Dr. Laura gives moms at home their due

In celebration of Mother’s Day, Dr. Laura Schlessinger will host a live event that will be simulcast in theaters nationwide, including the Cinemark Century Theatres at Westfield Capital mall. “Dr. Laura Live! In Praise of Mom” will be aired at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, with an encore presentation at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday.

The show will feature audio and video vignettes about moms, and Schlessinger will answer questions from the audience. The event is part of a launch of her book “In Praise of Stay-At-Home Moms.”

Schlessinger discussed her book in an e-mail interview with The Olympian:

Why did you write your book and what do you hope readers will gain from it?

Stay-at-home moms are not much respected for their sacrifices or the benefits they give to their children and families. Many discount them by saying they’re “lucky” to be able to stay home, when staying home is not a luxury; it is a real compromise in lifestyle and buying power.

Also, many will say that what the SAHMs (stay-at-home moms) are doing is a wonderful thing but that they choose not to – which means that being a SAHM is not necessary, just an equal choice to full-time day care, nannies or baby sitters. How can it be that a mother’s love, attention, affection, influence, etc., can be adequately replaced by hired help?

In this economy, many working moms are finding themselves in the role of stay-at-home mom – often not by choice. What’s your advice on how to handle the transition?

My book has chapters that deal with the transition and the need for support (MOMS Clubs for example), budgeting, feeling valuable, and so forth. I have been impressed with the number of letters from women “laid off” who are discovering how wonderful it is to be at home, enjoying their children, and having less stress, in spite of the diminished living standard.

Some working moms want to stay at home with their children, but can’t financially. What advice do you have for them?

The book contains such stories – people who knew they couldn’t make it work, and found ways to make it happen. Where there is the priority, there will be the solution. … Where it is truly impossible – it is just so sad and people have simply to do their best. That something is difficult or impossible for some people doesn’t diminish the value of that thing.