Reason # 1— Why Working Moms Shouldn’t Stress about “Mommy Guilt”

Reason #1 – Moms are actually spending more time with their children now than 50 years ago.”

According to a recent study from the University of California, Irvine, more parents work outside the home now than ever, but they are still spending more time with their children than the generations before them. Researchers at the University found between 1965 and 2012, all but one of 11 Western nations showed an increase in the amount of time both parents spent with their children. The exception was France.  Hmm… That’s interesting, but…

What does that mean to you?

You can finally say sayonara to the stress of “Mommy Guilt”! You know why- because you my friend are “Momtastic”! You don’t have to let that guilt paralyze you anymore.  It’s right here in black and white – Today’s generation actually spends more time with their children than past generations.

Mom, you are doing a great job. And your kids will turn out just fine despite the hours you presumably spend away from them.  Because, you are spending a lot more time with them than you gave yourself credit for.

How is that possible?

Well, I’m glad you asked.  Here’s how- According to the study, moms in 1965 might have spent more time at home, but they only spent 54 minutes on child care activities. 54 MINUTES, that’s almost an hour.  It makes you wonder what they did with the rest of the time!? I mean really… 54 minutes!?  That’s how long it takes just to put my kids to bed at night.

Here’s the good news though, moms in 2012 nearly doubled that, reporting 104 minutes per day. That’s a whopping 1 hour and 24 minutes.  Woohoo!!!  For the purpose of the study, time spent with children included preparing food, feeding, bathing, changing diapers and clothes, preparing for bedtime, reading, playing, and helping with homework.

More women may be working outside the home than before, but the research shows that we are spending more time with our kids than ever before.  Ladies, it’s not just the quantity of time that matters, it’s the quality.

But wait… That’s not all…

Dads are also spending more time with their children.  Now, I know this article is written for women, but I had to include this piece about dads.  Moms, if you think you’re killing it, wait till you hear about dads.  In 1965, dads reported spending an average of 16 minutes per day caring for their children. Can you imagine that, 16 MINUTES!? Unbelievable!

However, since 1965, fathers’ time with children nearly quadrupled.  According to the study, dads in 2012 spend an average of 59 minutes caring for children.  You guys, dads are changing diapers, giving baths and telling bed time stories… Crazy!

So, if you ever needed a reason to splurge on dad this Father’s Day, this is it!  Though, they may not be wearing red capes, dads of this generation are definitely super!

The Countdown!  A recap…

When we started this series, I introduced you to Mara- the Supermom.  Granted, Mara is far from perfect, but she is a great mom.  However, just like Mara, many of us struggle with feelings of not doing enough, giving enough and being enough for our kids.

The purpose of this series was to help those of us like Mara, to stop stressing about the pressures of “Mommy Guilt”.  That is why we gave 3 reasons why working moms shouldn’t stress about “Mommy Guilt”, and here they are:

 If you missed the previous two articles, just click on the title above to read the full article.

So, in conclusion…

Sure, you could always be more organized, more energized, more on top of every little detail. But you’re not a Mombot, thank goodness, and no one (except, perhaps, you!) expects you to be.  Don’t let “Mommy Guilt” consume you; instead realize that you’re not alone. Guilt connects women in all walks of life

Realize that the guilt you feel is an indication that you care. I mean, if you didn’t care, there would be nothing to feel guilty about. The fact that you feel guilt can be seen as proof that you really want to do what’s best for your family.

Remember that childhoods are made of parents trying their best, with love and attention, and apologies, and examples.  If you missed it today, it’s ok; there’s always tomorrow.

Being a mom is hard work and it’s very important work; and feeling guilty about missed opportunities is normal. You will make mistakes, you will mess up, but it’s OK! It’s even OK to feel guilty about it sometimes. Just don’t dwell on it. Embrace it!

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