What can you read in this article?
- What is mom guilt
- What can cause mom guilt
- How to get over mom guilt
Mom guilt story
I learned that mom guilt is there no matter what kind of mom you are. Whether you are a corporate working mom, full-time mom, or mompreneur, you will experience guilt.
I left my job in December 2016 because of mom’s guilt and burnout. I was at the peak of my corporate career as Audit Manager of Emirates Airlines in Dubai.
I thought that becoming a full-time mom and leaving my 16+ year career will remove all my “mommy guilt” but I was wrong.
When I became a full-time housewife, I felt guilty for not being a good housewife and for not contributing to the finances of the family.
I started my own training and consulting company in 2018 but I felt guilty again as a mompreneur for not earning enough than I used to when I was employed.
I learned that guilt is always there no matter what kind of mom you are.
After working with more than 100 women of different nationalities, I learned that I am not alone. I learned that feeling guilty is one of the emotions that all moms share regardless of work, age, nationality or location.
What is mom guilt?
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Mom guilt is the feeling of not doing enough as a parent, not doing things right, or not making the right decisions for your kids. Mom guilt is the “shoulds” and the “supposed to’s” in your mind. Mom guilt comes from personal insecurities and pressures from family, friends, social media, and society.
The first thing to remember if you’re experiencing mom guilt is that it’s completely normal. Putting yourself down for feeling guilty will just make matters worse, so relax.
Mother guilt is especially common among professional women. Professional women frequently find themselves torn between their desire to work and their apprehension about leaving their children.
They may be disappointed or conflicted about not having enough time with their child. They may also be resentful about not being able to spend more time with their child. And they can be concerned about the cost, quality, and logistics of daycare while they work.
What can cause mom guilt
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Working mothers, feeling bored while parenting, and other circumstances might make mothers unhappy.
Better Up has listed a few reasons why one might have mom guilt.
The dysphoric milk ejection reflex (D-MER) is a condition in which you have an excess of negative emotions while nursing. Prolactin (a milk-producing hormone) replaces too much dopamine in some women.
Women feel guilty and ashamed about how they felt when breastfeeding. It’s easier to accept these feelings if you understand that they’re a fully normal biological reaction.
There’s nothing wrong with giving your infant formula, but because of past taboos, many new mothers feel bad about it.
2. Being a career woman or staying at home
Working mom guilt is common, especially in countries where maternity leave is limited to only 12 weeks. It can be humiliating to leave your child in daycare at such a young age.
On the other hand, stay-at-home mom guilt is quite real. You might be afraid that not going to work isn’t setting a good example to your kids.
3. Asking for help
It’s been said that it takes a village to raise a child, so don’t feel bad if you can’t do everything yourself.
Most of us nowadays are raising children without the assistance of extended relatives. Attempting to do everything yourself, particularly if your children have special needs, might, however, lead to caregiver burnout. There is no shame in asking for help if you need it.
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4. Having no time for your kids
Spending time with your children is essential. This does not, however, imply that you must devote all of your time to them. Remember that as they become older and move through different stages of life, they will become more self-sufficient.
If you need a spa day to relax and enjoy some alone time, don’t feel awful about leaving the kids with a babysitter. Reframe your self-care day as an opportunity to spend time with them while being your best self.
5. Peer and family pressure
Family members’ unsolicited advice and comments can lead to feelings of maternal guilt. But keep in mind that just because they did it one way doesn’t mean you have to do it the same way. Your children, like you, are unique, and you can figure out the best method to raise them.
How to overcome mom guilt
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I learned that guilt is an emotion that most moms share because your mind has a lot of unrealistic expectations that you set for yourself and expectations that you allow others to set on you.
On a live coaching call with one of our community members at Working Moms Academy, I shared 3 simple steps that every mom can follow to deal with mommy guilt.
Accepting the feeling of guilt without judgment whether it is a right or wrong feeling is the first step to overcoming guilt.
To overcome guilt, you need to first understand where your guilt is coming from because guilt can only come from:
The high expectations you set yourself
The expectations of other people that you accepted like your husband, mom or mother in law’s expectation of you
I learned that nothing and no one can give you guilt unless you allow it.
Guilt is something internal and when you accept the fact that you can do something about your feeling of guilt, you will feel more powerful because it is within your control.
The next step is to understand what your guilt feeling is telling you to do by asking yourself empowering questions.
Image from Shutterstock
Check on yourself
To manage your feelings of guilt, you need to start asking yourself empowering questions as Tony Robbins said “The quality of your life depends on the question you ask yourself”.
First, ask your kids and your partner about their thoughts on how you are performing as a wife and mother. I am sure that in the eyes of your family, you are the perfect wife and mom because, in your family, nothing and no one can replace you.
Second, ask yourself, what is this guilt feeling telling you to do? What do you need to start doing more of? What do you need to stop doing?
This, ask your children and your family – what do they need more from you? How can you love them more?
Watch the recording of the live coaching now and discover more about how to manage mommy guilt and the power of asking the right questions.
Action is the game changer in your life. To stop feeling guilty, start managing your time well because time is priceless. You can master your time and accomplish more by remembering the 4Ds of time management – Do, Delay, Delete, or Delegate.
On the endless task of every day, classify and prioritize your task so you can accomplish more
Do and focus on what matters most to you in alignment with your top 3 values. These are things that are urgent and important
Delay things that are important but not urgent like office task
Delegate tasks that are urgent but are not important like house chores
Delete and eliminate tasks that are not urgent and not important like watching tv, checking social media
Here is an example of time management using 4D’s for moms.
If you want to discover more tips and tools on how to master your time and accomplish more, watch the recording of the live webinar of Working Moms Academy.
Additional information from Margaux Dolores