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I recently shared a post on Facebook that proposes a fiscal value for stay-at-home mums. It suggested that they would be eligible for an income of $113,000 per annum if they were paid. It prompted me to think about what I would pay myself if we did earn a wage.

A while ago, in my house there was some tension over who earnt the almighty dollar. In particular, who put food on the table and a roof over our heads. With tenacity and my, ‘I-am-woman-hear-me-roar’ defiance, I wrote an invoice for a week’s worth of wife/mother duties. I created a business name, logo, a fake ABN and all other company related whatnot that you would see on any other invoice.

This invoice listed an itemised account of all my motherly & wifely obligations.

It included the following responsibilities – cooking, landscaping, nanny, personal shopper, cleaner, dog walker, gardener, accountancy, and so on. Each job included the hours spent on each activity and the hourly rate as set by the state’s wage policies, with GST applied individually.

So, my bill was popped into an envelope and sent on its way to my dearly beloved. I waited anxiously, laughing at the hilarity; how I was going to win the argument and clearly state not to undervalue or under-appreciate my contributions to the household.

Secretly, I was high-fiving myself – I missed my calling as a comedian, obviously!

Please don’t mistake my intentions, I am a proud wife and I am honoured that my husband is the man he is.  Truth be told, my husband works his behind off to provide for his family. He works two jobs, often to the point of sheer exhaustion which can affect his delightful manner and thus, his ability to have quality time with us.

Dear hubby’s work ethic has enabled me to be a stay-at–home mother to enjoy and raise our children.

However, does that mean stay-at-home parents are of less value then their paid partner? I put in the hard yards as a mother and wife – usually around 18 hours a day. The rest I’m getting broken sleep whilst still needing to be bright and chipper for the kids and a doting, loving wife.

Having a partner show gratitude for your efforts goes a long way.

Being a mother is not necessarily hard, depending on how many children you have and their individual needs. However, I am quite often flat out from daylight to dark; running around after children like a cheetah hunting an antelope. When I do manage to fall into bed, I can’t find myself able to relax long enough to get a good night before I have to do it all over again.

Occasionally, if I’m lucky, I may be able to read one paragraph of a book, or take a bath. But, often my effort goes unnoticed by my dearly beloved, just the weary and grouchy Mum, or something not done. This is where I breathe deep and try not to implant an axe into his skull. Counting is another strategy I use in times like this, I am an expert at counting to 1o, sometimes to 300.

Being grateful costs zilch, all it takes is a few words of appreciation.

Now, back to the invoice. It arrived in the post and I placed it on the cupboard to wait for my husband to open it. Eventually, when he did read his mail, it was met with the comment “What’s this crap?”

I, meanwhile, was barely holding on to raucous laughter amidst trying to explain the intention of the invoice. As you can imagine, it wasn’t well received at all. Yet, I still feel very accomplished and victorious, as my point was received and heard.

Mums, don’t ever feel undervalued or under-appreciated. You are investing in your legacy; the future leaders and change makers of this fabulous world we live in. Every day, give thanks for the efforts your loved ones are making in and out of the home. Remember Mummas and Papas, being a stay-at-home parent rocks!

How do you like to show appreciation? Share with us below!

Image source Shutterstock.

  • We should all appreciate one another, both partners contribute in the running of a household.

    Reply

  • I have been a working mum and finally with child no. 4 a stay at home mum for 7 years. Both are time consuming and I do appreciate both sides. But as you said a bit of appreciation and gratitude for what the other partner does goes a hell of a long way.

    Reply

  • I show my appreciation by listening to my husbands’ complaints about work and how no-one else will do the jobs. I work a full time job plus do the housework and always have a meal on the table. I bite my tongue when he gets home, checks his computer and asks what time dinner will be ready. The one thing I never do is tell him I’m doing 2 jobs and only get paid for one. I prefer not to rock the boat.

    Reply

  • I have heard stay-at-home mums say that “I am just a house wife” or “I am the Manager of House Hold Affairs”. The perception also stems from the mum’s attitude towards their role as well as society values.

    Reply

  • So how much was the invoice for? I don’t have the luxury of a husband or partner, I do everything.


    • I would have to have a look at it it was something like $3000 a week from memory. I have been a single parent and seriously you rock ! ????



      • I would have to have a look at it it was something like $3000 a week from memory. I have been a single parent and seriously you rock ! ????


      • I would have to have a look at it it was something like $3000 a week from memory. I have been a single parent and seriously you rock ! ????


      • I would have to have a look at it it was something like $3000 a week from memory. I have been a single parent and seriously you rock ! ????


      • I used an emoticon- hence the ? Mark

    Reply

  • I buy myself flowers, all the time, because I love them and deserve them. It’s my weekly thing and nobody questions it. Hubby used to buy them for me on special occasions or just because, but I’ve now taken that mantle on. I often buy them for people in my life for no reason or for a reason. I think we should all have flowers in our lives every day. I cook hubby his favourite meal to show my appreciation. He’ll hug and kiss me and thank me for what I do. But obviously there are times when it all gets too much and I feel not appreciated at all! It’s at this breaking point that I share it with hubby and son and tell them they need to put in. It works all ways I think. We need to be grateful, thankful and show it.


    • I completely agree gratitude should travel all around. We need to show it and receive it as do others in our life. Thanks for sharing????



      • I completely agree gratitude should travel all around. We need to show it and receive it as do others in our life. Thanks for sharing????


      • I completely agree gratitude should travel all around. We need to show it and receive it as do others in our life. Thanks for sharing????


      • I completely agree gratitude should travel all around. We need to show it and receive it as do others in our life. Thanks for sharing????


      • I completely agree gratitude should travel all around. We need to show it and receive it as do others in our life. Thanks for sharing????

    Reply

  • I’m a stay at home mum and don’t feel undervalued or under-appreciated. My husband tells others often that I’m working harder then he does and that’s true and I find great joy in doing so and being there for the children.


    • What a wonderful hubby :) You’re very blessed .

    Reply

  • I stayed at home and raised the children and enjoyed it thoroughly. After all I believed they are my children and considering it was no easy feat that I became a Mum, as I was told I could never have children. So my husband and I decided that he would work and I would work at home and put in the abundance of time with the children. If I had the opportunity, I would do it all again. I loved being the one who saw their first steps, watched them cut their teeth. Take them to the park, read to them and cook for them. They are so precious and yes, mums are undervalued and shouldn’t be. Mums who stay at home are doing the welfare system a favour and their contribution to educate and grow these little people into good citizens can never be under rated. Years ago a woman asked me what work do I do and replied ‘I’m just a mum.’ She said to me no, you’re not just a mum, you have a very important role to play in the lives of your children. She said, don’t ever refer to yourself like that again, because you have high value in being there for your children. So I never use that word ‘just’ in and context of my vocabulary any more, because I now sense that it can make whatever I do trivial, and motherhood is not trivial. It is a demanding role and the best achievement I have ever accomplished in my life has been to become a mother. If I am not successful in anything else of my life, I know that I will always be satisfied knowing that I raised 3 wonderful children who are intelligent, don’t get themselves into criminal situations or hang with the wrong crowd and definitely haven’t done drugs. They are grounded and sensible. Sure they will make their fair share of mistakes, everyone does, nevertheless I am grateful and thankful that I was able to impart a make a good impact on their lives. The rewards will be seen when they mature into adults. Keep up the good work Mums of Australia. And if you are a full time stay at home mum, or even if you work part-time or full time, be proud and know that you have extreme value because you are the one who puts your life and energy into them. It’s great to see written articles such as this, because recognition is important and gives encouragement. Thanks for the great article.


    • Oh my goodness Mumma- I loved your comment. I couldn’t agree with you more. You took the words out of my mouth literally. Thank you thank you xx

    Reply

  • i don’t think that i would do that- sending an invoice lol.

    Reply

  • I don’t know a husband who could afford to pay you a salary as high as that unless he is a Managing Director or has a very profitable business. The average husband would have to work for at least 18 months to earn that much money pre-tax.
    It is nice if the Dad helps with chores, makes you feel loved, supported and appreciated – not taken for granted.


    • I know right! I sometimes think because us Mumma’s perform our role out of love that we are undervalued and adding a fiscal value to it helps people understand that what we do is important and extremely valuable. I completely agree with you Mumma a husband who helps out with the chores really does show love and appreciation. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. x

    Reply

  • Sometimes I can feel unnoticed, but my husband makes a point of saying thank you regularly.


    • Glad to hear that your hubby says thank you – it is important to hear it! :)



      • That’s so lovely Mumma that your husband thanks you. What a beautiful gesture.

    Reply

  • It is certainly appreciated when I get a thank you every now and then.


    • Thank you Mumma’s for your comments. How wonderful for those Mumma’s who get thanks and feel valued and appreciated. That is a true blessing and your partners are gems. As for those who don’t always get the thanks know that there are plenty of other women in the same shoes that thank you for your fabulous job- raising kids and leaving an important legacy to the world.

    Reply

  • I think mums as a whole are under valued, what they do is dismissed as not much. Years ago, I worked and hubby didn’t. Still it was me 100% responsible for the home and the kids as well as being the bread winner. Now, hubby works and I am unable to. The kids have left home but we have 2 dogs, nearly the same. And I am still 100% responsible for all things home and dogs. When I worked, days off were spent catching up on housework and baking etc. Hubby has a day off and it’s spent ‘relaxing.’ There’s way too much double standards going on

    Reply

  • I think my husband would have a similar response.

    Reply

  • Never felt undervalued by my partner – it is a partnership and we parent and share responsibilities together.

    Reply

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