are you saying that being a stay-at-home mom doesn’t require any brains?
Anyone who feels that being a full-time mother does not give them enough emotional, spiritual and intellectual satisfaction and is therefore looking for “more” needs to reexamine the whole motherhood thing. (That’s not to say that a woman might not want to pursue a profession for financial reasons, or because she enjoys that particular field. But it should never be because she’s looking for “more” outside of mommyhood.)September 27, 2011 3:44 pm at 3:44 pm #813217
I’m really enjoying your input on this thread! I too, have a very strong opinion on this; thank you for setting the record straight about the privilege, patience, and priority shift that motherhood is all about.September 27, 2011 3:50 pm at 3:50 pm #813218
The thread is about women who feel they need “intellectual stimulation” beyond staying home and raising kids.
The argument the original poster brings forth is that staying home is what Hashem wants and that is all they need…here is the quote;
“Isn’t that the way Hashem ultimately wanted it? So why do women feel the need to leave their house?”
My counter argument is simple. If this is what Hashem wants, why would some women not feel fulfilled by simply stating home? Why crave additional intellectual stimulation…Perhaps Hashem gave them this “itch” because in those cases he wants those women to do more???
Why can’t that argument work as well…It is very tricky when one states it’s this way because this is what Hashem desires….September 27, 2011 3:59 pm at 3:59 pm #813219
mikehall — I am a woman with “a brain”, B”H. Without putting up my resume right now I will say that both in high school and college I was considered very smart, and I have a B.A. and M.S. and worked in the secular world for 10 years, and am now beginning my 2nd year as a “stay at home mom”. I therefore think I am somewhat qualified to state emphatically that there is plenty of opportunity as a mother and wife to stimulate and challenge your brain!! As many people have already mentioned, the job itself involves a lot of brain power, and a women always have the option to listen to tapes, read books, etc.
That is not to say there are no reasons that a woman may feel unfulfilled at home. IMO, one of the posters earlier who mentioned “social stimulation” is on target. It can be very lonely and isolating to be spending your entire day without adult conversation, which may be the “stimulation” these women are craving.
aries — I personally strongly agree that ideally a woman should be focusing her talents and energy on her most important role as a mother. However as with all generalizations, there certainly are exceptions, and every one needs to know themselves. I personally love being home with my kids finally, and find myself laughing out loud when former co-workers wonder if I’m “going out of my mind” home all day (I worked until now as a result of financial necessity, not because I wanted to). I don’t believe, though, that a woman who finds it overwhelming to be home all day with her kids, and chooses to work/ volunteer/ learn outside of her house is not worthy of having and raising kids, as you imply. Obviously there are extremes in everything, and someone who is pursuing selfish desires at the expense of their kids needs a serious change in priorities. But sometimes a woman may know her weaknesses and realize that the time spent out of the house is necessary for her own well being. It’s not ideal, but these women are doing the best they can and many are wonderful mothers and wives despite these needs. I found your posts to be very judgmental.September 27, 2011 4:10 pm at 4:10 pm #813220
Olam hafuch raissi kan. I took PBA seriously, and still think Aries is pulling our leg.September 27, 2011 4:11 pm at 4:11 pm #813221
While there is plenty of opportunity to stimulate your brain staying home, this does not address those women, who still feel the need/desire to do more.
I do agree with pursuing more for selfish reason like working so you can simply go on fancy trips is wrong…
but I don’t have an issue with someone who wants to further their career or education because they desire that type of stimulationSeptember 27, 2011 4:11 pm at 4:11 pm #813222
“My counter argument is simple. If this is what Hashem wants, why would some women not feel fulfilled by simply stating home? Why crave additional intellectual stimulation…Perhaps Hashem gave them this “itch” because in those cases he wants those women to do more???”
These women obviously have lots to learn about motherhood. How sad. To quote TAB’s friend:
Instead of saying “Well, its not for everyone,” why don’t people say “Its something I need to work on. Unfortunately I’m not able to stay home with my kids”????
The problem is with them. Not with the staying at home.September 27, 2011 4:21 pm at 4:21 pm #813223
tickle toe eitusMember
m in Israel: Was it worth spending all those years pursuing a BA and MS for just 10 entry-level years of post-school work? You almost spent as much time schooling as working using what you were schooled on!September 27, 2011 6:24 pm at 6:24 pm #813224
tickle toe eitus — Actually it was very worth it, although it was difficult. I did my B.A. relatively quickly by taking many credits per semester (I was able to get certain maximum case loads waived), as that was before I had any kids. My MS took an additional two years. When I completed that I was able to take a job with much better working conditions and about a $20,000 higher salary then the jobs I had previously available. In addition the salary went up dramatically over the next years, so that my last year working I was making close to $70,000 plus benefits in a job that allowed me to be home before my kids got home from school!
Without my degrees I would have been forced to work much longer hours, with less flexibility to be there for my kids. Additionally although now I B”H have the financial ability to stay home, I don’t know think that will be the case long term. The investment in my education will allow me to go back to work at a higher salary in the future if necessary, so it was not for “just” those 10 years.
Although it was a lot of effort at the time, the approximately 5 years of hard work at an earlier stage in my life, when I had less family responsibilities (I finished my masters when I was expecting my 2nd child) meant that when B”H I had children who were growing older and needed me I was much more available to them while still allowing my husband to learn in Kollel and then work in Chinuch.September 27, 2011 6:37 pm at 6:37 pm #813225
A point to consider. Many women start “school” and “work” before they have children and almost always before they are even engaged, let alone married.
Are you proposing that all those years of schooling go for naught? Are you suggesting that all jewish females enroll in a full time seminary until the day they have their first child?
It is nice quote pie in the sky sentiment. It is quite another to offer something practical.
Please offer something concrete.September 28, 2011 4:14 am at 4:14 am #813226
m in Israel, I particularly find anyone who says that staying home with your kids is not “intellectually stimulating” very judgmental and snobby. I can understand when someone says they have no patience to be home with their kids or find it too difficult and their kids are better off if they go to work at least part time so they have more patience for them. I can get that because that thought process focuses on the kids’ best interest and not on the mom’s best interest. The point being that if you CHOOSE to have children then you are obligated to put them first. If you don’t believe that you are obligated to put your kids first then there is no way you are a good mother. And then the question becomes why have the kids if you don’t put them first, if your needs come first and you would rather work than take care of them and raise them? That is very selfish.
As far as putting effort into education and not using that practically later on, all I have to say is education is education and the more you learn the better off you are. You have no idea when you might have to use it or fall back on it. So it is never for naught.September 28, 2011 7:35 am at 7:35 am #813227
aries — From your last post it seems that we don’t disagree. If your problem is simply with the explanation that someone is working for “intellectual stimulation” then I agree with you (as I said strongly in my previous post). My problem was that you seemed to say that any woman who works when it is not out of financial necessity is a bad mother. I was simply trying to make the point that a woman who knows herself and is making choices for her own emotional health may still be a good mother, assuming these choices are within reason. I love being home full time with my kids — but I can understand how some women may find it hard.
I have a friend who worked out of financial necessity in the early years of her marriage. At some point her husband got a better paying job that allowed her to quit her job and stay home with her kids. She stayed home for a year and went out of her mind — her personality was such that she craved the social interaction and structure that going to work each day gave her. The next year she returned to work part time, and although I could not relate to her feelings, I still think she’s a great mother who loves her kids.
Obviously your kids should come first, and the ideal is for a woman to be there for her kids all the time — but part of caring for your kids is caring for yourself. There is a famous story of a woman who was at her wits end after a rough day and just needed some “me” time, so she locked herself in the bathroom and settled down for a relaxing bath. The kids began knocking on the door and asking her what she was doing. She responded “I’m making a mother for you.” It takes a lot of self introspection and honesty to differentiate between your selfish desires and your legitimate emotional needs, but it it important.
apushatayid — I don’t understand your point. Are your trying to say that because a woman needs something to do in the years before she has a child, and getting a degree/ starting a career is a good use of that time, therefore for the next 20 years she shouldn’t be home with her kids??? She’s working because otherwise she wasted her schooling? What if she got a job offer that did not require her degree, that was a much better job, would she turn it down because how can she let her schooling go for naught?September 28, 2011 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm #813228
Oh boy, I took a break from YWN and this is what I come back to?September 28, 2011 3:17 pm at 3:17 pm #813229
When you have to work your kids around your job rather than your job around your kids, then you are stepping into that territory of NOT being a good mother. When you bring your job home and have no patience or time for your kids even when you are at home, then you are not a good mother. When you have no time for your kids or are too tired to listen to them or play with them because you are too tired from your job then you are NOT a good mother. Because Motherhood still has to come before your career. If the career is that important to you, then you have to make that decision before you make the decision to become a mother. Not everyone can have everything and it is no mitzvah to bring children into this world that will be ignored or raised by others. Those children grow up feeling unloved and unwanted and they carry the burden of they mother’s choices.
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