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Stay-at-home moms and working mothers may disagree on many issues, but psychologist Dr. Robin Smith, an Oprah Radio host, says it doesn't have to be that way. The bottom line is that all mothers want the same things for their families.

"America is an either/or country," she says. "We're a black or white, pro-life or pro-choice, Democrat or Republican. There's all this splitting that we do, and we lose the wisdom of both worlds. We lose the wisdom of being able to be women at our best—blessing the journey of someone who has found their way and not trying to make it your way."

Dr. Robin says women can't have it all. In fact, no one can. "That's an illusion that any of us can have it all," she says. "The goal isn't to have it all...it's to be attuned with yourself and with your children. Attuned means 'I'm connected.'"

If a stay-at-home mother becomes disconnected or exhausted, it's as if she isn't there at all, Dr. Robin says. The same goes for working moms. If a businesswoman is preoccupied with work and checking her Blackberry when she should be cheering on her child at a soccer game, then she might as well have stayed at the office.

Dr. Robin says that if she had attended the mothers' roundtable discussion, she would have asked the women to argue the opposite position—working moms explain why it's important to stay home and stay-at-home moms argue why it's better to work outside the home. "We need to be able to drop our egos, and I mean, the way in which you see the world," she says. "[This] begins to expand our hearts, our minds, our spirits, and it takes the judgment away."
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FROM: My Baby or My Job: Why Elizabeth Vargas Stepped Down
Published on January 23, 2007

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