We used to define motherhood as a lifelong commitment to taking care of children and doing household chores alone. Women now play a vital role to contribute to the economy and expect their spouses to help with household chores. Some believe mothers should be staying home and tend to their children’s needs. Others say women should have the perfect balance of both.
Working moms become positive role models. This instills in children the idea that a woman’s role can include a thriving career apart from domestic tasks. They raise more independent children. Since working moms need to teach kids how to do chores on their own, they develop a strong sense of responsibility at an early age. They have stories to tell outside their personal life.
Working parents have the opportunity to extend their circle with their colleagues. This also lets them go on work outings and bring along their children. That’s quality time with their family and colleagues in one.
Struggles of a Working Mother
Working moms seem more tired and stressed. Imagine working for 8 plus hours, suffering through the traffic and a long drive home, if that applies to you, walking into your house with restless children who need a parent’s attention, and yes! you missed them and want to give it to them but you are so mentally exhausted you just want to zone out. Or your spouse who was home all day and left piles of laundry, dishes in the sink, and messes everywhere that you have to clean up just for your own mental health. Asking for help but have fallen on deaf ears. Working moms go through this almost every day, along with other matters they need to attend to.
They are also prone to health issues. Their mental health takes a real toll with fatigue, cynicism, lack of motivation, headaches, chest tightness, stomach aches, nausea, hair loss and even increased crying along with Stress, lack of sleep, absence of physical activity, and poor eating habits. This all can lead to serious illness in working moms.
They are prone to health disorders such as anxiety, depression, heart diseases, obesity, insomnia, asthma, arthritis, psychological issues, high blood pressure, thyroid, body ache, and fatigue. A woman with job stress has a 40% higher chance of getting cardiovascular disease. Another contributing factor to a working women’s mental health decline is many say that their primary responsibility was taking care of their children but while they are at work they are getting neglected by the child care providers and sometimes abused. Constant worry over children is a high factor of mental breakdowns in mothers in the workforce today. Mom Guilt is most definitely real.
They feel as if they miss out on the lives of their kids. Some working moms miss out on the opportunity to witness their child’s first word, first step, and other priceless moments. Working moms may also have less time for their other family members.
Finding That Work-Life Balance
From babysitting, cleaning the house, cooking dinner, or even doing the laundry, let your family, friends, and colleagues help you. If they initiate to offer a helping hand, take it. It’s a win-win situation. Don’t be afraid to ask for support, especially during tough times. Surrounding yourself with people who trust you and will help you through thick and thin helps you manage your life better
Establish a self-care routine. Yes, you may be providing for your family while making your career worthwhile; but it doesn’t mean leaving yourself out. Meditate, exercise, go shopping, get your hair and nails done, or get a massage. Self-care helps us become less susceptible to depression, anxiety, stress, and other emotional health issues. Organize your to-do list the night before. Avoid a chaotic morning by doing this. Pack your kids’ lunches, get out their clothes, and decide what you want to make for breakfast.
Children are dependent on their parent’s attention. Their emotional development and well-being depend on how much time you spend with them. So discipline yourself and set a time limit when checking your phone or watching TV. Listen to their stories, play that game with them, and give them your full-on attention even just for one hour straight.
Many women feel like “married single moms.” That is, they feel like they’re going it alone on the home front leaving them feeling overwhelmed, feeling resentment, and just wanting to leave the situation altogether. If they are doing everything on their own anyway, why stay in a “married but single” type of environment? Working full-time, coming home, and working full-time when it should be a joint effort takes a huge toll on a woman and her relationship with her spouse. She does not want another child, she wants an equal partner. If that is a problem, access it, speak up about it, and if it does not get fixed remove yourself from the situation. You have been doing it all by yourself this long, unload the extra baggage.
New Opportunities/New Beginnings
Be kind to yourself. Focus on hobbies and friends or take that trip you’ve always dreamed about. Spend every free moment you can with your children that you can, listen to, and hear about their day. Go see your parents, grandparents, or siblings. Do what you can. Say no to things that don’t spark joy. Don’t stay at a job where you’re going nowhere or it’s a toxic environment. Make yourself and your kids happy. Find peace in work and make the time to be the best mom you can be whether you have a whole village or not. Do the best you can do and Go Easy on yourself.