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Working Moms vs Stay At Home Moms – Pros and Cons

Becoming a mamma is one of the greatest moments in life. Admittedly there is a lot to consider if you’re joining all of the other powerful women abroad on the motherhood train.

Your family dynamic is unique to your household, and the ways that you parent are a reflection of that.

The resources you have readily available, how many helping hands are nearby, and how close to trustworthy family members or babysitters will ultimately predict whether you can practically be a stay-at-home mother.

Or if you’ll need to work outside of the house prominently throughout your time raising a young child or multiple children.

Being a stay-at-home mother certainly has its positives and its negatives – just the way that being a working mom does as well – what you end up doing is determined by a lot of moving variables in the end.

In this article

What is a stay-at-home mother and how is a working mother considered in the world of parenting?

Whether you will end up being a stay-at-home mother or a working mother is primarily based on your family’s financial, emotional, and livelihood demands as a whole.

There will probably come a time when you sit down with your partner and ask yourselves what’s truly best for your baby, your relationship, and your wallets.

This usually happens when more than one child becomes a reality – when you have your second child per se. Maybe this time is happening right now, as you read this, and that’s why you’re here in the first place – to sort through the slew of questions.

All of the ‘what ifs’ and ‘I wonder ifs’ that are running through your mind are very important questions and curiosities. Where your children go or do not go, when you and your spouse are working is one of the most important things you’ll ever have to consider.

A stay-at-home mother is a mother who plans to stay at home for many years caring for her children

A stay-at-home mom or SAHM as many parenting groups know these superhero women to be are mothers who plan before they have children, or at an inevitable point of giving birth to multiple children – that it’s best for them to stay at home and raise their kids fulltime.

Many stay-at-home mothers happen by chance, but there are also families who implement the well-planned growth of their family that consists of the mother staying at home with the children until they’re able to on their own.

As a stay at home mom, you might find yourself fulfilling the following tasks on a regular basis:

  • Household laundry and chores
  • Diaper changes for multiple children at a time
  • Bath time for each child a few times a week
  • Preparing meals multiple times a day for the kids
  • Breastfeeding or bottle-feeding baby as needed
  • Cleaning up spills, food leftovers, and old-milk sippy cups daily
  • Working through all tantrums or fits with baby’s, toddlers, and older children
  • Clothing the kids each day appropriately
  • Physically paying bills and keeping track of household financial ebb and flow
  • Taking care of school projects or possible homeschool lessons
  • As you can see, being a stay-at-home mother requires you to be emotionally, mentally, and physically prepared to do all of the various tasks at hand. You might be feeding the baby while being on the phone
  • with the internet bill while cooking dinner – all at the same time.

It truly is more than a full-time job to be a stay-at-home mother. Yet, many women find these household chores and tasks for the children to come as second nature eventually. So, what are the positive aspects and negative aspects of being a SAHM?

Pros or positive aspects of being a stay-at-home mom

Let’s start with the positive aspects of being a stay-at-home mother (as told by real mothers), hearing from other mothers directly is one of the best ways to figure out if it’s right for you.

According to, there are many positive sides to being a stay-at-home mother like having a routine suited to you and your child’s needs, being available to meet each of your child’s needs during the day, and the luxury of being completely work-stress free during your time staying home.

Since a stay-at-home mother is solely focused on raising her children, she gets the satisfaction of her partner working for the family, while she gets down in the nitty-gritty of raising well-mannered kids.

Additional positive experiences that a stay at home mother might get to experience include the following:

Learning to de-stress with your children through yoga, stretching, or other activities you can bond together through

It’s tough to be there for your children’s stressful moments while working outside of the home, which is what makes being a stay-at-home mom so wonderful – you get to de-stress with your children.

Many families wish they could’ve taught their child this or that, and well, a stay-at-home mother gets to.

Staying at home means lots of hours to spend bonding time with your children. You can do yoga, arts and crafts, or other fun bonding activities with your children on a regular basis.

This can help destress you and your children, which is something that has a lifelong impact on your relationship with your kids.

In fact, one of the longest child behavioral studies executed by The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, which is called – The Study of Early Childcare and Youth Development proved that children with a stay at home mother have less aggression and violent behavior than children who have a working mother.

Now, we’re not saying that all kids who don’t have a SAHM turn out to be angry, that’s not the case at all, but when aggression is present for certain age groups of children – more commonly they were in kids who had less time spent with mom at home. 

Stay at home moms get to feel the gratification of proving to herself that she is capable of being a stay at home mother

When you transition into motherhood, right away it’s evident that it’s not going to be a cakewalk. Motherhood is full of left turns, surprises, and a lot of emotional turmoil.

Motherhood is unforgiving and happens all too fast to ask your growing child to slow down for you to catch your breath.

When you’re a mother who stays at home with many or one small child, then you get to feel massive gratification from being a stay-at-home mother. Ask anyone out in public what they think of stay-at-home mothers, and they will tell you they admire them, it’s tough being a full-time parent!

You can focus on your unique child’s needs and support them

The more you’re around your child the more you get to work on their specific set of needs and desires – because you get a front-row seat to the show. You won’t have to ask anyone else, like a childcare provider how the day was because you will; be right there with your child all day long.

This can be a gift in many ways, your child will learn to trust you deeply, and you will be able to focus on your child’s needs 100%. All of the exciting milestones you’ll get the opportunity to witness like your baby’s first words, the first step taken, the favorite foods.

You might be able to fulfill that breastfeeding dream of your’s for your baby

Upon finding out you’re pregnant, instantly feeding your baby comes to mind. You smile to yourself and think about how healthy your baby is going to be. Breastfeeding is proven to enhance immune health function in babies. states that breastfed babies have fewer hospitalizations and infections as a baby – breastmilk is wonderful at creating antibodies and nourishing all of a baby’s needs.

If breastfeeding is important to you, you can fulfill all breastfeeding plans when you’re a stay-at-home mother.

Routine is a key essential when you have a child and you get to choose yours when you stay at home

Being a stay-at-home mother simply means choosing your own schedule, even if that means being as lax or structured as you’d like to be. Sometimes stay at home mothers have no routine, and this works for them.

The free nature of being able to create a routine that can and will change over time is one of the biggest bonuses to being a mother who stays home with her babies.

Motherhood is demanding in ever-changing ways; for example; your baby usually sleeps through the night, and then suddenly they get sick for a night which causes you to stay up more hours than sleep.

Things change all the time in motherhood, and it’s nice to have the flexibility of setting your own routine.

Cons for a stay at home mother includes not getting alone time and more

It’s completely normal for a stay-at-home mother to question why she chose to do the hard enduring work it takes to be a good stay-at-home mother – at least once in her motherhood journey.

After all, being a good mother is hard work – when you’re doing it the right way it always is. Some days won’t seem as smooth flowing, and easy-going as other days.

Being a stay-at-home mother takes patience, resilience, and grit. Most mothers will experience hardships in their time being a stay at home mothers. Below are the most commonly experienced challenges when choosing to be a stay-at-home mother.

You might find it hard to maintain your identity when staying home with your child full time

Maintaining a sense of your identity will be harder to do when you become a stay-at-home mother, keeping up with the demands of motherhood will be much more obvious than maintaining your own identity.

Many stay-at-home mothers go through an identity loss crisis at some point after childbirth.

Losing your identity can be felt in a variety of ways, some of which can include the following; not keeping up with hygienic self-care, losing interest in activities once loved, or even neglecting to maintain a balanced diet – poor nutrition.

It’s certainly nothing to be ashamed of for experiencing a loss of identity after having your baby, and it can happen to work mothers just alike – though, it is more prevalent for a stay-at-home mother to experience.

When this happens it can take a lot of work to recollect your identity, some mothers benefit from therapy sessions after giving birth to their babies to assist in reclaiming their identity.

The household chores can be difficult to keep up with and can feel like too much to handle

Staying at home with your child, ultimately means you will probably be doing most of the housework on your own while your significant other works outside of the home.

Even though this sounds fair, housework, bills, and caring for your baby can cause the best of us to feel overburdened.

Keeping a house clean without children tossing toys around, breastfeeding pillows laying about, and let’s not forget how much you’ll need to sit down with your baby to nurse or burp them (not allowing you to get moving to clean the house) can seem like hard work.

You throw babies in the mix and chores will seem even more complicated.

Your significant other will hopefully be understanding how difficult it is to keep a house clean and a child fed all in one day, but this aspect of being a stay-at-home mother can be one of the most difficult to experience.

As a stay-at-home mother, it’s hard to neglect the house mentally because a part of you will want to keep the house clean – yet it is physically exhausting to constantly keep a home clean and successfully be a stay-at-home mother(for most women).

Alone time is harder to create when you become a stay at home mother

Being a stay-at-home mother is not only a commitment to being there for your child while your spouse works, it is a bond that will inevitably form deeper than this. Your child might need you, even when your spouse is home – which can make it very hard to get any alone time.

This can be very difficult for mothers who know that they thrive through alone time. This can completely change when you become a stay-at-home mother before you might have found relief and ‘alone time’ from being at work or going to the gym.

When you’re a stay-at-home mother, you might not be able to walk out the door so smoothly. Since your child is already used to you being by their side, your baby might not want you to leave even after their other parent is home.

Handling your child’s temper tantrums in a healthy way might prove to be hard eventually

When you stay at home full-time, it can be hard to manage the way that you respond to your child’s fits. After a while, you get so comfortable with feeling like you’re in charge of the situation that you forget it’s still important to remain calm, cool, and collected when a fit happens.

You might start to feel like you get no time away from your child, therefore it’s much more difficult to respect their space and emotional needs. In turn, your child might disrespect you more often because you stay home all of the time.

Let me remind you of the phrase – time away makes the heart grow fonder – you might find this to be true for your relationship with your baby and toddler, especially as they grow up.

You might truly miss engaging with other people outside of your home socially 

Some people are social butterflies while others simply aren’t – regardless of where you fall on this spectrum, you might endure the feeling of social isolation that sometimes comes with being a stay-at-home mother.

Having to stay home all of the time can be lonely and cause feelings of isolation. Many parents feel that they need to communicate with other adults to be fulfilled, and this is when staying home all of the time becomes saddening.

Not being able to engage with other adults, is one of the most emotionally exhausting aspects of being a stay-at-home mother.

You might end up wanting to engage more with other adults or people outside of your home more, and feel the loss of not having that when you have to stay home all of the time.

A working mother is a woman who leaves the household for her employment while their spouse or a childcare provider watches her baby

Being a working mother ultimately means that you will leave the home to go to your place of work, while your baby is with their other parent or a babysitter.

There are also pros and cons to being a working mother, so let’s go over the positive and the negative aspects of mothering while working outside of the home.

The pros of being a working mother are plentiful, for instance, you’ll be able to interact with other adults

Many mothers love going back to work after their baby is born, it gives many women a deeper sense of fulfillment and purpose than staying home will. As a working mother, you will enjoy many of the benefits of being able to work after having a baby.

You may even find more positive aspects to being a working mother than I could name here.

You certainly won’t be alone, nearly two-thirds of mothers with children under the age of 18-years-old find themselves working – according to a census done by the census bureau recently.

You get to feel the fulfillment of sourcing income that will be helpful for your family

Depending on what kind of personality you have, making money of your own might be an essential requirement for you to thrive after having your baby – some of us are natural-born go-getters and won’t give up work-life that easily.

Some women don’t mind having their partner working, but many women are just as driven as their spouses to bring in the cash flow.

If you previously worked and decided not to after having a subsequent child, it might affect your household financial status more so than if you decide to stay home full-time after your first child.

It also makes sense that if you need to work to keep your household status, then being a working mother is suitable for you.

Regardless if you have to work or have the option to stay at home without making money, some people feel their best when making money.

If this is you, you will be able to continue fulfilling your personal financial accomplishments while being a new mother too if you get to continue working outside of your home.

You will be able to have your alone time and talk to other adults fulfilling the urge to be an adult

They say; love what you do and it won’t be considered work. That’s true, but not all women need to be head over heels in love with their place of employment to reap the benefits of being a working mother.

Having a job is crucial to interacting with other adults in the early years of motherhood.

Some women find that going to work is incredibly satisfying for their mental health by enhancing their social skills with other adults. Sometimes talking to babies all of the time can make you feel a little wonky – adults need other adults.

When you’re a working mother, you’ll look forward to getting out of the house and interacting with other adults outside of your immediate family.

Your spouse might be much more willing to help you with the household chores if you’re working too

It sounds fair enough for a stay-at-home mother to have full responsibility for the household chores while their spouse works – and – it sounds fair enough for a working mother’s spouse to help halfway with all household chores.

A 50-50 split? Many mothers will find this to be the most enticing plan after motherhood. Working moms will probably get more help with the household chores since their spouses will see that they have to spend time outside of the home too.

If it means a lot to you when your spouse helps out with the household chores, you might want to opt for being a working mother.

You will learn how to be the most efficient version of yourself

At some point, it will all slow down…remind yourself of that when you become a working mother. But, when you become a working mother the mode of your life is naturally set to go mode – which ultimately means you’ll need to learn to be the most efficient version of yourself.

Life will demand that you know how to utilize your time wisely to make things go smoothly.

Waisted time and lollygagging will be a thing of the past, and while this might reign true for working and non-working mothers – when you opt to work outside of the home, you will need to be able to manage your time well.

It’s not that life will be put on hold while you work, you may have to take your child o daycare or elsewhere to stay while you’re at work.

Take all of the details of your lifestyle into consideration when you’re deciding to stay home or go back to work. If you aren’t already good at managing your time, you’ll catch on.

You can keep working toward your career while you endure motherhood

One good thing about continuing to work after you give birth to your little one is continuing to work on your own career. Sometimes as mothers, we feel that it’s natural to give up on our own goals when we have a baby – this simply isn’t true.

You can continue working on your own career or goals at work, and be a good parent. It’s nice to see mothers continuing to pursue their careers while simultaneously mothering a young child.

Many people include their career or work as a part of their identity, and losing that can prove to be quite hard. You get to continue building your career when you choose to be a working mother.

Often we hear about how exhausting motherhood can be, yet, less often we hear about women feeling unfulfilled leading to that exhaustion when they are no longer pursuing their work endeavors.

It’s quite possible that mothers would have more energy overall when they feel happier by continuing their career pathway after giving birth.

Cons of being a working mother might include feeling guilty for leaving your child early on and more

Like all good things, good things must come to an end eventually…it’s likely that at some point you won’t feel too good about your choice to be a working mother.

You might not feel that good when you leave your child with a babysitter anymore, or you might find it exhausting to have to plan work attire and clean the baby clothes every day.

Below are the most common negative experiences for new working mothers.

You might experience guilt when you have to leave your baby to go back to work

Leaving your baby, especially in the early months after birth can be quite difficult. Many new mothers, end up feeling guilty when they have to leave their baby for the first time to go back to work.

This feeling of guilt may or may not go away over time, and is unfortunate to have to feel but inevitably it does still happen to work mothers.

It’s good to be aware that your setting yourself up for this when you plan to leave your newborn baby more so than leaving an older toddler at home – though, it can happen regardless of the age your child is.

When you understand that there is a possibility of experiencing guilt over leaving your child at home early on, you can plan coping mechanisms, or, enhance other aspects of your relationship with your baby to help soothe this feeling over.

Your child might miss you more than you expected they would making it even harder to leave

On another note, when you leave for work all of the time your child might miss you even more than you expected. Even though this is something you planned for, you can’t control how your child is affected by you having to leave them to work.

It is human nature to miss the people we love, and children especially have a hard time dealing with their mom leaving. Your baby might have a more difficult time allowing you to leave for work.

A baby or small child feeling emotionally overwhelmed with their parent leaving them might look like throwing horrendous fits each time their parent leaves, shying away from playing with other children or with their parents, looking or feeling sad on a regular basis.

Even when you expect that things will be okay eventually, or that you can ‘train’ your child to be okay when you leave for work – you might find that the adjustment is simply too hard on your child to continue leaving them to go work.

This happens often to first-time mothers who haven’t been through the adjustment phase yet, of leaving their child to attend work. New mothers have high hopes and then once they actually have to say goodbye to their little one, it doesn’t evolve the way they expected.

It can be very stressful to plan for a week of working with small children involved

While you gradually learn to be the most efficient version of yourself, you might naturally feel the stress that comes along with working outside of your home.

Planning a week of work with a young child means meal planning, car rides, and preparing everyone emotionally for being apart during your work hours.

Yes, you might get used to your routine after the learning curve, but, work schedules sometimes change frequently and when that happens you’ll have to adjust once again to another schedule.

The average work schedule changes on average every couple of months. Work schedule changes can happen at any time and you don’t exactly have the right to refuse a schedule change.

While shift changes at work may not be a deal-breaker for working moms – keep it in mind when considering returning to work.

When your baby gets sick you might still have to leave them while you fulfill your workday

Most parents can agree that it’s one of the most unsettling things when our baby gets sick, especially for the first time in their life.

When your baby gets sick and you have a job, you might have to leave your baby on the days when they’re sick so that you go to work – which can be extremely hard to do.

As a new mother, there will be nothing more that you will want than to be there for your baby’s first illness, you will want to nurture, cuddle, and love your baby when they get sick.

You might be required by your employer or financially to still go to work when your baby gets sick, especially if the duration of your baby’s sickness lasts more than a few days.

This is one downside to being a working mother, and it absolutely helps to have a trusted care provider or family member to look after your baby when they get sick, if possible.

And then there’s the in-between – A working stay at home mother is a mother who works from home and stays home full time raising her kids

Some mothers have been able to find a combination of being a stay-at-home mother and working simultaneously, this can consist of working in a career choice that involves being with your children.

Certain jobs can be done from home, though this will take patience, understanding, and resilience on the mother and child’s part. The jobs that are more often performed by mothers from home include the following.

You can become a daycare provider for the neighborhood children near you from your home

Many stay at home mothers who still would like to bring in income for their families end up combining being with their children and staying at home by opening their own daycare center.

Depending on which state you live in, you may have to obtain certain licensing and state approvals to become a daycare provider. Seek further information in your area if you feel that this is suitable for your household.

You can seek writing employment or call center work that can be performed from home

This year, especially, work-from-home job options have peaked, it’s not uncommon to find suitable employment that can be done from home. Writers, accountants, and even telephone operator positions can all be fulfilled from home.

Once you secure the right position, you can satisfy financial requirements for your family and save on childcare by working from home.

Building an online business from home is possible for stay at home mothers

One good idea that you can do at the start of motherhood is to launch your own personal business. Yes, it will be time-consuming to do so, but despite those challenges, it can eventually pay off in the long run.

Building your own brand and business is a good way to eventually have a source of income while staying home with your child.

I know how busy motherhood can be, and finding the extra time that building a business takes can be difficult, but it’s worth it if you’re willing to navigate this option with patience.

Grants and loans can also help you launch a business by funding the necessities you’ll need to get your business started.

After a while, this option can provide relief for your entire family, and you’ll be able to stay with your children.

In Conclusion

Whether you’re a stay-at-home mother, a working mother, or a mother who attempts to do both – motherhood is meant to be a beautiful time in both you and your baby’s life.

Even if being a mother to young children is only temporary, the bond that you create with your child during their childhood will last a lifetime.

It’s important to do what’s best for you and your child at this time, it will change in the future, and you can always come back around to working once your child is a bit older. You aren’t missing out on anything by choosing to be a stay-at-home mother rather than continue working. And remember, you got this!


Pros and Cons of Being A Stay-At-Home Mother – MomJunction

Children – Working Moms vs Stay-At-Home Moms

Surprising Facts and Research About Stay-at-Home Moms

Working Moms vs Stay at Home Moms (SAHM): Pros and Cons

Should you quit your job to be a stay-at-home mom?