Look, this mom guilt thing is real.
On our very bad days, it has us moms (and maybe dads too) crying in a fetal position under our covers.
Or, it has us screaming like a demon-possessed person at our children while they stare at us in disbelief. After our tantrum, we feel worse than horrible, and the mom guilt really sets in.
It is a nasty cycle. And, it’s time it ends!
I’m an addict who must wake up every morning and decide if…
I am going to choose today to love my children and my work and my life as fully as possible.
Read below for 3 reasons why you should choose to drop mom guilt like a bad habit.
#1: Children need to see what hard work looks like.
Much of our mom guilt is because of work.
We feel guilty when we are working and, thus, not spending time with our children. That work can be “outside the home” or washing dishes 4-feet from the table where they sit coloring or doing homework. It doesn’t matter; we feel guilty.
FYI, I am a stay-at-home mother now after working as a teacher for 13 years. So, I have done both—work outside the home as a mom and work inside the home. Guess what? The guilt didn’t go away when I became a stay-at-home mother.
I mean, seriously, the guilt beast is fierce. He attacks you in any situation and makes you question everything!
But, when that beast comes a knockin’ I try to stop and choose option B—to love my children and my work and my life as fully as possible.
If we want our children to grow up to be productive adults, is it not our job to model for them what that looks like?!
We can’t just tell them to work hard, and then we never give 100%. We can’t just tell them to be good to their friends, and then we never extend ourselves to help our friends and neighbors.
We must model for them the principles we are teaching. Remember, more is caught than taught!
#2: It’s robbing you (and your children!) of joy.
At a mompreneur meeting I attended, one mother was pouring out her heart, describing the guilt she was experiencing about working from home (on a lucrative online business) while sending her son to daycare. She was getting nasty comments from family members and from “friends” on Facebook that were adding to her guilt.
With tears streaming down her face, another mother, older and wiser, looked at her lovingly from across the table and said, “You are letting this guilt rob you of your joy.”
I’ve thought of that comment many times since. It really is that simple. It really is a choice.
If we choose to let guilt consume us, then we have little room for joy…joy that needs to be shared with our children.
#3: It’s our responsibility to model a healthy self-image to our children.
This one kinda sums it up. People who take pride in their work and who find joy in life often have a healthy self-image. They’re comfortable in their own skin.
Consider the opposite. Do we want to raise children who will feel guilty all of the time, even when their work is of value to their family and to others? Do we want to raise children who become mopey adults with little joy in their lives?
Let’s all together say, “No!” Of course, we don’t want these things for our children.
We want them to be happy, confident adults.
So, we must drop the guilt (like a bad habit!) and show them what that kind of adult looks like and lives like.
Defeat the guilt beast…get the monkey off your back. Choose option B to love your children, your work, and your life fully.
And, Just for Kicks…
Hey, humor is often the best the medicine.
You need a laugh…a little joy in your life right at this moment? Check out ScaryMommy and how Lauren decided to embrace mom guilt, but more importantly why she did. In essence…because she cares about her kids like we all do.
make you laugh.
Then, go share your joy. Especially with the little (or big) people in your life.
About the Author: Rachel Eubanks, a freelance writer in Huntsville, AL. She writes about her experiences in life, motherhood, and business at inspiretoengage.com. There she tries (bless her heart) to inform and inspire other mothers who are navigating the murky waters of motherhood and entrepreneurship.