Law School Discussion

Poll

Are stay-at-home mothers with  graduate degrees conscientious caretakers or the downfall of equality in the workforce?

Educated stay-at-home mothers raise educated kids, benefiting society
28 (35.4%)
Mothers should work part-time if possible
10 (12.7%)
Mothers should be full-time 3-6 months after birth
6 (7.6%)
Anything less than full-time is a detriment to all women and society
5 (6.3%)
Doesn't affect society or equality either way
30 (38%)

Total Members Voted: 79

The Mommy Wars for J.D.s

mugatu

  • *****
  • 21790
  • I'll show YOU pacifist.
    • View Profile
Re: The Mommy Wars for J.D.s
« Reply #60 on: May 22, 2007, 12:30:20 PM »
hmmm...

Astro

  • *****
  • 9930
  • Happy birthday goalie!!!
    • View Profile
Re: The Mommy Wars for J.D.s
« Reply #61 on: May 22, 2007, 12:53:57 PM »
Commenting after everyone's cooled down is fun!

Yes.

No mention of one of Lily's favorite chestnuts: parents really play only a small role in what J called "nurturing," instead, it's peer groups that really shape people.  Judith Harris and others have written about this.  Some of my local homeschool enthusiast acquaintances are sort of using idea as one of the reasons they want to keep kids out of schools - 'cause kids are not fit to teach other kids to be good, moral people.  (Note please: I'm not personally on the homeschool bandwagon.)

http://www.amazon.com/Nurture-Assumption-Children-Turn-They/dp/0684857073



I remember this.  I think it strengthens my argument.

Astro

  • *****
  • 9930
  • Happy birthday goalie!!!
    • View Profile
Re: The Mommy Wars for J.D.s
« Reply #62 on: May 22, 2007, 01:56:46 PM »
No mention of one of Lily's favorite chestnuts: parents really play only a small role in what J called "nurturing," instead, it's peer groups that really shape people.  Judith Harris and others have written about this.  Some of my local homeschool enthusiast acquaintances are sort of using idea as one of the reasons they want to keep kids out of schools - 'cause kids are not fit to teach other kids to be good, moral people.  (Note please: I'm not personally on the homeschool bandwagon.)

http://www.amazon.com/Nurture-Assumption-Children-Turn-They/dp/0684857073


I remember this.  I think it strengthens my argument.

Were you arguing that 'rents ought to be staying at home?  At least for a while?


Not ought to, necessarily, but that it benefits the children (and, as a result, society).



ETA:  I don't like the word "ought" at all.  Both in sound and in meaning.


Re: The Mommy Wars for J.D.s
« Reply #63 on: May 24, 2007, 10:41:53 AM »
I see that there's a lot of societal pressure on women to be perfect moms and perfect workers. Mothers and fathers probably feel they miss out on a lot of things by not being around for their children 24-7 but society continues with the notion that if a mother can, she should stay home with her children and the father should go out and support the family.

A woman is in a catch-22 position. If she decides to continue to conform to that notion of society, marry and not go to college, have children and never work, she's considered lazy. If she has a college degree and doesn't work, she's considered lazy or a social status seeker. If she works full-time, she's considered a bad mother because she can't be immediately available to her children. The happy medium seems to be part-time, work-from-home mothers. Then there's the problem of the "old maid", which still exists in some form or other. Older family members putting pressure on women (and men too) to settle down, get married, and start a family once they reach the ripe old age of 25 or so. Although that may be for people who are not in a graduate or professional school program.

But that thinking largely relegates a woman to filling a predetermined biological function: Your purpose in life is to bear children and raise them. It reduces them to a somewhat less than human status. If we're still human, it's ok to want to do more than fulfill a stereotypical role. Maybe we do have a responsibility to work. If I have a daughter, I don't want to give her the idea she has to depend on a husband, nor my sons the idea that it's ok to disrespect women in the work place because they're "supposed" to be at home.

It may sound fairly feminazi to say this. I am hearing more women my age complaining they really need to find a rich man so they can stop working.

Astro

  • *****
  • 9930
  • Happy birthday goalie!!!
    • View Profile
Re: The Mommy Wars for J.D.s
« Reply #64 on: May 24, 2007, 10:45:10 AM »
::checks agenda::
::sees Soc101 is scheduled for 2 PM::
::scratches head::
::wonders what the lecture was all about, then::

mugatu

  • *****
  • 21790
  • I'll show YOU pacifist.
    • View Profile
Re: The Mommy Wars for J.D.s
« Reply #65 on: May 24, 2007, 11:17:23 AM »
::checks agenda::
::sees Soc101 is scheduled for 2 PM::
::scratches head::
::wonders what the lecture was all about, then::


:D

It's surprising the rest of the thread didn't suffice...

naturallybeyoutiful

  • ****
  • 1203
  • Everything is everything
    • View Profile
Re: The Mommy Wars for J.D.s
« Reply #66 on: May 27, 2007, 05:15:41 PM »
A woman is in a catch-22 position. If she decides to continue to conform to that notion of society, marry and not go to college, have children and never work, she's considered lazy.
Maybe this is regional/cultural because I know a plenty of girls from my high school (and the larger surrounding area) who planned to and are doing this right now.  Many of the people in my town not only do not bat an eye, but also don't expect otherwise.  I think it just depends on where you're coming from (literally  :D).


If she has a college degree and doesn't work, she's considered lazy or a social status seeker.
Perhaps, though I still think it depends.  I know another substantial portion of my high school graduating class (and my town, in general) who did get 4-year degrees acquired their MRS "degree" in the process!   :D  If they got pregnant right away, they didn't spend one day in any professional setting.  Interestingly enough, it seems that no one thinks less of them because of it either.  Though I realize that my anecdotal experience doesn't disprove your points, I do think it goes back to the issue of regional/cultural differences and norms.

If she works full-time, she's considered a bad mother because she can't be immediately available to her children.
Again, it depends.  I'd daresay that the majority of black children in two-parent homes, for example, would still have a working mother.  (There are also historical patterns and trends at play here, but I digress...)  I know I and almost everyone I knew certainly did, and no one thought less of our mothers because of it!  Again, I could see this being subject to cultural or socioeconomic influences though.


The happy medium seems to be part-time, work-from-home mothers. Then there's the problem of the "old maid", which still exists in some form or other. Older family members putting pressure on women (and men too) to settle down, get married, and start a family once they reach the ripe old age of 25 or so. Although that may be for people who are not in a graduate or professional school program.
On these points, I agree!  Your first point was of particular interest to me because if I could find a way to be at home with my kids and still earn my own income with limited hours, I'd be all for it!  Best of both worlds, in my opinion.  For other women, the choice might be different though.


But that thinking largely relegates a woman to filling a predetermined biological function: Your purpose in life is to bear children and raise them. It reduces them to a somewhat less than human status.  If we're still human, it's ok to want to do more than fulfill a stereotypical role.
This kind of thinking does, unfortunately, underpin some people's views of womanhood.  I like to think that it is a woman's awesome privilege to bear children, and yet the responsibility of both a mother and father to raise them.  I don't see bearing and helping raise children to be some kind of burden that makes you less human, but rather an opportunity to become more of who we so desperately need to be -- loving, selfless, giving, etc.  Done right, raising children can help you become even more "human", or perhaps "humane."  That's why the idea of raising children should (and on this point I suppose we may agree) not be "pushed off" onto women alone.  It was never intended to be this way, irrespective of the sheer biology of reproduction.

Anywho, just my thoughts...

boo!

Re: The Mommy Wars for J.D.s
« Reply #67 on: June 04, 2007, 08:48:44 PM »
Once the children are in school full-time, there is NO reason for a woman to sit home.  I've been a full-time employed mother for all of my son's life.  I quit my full-time, high pressured job to attend law school and now he's in school full-time. 

There's VERY little to do during the day when he is at school and my husband is at work.  I'm so sick of hearing homemakers complain about how hard it is to be a homemaker.  I've done both and I can assure you, IT IS MUCH EASIER to be A STAY AT HOME MOTHER, then it is to be a working mother!!!  Cleaning the house takes no more than 5-7 hours per week (my house is not small), laundry takes maybe 3-4 hours (including folding/hanging it and putting it away), shopping takes an hour, preparing meals- maybe 7 hours a week.  All of those things are done when no one is around.  Perhaps if women spent less time sitting on their butts in front of the TV watching soap opera's, oprah, the View and gossiping about their neighbors, they'd realize how SIMPLE their stay at home jobs really are!


darlinalexi

  • ****
  • 425
  • Southwestern Class of 2010
    • View Profile
Re: The Mommy Wars for J.D.s
« Reply #68 on: June 05, 2007, 07:16:27 AM »
My mother went to ug and grad school when I was a little kid.  I know she worked her ass off to be a student and a mother, and it was hard to leave her two elementary school kids at home.

Then she was in a car accident when I was in 4th grade, took time off work for injuries, and then she never went back.  I'm the youngest.  Honestly, I've always been sad for my mother for doing this.  I can't understand why an extremely intelligent and well-educated woman would chose not to use the education she had earned.  She got it into her head, though, that the household couldn't survive if she went back to work... this was not the case.  I think I would have respected her more growing up if I knew that she had an existence outside of my brother and I, and that, while we were important, we were not her only priority.  I think that this attitude is one reason that my 25 year old brother still lives at home (and no, he never once moved out).  Also many times I saw that she was unhappy with my father, but she couldn't leave the marriage because she had no money on her own.  Now, my brother and I both have college degrees, she is bored, but she has been out of the work force for too long (in her opinion) to go back. 

I think working part-time, at least, gives a woman options. If her marriage ever falls through, she can control her own destiny.  She can also be a role model for her daughters--- teaching them that they can have a career and a family.  Also, when I was a teen and my mom was lecturing me on getting an after-school job and earning a living, I barely listened to what she said because she did not work...



Maybe this was just my situation though.  I think there are definitely different options for different women.  Also, if a woman has many small children, I can understand taking a few years off until they are older.  But what does she do when her children are older and don't need her as much?

darlinalexi

  • ****
  • 425
  • Southwestern Class of 2010
    • View Profile
Re: The Mommy Wars for J.D.s
« Reply #69 on: June 05, 2007, 07:31:59 AM »
Then again, I can't understand why many women feel that they MUST have children.  I am a woman, and I never want to be a mother.  I feel that many women selfishly have children because they want the experience of being a parent.  If you are going to be a work-aholic, don't have kids. If you can't afford to have children and you have the option, don't have kids.  I know that there are some surprise circumstances, but if you CHOOSE to be a mother, you should have the resources to support a family.  That means, some money and some time.  Really, society doesn't need more children.  We are an overpopulated nation.  It isn't like  women have kids for the purpose of benefiting society. 

I don't know if this really has anything to do with this thread, but it is something to think about...

(Mind you, I am not saying that mothers can't be attorneys.  I'm just saying, if you are working 60 hours a week to make partner, you might want to reconsider having kids just to fulfill a societal expectation that women should be mothers... that's all.)