Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Worth The Wage

Reuters reports on a recent study which declared that a woman that stays at home full time with her children would earn $134,121/year if paid for all of her work.

The pay was based on the typical jobs a mother does such as housekeeper, day-care teacher, cook, computer operator, laundry machine operator, janitor, facilities manager, van driver, chief executive and psychologist.

First of all, I want to put to rest the myth that parenting is a job. It's not. It can be hard work, but it's still not a job in any traditional sense. So now hundreds of thousands or maybe millions of mothers are going to read the article I linked to or hear about it on Oprah or something like that and get snippy with their husbands because they're not getting what they're worth.

If parenting were really worth as much as the survey says it is, day care workers would be getting paid a lot more money than they currently are since they are pretty much raising our children for us anyway. With our children institutionalized they way they are, the best we can do is hope to counteract the damage done to them by the 'professionals'.

The bottom line is that we shouldn't attempt to put a dollar figure on parenting. The smiles, the hugs, the joy of watching them learn and grow are more than payment enough simply for having them around. I was with Little Dif in the bookstore a few weeks ago and I heard her tell another child, "...I learned that from my dad." Who needs a paycheck for that?