Generation Cedar

7 Myths of a Full Time Homemaker

Myth #1:  “You’re wasting your college education.”

I’ve been told that before. (It could be argued that college was the waste. But, I digress.) When I was a high school English teacher, teaching the children of perfect strangers, I was awesome. When I came home and started teaching my own children, I was a waste. G.K. Chesterton said it best:

“How can it be a large career to tell other people’s children about the Rule of Three, and a small career to tell one’s own children about the universe?”

Myth #2: “All they do is clean.”

We do a lot of cleaning, that’s for sure. And while it can feel like drudgery at times, with an attitude shift, bringing order, beauty and freshness to a home can be one of the sweetest ways to serve and love. And it will not be wasted on your children. They may not notice it now, but they will remember your efforts to look well to the ways of your household, and they will rise and call you blessed.

“If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.” John 13:14

Myth #3: “They don’t get to use their gifts.”

Personally, being a homemaker is the only way I’ve been fully able to use my gifts. A full time job outside the home robbed me of any time to pursue them. Freedom and flexibility are friends to us.

Myth #4: “Your husband has to be rich.”

We have lived on as little as $19,000/year with 3 and 4 children. It may require sacrifice to live on one full time income (I work very part time from home now), but it can be done. Additionally, money can be saved when one factors in gas, lunches, eating out, clothes, daycare, etc.

Myth #5: “Homemakers are lazy and want the easiest route in life.”

I heard a man say this. And clearly, he’s never been a full time homemaker.

Myth #6: “It’s not a real job.”

A “real job” is defined by a paycheck. But a paycheck is a terrible indicator of a job’s importance. A prostitute provides a service and makes money, but I wouldn’t call that a “real” job. However, a woman gives birth, thereby perpetuating civilization, and doesn’t get a paycheck. I’d say she has a real and important job. See? A full time homemaker makes people and shapes them to live productively in society, and serves as her husband’s assistant. Real. job.

Myth #7: “Homemaking isn’t fulfilling, like a career.”

The paycheck thing again. Our worth, unfortunately, is inherently, inextricably tied to making money. So we have to keep pushing against that powerful message and remind ourselves of the truth.

Homemaking is incredibly fulfilling only if you realize your weight and influence. You are irreplaceable in your home. As a nurturer, a nurse, an encourager, a counselor, a steady presence in a shifting world, a cook that creates memories and builds relationships around her table, a ready neighbor to soothe a hurting friend–you are the maker of a home that will stand against the storms of life.

Steady homes anchor people through life. Steady homes must be built by steady laborers. Be encouraged:

“…be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” 1 Corinthians 15:58

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26 Responses

  1. Another well said post. Thank you so much for these encouraging words. “…being a homemaker is the only way I’ve been fully able to use my gifts.” I couldn’t agree with this statement more.

  2. Thank you so much for posts like this. I don’t often hear comments like this directly, but I feel it in the way that people talk around the subject. When loved ones talk about other women in our family and their wonderful careers and how fulfilled they are, the implication is there. Another myth I would love for you to explore is “What will you do when your kids are grown?” It seems obvious to me that I will be continuing to care for my home and also helping them out and hopefully being a blessing of a grandmother! Even if they don’t get married or have children right away, the idea that I would have nothing to do seems positively crazy to me! 🙂

    1. Angela,

      You’re right. And from what I’ve seen with my friends, the season of grandchildren, and (usually) caring for parents is an extremely busy season. Caring for parents seems to be an after-thought, and many find themselves too busy to do it.

    2. I have two kids who are college age now. Because I homeschooled them and they are taking some of the same college classes I took, they feel completely comfortable asking me for help. Now I am homeschooling college! My oldest who attends college away from home also calls several times per week so that keeps things busy. Plus I still have the three younger ones too.

  3. Thank you for encouragement through truth! It is still hard sometimes to focus on the value and importance of staying at home while the world around belittles and frowns upon our choices. Giving up a career has been the most rewarding and at the same time hardest thing. But God is gracious and His blessings abound in our faithfulness to Him.

    1. Heather,

      Yes they do. And praise He told us that there WOULD be enmity between us and the culture. We don’t have to look to it, or be guilted by it. He alone we must serve.

  4. We are facing the possibility of my husband losing his job of twenty years. While trying to be supportive, my dad seemed almost excited to suggest I would probably have to find work again. I know he feels I’m wasting my degree, intelligence and talents by staying home with my children. I no longer chaff under his comments, I just know there are scales over his eyes and he doesn’t comprehend our values or vision. There is also no way for me to communicate it to him without offending him deeply.

    All that to say this, your post blessed and encouraged me more than you could know. We are in trying times and I needed a reminder of woo do what I do.

    1. Erin,

      Wow, that is a difficult trial. I’ve been there. God’s Word is true. He is faithful and He does provide for our needs according to His riches. Sometimes it’s family disapproval that is tougher than the physical challenges.

  5. Thank you for this post! I amu finally at pace with God’s call for me to be a homemaker. I always wanted this life but I always felt guilty for wanting it. I watched Mt husband struggle to make ends meet and thought of myself as a burden. So, I went to work! Within 6 months I was making compromises in Homeschool just trying to get everything done, my home was a disaster, and there was such tension in my home. The Lord showed me that I was made to be the glue for my little family and that raising my children with godly values and a true sense of the word ‘American’ is indeed a huge contribution. They will grow to be world changers in their own right because I nurtured them in the fear and admonition of the Lord. Thanks again for this post. You are very encouraging.

    1. This, this, this. Between the comments from my mother and my own lack of a paycheck, I often feel like a burden to my family. My husband has to remind me often that where we live, daycare for both our kids would cost about $400 EVERY WEEK. It just makes more sense for me to be home with the kids – I’m happier, the kids are happier, and my husband actually looks forward to coming home from work now.

  6. I have a feeling that once I am done with this season of growing my little ones,(years from now)that I will finally know what I want to *be* when I grow up. We raise them, but it *makes* us!

  7. Awesome article. I just think God commands us to be homemakers who cares what the world thinks!!! We obey God the devil wants us working and no having babies

  8. This is so accurate!
    Mums at home are really important.
    I worked as a paramedic when my two boys were toddlers. I could choose my hours, so I worked either nights, or when their teacher dad was at home. It was part time and brilliant.
    When we moved from NZ to the U.K., I made the decision, based on lots of prayer, not to go to work till I felt it was the right time.
    My colleagues and friends asked why. I told them it was simple, lots of people can save lives, but my kids have only one mum and it was my job to be there to support them as they settled into a new country, life, etc
    Six years later, I felt called back to work. I found a great part time job that was just during school.
    After being made redundant during lockdown I have realised it is helpful for me to be home again, as the kids return to school in this turbulent time, as seniors, I will be home to reassure them, calm them, have a tasty snack ready after what was maybe a more-than-usual stressful day, etc.
    By being here, they have more opportunities to talk to me about what’s bothering them. I have noticed my teen boys don’t chat much about what’s bothering them, so they need as many opportunities as I can give them.

  9. As we move toward secular, humanistic materialism, all there is is “ordinary time” converted to money. “Flourishing” is an increase in GDP. Outsourcing investments in a family is better if one’s time can be converted to a higher fee per hour–whether this is public school, day care, or a nanny.

    Unfortunately, since about the beginning of the 20th century, our society (and government) judges progress via Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and therefore a school teacher’s work is counted in GDP, but a homeschool teacher’s work (or a homemaker’s work) is not.

    For me, one way to “economicitize” homeschooling is to consider the cost of private tutoring that would be paid if you were outside your family–and not just any private tutor, but a top of line dedicated one that provides a customized curriculum per student.

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