When I first started to work at home, I was the mom of two kids. I was working for a little “extra” cash. Disneyland pass money. Purses and new shoes. My primary business was marketing the clothing line I’d launched. I was shipping to some 250 or so stores worldwide, not making a huge profit. But it was cool. I started blogging to boost my marketing efforts. Anything not to have to go back to work in an office for a marketing firm. Or as some obnoxious people liked to say, “get a REAL job.”
Two more kids later, some tough economic realities intervened. My husband was spottily employed and we were paying for private school. I took on more. My efforts were no longer paying for Disney passes and designer purses. I was paying for food, and gas and tuition.
Fortunately for my family, I’m pretty good at what I do and I had an established freelance career in marketing and advertising to return to. I was able to take on contract marketing and writing assignments, and earn a respectable salary, without giving up flexibility. But like Rumplestiltskin says on Once Upon a Time , “All magic comes at a cost…”
Some of my (mostly ex) friends still don’t grasp the fact that I work full time from home. They think I’m selfish and aloof. That’s why I’m unavailable a lot of the time. Yes it stings, yes it’s tough, but I literally don’t have time to meet, have coffee and explain it to them. Some weeks, all I have time for is a brief Facebook chat.
There are a lot of challenges and biases unique to work at home parents, but the following inaccurate assumptions seem to affect moms in particular. I’m not saying men don’t deal with the same, but society is what it is. Our culture comes with a set of infuriatingly outdated ideas and expectations that get applied liberally by the most surprising people.
It’s been over ten years since I started working from home, yet I still face the following mis-perceptions, on a near daily basis.
Hear more about the Mommy Wars: The Peace Talks on Raising America:
We’re continuing this conversation all this week, because we want that lasting peace, dammit. Read more posts on this subject in this section all week (you can start with Catherine’s kick-off post.) And tune in to HLN’s Raising America (12:30 EST) to watch The Mommy Wars: the Peace Talks, a 5 day collaboration with HLN’s Raising America aimed at wrestling this so-called ‘war’ into peaceful submission.
For more on ‘leaning in’, and for buckets of inspiration toward being intentional and empowered in our choices (motherhood-related or otherwise) and our lives (including inspiring stories from many Babble bloggers that you know and love), visit the Lean In community. And maybe join the Lean In community. It’s a movement for all of us.
More Casa de Chaos adventures:
- On my personal blog MOMFLUENTIAL
- MOMFLUENTIAL ON TWITTER
- MOMFLUENTIAL ON FACEBOOK
- On INSTAGRAM via Followgram.
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