A recent survey hosted by ForbesWoman and TheBump.com attempts to capture how American women feel about the economy and working outside the home. It found that working moms are, in general, “an unhappy lot,” further supporting the fact that men and women are not interchangeable cogs in the employment and domestic worlds.
Of the 1,000 women surveyed, 67% worked outside the home. The remaining 33% were stay-at-home moms. The majority of both groups agreed that staying at home with the children was a luxury few could afford. Most (69%) of working moms said their families needed the extra income. But the conflict between children and finances left all women feeling pressured: “ . . . more than half (52%) of the women surveyed say their partners or others sometimes make them feel that they aren’t devoting enough time to their child/children. And 44% of stay-at-home moms say their partner or others sometimes make them feel like they’re not pulling their own financial weight.
Neither sex, apparently, can decide whether family finances or the children should be women’s primary focus. Around 10 percent of stay-at-home moms wish they had remained in the office rather than leaving to have children. Overall, though, stay-at-home moms are more content with their lot: Almost half (47%) of working moms believed they would be happier at home, while only 19% of stay-at-home moms wanted to trade places with their working sisters.
The Family in America is a journal of public policy published online by The Howard Centre for Family, Religion and Society. Its current issue has a very interesting discussion of the much maligned 1950s.