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After Decades of Decline, A Rise in Stay-at-Home Mothers

In addition, across class and marital status, full-time homemakers used more authoritarian control and stronger discipline and stressed obedience as a goal for their children. They also indicate that the rise in the proportion of mothers who stayed at home will not likely continue because most mothers surveyed would like to work part-time or full-time. Wherever you are, make sure you have a group of people who will support you. The research that has shown reasonably consistent differences has examined the relationships within subgroups based on social class and gender. Yasgoor also recommends joining professional associations or attending networking events.

Mothers with the financial means have long had the choice to go back to work or stay home after the birth of their children. Today, however, more moms in all economic levels appear to be.

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The number of these married stay-at-home mothers, Education levels of single stay-at-home mothers are markedly lower than those of single working mothers.

Single stay-at-home mothers are slightly younger than working single mothers, and are more likely to have at least one child age 5 or younger at home. The share of foreign-born is similar for single stay-at-home mothers and working mothers but is lower than for married stay-at-home mothers.

Single stay-at-home mothers include those who have never been married, are divorced, separated or widowed, and who do not have partners living with them. As is true of single mothers, there is a wide education gap between cohabiting stay-at-home mothers and cohabiting working mothers. Nearly two-thirds have at least one child age 5 or younger at home, compared with about half of cohabiting working mothers who do.

Cohabiting stay-at-home mothers are somewhat less likely than their working counterparts to be white, and somewhat more likely to be Hispanic. The shares of cohabiting stay-at-home mothers and at-work mothers who are black are identical. They are somewhat more likely to be Hispanic than comparable working mothers and less likely to be white. They are younger than comparable working mothers: About Pew Research Center Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping the world.

It conducts public opinion polling, demographic research, media content analysis and other empirical social science research. Pew Research Center does not take policy positions. It is a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts. She writes for a few hours in the morning but spends most of the day with Sophie. Organize the desk, write out a short list of the top three priorities they want to do tomorrow, and shut off the computer.

Many women—66 percent of working moms and a whopping 83 percent of those at home, according to our survey—believe the start and end of the day are crucial times to connect with children. Cue lots of moms nodding in agreement: When her son, Masa, was 6 months old, she took a part-time job producing an educational video series.

In hindsight, the timing was terrible. Her husband, Mark, who works in the outsourcing industry, was in an intensive work cycle and traveling overseas regularly. Rachel would put in a long day, pump breast milk in a supply closet, then rush home to a babysitter anxious to leave, a clingy child and no food in the house. Although her employer was supportive, Rachel still pushed herself to log extra hours, knowing there was a deadline to meet and a team waiting on her contributions.

Once the project wrapped, she opted to stay home. Because she was there, too, mom can translate the nuances, leading to richer dinnertime conversations. The primary reason—according to 44 percent of respondents in our survey—that moms stay home is to be with our children. What Hurts Career uncertainty. In our study, 35 percent of career-oriented stay-at-home moms say the cost of child care is a barrier to returning to work. Dinners with Jen, Rita and a few other mutual friends from prenatal yoga are a huge source of connection.

Always on the Go Jen is at a crossroads. When she spoke to Working Mother , she was on maternity leave with her second son, Henry, now 4 months old, but intending to return to full-time work. Her manager, a fellow working mom, also allows Jen the flexibility to occasionally work from home.

What Hurts Morning goodbyes. But instead of feeling resentful of his widening world, Jen tries to reframe it as an inevitable part of his growing up. What Helps When she feels overwhelmed by the sheer work of a two-child, two-career household, Jen keeps perspective by knowing that family life evolves quickly. Household cleanliness is a nemesis for many working moms:


The tension between moms who work and those who stay home is still smoldering a decade or so after the term "mommy war" was first coined, and even as the number of working mothers climbs. Acceptance As a Working Mom. 4Stay-at-home moms are poorer, less educated than working moms: Stay-at-home mothers are younger, poorer and less educated than their working counterparts. For example, 34% of stay-at-home mothers are poor, compared with 12% of working mothers. Mothers at home tend to be younger than working mothers: 42 percent of stay-at-home moms in were under age 35 compared with 35 percent of working moms, and stay-at-home mothers are more likely to have children under age 5.