Empowered through the mouse

Empowered through the mouse

MOUSE WIVES

Empowered through the mouse

Some may frown upon hearing the title, deeming it unflattering. However, the benefits that come with it are fairly enticing. Mousewives, (for those who did not know) is the term used in contemporary lingo for those enterprising and self-assured homemakers who use the computer and an internet connection to make not just money, but a career as well, while staying within the confines of their homes.

With an eye on their computer screens and another at the numerous activities taking place at home, these homemakers do not let anything, neither household responsibilities nor the challenges of motherhood, bring their competence to a halt.  What could be a better way to improve their finances and gain an elevated sense of achievement than to get cozy in the computer chair, grab the mouse and zoom into cyber space to avail of the innumerable opportunities to earn?

Shruthi Rao (32), a freelance writer, working for a resume company feels that people should not underestimate the challenges of home employment. Working from home is as serious and professional as any other office job, according to her. “We do have specifications, deadlines or rules to follow. Just because we don’t step out of our homes does not mean we are doing some non-serious stuff.”

Often inundated with tiresome technical assignments requiring intensive research, she however, takes a breather and satiates the writer within her by writing short stories for kids and adults meant for publication. “It is all about combining passion with professionalism,” says this mother of a four-year-old daughter, who has earlier worked as a software engineer and confesses her real interest lies in writing.

For any homemaker it is not easy to isolate herself completely from commotion (read distractions) taking place around her, like a maid awaiting instructions, a cranky kid hungry for attention or the frequent ringing of the doorbell. These are some of the reasons that hamper Shruthi from working to her full satisfaction.  Working from home is surely a test of how good you are at multi-tasking.

Despite all these limitations, she firmly believes that the positives weigh greater than the negatives. “I can take care of my kid, household chores, work at my convenience, and get paid according to my output,” she states.

Nayantara Mallya (36), a web content writer, thinks setting aside a time table, which keeps changing according to other commitments, often results in the work being done in bits and pieces throughout weekdays and weekends. However, she feels that flexibility in working hours has its own benefits. Besides, working from home means she does not have to lose precious time and energy commuting or dealing with office politics. “It is only about work, which is paying enough,” she says.

But what really irritates her is the common notion people have about home employment. “People don’t consider this work. They think it is just time-pass,” she laments.

While appreciating the fact that these days, qualified and ambitious women can avail opportunities to work from home, she expresses displeasure about the term mousewife.
“I’d say it is dismissive and rather insulting. My marital and homemaker status has nothing to do with the quality and professionalism of my work,” asserts this mother of two.

New age women do not think juggling between their household chores and professional work is a feat limited to superwomen. The computer has made things easier for them and has literally brought the world at their fingertips.

Describing home employment as “an ideal option,” another homemaker, Smitha Krishna (35) working as a freelance web/graphic designer, says, “Home employment is best for women looking after small kids or elderly people and have responsibilities that require their presence at home.”

With a diploma in multimedia, she finds it easier to work from home, keeping flexible hours, and saving time, expenses and effort required for an office job. Besides the best thing is, she can be with her three-year-old daughter. “Balance is the key word. A great deal of responsibility and discipline is also required in order to succeed at working from home,” she stresses.

While she lists out the numerous benefits of home employment, Smitha feels the only demerit is there is no security in terms of payment. “That could be a hitch for an ambitious and career oriented person.”

Seema (29), who recently finished her training in medical transcription can wait to get started.  Her work requires a good typing speed and grasp over the English language. She hopes her degree in Food Sciences and experience of working as a nutritionist will help her understand the numerous medical terms she will have to deal with at work.
Talking about how medical transcription is attracting doctors for monetary reasons, she feels that the work has considerable scope for growth and is paying as well.  “They pay per page. The more I type, the better I earn,” she says adding that the payment could swell to Rs10,000 a month.

Of course,  the biggest plus point is she could be with her two-year-old daughter and also take care of the household chores.  “I don’t want to get an office job and leave my child in the care of a maid,” she says.

The computer has enabled women to seize endless opportunities to make a difference in their lives. N Nirupama (35) too found a way to win her fight with cerebral palsy and all the drawbacks and disabilities which came along with it, through this miracle machine. “I learned MS paint software on my own and started drawing the images of gods. These were appreciated by my family and friends who encouraged me to go ahead. I now get orders from acquaintances for the work I do, albeit on a small scale,” says this spirited woman who believes she found a way through her will and with the aid of the humble “mouse”.

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