Why Stay-at-Home Parenting May Not Be Right for You

5 Reasons Being a SAHM Sucks (And What You Can Do About It)

A picture of a mom holding an upset baby
Being a stay-at-home mom isn't as easy as most people think. Photo © Image Source / Getty Images

While everyone thinks it's easy being a stay-at-home mom, sometimes it may feel like it flat out sucks. Everyone has a bad day every now and then. While these top 5 reasons show how being a stay-at-home mom isn't for everyone, they also highlight a bright side you should look forward to:

1. You're Never Alone

From sunup to sundown, you're never alone. When you're in the potty with a toddler at your feet ripping the toilet paper off of the roll, your other children will be banging on the door and asking, "What are you doing in there?"

The very definition of being a stay-at-home mom means you'll be spending a bulk amount of your time with your children. The other few hours you'll be sleeping and even that's no guarantee that you won't have kids by your side.

The bright side: This stage won't last forever. And, believe it or not, you'll miss the chaos of siblings bickering one minute, squealing with delight the next and never giving you a moment's peace. Whether the kids are in school or, gasp, move out one day when they're all grown up, your house will one day be way too quiet.

2. You'll Always Be a Mommy Wars Target

You are a lazy, non-contributing member of society who sits around all day doing nothing but watching TV and eating ice cream. Stay-at-home moms are no stranger to the harsh comments from people who don't truly understand what all a SAHM does. You'll always wear a target on your back.

The bright side: Every mom is a victim of Mommy Wars, not just SAHMs.

If you work outside of the home, you can't possibly love your children or you would stay home with them. If you stay home with them, you can't possibly be anything but a no-good lazy bones who doesn't ever get out of her bathrobe. You can ignore the noise other people make about your life, whether it's a stranger or even your mother-in-law.

3. You'll Be Volunteered for Everything

You're a stay-at-home mom. You have nothing to do all day so why can't you make the costumes for the school play, make cookies for the church bake sale, coach your child's little league team and organize a fundraiser for your daughter's dance team? Having a 9-5 job will get you out of a lot of those commitments when "volunteering" means someone signs you up as a volunteer, not that you signed up for it. But even without a full-time job, you

The bright side: You can and should say no. You simply can't do everything, despite your secret desire to live life as SuperMom. Forget the idea of being a superhero, the nice gal who never says no and the perfect mom. There are plenty of ways you can help out your child's school or volunteer your time for their extracurricular activities without your free time turning into a part-time job ... with no pay.

4. You'll Be the Go-To Sitter

Moms rely on moms a lot and, when it comes to stay-at-home moms, sometimes moms rely on them a little too much. You're with kids all day so why can't you just pick up that other mom's kids from school too and watch them at your house for a few hours? Unfortunately, stay-at-home moms are viewed as the go-to babysitter.

After all, you're not doing anything but watching kids all day, right?

The bright side: Make the situation advantageous to you and other parents. Start a babysitting cooperative so you can stop having to pay for babysitters. In a babysitting coop, all of you will swap time instead of money to share babysitting time. Everyone swaps time fairly so you're not the only one serving as a babysitter. Set your babysitting coop's rules to protect everyone in the coop. That way, you don't have that one parent taking advantage of all the other parents without ever giving back.

5. It's Easy to Get Burned Out

You love your children, of course. But it doesn't matter if you made your decision to become a stay-at-home mom because you couldn't bear the thought of not staying home with your children or you had other reasons, including not being able to afford the high costs of child care even with a paycheck.

It's easy to get burned out on staying home with the kids all day. Between the constant diaper changes, multiple runs to and from school each day and continuous loops of Itsy Bitsy Spider your kids will be singing each and every single morning, you'll feel like you're trapped in the same monotonous routine day in and day out.

The bright side: You can prevent burn out. You simply have to make time for yourself. Host a girls' night  for your mom friends. Plan a date night with your spouse. Take a night off and indulge in some me-time alone. You don't just deserve it. You need it to survive stay-at-home motherhood.