Ask SAHM is a place where you can ask our staff & community a question safely & anonymously. Please read our disclaimer.

How old must your kids be before you're no longer a SAHM and just a deadbeat who wont work?

Of course a woman who has never worked deserves alimony. It is how the court systems help keep additional deadbeats off of welfare. They start being a SAHM.. then become housewife, then retired housewife.. then eventually just live off the alimony provided by some hard working sucker.

Report

Got an Answer?


Answers (17)

Some people go back to work 6 months after their babies are born. Some go back when they are done having children and the youngest is at school.
Some go back because they need to financially. Some need to for their mental wellbeing. Some do because it makes them feel fulfilled. All of these reason are perfectly fine.
Some go back to work when their children move out. Some never go back at all.
Some do this because they love being available to their families 24/7 and they feel being a stay at home parent is their calling. Some do this because they feel the household runs better with them home. Some do this simply because they don't need to financially so why the hell would you (most of us look forward to retiring, let's be honest). Some scrimp and save and budget to make it happen, and some are really fortunate to be in the position where their partners income covers everything. All of these reasons are perfectly fine too.
Since when does doing what works for you and your family, and making life easier for yourself, make you a "lazy deadbeat"?
You don't have to do things the hard way just for the sake of doing things the hard way.

 ^^^LOVE this response! Perfect! Agree 100%
helpful (3) 
 Agree, heat response. You have covered everything. I'm currently at home, the youngest starts kindy next year. I help at school and preschool when needed and help run part of the p&c. I do everything at home and get the kids the after school activities and play dates. My husband works and studies most of the time and hardly has any time at home. Me being at home ensures that any free time he has is spent with the kids and I. We get no help from Centrelink and pay huge tax amount per year, so definetly contributing to society. I love being around at home for the kids. I. A few years time I will be in a position to work with my husband in our own business and until then, I don't give a crap what other people perceive me to be dong when my kids are at school.
helpful (4) 

My husband has suggested I continue to stay home once the kids are at school (no pressure, just presented the option).
We both like the way the house runs with me being at home. It means I am able to run all the errands during the week and get everything done during the day so when he gets home and on the weekends we all get to relax and have good quality family time together. Basically I would continue to do everything I already do, I'd just be doing it better because I'd have less interruptions etc. I might even be able to take a class or 2 during the week and actually be able to do something for myself for once - which isn't a bad thing and doesn't make a person lazy.
It would also mean we wouldn't have to waste money on before/after school care (we don't get any assistance from Centrelink, so with 3 kids, the hours they would be in care I'd be working for free).
Having said all that, I've decided to start studying via distance next year and start working when the youngest starts kindy, just for the sake of my mental health and to have some financial independence.
But I can see why some parents don't return to work. Everyone's situation is different and different things work for different people.

 You have described our situation pretty much exactly. Everyone is different. I'm fortunate to be in the position of not needing to work. I want to be here for the kids when they get home from school.
helpful (4) 
 Im fortunate to be in the position of working school hours, win-win!
helpful (3) 

I don't think a person that raises their children is a deadbeat. I know lots of women that have waited until their children have grown up and then gone back to work.

I think a 'deadbeat' is someone who is not contributing to society positively. If you a raising reasonable children tone a help to the next generation you are not a deadbeat, and frankly if you are doing all the housework and errands and working full time, you are helping contribute to the myth of being a superhuman which none of us can be. Sounding like a martyr instead. I think if you want to work and can find work after your youngest child is 8 y o then all good. There was a Facebook article that probably went viral some years ago and that person who wrote it said paraphrasing her it's ok to be mediocre and not be a superwoman. To love your life as being ordinary.

 Its OK to be a superwoman too. People do what they need to do, who are you to tell working mums what they can and cant do? Hypocritical much? No martyrs here, just well organised and share housework and childcare equally with my kids Dad. If you dont want to do that, no problem, but your comment just sounds bitter and jealous.
helpful (3) 
 Sensitive much? Her comment was about her not anyone else 🙄
helpful (3) 
 You think her comment sounded bitter and jealous? How on earth did you get that? I thought it was spot on. And if you got offended it probably reflects more about you than her.
helpful (3) 
 If you got offended by my comment id say it says more about you love..
helpful (4) 
 Sje needed to put working mums down 'for making her feel inadequate, lolwtf' and the working mum who sticks up for herself is the one in the wrong. Oh-kay-dokey. If somebody makes YOU feel inadequate by just doing what they do, YOU are the one with the problem honey. Nothing to do with martyrs. Women have worked and coped for aeons.
helpful (2) 
 She didn't put anyone down. Merely saying it's ok not to be a superwoman.
helpful (1) 
 OMFG. Where did she say working mums make her feel inadequate? And where in her post did she put down working mums? I read from her post it's ok to be either. And it's fine not to feel you need to do it all. You're not wrong because you're a working mum. You're wrong because you've completely taken her post the wrong way. Did you know it's possible to be one thing (like a SAHM) and be perfectly happy yet at the same time respect the choices other mums (like working mums) make? I think you're the one who feels inadequate. And threatened by SAHMs. Bloody hell.
helpful (1) 
 Did you EVEN READ her post? I quote 'you are helping contribute to the myth of being a superhuman which none of us can be. Sounding like a martyr instead'. Are you really saying thats not a put down?
helpful (2) 
 Did you ??? "I think if you want to work and can find work after your youngest child is 8 y o then all good." All of us work hard, no matter what but none of us are martyrs. We all just do our best. Nothing superwoman about that, because not a single one of us is perfect. And that is ok. I think you completely missed the point.
helpful (0) 
 So its ok if your childs 8 and if they arent? Not judgy at all eh?
helpful (1) 
 Blaming working mums for sahm feeling inadequate or not being able to do everything is like blaming a naturally slim person for fat people feeling inadequate. Imagine the uproar if somebody said that on here?
helpful (1) 

We've recently found ourselves in a position whereby I no longer need to work and probably won't need to ever again. My husband works full-time, and my kids are school-age (6 and 10).

Will I go out and get a job just so a stranger on the Internet won't think I'm a "deadbeat".

Nope.

Quite frankly, I'm enjoying spending my days pottering around the house, playing with my dog, reading books, and taking naps. I appreciate that I am lucky to be able to do this. But I have no financial or emotional need to work, so why do it? I'd only be taking a job away from someone who does need it.

What business is it of yours when a parent returns to work? You do realise that there are many ways to contribute to society that don't involve earning an income. Who do you think runs the school canteen, or helps your child in reading groups, or the many other activities at school where volunteers are needed.

 Parents do it, and they are both working and non working. Most of the volunteers at my kids school work too.

helpful (3) 
 ^before anyone twists that around I dont have any issue with SAHP, thats their business. I just wanted to point out that working parents volunteer too because its rarely acknowledged..
helpful (1) 

I knew a woman who was a SAHM for 18 years and I said the kids are at school from age 5 or 6 and she said she is home in case the kids need to come home if they aren't feeling well

 If that works for her and her family then cool :)
helpful (5) 

I work and my husband stays at home. I am away with work very often and my children are all at school. My husband takes care of everything at home, and I take care of bringing home the bacon. It works well and he is by no means a deadbeat.

When they have finished uni. But than again why work if you don't have to?

Oh dear, are you having a cry about what other mums do OP? 🎻

It took me 6 years to find a job after 12 years as an SAHM. I started looking when my youngest turned 6, after completing some courses to brush up my skills. I was an Executive Assistant before becoming a mum. Ended up waiting tables and checking out customers at Coles, both part time.

 Sometimes its that you havr been away so long you can't get work
helpful (3) 

I assume this was written by a male. Pig.

 Idk my MIL told me im not allowed to take maternity leave (like wtf )
helpful (0) 

Im not 100% sure but I thought that once your youngest child reaches school age that being a sahm on centerlink was not acceptable. I vaguely remember a huge uproar when this was introduced some years ago now

 I think you are right. I'm pretty sure parenting payment stops when your youngest turns 5. I could be wrong though lol.
helpful (0) 

Why do mums have to be doing paid work to not be deadbeats? I've always worked part-time/casual since having kids but only because I want to and the opportunity has been there. Financially I dont need to. Currently i do 1 school day per week plus some casual work. I dont want my kids in daycare or before and after school care. I work my a*s off at home! Cooking, cleaning, washing, ironing, meal planning, grocery shopping, Bill paying, deal with all paperwork, take kids to sports, appointments, friends houses, help with homework, attend school events, run all the errands, gardening, arrange, plan and co-ordinate EVERYTHING to do with the running or our house, family and lives. My husband works full time. We don't get anything at all from the government financially. I guess our rolls are 'traditional' but it works well for us. Because I take care of everything during the week my husband can relax more and not feel he needs to do stuff all the time and we all have free time on the weekends for fun and socialising, hobbies, family time etc without feeling like we have an endless to do list hanging over our heads.

 I work parttime and study parttime so all in equals fulltime. My husband is army and goes away alot.
Definitely feel like we have an endless to do list hanging over our heads.

helpful (0) 
 Some people do all that and work 🖒
helpful (4) 
 ^and some do not. Why is one way always the only way? How judgmental people are of those in different situations to the
helpful (4) 
 Like someone else said. Why work if you don't want to and don't need to? If our family life runs better for everyone with me being at home how does that affect anyone else? We don't get any centrelink payments and my husband pays over $70k per year in tax so it's not like we are leaching off other taxpayers and not contributing! We have been together 20 years (since we were 17). Before kids I worked full-time. Everything we have we have built together from scratch. We are a team and each of us has our strengths to contribute. I could not earn what my husband does and never had a career as such, although I've worked in the same industry (in varying capacities) for 17 years. I'm very organised and good at 'running the show'. Works for us so why should anyone care or have an opinion? Everyone is in a different situation with different goals and priorities. No-one is right or wrong.
helpful (5) 
 I wasnt being judgement. Was saying some people do what you do and work. And realistically it doesnt take all day to do things. Home by yourself with no kids to entertain, dinner to prep etc takes 1/4 of a day at most. Bills, errands, paperwork etc isnt that hard. Unless your doing like business paperwork, then yeah- but then id consider that working. Its great you can do what works for yous. I only work 4days a week because i choose too, i dont really need to either. But i find it keeps me from sitting on my butt because i was always so organised there was hardly anything to do. Come 11:30 id just sit and watch tv etc whatever works works 😆
helpful (2) 
 Sad if you think you are only good for breeding and being a good a little housewife
Your life sucks

helpful (0) 
 ^ if it makes some people happy, why is it sad?
helpful (3)