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Non-working mums


It goes without saying that there's a pressure on all women today to be high achieving and wonderful at multi-tasking. The great debate of stay at home/working mothers rumbles on and even though the years pass, the conversation stays exactly the same. When I was at a girls only school, our headmistress (way back then) was all for us majoring in physics to ultimately train as engineers and beat men at their own game. That might have worked as a life plan for one or two of us, but let’s face it, for the rest, it was like trying to force round pegs into square holes and that particular stuck record got boring.

There was a pretty vitriolic attack on the Kilimani Mums that I read online, criticising them for spending their days manicuring their nails, going to the gym then collecting kids from school. I think that this was a little unfair.

Read Here:  'Dear Kilimani Mum, how to survive your husband's affairs'

Apparently Miuccia Prada (world famous Italian Designer) recently said (in what I detected as a somewhat chippy tone..);
If you don’t work, of course you think about the problem of your wrinkles from morning until night!’ said Mrs Prada. ‘If you work, you have something better to think about.’ Adding, she could have ‘no conversation’ with a woman that doesn’t work. Okay, harsh. Apparently Rachel Johnson agrees;

Read Here: The secret of a Perfect Wife is...

Many women dread the searching dinner party question, ‘so what do you do?’ but if you are an expat wife then it's worth facing that fact that you probably can’t work (due to permit limitations) and hell, there is nothing wrong with that. If you have a chance NOT to work for a while then it’s pretty wonderful. Enjoy it. Having interests is great. Learning a new skill and setting yourself challenges - invaluable.  Getting on with some online study might be fun.  But appreciating precious time spent raising your kids, being there on a constant basis which will hopefully invest them with a sense of security which they can carry with them for the rest of their lives, should never be underestimated.

My eyes swim when looking at the websites of various literary agents.  One wrote, ‘we would love to hear more from working mums!’ Oh , for goodness sake let’s get real for a moment. Don’t you know that working mums don’t have TIME to write a manuscript in the first place, then endlessly trawl the internet to find the ‘right’ agent for their particular genre.  They are busy juggling a job, travel to work, a household, kids and then doubtless they collapse on the sofa in an exhausted heap whenever they get the chance. It's just the lazy layabouts like me who want to give it a go.

There was once a time when writers were allowed to be simply writers, artists were artists, poets, poets and housewives were unequivocally housewives. They weren’t required to do a hundred other things to justify their existence. Now that housewife is a dirty word, don’t feel done down.  My advice is; always have something in your back pocket to fling back at those nosy-parkers who ask searchingly; ‘What do you do?’ and then run with it with confidence. If necessary, make something up. ‘I’ve just taken up extreme sports’, ‘I trade stocks and shares online’ ‘I’ve just launched my own jam making business and it’s going extremely well.’  

We should all feel that we are enough and to all of those working mums out there; I take my hat off to you.  You are superheroes and I don’t know how you do it. This particular Stepford Wife is giving you all a wink ;) 

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