STFU Parents: Moms Never Get A Break (On Facebook)

A big talking point in the media over the last couple years is the value of being a mom. Some websites proposed what a mother’s salary would look like if women earned money for being full-time moms. (Answer: $112,962. But everyone knows that number is off by at least $900,000!) Other outlets focused more on the conceptual worth of mothers, asserting that moms simply don’t get the credit they deserve.

On sites like Facebook, women preached about the highs and lows of motherhood, which inspired columns like “Can Stay-At-Home Moms Say That They Have Jobs?“ and “Mother Who Expect Special Treatment — For Being Mothers.“ And while some of the “buzz” surrounding this subject has died down, I still regularly receive submissions that capture the same idea — that mothers are valued, but they’re not like, valued. People have no idea what it takes to be a mother, or so some parents would have you believe, and get this: Moms never, ever get a break.

Nope, moms can’t clock out when their shift is over. They can’t drive home in gridlock in bliss like everyone else. They don’t get to collect a paycheck for all their hard-earned dollars after adding to the general population, and they don’t get big, fat bonuses at the end of the year like everyone who has a full-time job. (Note: The last “big bonus” I received at a corporate job was a $15 iTunes gift certificate.) It’s like the whole world has conspired to ignore the fact that mothers never even get a minute to themselves!

Did you know that toddlers insist on talking to their moms while they use the bathroom? It’s true. And it’s like no one even bothers acknowledging that. Based on the way some mothers remark on this conundrum, you’d think that moms in the ’50s received giant annual checks like the ones Publisher’s Clearinghouse doles out, just for being awesome at mothering.

Of course, that isn’t the case; it’s just that being a mother now requires additional skills that used to not be part of the job requirement. Nowadays, kids have to be 100% germ-free instead of just 12%, and an average of 74% of children should be able to speak at least three languages by age four. (Interestingly, the art of disciplining children seems to have regressed by several dozen degrees.) All of this effort (or, lack thereof), contributes to the solitary confinement that is modern motherhood as we know it. WILL mothers ever catch a break? CAN society finally recognize the difficulties that come with never taking a day off? And when will someone finally figure out a way for moms to cash in on this whole “motherhood” thing? Those answers remain to be seen. In the meantime, here are five examples of moms who can’t stop dwelling on the fact that parenting is a 24/7 gig:

1. Moms Never Get A Break

STFU Parents

“Hello, 1-800-MOM REST? I need someone to tell me when I’ll be able to take a break. Oh, wait, moms don’t get a break? GEE THANKS NEVER MIND.”

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  • Emily

    Have to say, I love your blog and think people totally overshare and I generally don’t think that it matters one whit that you are not, in fact, a mom. BUT- this is one situation where I have to disagree with some of what you are getting at. It’s one thing to say that moms (or “mom’s” as some like to say) don’t get a break, and another to actually not get a break for multiple years on end. Just one of those gigs that you can’t totally, truly, deeply comprehend until you have done it. Maybe you put a load of laundry in the washer today. Did anyone “help” you with it? Was your detergent level at more than twice its recommended limit, or under half? Did it take nearly a half an hour to get that load of laundry going? That is no break. How long does it take you to read the comics? Two hours? Hard to tell because it has been broken up into so many small increments of time? That is no break. No joke, when I went to the hospital to have my second, I read the paper while in the prep room because I had not read the entire thing in twenty months.

    So, I do not mean to bash you in any way… I just mean to say that there is a ibig, gaping difference between sympathy and empathy.

    • Mary Sue

      It’s completely possible for many – even most – moms to get a break from their children. It’s a priority balancing act. Being a parent is very exhausting and can be difficult and monotonous. No doubt. It’s hard to get a break from a newborn if you are breastfeeding, sure. But after you’re done? Make yourself a priority every now and then. Go out to dinner with a friend when your partner gets home. Hire a babysitter and go sit in a coffee shop and read a book for an hour… It’s good for everyone involved.

    • Kay Krueger

      Yeah, I keep thinking, “whoa. Do none of these moms have husbands? Or partners?” Can they never, EVER sit down and read a book for 15 minutes? I’ve got 2 kids, 14 months apart- at one point I was dual breastfeeding. But when my husband got home from work I took 30 minutes to myself, whether it was to take a bath or whatever I needed to calm down. I also did the grocery shopping alone on Sundays- an hour of alone time is bliss! Breastfeeding? Pump a bottle or two. I don’t know- maybe i just had a more supportive husband who recognized that I needed a break. Plus I was working part time, to boot. It just feels like the “Mommy Martyr” syndrome to me, sometimes.

    • TS00

      That is exactly how I feel, mommy martyrs. They want to be martyrs.

    • Kay Krueger

      I’ve never felt like my children were a burden. Well, not until they turned into teenagers. But that’s a whole ‘nother ball of wax, y’dig?
      I mean, really. If these women were my friends I would probably have a hard time not pointing out that you CHOSE to have children. No one goes into it thinking that it’s going to be some kind of dreamy job, unless you are ridiculously rich and can turn over the day to day to a nanny.

    • Caroline

      Have you ever been on call on a 48 hour shift in that same hospital? No? What about doing that while pregnant or after having a little kid at home and having to take more shifts because you had to take time off to have said kid? Being a parent is not a job. A job is something you do for money – for other people with no relation to you-it makes you money that you spend on the things in life that are more important (like those kids). Parenting is a lifestyle and a gift not everyone gets. Everyone’s life is hard in its own way and no one is saying that being a SAHM is super easy – we are saying that it is not THE HARDEST EVER. Cause it isn’t. Try being a single working mother (which I am not and know it is harder than what I went through even as a resident). We are only asking that people try walking a few miles in someone elses shoes before deciding they win the martyr of the year award. Don’t forget that life isn’t “fair” or “easy” for anyone at different times. I appreciate that you are putting your all into your kids but be careful what you say. There are many people who wish they could read this at all. Be real, we are damn lucky right now. Not being able to read comics or do laundry correctly doesn’t sound like the hard life of someone who might not make it to tomorrow.

    • Skadi Humphrey

      There is always someone worse off. I remind myself of that when juggling 12 hours a day, 7 days a week for work, whilst raising my son and doing full time uni from home.

      But not everyone has the option of getting time away from their kids before kindy and school start. And sometimes, mums really really need a sanity break.

      I think most of this comes out in those times where they aren’t getting a breather. I managed to get away from my son for a whole 20 minutes today [first time alone in a week] and it was bliss.

      That being said, I have only a little sympathy for those who act like they are Mother Theresa for raising their kids. It is a responsibility, a big one. But hardly something that has never been done before, or something completely ground breaking.

      A pat on the back is one thing, asking for a pedestal is another.

    • Emily

      I did not use the word “job” even once. Nor did I say that it is “the hardest thing ever.” I was just saying that there is a big difference between saying “of course moms do not get a break!” And truly comprehending what is like to not get any break. I also did not say that other people do not have it harder… Of course they do. Nor did I say that it wasn’t fair. Please read thoroughly before commenting.

    • IcecreamSammich

      Where did people say that mother’s get breaks by doing laundry or reading comics? Where did anyone say that being a mom is easy or that you don’t deserve a break? (I know you didn’t say this outright but I used a little trick called inference.) Maybe she’s not the only one who needs to “ready thoroughly before commenting.”

    • ceebs

      I’m not saying it isn’t difficult. A lot of the mothers I work with as a social worker are very isolated, single mothers, with almost no support. But a lot of the women who register these complaints are married. They have family members who would be happy to sit with the kid for a few hours, or can afford to pay someone $30 so they can get away for a couple of hours, and not go almost two years without reading something.

      Also…one of them essentially compared herself to active duty soldiers. And got support! I think people need a little perspective. These are problems that many people would be happy to have. My wife and I had a hell of a time getting our kid, and are now desperately hoping it might be permanent. I can’t imagine talking about parenting like this. It is not, actually, the hardest thing in the world.

    • whiteroses

      I agree with this. I’m lucky enough to be very close to my parents, who adore my son. Every month, I get together with friends and we do some crafting. My mother will often watch my son for that whole day so I can get some shopping or whatever else done. And sometimes I will do what I used to do before my son was born- waste a few hours in Barnes and Noble. I look forward to those days each month. At the same time, I love my son and there’s nobody on earth I’d rather spend time with. Parenting is extremely rewarding. But I have no shame in admitting that I’m glad I can be both Mom and everything else that makes me… well, me.

    • Barkybark

      I helped my mom take care of my grandmother, who lived at home with us, and it was no picnic. Sure, she wasn’t my child–but in many ways she was a child, and she didn’t wear a diaper, which meant I had to clean her up sometimes after she went to the bathroom. But I loved her, and I don’t regret doing it.

    • Lawcat

      Meh, “not having a break” is usually a choice. Kids can function without being tethered to mom or dad 24/7. I was usually able to read books, papers, go shopping, eat lunch, clean, handle laundry, etc. in my stint as a SAHM.

    • Sara

      I wasn’t tethered to my mom 24/7, and it was actually good for me. My mom had the audacity to believe that just because she had kids, it didn’t mean she had to give up her own identity, career, hobbies, etc. She actually thought that she still had the right to see friends, go work out, go on dates with my dad and work outside the home–I know, what a horrible, selfish woman, right?

      Except that the side effect of knowing that Mommy wasn’t always there to fix my problems meant that my sisters and I had to learn to be relatively self-reliant and independent. Yes, she was there for the really important things, but we learned from a very young age that if we forgot our homework or lunch at home, she might not be there and able to bring it to school, meaning that we’d have to either take the 0 on the assignment or eat the nasty “emergency lunches” that the school provided. Either way, we learned to be responsible and take care of a lot of our own day-to-day needs. This served me well later on.

    • Tammy Gaudreault

      you lost me at ” deeply comprehend until you have done it”. How can you not find time? Do your kids never sleep, play by themselves? They don’t need you 24/7.. it’s very easy to make time, it all comes down to prioritize your empty time slots.

    • Tinyfaeri

      I’m a mom of an infant, and I work full time from home. So does my better half. We give each other breaks. That’s kind of how it works. If you don’t have a partner or family or friends who can watch your child(ren) from time to time, fine – save up if need be, get a babysitter and leave the house for a bit. To say that to be a mother means never getting a break (or day off, or vacation, etc) again is more than a bit dramatic – I’ve found that mostly it just means you aren’t trying to get a break, or asking for help to get one. It may seem like we never get any time to ourselves some days, but that doesn’t make it less dramatic, or less whiny when posted about on Facebook.

    • Mads

      The other option I’m kind of amazed these women don’t try – have one of your SAHM mom friends watch the kids for an hour or two, and return the favor for them. The kids get a chance to play, and both moms get the option for free time now or in the future. Instead of wanting pats on the back over facebook, make friends with people who will give you actual support. Hell, even your childfree friends will probably be up for an hour of babysitting every now and then if you don’t alienate them by being a nut.

    • Tinyfaeri

      That’s a good idea :). Just about everyone should have at least one friend that is capable of watching a child or a few children for an hour.

    • Justme

      I’m very confused by your post because I’m not quite sure how doing laundry fits into this equation. Especially the detergent level?

    • Courtney Lynn

      Me too. I don’t get the degree of difficulty in it. I do laundry almost every day.

    • Courtney Lynn

      I’m a mom and I think you’re exaggerating. How long does it take to put in a load of laundry? Under a minute. Really. I don’t need help with it, that’s for sure. Pretty easy task.

  • kim

    I wish these moms would take a break long enough to learn about plural and possessive nouns.

    • Erin W

      I know, it makes them look like idiot’s.

  • Becas4ecas

    I feel sorry for them, there must be no babysitters where these poor women live?

    That or they just like to whinge about the fact they chose to have kids and then SMACK all of a sudden they had to do everything for their kids…..Geez who knew you actually had to raise your own children these days, what terrible times we live in :(

    You get bloody paid, in seeing your child grow up and become a decent human being and knowing you made that person and if your lucky your bonus will be a few cute grandkids and they choose a nice nursing home for you!

    • Caitlin

      Will you be my best friend?

    • Skadi Humphrey

      Some people don’t have ready access to sitters. They aren’t that common in Aus.

    • lea

      Hmmm I too live in Aus, and babysitters are readily available. There are whole agencies dedicated to providing them.

    • Katie

      Snap. Another in Australia, there are MANY babysitting agencies.

    • Dlee

      Speaking from experience, that’s a fib. And I live in rural Victoria. Babysitters aren’t just a fancy, city thing.

    • Véronique Houde

      You mean to say that college-aged people don’t exist in your part of town??

    • Justme

      Are there no teenagers in Australia?

    • Leigha7

      Oh please. I’m American, not Australian, but I grew up in a town with about 800 people, and I had at least 5 different regular babysitters growing up, ranging in age from 15 to 90. If there are a minimum of half a dozen babysitters available (and, honestly, there were quite a few more) in a town with under a thousand people, there are babysitters EVERYWHERE.

      Finding someone you actually trust with your kid might be easier said than done, I’m sure, but the bare minimum of someone who’s willing to watch them? Yeah, not that hard to find.

    • jsterling93

      Or have kids with a guy who will be a parent as well. My husband actually watches the baby so I can go get a mani/pedi sometimes. And my mom watches the baby so we can have dates!

    • Courtney Lynn

      My husband does, too. He loves his daddy/son time!

    • katydid

      agreed. you know, we cant afford sitters…but we take turns going out with friends and watching the kids for each otehr! Just last night i went to tiffany’s, drooled on the display cases, then treated myself to pinkberry

  • whiteroses

    I hate those posts that say “I’m not just a mom, I’m a (hairstylist, chauffer, photographer, sewage treatment worker, President of the United States).” No, no you’re not. All of those jobs require a very specific skill set that you did not acquire by osmosis simply because you got knocked up. There’s a reason why I pay someone else to cut my hair and take pictures of my son. That reason is because I am neither a hairdresser nor a photographer and I don’t pretend to be. I didn’t earn degrees or qualifications to qualify for any of those things. Oh, and that thing about being a teacher because you’re a mom? Unless you’ve gone to school for four years, passed some pretty grueling exams, and actually draw a salary, you are not a teacher. Speaking as someone who was a teacher before I became a SAHM myself, I can tell you that thinking you’re a teacher just because you’re a mom is utterly wrong.

    Yeah, being a parent is tough and the most rewarding job there is. And childfree people don’t understand how difficult it can sometimes be. That doesn’t mean that they don’t have rewarding, challenging lives in their own right. All this moaning and whining on FB is exactly why people think SAHMs are nuts. This was a choice that we made. And yeah, it’s hard. And you need to be able to talk to other moms. But you also need to suck it up and deal sometimes.

    • Jenny

      YES! Thank you so much. The worst thing ever was that stupid “the price of a stay at home mom” thing where they averaged that the salary of SAHM to be something in the hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. Hell no. If doing similar things that professionals do for my own family in my own house counts as being in that profession, than I am a vet, a chef, a doctor (taking care of my dad) a housekeeper, a journalist (I have a personal blog), a computer programer (I play video games) and (according to that last game of Risk I played) dictator of the world. All on top of being a teaching assistant. I can’t wait for my next check.

    • whiteroses

      Teaching one child their ABCs is not the same thing as teaching 32 different children. Unless, you know, you have 32 kids, in which case I stand corrected. So I agree with you, Jenny.

    • Helen Donovan

      BRAVO! Yes, moms do a lot of things but 1. they may or may not do them well and 2. non-moms do many of these same things too – are they allowed to nab all the extra titles as well? These list-makers come off as pitiful and trying to justify their worth while disrespecting all the people who actually are cooks, teachers, nurses, etc.

    • whiteroses

      Pretty much. I feel like these stupid memes/copy and pastes devalue everyone who actually does that job.

    • Barkybark

      Haha you kinda remind me of Liam Neeson in Taken: “…but what I do have are a very particular set of skills. Skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you. If you let my daughter go now, that will be the end of it – I will not look for you, I will not pursue you… but if you don’t, I will look for you, I will find you… and I will kill you.”

    • whiteroses

      I love that movie :)

    • meteor_echo

      No, we do understand how difficult it can be, That’s exactly why we’re childfree :)

    • whiteroses

      Hey, to each their own. My point is- nobody, but nobody, will ever hear me whine or bitch about it on FB. If I need to do that, I do it IRL to other moms.

    • whiteroses

      I honestly believe that parenthood is like skydiving- you have a pretty decent idea of what it’s like, but unless you’ve done it, you don’t really know. It’s a lot like falling in love. I consider my son the most amazing person in my life, but this isn’t an easy job. It’s not the hardest job EVER OMG (I would imagine that being a brain surgeon, for example, is considerably more difficult) but it isn’t easy. And it’s hard to describe how it feels unless you’ve been there.

    • Anon

      I agree with your analogy.

      Parenthood is like skydiving, so those of us who are afraid of heights will quite happily stay on the ground.

    • whiteroses

      Which is your choice- and it’s great that we live in a country where our worth isn’t tied to our ability to reproduce (mombies notwithstanding). These things also don’t take into account people who have tried to have children but were unable to.

    • meteor_echo

      I dunno, I can easily see that parenting is hell-load of work and that, once you have a kid, you don’t have time for yourself. So I choose not to do it.

    • whiteroses

      Oh, sure. Let me preface this by saying that I don’t mean to sound condescending or snarky, so please don’t take it that way- it’s hard to read intention on the Internet! I believe that if someone realizes they don’t want kids, then it’s the best possible decision you can make not to have them. Childfree people would make good parents, I believe- since most of the ones I know are very comfortable in their own skin and “know what they’re about” as my grandmother would say- but part of being a good parent is wanting to do it. I do still get time to myself- not as much as I used to, but I do still get it. I’m able to carve out time for my passions in between taking care of my son. We prioritize what is most important to us, I think. I have a lot of help from my parents and husband, so I’m very lucky, and I doubt I could do as much as I do outside of my “mom duties” without them. You do change when you become a parent, it’s a transformative experience, but you are also still very much the person you were.

    • Courtney Lynn

      I agree! And as a mom, those posts are embarrassing as hell. “I’m a referree, I’m a teacher…” No, the fuck you’re not!

    • Belle

      My SIL re-posted one of those “I’s a this, I’m a that bla bla bla” posts and my kids (I have 5, ranging in ages from 5 years to 18 years) couldn’t stop laughing about it, they told me that should I get paid for simply being a mother, I should be docked the pay of the hairdresser and chef, because I suck at both.

  • Daddy Geek Boy

    I truly believe that being a mom is an incredibly difficult endeavor. But I don’t buy the self-pitying notion that moms can never get a break. Sure, maybe there isn’t much free time in the day-to-day, but if you truly need a break, you can arrange one. I am married to a mom and I try to help lighten her load as much as possible. Sometimes it’s getting our kids out of the house for a few hours, sometimes it’s taking control of the ship for a weekend so she can get away. I know that not all dads do this and I know that not all moms have significant others. I’m not looking for a pat on the back or anything. But we live 3000 miles away from our family. We have no support system out here except for friends and each other. We make it work. Mainly because instead of whining about it on the internet, my wife takes the breaks she so desperately needs and deserves.

    • Véronique Houde

      For me, taking a break is hopping into the bath with a book for an hour before my boyfriend goes to work while he takes care of the baby. It’s a golden hour for me, and allows me to have patience with her after he’s gone :). There’s also nothing wrong with hiring a babysitter for a day to be able to go off somewhere and relax, or just to take a nap. Yes, we can have time off, all we have to do is ask for help!

    • HaydenT

      My dad used to spend hours in the bathroom; sometimes on the toilet and sometimes in the tub. He had a library in there and would read whole books. I never ever understood that…and then I had a child. I wouldn’t go there but I totally get why a single parent would.

  • Tammy Gaudreault

    Sure because being across the seas with the risk of your life ending at any moment is comparable to being a mother. Such an insult to our service men and women.

    • Holly Christine Bishop

      thank you Tammy!

    • w2202

      EXACTLY what I was thinking! I don’t see the service men and women who risk their LIVES day in and day out whining on facebook about having a tough job. Lets face it, being a mom is NOT the toughest job, in fact it isn’t a JOB at all, it is a responsibility. Since when should people be praised for taking care of the children they created and keeping the house they live in? These women have the most common ‘job’ on earth, but to hear them tell it, they’re pioneers.

    • Tammy Gaudreault

      Exactly. I mean, heck even being a cop or a lawyer is a harder job then being a mom. Any public service job comes above the job of being a parent. Instead of the parents comparing themselves to a career that keeps they safe and free, they should be thanking them meaning the service men and women.

    • whiteroses

      Speaking as someone whose father was in the Army for nearly thirty years- yeah, it is an insult. I like hearing that I’m a good mom (and my father has told me more than once that he’s glad Mom had the baby in their relationship and not him) but changing a diaper is not the same thing as being in the middle of the desert while a bomb goes off behind your head. Try again, martyr mom.

    • Lauren

      I’d just like to shout-out to the deployed parents out there! My goodness. I live on a Navy base – filled to the brim with Marines and Navy men and women who are not only deployed in harrowing situations for extremely long periods of time, but have to be apart from their families (sometimes with little to no communication) and kids for those periods. I’m not going to pretend that I’ll ever live up to the bravery and service (to country and family) that those people do.

    • EscapeHatches

      I submitted that particular gem. It only gets worse.

    • Tammy Gaudreault

      oh boy, you poor thing. I hope you either deleted her or submitted more lol!

  • Sara

    I think a lot of this stems from the fact that unlike in generations past, when women had kids and ran the household because THAT’S JUST WHAT YOU DID and no one gave you a pat on the back for it, women who become stay-at-home moms now largely do so out of conscious choice. They choose not to have careers outside the home, but rather to focus all of their time and attention on raising the family. That’s fine–no value judgments here. But, just like being a working mom or choosing not to have kids, it’s a CHOICE and not something you were forced into, not something that makes you a victim. That doesn’t meant that you can’t sometimes vent about the fact that it’s hard. But I get really irritated with the women who practically dislocate their shoulders because they’re patting themselves on the back so hard, and get pissy when the rest of the world doesn’t do the same. No matter what choice you make, there will be upsides and downsides. Being a SAHM is hard. So is being a working mom. So is being a child-free woman with a demanding career. They’re all hard in different ways, but when you make a choice, part of that choice is owning it.

    • Holly Christine Bishop

      awesome comment Sara.

    • w2202

      Well said!

    • Sara

      I think I should clarify one thing–I know there are women who don’t have kids and for whom it wasn’t a choice. I just realized that was a little insensitive in my original reply.

  • bumbler

    facebook is the land of pity parties (appropriately so, I believe), and of all the inane, bizarre things people post, this is pretty low on the radar, don’t you think? It’s the equivalent of your working friend posting YET AGAIN “Boo, it’s Monday!” then inevitable “Whoo hoo, it’s FRIDAYYYY!!!” But I am actually glad this was posted because the comments of people gettin’ ALL riled up about such a silly, generic statement is delightful to browse.

  • D. Y

    I am a stay at home mom (to twin toddlers) and the worst part about it for me is lack of adult conversation. But I take the time to get out with my friends when I need to, instead of whining about it. I don’t see this as my “job” because I chose to have a family with my husband. I don’t get the whole martyrdom crap that my other SAHM friends pull. I make a point to have a life outside of my children. They are my priority but not my identity. But staying at home is a pretty sweet deal most of the time and I feel fortunate that we are able to afford it (well daycare for two would have eaten up my entire paycheck.) Sometimes, I never get out of my pajamas. And during naps, I sometimes nap too. Or play some Mario Bros, or catch up on some Honey Boo Boo.

    • Erin W

      If you are needing mental stimulation, maybe avoid the Honey Boo Boo.

      In all seriousness, try podcasts! I live alone and often have to take long car trips alone, and podcasts are great, interesting conversations that happen for your benefit. Audiobooks work, too.

    • whiteroses

      Audiobooks and TEDTalks are awesome. Another thing that has helped me a lot is Netflix and TiVo- my son is now a Ken Burns fan :)

    • Mary Sue

      Another neat thing is You can take free college classes taught by professors from universities around the country including some of the Ivy League schools. I don’t work for them or anything, but Im taking a class right now and it is really nice to be using my brain again.

  • Holly Christine Bishop

    Hey, here’s a solution… Don’t have kids.

    And be grateful for your damn kids that you have. There are so many people out there that are not fortunate enough to be able to have children AT ALL.

    • Tammy Gaudreault

      Amen. It’s horrible to read when you’re someone who struggles to conceive.

    • StephKay

      Just reading these mommy posts really made me sad. While I’m not struggling to conceive, and don’t mean to minimize the struggles of women who are, I just found out today that I’ve been contracting without knowing it, lost my plug, and my 28 week baby (who is already fighting a kidney defect) is fully engaged and 50% effaced. I have a little girl who celebrated her third birthday at the high risk unit with her mother today, and no one to take care of her whether they put me on home or hospital bed rest tomorrow. I may lose or have to leave my little man in the NICU and have absolutely no idea who can care for my toddler without my partner taking unpaid leave, leaving us bankrupt with two kids. I am terrified and frankly right now I would give my right arm to be guaranteed a future of complaining about my days chasing around two healthy little kids. I don’t want to play “suffering Olympics” here, but I fully admit posts like the ones in this article make me insanely jealous and sad right now.

    • Simone

      I’m sorry, Steph. If I were near you I would help. Wait for better news.

    • StephKay

      I’m replying to you, but the same goes for all four of you that left well wishes. When I came online and saw the new discus alerts I deliberately avoided checking back thinking that I was being too harsh on the moms in the article and would be chastised for it. I am so thankful for all the kind words and it never ceases to warm my heart to see how caring and connected moms can be.

      Didnt get great news at the hospital, but we’ve moved on to bed rest and completed steroid treatment for his lungs, so I’m feeling optimistic. I just wanted to take a moment to thank you all for your well-wishes. Even a brief comment from a stranger does me so much good right now. Hugs to all of you :)

    • wmdkitty

      Not a mum, but I am a former preemie. Even if your son does insist on making an early appearance, medical technology has advanced so much in the last 30 years — I’m sure he’ll be all right.

    • StephKay

      It makes me so happy to hear that. I was technically a preemie too but they did get me to 36 weeks so aside from light therapy for jaundice I was able to go home within a week. Younger preemies are a total mystery to me. But hey, since my initial comment I found out he’s an amazingly healthy kid. His kidney defect appears to have healed without further intervention, he’s already just shy of three pounds, and the steroid shots I received this week should make a world of difference in lung maturity. Feeling hopeful, and believe me, your reassurance helps a lot. Now go give your mom a hug and tell her its from a stranger online who’s proud of her for making it through this with you all those years ago :)

    • Dee

      Stay optimistic, StephKay. My son was born at 34 weeks, 4lbs, spent a month in the NICU, and another 3 months after that with a heart monitor. It was the hardest time I have ever been through, and that’s including my deployment back in 2009. I spent every moment of that month in the NICU feeling like I was a horrible mother because I couldn’t carry my son to full term. Now, he is a healthy 7 month old and growing like crazy. Believe me when I say that you and your little one will make it through, and in the end you’ll be so happy for your family and so proud of your little one for being the tough little guy he is.

    • StephKay

      That means the world to me, thank you. I am so glad to hear he’s doing well. You must have gone through so much. The NICU to me, at this point, still feels like the scariest thing ever but I know that if I can’t keep him in and he does need specialized care I will be SO grateful for all the amazing services the NICU can provide for him. I am just so greatly in awe of mothers like yourself. My only experience with motherhood has been with my healthy, full term, now three year old, so the sheer selflessness of being able to walk out of the hospital without your baby blows my mind. I just can’t fathom the strength necessary to give up all that new-baby cuddle time, and long nights at home adjusting in order to let your baby grow and heal. You’re basically a superhero to me. The outpouring of support from other pre-term labor moms online has been so incredible. And, of course, thank you so much for serving during that deployment in ’09. You must be such an amazingly strong woman.

    • Dee

      Thank you as well for the kind response. It really is hard to leave, but trust me– it’s the absolute best place for the babies to be. There were so many times that I wished I could take him home, but you just can’t beat the 24/7 specialized care. It was comforting to know that if anything should happen, the nurses and doctors were right there for him. Believe me, I got my cuddle time in whenever I had a spare moment (thank God the hospital was 20 minutes from home)!

      There’s a special place in my heart for pre-term labor moms and preemie babies. We’re all superheroes– the moms for their courage, and the little ones for their strength. I wish you all the best with your family, and all the strength in the world for your little one.

    • meteor_echo

      I hope everything will be well for you and your baby. If he is already doing better, that’s a reason to be optimistic :)

    • StephKay

      Thank you so much! It’s been an incredible relief to find that his health is going strong. We definitely didn’t need the extra risk of a kidney defect on top of pre-term labor. Now we just need to keep that cranky old cervix from causing more problems. But on the bright side, if I can stay pregnant for two more days I’ll have made it to 30 weeks, the big 3-0! Feeling very optimistic, and every time I check discus and find even more words of support it helps so, so, so much. Thank you again, to all of you.

    • flax

      Good luck! That sounds so scary and stressful. I don’t know jack shit about pregnancy or child-rearing, so I’ve got no advice at all, just hoping that everything works out for you and yours.

    • StephKay

      Thank you so much! Hell, I’m on my second baby and I still know basically jack shit about pregnancy and child rearing either :) Its been really incredible to still find reassuring comments trickling in on an old article. You are all just awesome people.

      Still on bed rest, probably will be for another month or so, but today we got awesome news. Some of the preterm labor progress has undone itself. My confused body apparently got a clue and is slowly snapping out of it. Feeling far less scared and devastated than I was when I left my initial comment, and honestly a big part of my change in emotions has been due to the incredible support from strangers online. Thanks again to all of you.

    • wmdkitty

      Best of luck, Steph.

    • meteor_echo

      Good luck! I hope that both you and your child will be okay!

    • Tammy Gaudreault

      Sending you all of my well wishes!

    • KC

      Good luck, StephKay! I know having preemies is super scary and stressful, so I wish you the best. I also hope you have a good social support network to tap into– don’t be afraid to ask other to help you out, because I’m sure they would understand and be happy to do what they can!

    • StephKay

      Thank you so much! I’m glad you said that, because it gives me an opportunity to publicly plug a non-profit called sidelines. Sidelines matches women with serious pregnancy complications with other mothers who have survived the same serious complication. Everyone receives a connection to a woman who will take their sobbing 3 am phone calls, some may even find a woman in town who can physically help them. I can’t recommend them enough. This whole experience has really shown me the good in others. From my mom spending her days caring for my 3 year old and feeding me soup and grilled cheese in bed like when I was a little girl with the flu, to awesome people like you who are still trickling in with so much support. Honestly it means the world to me.

      I hit 31 weeks this past Saturday and I’m still pregnant! It’s such a relief to have gotten this far. They did end up finding an infection that may have started the preterm labor, and with any luck these aggressive antibiotics will stop it in it’s tracks. Feeling very positive, and all of you that commented here have really helped keep a smile on my face :)

    • ktree

      I just wanted to send my best wishes and good luck your way!

  • w2202

    I just don’t get everyone who wants to call motherhood a ‘job’. “The most undvalued job in society” makes no sense to me. Since when is taking care of your OWN children and your OWN home a job? It isn’t a job, it is a responsibility. You aren’t ‘babysitting’ your own child for crying out loud. I just can’t stand hearing moms whine about their ‘job’ and then qualifying it with “oh but its the BEST job”. They want to be martyrs. They want praise and payment (whether monetary or some other form) for doing the most common ‘job’ on the planet.

    • Courtney Lynn

      I have no sympathy for them at all. As a mom, I know it can be stressful, BUT what did you expect?

  • Skadi Humphrey

    I would love a vacation without my child. I don’t know anyone who would watch him for a week though.
    I do think Mums whine a lot, but there is an undervaluing of all traditionally “feminine” roles in society, not just mothering. I also think there has been a huge shift in the last 40 years about what it is to be a mum. Many girls grew up thinking it was their ultimate job, having seen their mums in the 50s and 60s have motherhood as their identity.

    These days being a mum is more of a additional descriptor than an identity. Many women are mocked for coming across as nothing more than so and so’s mum, or who fall into the trap of letting their whole existence be about motherhood.

    But you know what else is just as sucky? Running your own business. I do the office stuff for my husband. I answer phones 7am to 7pm 7DAYS. No vacations. No down time. Phones come with me when I go out. After a 30 minute dental trip there will be 4 messages. At least kids nap.

    • Joe

      Oh man, starting a business is a complete bitch. It’s like having a huge angry child that never sleeps and may not ever (but hopefully will) pay off in the end. I feel ya. Good luck!

    • Skadi Humphrey

      I am a glutton for punishment, I am studying full time uni and doing the SAHM thing with my 4yo. Who will go to kindy soon.

      There will be a party when that happens :D

    • Jenny

      I completely agree. I’m sure it is hard and I agree that they deserve
      breaks. But getting those breaks and getting that general respect from
      society that they deserve will not happen with passive-aggressive
      facebook messages. If anything this idea that they are insta-martyrs
      holds back exact what they want. Whenever someone says that they have
      the hardest anything in life, they invite comparison and will always
      come up looking like whining sheltered children. Really, this sort of
      fake adulation is, to me, a way of keeping women placated instead of
      offering them real solutions (like daycare services). Kind of like how
      you never go to Hallmark and buy your doctor a stupid little angel
      figurine but you do it for your underpaid and clearly under-appreciated
      teachers. Telling someone that their job/lifestyle is by default
      “hard/impossible/selfless/sacrificial” is a great way into shaming them
      into not asking for more. These women might not know it but by giving
      each other pats on the back for not sleeping for weeks or whatever, they
      are not owning up to that being actually unfair and something that
      should change. I can dole out faux praise all day but it won’t help her sleep, so why do it? I feel like a
      lot of these women need to have a talk with their significant other or
      someone else close to them to help share the load instead of making
      their own child seem like a horrible chore they can’t escape.

    • Simone

      I think Jenny’s raised some of the only sociologically interesting ideas in these comments, to be honest. Describing motherhood, in its present, all-consuming way, as ‘selfless’ or ‘impossible’ really does provide women with short-term gratification whilst doing nothing to address the inequalities present in today’s parenting (among many family groups). Motherhood as it’s posited today is a relatively new phenomenon – at no other time in history have individual women been expected to be so closely and constantly in sole servitude to their children’s needs, and that’s a conclusion drawn from years of study, not my opinion. We give mothers token acknowledgement for their work – like the little angel figurines – without really addressing why it is, in such a gender-conscious climate, that we still expect women to do almost all the parenting, and fail to provide men with the work-life balance they also need in order to participate in raising a family.

    • Sara

      I agree, and I often think the same thing about the way we look at teachers in this society. We set up this “teacher-as-martyr” phenomenon and talk about how wonderful and selfless teachers are, how they all do it for the love of the children, which is emotionally satisfying and easy to do but DOESN’T solve the problem of terrible working conditions and pay that’s often not commensurate with the level of education and skill that teachers in many states have to have. The bottom line is that teachers AREN’T martyrs, and most of us, while we enjoy being with children, don’t do it “for the love of the children.” We do it because it’s a job that we can support our families with and we all need to eat, but in the present climate anyone who dares to point that out is derided as a vulgar, selfish person who’s only concerned about money and clearly went into teaching for the “wrong” reasons. It’s a skilled profession that deserves to be treated with the realism and respect due to it, but (like motherhood and a whole raft of other traditionally-female-dominated fields) it’s a whole lot easier to just throw warm, fuzzy things like “Teacher Appreciation Day” and cute sayings out there and think that solves the problem.

      Teachers and mothers both need more respect and value–working or not. But as Jenny rightly points out, these passive-aggressive little Facebook rants aren’t going to result in the true shift in societal perspective that we need if we’re going to value the work that mothers do and support it appropriately.

    • Justme

      Speak for yourself. I do teach because I love children. Of course I wouldn’t do it for free but I’m certainly not in this profession for the money.

    • K.

      Sara, you just described my LIFE!

      Rock on.

    • Jenna

      Sara – I like the way you phrase that. I feel the same way as an RN. There are all sorts of martyr complexes about that job. Yes, I deal with a lot of snot and poop, but I’m pretty well compensated for it. It is a job I am passionate about but ultimately, I work for the money and the family-friendly schedule.

    • HC_Mlis

      Well-said! Thanks for the thought-provoking post.

    • Simone

      Yes, most ‘feminine’ roles are undervalued, the way most ‘feminine’ careers, like carers, teachers, nurses. social services workers, pay far less than stuff like plumbing or electricial work.

      Rest of the post, yay, suffering olympics. Enter the martyr.

  • ENorth

    Always very amused by people who say, “People who don’t have children don’t know how hard it is.” Never occurs to them that the reason some of us chose not to have children is that we know exactly how hard it is.

    • katydid

      i have children, and think this is a really excellent comment!

    • justhypatia

      Personally I’m more impressed by the people that are parents and still think the whiners are full of it.

    • ENorth

      Darn it, and I was so trying to impress.

  • Sheri

    I don’t understand the implication that moms who work outside of the home DONT do all of these things. I still have to do all of this crap to keep up my household and have a relationship with my kids and my husband, I just have to cram it into the four hours after I get home from work. Plus I don’t get a nap and I can’t wear jeans.

    • Courtney Lynn

      Agreed. After busting my ass serving ungrateful, spoiled-ass customers, I have to still come home, feed the kid, bathe him, do dishes, clean and figure out dinner.

    • CookieChica

      Seriously! It would be hard for me mentally and emotionally to be home all day long so I get that stress. But these statuses that complain about cooking and cleaning and shuttling, blah, blah, blah… I do that too after 8 hours at work. And honestly? It’s not that big of a deal most days. Yes, I would like to get 5 minutes to sit down when I walk in the door but that’s what an 8:30 bedtime is for.

    • KingCJ

      My thoughts exactly! What I hear next is, “but you get BREAKS at work” – yeah, I get a 20 minute lunch break (and that is it), which usually ends up being about 7 minutes of sitting, trying to eat what I brought and inevitably not having enough time to eat my luxurious 3 course meal of yogurt, a bagel, and an orange. I’d trade you any day.

  • Renee J

    I wonder how they post online if they never get a break. Maybe they post while watching the kids. It’s also interesting that they complain about, what I’m assuming, typical, healthy children. I once read about the day to day life of a mother raising a bipolar child. That made me see my own kids in a different light.


    Don’t any of these moms have husbands or partners of some sort? If they do then what the hell are THEY doing?!? If they aren’t doing anything to help, why the hell would spawn with them then?!

    Also, they apparently have time to repost glurge & rants about how hard it is so they obviously have some “down time” in their days & nights so maybe instead of pissing & moaning about it pick up a book & read a paragraph or 2. It might take you longer to read it but it’s much more productive than whining on Facebook.

    Or hell, watch a minute or 2 of Toddlers & Tiaras & whine about that instead, you know, just for a nice change of pace.

  • K.

    B, I love your blog and I’m normally laughing my head off reading it, and I am probably going to get slammed for saying this because there are a lot of STFU fans out there, but this latest collection left kind of a bad taste in my mouth. I think because it slides a little outside of the purview of your stated intention for STFU, Parents which is that the blog is intended to mock parental overshare and “never aims to be hateful or mean-spirited.” Some of this strikes me as a little mean-spirited. I mean, some of the moms are simply venting (I’m thinking #1 & #5)–it may be hyperbolic, but everyone does that sort of thing on FB. Why shouldn’t moms get to complain about their shit days too or how crappy it is to prep for a family vacation? And by the way, I’m BOTH a teacher and a mom and I find both roles to be quite unappreciated AND very rewarding at the same time. But I understand why some mothers feel like they never get to ‘turn off’–as a working mother, I’d say that I often feel that way, that I can leave my job when I go home everyday, but I don’t really ever get much of a break as a mom.

    I also feel that as a teacher, I get constant assessment for what I do–most of it positive because I’m a damn fine teacher, thankyouverymuch!–but you know, I get the written evaluations from my bosses; I get the parent-teacher conferences; I get return-visits from students; I get verbal “high-fives” from students; I converse with other teachers about triumphs and tribulations that happen in the classroom. Hell, my students take tests and my value as a teacher is implicated in their results. In short, I have, on a regular basis, people who in one way or another tell me that they are paying attention to my work; that my work is not proceeding unnoticed. I am not sure that moms get that kind of acknowledgment because their audience is smaller and because yes, most are taken for granted. Motherhood *can be* pretty isolating. I know that I get far less acknowledgment as a mother than I do as a teacher, and trust me, when you’re pumping milk at 4am for a kid that can’t thank you while your husband snores away, you really want someone to in some way pay attention to the fact that you ARE pumping milk at 4am. Or that you woke up early just to do the laundry. Or that you remembered the doctor’s appointment. Not applause, not even a ‘pat on the back’–sometimes moms just want to know that their efforts are not invisible. I get what your post is about and some of the moms in it are yes, obnoxious and sound whiny like they expect cookies for being mothers. But I’m conflicted in accepting the snark wholesale because I suspect that for a lot of these moms, FB is the only way that they’re not feeling isolated.

    On another note, and for the sake of discussion what I find MORE interesting is that I think it’s the passive-aggressiveness about these posts that piss people off and I agree with that. But I’m curious as to where the passive-aggressiveness comes from. My tentative guess is that just as most women are not as assertive with what they need and deserve in the workplace, they are also not as assertive with what they need and deserve as SAHMs, whether it’s a more equitable workload with dad, more time outside the house, or whatnot. Culturally, I think a lot of women are more comfortable being martyrs than they are being squeaky wheels.

    • meah

      I didn’t feel B was being mean-spirited, but I totally agree with your comment re: passive-aggressiveness. That’s what bothers me about these updates. I just read them (here, and on my own feed) and think, “Damnit woman! Why are you not enlisting the father’s help with any of this? You both ‘work’ all day and then at night, responsibilities must be shared!” (of course, it’s different for single mothers… I don’t know how they do it!).

      When I first became a mom, I fell into this trap of martyr (it happens so easily). I read a book about 3 months in, that helped me to realize that if I felt like I was doing everything, that was my fault! I had to allow my husband to get involved, and stop playing the victim. Life changed for the better once I made that realization! I wish these women would come to the same conclusion.

    • Tinyfaeri

      What was the book?

    • Tammy Gaudreault

      The reason it’s directed at parents is because that’s the topic of STFU Parents. There are other similar blogs out there for couples and what not. I can’t think of any of her recent posts as mean spirited as naked pictures of your kids and complaining about your kids is definitely over share. Yes they have a right to vent, but how about they be greatful because some out there would give anything to be in their shoes. Many couples struggle to conceive at all. To see these are a slap in the face of those who can’t. And I can’t say for sure but they have yet to mention about them having medical issues so they should be greatful for that as well.

      But this is not an attack as I think everyone has a right to their opinion just I fail to see where the mean spiritedness is coming from.

    • K.

      I understand what the blog is about–I’m a regular reader–but I was commenting on specifically this post (not pictures of your naked kids on Facebook or any other posts on STFU or STFU the blog as a whole) on, which I understand as not necessarily a facsimile of B’s blog–it’s a slightly different forum. But I DO think that irregardless of Mommyish or, that B is open to discussion, which is what I’m trying to do, and I don’t think that she’s trying to condemn parents.

      Having said that, I did feel that *some*–namely #1–examples in this post were a little off the mark. A mother complaining about her shitty day on her own FB page and then having other moms commiserate in the comments section is not really a problem by me. That’s different to me than what you see a lot of on the blog, which is when a non-SAHM complains about his/her shitty day that might involve say, traffic and getting sprayed by the bus and having the wallet stolen and THEN have a parent respond in the comments section, “Well, you don’t know PAIN until you’ve had a CHILD!” That’s rude. But #1 wasn’t really it for me. It was complaining about a difficult day on the job and so I found the snarky commentary in response a little *too* sharp.

      #5 is sort of borderline because one the one hand, I get the “woe is me, I have to take a vacation with my kids!” is crap, sort of like posting “Man, packing for my Bali getaway is SUCH a drag! And how am I ever gonna eat all the foie gras that’s leftover from last week’s dinner party? #overwhelmed.” But I can understand a mom who is a little irritated that “vacation with the kids” is referred to as “vacation” by everyone else and tends to be less of a vacation for her. And yeah, you can comment on equity in a marriage and all that, but really–most of the heavy lifting in vacay-prep is done by SAHM or SAHD. And it’s sort of extra–like crunch time that you’d have on the job.

      Now believe me, I AM a working mom and I don’t really have much patience for the whole, “being a SAHM is harder than ANYTHING” line. But I’d also be lying if I didn’t admit that I can’t wait to go back to my regular job because taking care of the kids full time is not my bag. I’m frankly, not cut out for it. So I tend to cut a *little* slack for the SAHM/Ds who ARE taking it on and wish to let off steam on FB–especially when it’s their own page and they’re simply venting a bad day. That’s sort of in line with what everyone else does.

    • BigBlue

      Thank you for this comment. I’d been trying to put my finger on why I wasn’t really comfortable with several of the last few posts but couldn’t quite figure it out. Over time, I think these posts have gotten more mean-spirited. Although I don’t think that was the original intention of the blog or these columns on Mommyish it seems to have evolved that way.

    • ODBeckster

      I can’t speak for B, but I can tell you why I completely understand #1′s inclusion in this round-up. I agree with you entirely that the poster in #1 is well within her rights to complain on FB that she’s having a crappy day and to list the reasons why. I don’t think that is why she made the list. It’s the “when do mom’s [sic] get a break?” part of her post, along with the replies about how mom’s [again, sic-- seriously, these people should never claim to be teachers with their grammar] never do get a break.

      Let’s face it– in current society, pretty much no one gets a break unless they make one for themselves. For example, I am childfree, but I work 7 days a week and do all of the same running a house stuff that everyone else does. My to do list is hellish and makes me want to cry. But right now, I’m taking some time off and checking the Internet because I know that my sanity requires the downtime. And when I get overwhelmed, I ask for help or I take a step back and allow myself to let something go that isn’t important. Yes, I complain. But I don’t wail at the universe that attorneys never get a break. I take a damn break if I’m able; if I’m not able, I don’t waste time getting on FB and whining about it.

      tl;dr It isn’t the complaining about having a bad day, it’s the whinging that moms are the only ones who never get a break that lands them squarely on STFUP.

    • K

      Well, if the child can’t thank you and the dad is asleep and won’t thank you, what is it that these moms want, then? Random strangers are supposed to come to their house and thank them for being a mom and hand them a paycheck? If the mom is feeling unappreciated and not getting any time to herself at all, then she needs to DO something about it. If she has a partner, then she needs to negotiate with him for some time to herself. If dad’s not in the picture, maybe there’s a friend or family member or babysitter who could help. I just don’t understand what these moms want when they whine about it on FB. I can understand wanting to let off steam and complain – everybody does that – but canNOT understand their point of view where they expect to be paid, worshiped, or helped by society at large.

      And as far as being on duty as a parent 24/7 – well, yes, that’s what becoming a parent entails. That’s something to take into consideration when making life choices. Nobody made you do it.

    • K.

      I’m not in disagreement with you in that there ARE moms out there who expect to be “paid, worshiped [sic], or helped by society at large” and that’s pretty irritating…but that wasn’t what the mom in #1 was doing. She was, according to my reading of her post, letting off steam and complaining as “everybody does,” as you say.

      So one reason that I made the comment is that one assumes B. has a file 10 inches deep of moms who DO complain along the lines you are talking about and I’m not quite sure why it’s this one she chose.

      To your point about not understanding why moms “whine about it on FB,” I wasn’t arguing that moms don’t get credit or have to walk around playing the martyr; I was saying that a lot of moms DO feel isolated. I did the first time around on maternity leave, and I still feel a little isolated the second time around–why else am I on message boards? And I do have a very generous husband who gives me breaks, and I get that being a mother is a job I asked for and it’s a blessing and blah blah blah. I’m not asking for strangers to stand up and applaud me; I was simply bringing up the point that mothers often DO tend to gripe about the stupid incidentals on FB because it’s a social outlet that most of them need. There is a difference between the truly obnoxious griping (“I WILL KILL THE MAILMAN FOR RINGING THE DOORBELL DURING JR.’S NAP”) and having a truly rough day and commiserating about it on FB–which is what I felt the woman was doing in #1.

      And when I was a graduate student, there was an awful lot of griping that was very similar in tone to these mommy posts (“Why do people have to tear out pages in Heidegger? Especially the ones I NEED? Do I ever get a break?”) I think because working on a dissertation is also similarly isolating. But there’s not a wholesale backlash on grad students being pricks….Although maybe I should start a blog…

  • Faye

    The truth is that being a SAHM is devalued in our society, but these women that complain about it get on my nerves. They aren’t lamenting the societal inequities between men and women, they’re just complaining that being a mom is so hard and no one understands and why aren’t they being paid? It’s the complaining about payment part that is most ironic because then they become the ones perpetuating the societal assumption that a non-paying role like mothering is less important than bringing home the bacon.

    • laura rae

      Exactly. This is more or less what I wanted to say. There IS truth to the complaint that mothers and domestic work is undervalued, but that’s not what such complaints are getting at.

  • Sarah Hollowell

    What is it about being a mother that makes you use a lot of exclamation points?

    • Justme

      Because everything we say is SOOOOOO important because we are MOMMIES!!!!!!!!!!!! And that’s the MOST important JOB in the whole world!!!!!!!!! I mean, does YOUR “job” get paid in hugs and kisses???????????? I didn’t have a full coochy birth just for the fun of it!!!!!!!!!

  • HeatherK

    This is all bull. I am a mom of 2 and I have a full-time job and I still have time for breaks! In fact, I am reading this on my lunch break right now! These women who are complaining CHOOSE not to take breaks and I don’t feel sorry for them (maybe their kids though). My daughter’s friend’s mom (not MY friend) is like this. I said to her: “why don’t you get a babysitter?” “Oh, I could never leave my DD with a stranger!” Then I actually offered to watch her kid so she could take a break: playdates with two kids who entertain one another is easier than my daughter on her own. She says to me: “NO! My time with DD is too precious, I never want to leave her!” Me (in my head): “Then stop complaining you crazy b*tch!”

    • Courtney Lynn

      Some people just want to bitch.

    • ODBeckster

      ^ This. I hate the self-inflicted gunshot wound/self-fulfilling prophecy nature of this complaint.

  • Aja Jackson

    I have been both an SAHM and a working mother and while I believe that being an SAHM is undervalued, and wasn’t something that I particularly enjoyed, I hate the fact that every time an article like this comes out it assumes that working mothers don’t have to do all the things that it takes to “mother” their children. I still have to do all the things that I had to do when I was at home and I have to do it in a lot less time. So it means working an 8, 9 hour day, then coming home to do all of the home management things that SAHMs do. So should working moms then be getting paid part time salary taking care of their own kids? Enough with this “if it translated into a paying job” stuff. Its not a paying job. It’s not even a non-paying job. It’s a responsibility that we all chose to sign up for when we decided to bring babies into this world.

  • Courtney Lynn

    I had a taste of SAHMotherhood during my 3 month maternity leave. I would GLADLY quit my job if I could to be a SAHM or at least a WAHM. For me, working sucks and I would rather spend that time with my kid and keeping up my home. I’m GOOD at being a wife and mom and I WISH to HELL I could do it full time. There is NOTHING wrong with that and I don’t have to justify it by making it something more than it is! If a mom has a job she loves and is great at work/life balance, go for it! A happy mom is a happy family. I know for ME, though, I don’t think a lot of SAHMs count their blessings. It’s not always easy, but it’s something you chose. So yeah, I am unsympathetic when I hear SAHMs bitch and moan about how hard it is.

  • TheSquirrel

    Motherhood isn’t a ‘job’. A job is something you do for money. If you need to be paid to raise your own child, you’re some kind of sociopath who probably shouldn’t be around kids anyway.

  • tiaracara

    Who is out there saying “oh, you’re JUST a mom”?? Nobody effing says that! Seriously.

  • workingMOM

    i’d go on vacation without my kid and not feel any way about it.
    as long as i left her with someone responsible, like my parents, and didn’t hit the road for a month, a few days in an adults-only resort on the Mayan Riviera, filled with sun, good food, great booze and dancing the night away, sounds great to me.
    and those that judge, either, don’t have kids or have to drink a couple of bottles of wine a night to escape the perils of parenthood!

  • Truth

    When women post things like this on social media what they think they are saying is: “Oh I’m so clever making jokes about how hard all this is!” But what thy are REALLY saying is “I resent my children so much I can’t keep it to myself.”

  • JAN

    For the record I’ve been both a SAHM and WOHM so I have both perspectives. Also, I found some of the FB postings to be overly dramatic. That being said, I think most people vent about things in their lives to their friends, I know I do. (I will admit, I only have 20 “friends” on my FB account so I’m not advertising to my best friend from second grade’s third cousin.). If we were only allowed to complain as log as nobody had it worse…well actually it might make a nicer world…but really, sometimes people need to vent. All in all, I think some people are getting over invested in these comments.

  • MommyK

    Um, cooking, cleaning, laundry, errands, etc is part of being an adult, and is not exclusive to SAHM’s, or parents in general. These whiners need a good smack. I wish I could send them back to the pioneer days and make them churn butter and handwash and line-dry their handsewn clothes on top of it, give them a reality check.

    • Helen Donovan

      I think that is what really gets me. Of course venting is something we all do but this only mommies understand is what irks me. Yeah, because a single, childfree person who has a parent with dementia or (fill in 1 of a 1000 different situations here) has no idea what constant responsibility is like.

    • CookieChica

      I will say that it’s a little different without kids. Before my son, if I was lazy and didn’t feel like making dinner or I wasn’t hungry until 10, that was fine. My kid usually wants to eat earlier than that. Plus I feel obligated to prepare him a well-balanced meal as opposed to the bowl of cereal and the handful of M&Ms I might eat myself. And I might get lazy and re-wear a sketchy pair of pants that I spritz with perfume but you feel guilty doing that to your kid (plus they tend to get their clothes crusted with stuff).

      But hey, that was my choice. And as another strike against me, none of that behavior sounds like the kind that a well-adjusted adult would exhibit. :)

  • Robin

    I really get driven crazy when friends refer to their wifely duties as work. I don’t yet have a child, but I have been married for 5 years, and that makes life easier! I do half the cleaning and cooking, because I’m sharing one house with two lives, duh

  • heather

    I get bothered by the posts equating motherhood to random jobs. if you know when your kid has a fever, clean up puke, and bandage boo- boos, you are a wonderful mom, but you are not a nurse (unless you are a mom who is also an actual rn). that’s why when the fever is too high, the puke is too often, or the boo- boo is too deep, you take the kid to an actual nurse/doctor.

    back in the day, being a sahm was just what you did: a lot of women didn’t work outside the home even pre-child, and those who did would give it up. not every family worked this way, but that was the norm. as times have changed and women have had more options and more encouragement to have successful careers, and as the economy has tanked, women have options to weigh out. many keep going to work. for some this is a choice, and for others it is financially necessary. when a woman opts to be a sahm however, it is almost always a choice, a decision made based on what she and her partner (usually there is one if sahm is financially feasible) believe is best for their family. so why make it sound like the decision that was best for your family is so terrible? of course there will be stressful days and the need to vent. we all need to vent sometimes. but if you really find that being a full time sahm isn’t for you, then go back to work. if that sounds awful and you’d rather be with your child all day, then that’s great, and that is what’s best for you. and in that case, vent on occasion like we all do, but keep in mind why you made the decision to stay at home.

  • Monique Boulanger

    I’m applying for the Army Reserves. The recruiter actually told me to put “Homemaker” as a job between the time I got pregnant with my daughter and the date of application. He said if I didn’t the security people would look at the application funny. I’m like “But it’s not a job” He’s like “Meh…it gives the security people something to put in the box”

  • Hannah

    I’m a little surprised at how shocked these martyr-moms seem to be that they don’t get breaks. It makes them look foolish, like they went into parenthood on a whim without thinking it through. I guess that does happen to people, though, more often than I previously considered. Although I don’t like these women in the STFUP posts, they are having the effect on me of making me want to offer my [much nicer, less complainy] mom-friends the occasional break by playing with their kids for an afternoon while they nap, get a massage, or do whatever else they wish they could do.

  • Calliegh

    There is nothing quite like a bunch of self righteous condescending mothers complaining on a thread about SAHM complaining on facebook. Seriously!

  • Mars

    I feel that these are just a reaction to how mothering has changed in the 50 or so years since women really started entering the workforce. Before; pretty much all women were SAHM and didn’t complain because the husband was the breadwinner. She was supposed to do all household chores, and if she bothered him, she would be a bad wife for nagging him while he was unwinding from work. Nowadays, often both parents work, so SAHM feel that they are belitted by their working mothers counterparts, and thus they need to have some form of validation, while tearing down everyone else, that their work is still important.

    Undervalued? God no, I’d say garbage collectors, teachers, construction workers, and a myriad of other professions are undervalued because they make our society and infrastructure work. Children are a bonus, infrastructure is a necessity. SAHM that complain on the internet (a new development; before, women just suffered in silence with barbituates) because they want to feel important, even though they aren’t earning a paycheck. Their work as mothers is important, but not at the expense of other people’s self worth in their careers. That just makes this mother a self-involved prat.

  • baxter32

    So I’ve been a corporate lawyer and I’ve been a stay at home mom. And being a mom? Is much, much easier. Please with the hardest job in the world stuff. It is so not.

  • Isobel_A

    As a non-parent, I’m always amazed at how much stay at home Mums whine, bitch and complain compared to working Mums who, let’s face it, have a far harder time of it.

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  • OnionButt

    The bit about doing all the mom stuff for “the rest of my life” got to me (in the one listing all the careers being a mom is equivalent to). Sure, sure, I get that once a mom, you are always a mom even when the kids are adults and maybe even have children of their own. However, the way it was worded, sounded to me as if moms are expected to do all the “mom stuff” for their kids FOREVER. Unless your child is special needs, then you are parenting ALL WRONG. If you make your able minded/bodied children so helpless and dependent on you that even when they are 40 you have to tend to all their needs, you fucked up big time. In other words, you should not “be on call 24/7 for the rest of” your life!

  • JMB

    I’m a Mom. I work full time outside the home as well. I get PLENTY of breaks. I have lots of time to myself. Even when my kids were younger, I got time to myself and did the things I wanted sometimes (or often). Vacations (even with kids) still feel like vacations . . . I love vacations! I guess I’m doing this whole thing wrong.

  • LM

    So my mom needs that 112,000 including the pay she got from working full time and dealing with my dad who didn’t care about his kids until I was about 17 (even though they were still married, my dad just didn’t want to deal with people who couldn’t converse with him) and she did all that with twins. I respect stay at home moms, and I’m glad they had that option, but my mom never could have done that with my dad’s factory salary so I have little sympathy for the moms who complain they never have time for themselves or anything. My mom had no time for herself until my twin and I moved out and started paying our own bills.

  • Tammy

    I know I’m a little late to the party here but I just got back from a kid free vacation :D

    I was a SAHM for several years. Yes, it had it’s rough moments but overall I do not get what all the bitching is about. Maybe I just had an easy child but I never thought it was that hard. I was a young mother, had my son at 18, and even that didn’t maker it seem any harder. If you discipline your kids then you won’t have the tantrums and fits. Teach them right when they’re very young and you’ll be a much happier mom. I did not give in to his fits and tantrums and he learned that very early. I loved being able to be there for him and do all the baking for his school parties and having his friends over etc. Life is what you make it and if you let it stress you out then that’s on you. Everybody knows that having kids can be rough at times, everybody knows what it’s going to be like. If you didn’t think you could handle it then you shouldn’t have had a kid. My son was a “surprise” and I was young but I know I did the best that I could and I can’t remember a time that I complained about being a mom. Grandparents and aunts and uncles are there for a reason. Drop the kids off for a few hours and go do something!!! I know I raised my son right so I know when he goes out with his friends I don’t have to worry so much because I know he will make the right choices. I know I can leave him home alone and he’ll be just fine. My son is now almost 18 and leaving to join the Marine Corps in a few months and I would love to have those “terrible twos” back. Quit your bitching and enjoy your kids before the grow up too damn fast and start their own lives away from home.

  • Kim

    Well, yes it’s true – being a parent is really hard work. But the reason I don’t complain about it (at least on social media!) is there is no point, all other parents are in the same boat, it’s not a competition. And anyway it was my choice to breed so it’d be churlish of me moan about it. I save that for face to face time with my friends :).

  • sfphilli

    i’m always shocked at how big of a disconnect there is between real life and people like these on the internet. one of my best friends from work had an unplanned child at nineteen, both parents work almost-full time and are students, and they manage it just fine, find time for themselves And their child, and the child is incredibly well behaved at 2 and a half now.

    sometimes i wonder if some people don’t just cause most of their own problems just so they can complain and pat themselves on the back for dealing with them.

  • Jen Clark

    Breaking news, being a stay at home mom is now more hard then being a working mom or a single mom, and none of those is as hard as being a mom AND wife. Honestly, yes some moms do have it hard. But I also think alot of them are over dramatic in order to gain sympathy points or an award. It’s kind of annoying when people that generally have it easy complain about being a mom, when that’s what they chose. I’m a single mother, I don’t have the luxury of living off of a husbands paycheck, I often can’t leave my home or even get on the internet, without someone bombarding me about what a terrible person I am for not being married, or blaming me for being a victim of domestic abuse after they harass me about where the “REAL” father is. Among a 100 other things, Yet I rarely ever complain, well more like, I’m not allowed to complain cause then people tell me that I either deserved it, or that I’m not allowed to complain because im not a wife or dont know what being a real mother is like. I guess the point I’m trying to make is that child rearing has ups and downs for everyone, and all moms need to support each other, instead of picking and choosing and complaining without ever listening. And stop pointing fingers and shaming other moms because they don’t have the fabulous life that others do.

  • ATLWmn

    For the love of god folks, nouns ending in a consonant (besides s) do not need an apostrophe! The first post about “mom’s needing a break” just grates on my nerves. It’s definitely a recent development: people actually going to EXTRA trouble in writing, just to be incorrect. Okay, sorry. *steps off of soapbox*

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  • Alicia McCullough

    My dad used to tell me a joke about people without kids. What do you call a couple with no kids? RICH!!! BAHAHAHA

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  • RW

    As a mom, I totally get breaks. I calls it “HUSBAND ACTUALLY TAKES CARE OF HIS OFFSPRING,TOO.” We switch off – Saturday I get to sleep in, Sunday it’s his turn. And this weekend I got my sleep in Saturday, but was sick on Sunday, so he took to the field again to let me get rest. Imagine that!

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