Editor's note: This article was originally published on Lindsey Bell's blog. It has been republished here with permission.
We moms are way too hard on each other
Take stay-at-home moms and working moms, for example.
Instead of realizing we are all on the same team, we look at each other as opponents.
It's almost like we assume another woman's choice somehow threatens ours. Like if I support your decision to work, I'm also admitting I made a poor choice to stay at home with my kids.
But it's not an either/or issue. Whether you work outside of the home or stay at home with your children has very little to do with whether or not you are a good mother.
I'm a stay-at-home mom, but that doesn't make me any better (or worse) of a mother than you.
Here's the truth:
If you work because you need the money, you are a good mother. On the other hand, if you stay at home because you don't want to spend money on childcare, you are also a good mother.
If you work because you need the socialization outside of the home, you are a good mother. If you stay at home because it's a sacrifice you're willing to make, you are also a good mother.
If you work because you love your job or if you stay at home and plan to return to work later, both of you are good mothers.
If you work because your job gives you a creative outlet, you are a good mother. If you stay at home and find other ways to use your creativity, you also are a good mother.
A woman is a good mother, not because she works outside the home or doesn't work outside the home. She is a good mother because she loves her children. Period.
I believe there are some women who are better moms specifically because they work. Not in spite of, but because.
They would be miserable at home all day, and a miserable mother is not as good as a happy one.
The question we need to ask ourselves as we decide whether or not to work outside the home is not "Will I be a good mother if I do this?" Instead, we need to ask ourselves, "Which decision will help me love my kids more?"
If staying at home will help you love them more, then that is the best decision for your family. If working outside the home will do it, then that's what you should do.
Moms, it's time we stop being so hard on each other and let each family make its own decision. It's time we stay-at-home moms start supporting our sisters who work and vice versa.
So from one stay-at-home mother to all of you working moms out there, I support you and your decision to work. I believe you are a good mother.