Carbon steel is, as you've mentioned, a lot harder to maintain than stainless steel. However, carbon steel is a harder metal than stainless steel, meaning that it will be less vulnerable to the physical stress of everyday use and will hold an edge longer than stainless steel. As such, carbon steel knives are generally regarded as better for heavy or extended use in busy kitchens, as the chefs won't have to stop and hone their blades quite as often throughout the day. Stainless steel knives, on the other hand, are much more resistant to staining and corrosion, but they are harder to sharpen and will require more frequent sharpening overall than carbon steel knives.
Each material has its pros and cons. In the end, you're really just trading one shortcoming for another—extra cleaning with carbon steel and extra sharpening with stainless steel—so the choice really just depends on what the knife will most often be used to do. If you frequently do a lot of hard chopping or slicing, investing in at least one quality carbon steel knife for heavy-duty applications may be a good idea. But if you're at home just cooking for your yourself or your family and will usually only need the knife for basic tasks and low-impact cuts, stainless steel will probably do just fine in most situations.
You can find more information on common knife materials in the following article:
Hope that helps, and good luck with any future knife shopping!