"WHAT HAPPENED? WHAT WENT WRONG?"
An "Educated Woman" Who Stays Home With Her Children

May 1998By Kathleen W. Barr

Kathleen W. Barr, who was a human resources executive and corporate speaker for AT&T, is a stay-at-home mother of five in Newark, Delaware.

Ed. Note: The following speech, somewhat adapted here, was delivered last year at St. Joseph’s High School in Hammonton, New Jersey, at the induction of new members into the National Honor Society. Traditionally, the speech is given by a successful alumn about a worthy career in the world for college-bound students to consider. Kathleen W. Barr is a stay-at-home mom, and tells her story here. The NEW OXFORD REVIEW urges more Catholic schools — never mind public schools — to invite stay-at-home moms to address their students who are considering various careers. And, yes, it would be good for male students to hear such presentations, not to encourage them to be “house husbands,” but so that they might give broader consideration to the kind of wife — and mother for their children — they would like to have.

Congratulations to all of you newly inducted members of the National Honor Society, and congratulations to your parents for their support that has brought you this far!

This is certainly a blast from the past for me. Twenty-five years ago I sat here and was inducted into the National Honor Society. In my yearbook I was voted most intelligent, most talented, and most likely to succeed. Now I am a full-time, at-home mother of five children.

What happened? What went wrong?


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