There seem to be a lot of misconceptions and opinions about mums who work from home. In my experience there is rarely an acknowledgment that this is hard work, or perhaps even really ‘work’ at all.
Working from home does not mean I cruise the coffee shops all day, or that I can pop out for coffee whenever I choose – I don’t even like coffee!
When I say I’m working from home, I do actually mean just that. It’s not what I say when I fancy a spot of daytime TV – I couldn’t even tell you what programmes are on in the day, hell, I couldn’t tell you what programmes are on in the evening for that matter.
I am working on my business all the time, every day of the week, any minute I get. So when you see me waiting at school, or on my phone at the park, or at the queue in the supermarket, I’m not on Facebook or texting a friend – I’m working on my business, probably trying to frantically reply to that email I’ve been trying to get to all day. Although being a work from home mum affords me flexibility, sadly it does not give me extra hours in the day. Whilst I can drop off and collect my children from school, playgroup and drive around and around to after school activities, and whilst I can play dinosaurs with my toddler or read extra stories – sometimes I just need to reply to something before other people’s office hours end.
My business is just that. It is not a ‘hobby’ or some little game I’m playing to keep me busy. It is a necessity. I need to work to contribute to my family finances, as do the majority of WFHM’s – this does not tend to be the perception of outsiders though, and we are constantly left having to justify our position.
If you ring me for a chat in the two hour window I have between playgroup drop off and collection I WILL ignore your call. Why? Because that is the ONLY time I have on my own to tackle the really focused pieces of work I need to get done.
Working from home is not ‘easy’, but for some people it’s the option that works the best for them after having children.
Do you work from home? Have to been on the receiving end of any of these assumptions?