I have a good friend who used to tell me (before I had a child) that she always felt guilty as a mom. And I always thought she was crazy. What in the world do moms have to feel guilty about? They do everything, for-crying-out-loud!
Now that I have a child….I totally get it.
I feel guilty if I feel like I am not spending enough time with her.
I feel guilty if she is bad because it must be my poor parenting skills that have made her this way.
I feel guilty if she doesn’t eat dinner because she was being too picky because now she is going to starve to death.
I feel guilty that I have to work because we don’t get the one-on-one time that stay-at-home moms get with their kids.
I feel guilty if I don’t work because I don’t have the extra money for her to do extra curricular activities.
Do you see what I mean?!
Oh my word, this is a problem. I sometimes think I need therapy or something.
If you let this “mother guilt” get too far out of hand, you can seriously end up getting yourself down.
And it’s even worse when you have one of those days.
Today I had one of those days. And when I say one of those days, I mean, one of those days where all of my children (my dog, my husband, and my actual child) were making me completely crazy with the whining, the nagging, the needing, the complaining, and the rebellion. One of those days where you really want a boat so that you, and you alone can sail off into the sunset and you can be all by yourself.
But, I don’t have a boat and that really is never going to happen, so I opted for option 2. Option 2 was muting the monitor (because my child wouldn’t stop screaming because she didn’t want to take a nap), and took a steaming hot shower (because I am freezing and my husband won’t turn the heat up higher because “we are on a budget”) and just cried.
Ever have those crying shower moments?
So after I “cried it out” I realized that this “Mother’s Guilt” thing has to stop. I know it won’t go away for good, but I need to at least get in under control. It’s certainly not helping anything.
So here are my tips and thoughts on dealing with “Mother’s Guilt:”
1. Sometimes you just have to roll with the punches.
Sometimes you are just going to have one of those days. So you just have to remember that it was one of those days and move on. Tomorrow is a new day.
2. Don’t be so hard on yourself.
So the kids are talking back. So you forgot to mail out that Verizon bill. It’s okay!! We all make mistakes. We, as moms, have a lot of responsibilities. If you forget something here or there, or if you have a rough day with the kiddos, don’t be so hard on yourself. It happens to us all.
3. Don’t lose your cool.
Don’t lose your cool even if it’s really, really hard. Your kids are always watching you. Try to keep steady even when they test you….and test you….and test you.
4. Get some time to yourself.
Ask the hubby to watch the kiddos on Saturday and get away for a couple hours. Some time to yourself will do you wonders!
5. Remember how blessed you are.
This guilt thing is tough. But I try to remember that I would rather have mommy guilt than not be a mommy at all. We are blessed with our kids. We love them more than anything- that’s why we feel this guilt. So put the negative away and remember that you are blessed.
Remember that you are a wonderful mom! You may feel guilty for this and that, but in the grand scheme of things, those little things don’t matter much. Your kids look up to you and love you regardless of the small things.
Forget the guilt and bring on the joy!