Since I became a parent, I truly understood why Allah has exhorted us to honour our parents. It is easy to conceive a child but to raise one is something else. I don’t think you do realize the responsibility, the hard work that it represents until you have yours.
Mother status in the 21st Century
Nowadays, the key role of the Mother has been seriously undermined to the extent that she seems to be replaceable. The current trend tends to encourage parents to delegate their responsabilities to schools, social services , therapists and others. But obviously when you are looking at the state of our Society, it doesn’t seem to be effective. The right path should be that parents and external bodies ( when necessary)should work together hand in hand!
Moreover, today’s system is clearly stigmatizing the Mother who chooses to stay at home and look after her children. Thus, I would like to share an extract of Rukaiyah Hill Abdusalam’s book* that sums it all: ” Although a poor economy forces many mothers to work, it seems that others in the West are leaving home to get away from the stigma attached to being”just a mother”.Sadly when a woman in America stays home to raise children she is not allowed the peace and security of knowing that the system upholds and recognizes her role as a wife and mother.” Right to the point, isn’t it?
I am married and I have two daugthers. My eldest is six and she is autistic. My youngest is 13 months. I am working part-time and my children are staying at the childminder’s while I am at work. Alhamdulillah, Allah has blessed us with a very patient and caring childminder who hasn’t been put off by some of my daughter’s challenges . These factors definetly helped me going back to work peacefully. But whether your child is disabled or not, whether you’re working or staying at home, raising a child ain’t an easy job. Although I am often exhausted after a day at the office, I always strive to play with my children , take them out, communicate and annoy the teachers and all the therapists involved. I am as good at it as a “Stay at home” mum. So lately, I got very irritated by a “throw away”comment of a parent suggesting that “children need to have their mums home”. Some of these judgmental people assume that because you are a working mum, you only care for your career and that your children are left by themselves, sitting for hours in front of a Plasma eating take aways. The ironic thing is that at the end, this lady was begging me to help her finding a job.
So listen, whether you are at home or employed, fashionable or not, be comfortable with your choice and your situation !
* Women’s Ideal Liberation- Islamic versus Western Understanding by Rukaiyah Hill Abdulsalam