Dear SAHM HR Representative,
Firstly, I want to acknowledge that I have only been in this role for about four months now so I am aware there may be nuances I have yet to figure out. However, there are a couple of issues that I have been wanting to address but I can never seem to connect with anyone in your department (or also interestingly any other department for that matter). Before I delve into my concerns I want to clarify that I am grateful for the opportunity and am by no means afraid of hard work. I have worked my entire adult life from slinging popcorn at 16, to a stint as a drug test administrator after college (those are some creative people), and finally assisting managing a multi-million dollar generating department. I know transitioning to a new position is always difficult and the old adage “the grass is greener on the other side” definitely plays a part in the new job blues when it doesn’t quite meet your expectations. Even with my vast experiences trying to make a living I have never quite come across a job with such unique highs and lows. Perhaps upon review of my points below I can gain some much needed clarification. Surely, I am not the only SAHM experiencing this?
I am discovering there are a lot of unmet expectations by not only myself but also from my “colleagues” at my location stemming from unrealistic concepts of available time and energy. I partially blame Pinterest and the numerous blogs I guiltily devoured while working in other jobs. I thought “Look at these moms with their time to have a spotlessly clean and organized houses, hot nutritious meals cooked with no pre-packaged ingredients every night, and tone your booty in just an hour a day workout routines.” I believed if only I wasn’t working outside the home I too could accomplish all those things. Wrong. I now believe those moms are aliens. The work load is greater than I initially imagined. I spend more time picking up toys than I ever thought humanly possible, more dishes, more laundry, and a substantial amount of time negotiating with a tiny terrorist who threatens to unfold every piece of laundry, spill, or dump out all their toys over and over again. I have yet mastered the art of finishing tasks without having to stop and explain why USB plugs don’t go in tomatoes or why you shouldn’t lick things and try to put them in an outlet. The sheer exhaustion of never knowing exactly when your work day is going to start and the uncertainty of when it will end combined with absolutely no alone/quiet time is enough to drive anyone batty. I understand that budgets are tight so I am not expecting all of the legal lunch and bathroom breaks but starting with one 15 minute bathroom break sans children a day would be a great morale booster.
When I first envisioned this position I saw myself sitting on park benches casually chatting with other moms while drinking Starbucks. Mind you I do not even drink coffee but I thought for this mom friend utopia I would pick up the habit. The reality is there seem to be few social gatherings where moms actually talk to one another. When conversations do occur I seem to only be connecting with, let’s call them “unique”, over sharers. Perhaps this is a hazard of the position and what happens when you go too long without proper adult socializing. Lately on the rare occasion when a relatable mom strikes up a conversation I have found myself at a loss of how to really connect. I attribute this to my shock of them not immediately launching into the intimate details of their third degree episiotomy after they introduce their 2 year old son. I think workshops like “How to transition from toddler speak to adult appropriate conversations” or “It’s ok, we are all lonely. How to make friends as an adult” would be greatly beneficial for those of us in this position. Additionally, all the potlucks at my work location seem to have me as the sole planner, provider, and clean-up crew. I really miss the days in previous roles where everyone brought their fave dish and after we feasted we piled it all on a table in the office and continued to snack and chat intermittingly throughout the rest of the day. I have tried this concept but the conversations have been pretty one sided “where is my ninja”, “can I swim in the bathtub”, or my favorite “shh, I am hiding from the ghosts!” No one seems to care about my opinion on the recent North and South Korea negotiations. Adult socializing opportunities would be extremely rewarding.
In conclusion thank you for taking the time to review some of my concerns/frustrations within this position. I have many more points (along with lovely successes that border on over sharing) that I would like to share should you have the time. Also, it has crossed my mind that your department’s absence is a part of a greater (genius) plan to maintain SAHM position retention. I have to admit had I known whom to turn in my notice I probably would have quit multiple times by now only to want my job back the very next day. That would certainly generate a lot of useless paperwork so I could see how the secrecy would help maintain efficiency for your department. I promise if you tell me though I will keep the secret!