Millions of women across the world compromise on professional fronts to be stay-at-home moms after attaining motherhood. But do the society or their families appreciate their efforts? Do people acknowledge all that women give up on a professional level and so much more, to bring up children? Not usually. Simply because in our society, we value any kind of work by the price one earns from it. So while being a corporate honcho or a doctor or an accountant may earn you respect and status in the society, being a stay-at-home parent wouldn’t. In fact, many people assume that devoting years of your life to raising kids isn’t a job. But what if you put a price to it? Will stay-at-home mothers earn the respect and acknowledgement they so deserve?
- A research says that medium annual salary of a mother is $162,581.
- This should bring stay-at-home mums the respect and appreciation they deserve for their hard work.
- Staying at home to care for children isn’t easy and millions of women pay the cost of it professionally and financially.
- It is high time we begin to value the labour they put in.
Many people assume that devoting years of your life to raising kids isn’t a job. But what if you put a price to it?
Researchers at Salary.Com worked to put a price tag on some unpaid yet crucial jobs and the results are staggering. They have uncovered that the medium annual salary of a mother is $162,581– rising nearly $5,000 from our 2017 calculations. Which means that most stay-at-home mums are owed a lot of money and a sincere apology for the trivial treatment they receive for the sacrifices they make day in day out. This should silence all those who think it is easy to be at the beck and call of children non-stop and care for the home and other members of the family too. Perhaps all mums should consider carrying placards stating those figures around their necks, for every time anyone taunts them for “doing nothing” by staying at home.
The financial equation among couples plays a big role in establishing the gender dynamics in a marriage. It is quite easy for men to say that women must stay at home and raise kids and leave earning money to them. But do they have any idea how it plays out in setting up the hierarchy of power? Have men ever question what their entitlement has to do with their paycheck? Men enjoy a superior status in society because a breadwinner is given more importance than a homemaker. Not many consider caring for home and children as a full-time job. Despite it being just that, and one without any remunerations.
For us, a job is only respectable if it earns you big bucks. Imagine how many may feel about doing something which earns you no money at all.
Our society has conditioned us into believing that women are duty bound to take care of children. You bring them in this world, thus you are responsible to feed and take care of them. Which is why despite this being a full-time job, there is no paycheck at the end of the day. There are many who will argue that it is selfish to ask for a salary to care for your own children. But they should then answer why is it that the society treats stay-at-home mums so differently? Why don’t people acknowledge that these mothers work hard too, and thus deserve a status equivalent to that of any person who earns a salary for their work? The bitter truth is that we value money over love and care. For us, a job is only respectable if it earns you big bucks. Imagine how many may feel about doing something which earns you no money at all. That’s full time parenting for you.
Which is why these figures are humbling and put to rest to all those who berate stay-at-home mums for having it easy. Since the language of money is the one which everyone understands, it is important to teach the value of stay-at-home parents to people in it. Motherhood comes with a great cost and women pay it happily. All they ask in return is to be treated with dignity. That their efforts and hard work get acknowledged just the way any professional’s do. Because work is work, after all, no matter if you get paid for it or not. Every human deserves respect for how much they work, and not how much they earn for their work. Perhaps this report will put things in perspective for a lot of people who think stay-at-home mums are jobless or worse, living off their partner’s income.
Picture Credit: peacequarters.com
Yamini Pustake Bhalerao is a writer with the SheThePeople team, in the Opinions section. The views expressed are the author’s own.
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