Until you’ve experienced it yourself, being a stay-at-home mom seems like an easy gig. But as every mom who’s tried it, we know that this job is the farthest thing from being easy. Most of the time, we paste a smile on our face and get through each day with few complaints (most of the time). But there are some “secret thoughts” most of us stay-at-home moms struggle with regularly.
Secret Thoughts of Stay-At-Home Moms
Why do people not realize that this is a job?
Anyone who has never been a stay-at-home mom simply cannot conceptualize all that goes into it. I never ‘just play’ with my child all day. My day is filled with feeding my child, cleaning up after my child, and so many chores. It never feels like my house is clean at once. Nap time is always a crunch to do as much as I can. After regular “working” hours, it’s time for dinner and hanging out with my husband before starting all over again. It’s a 7 day a week, 24 hour a day job. If the baby wakes up, it is usually my responsibility to tend to him, as I am the parent who stays home. If I sacrifice housework for some “me time,” I feel so guilty!
Will I ever have an adult conversation again?
Layer being a stay-at-home mom plus the 2020 pandemic, and I have never felt more lonely. I would go days without human contact other than with my son and husband. I find myself craving adult conversation. Instead, I am singing the lyrics to the “Dora the Explorer” theme song in my head repeatedly! The women in my Facebook mom’s group have kept me as sane as possible, considering the circumstances.
I feel so touched out!
I cannot stand one more person touching me today. This is especially an issue if you have a husband who craves physical affection. My child clings to me all day, and then I have two dogs that want my attention as soon as I get a spare moment without the baby. After the baby goes to bed, your husband might want all of your attention – and so many times, at the end of the day, I have nothing left to give.
I am exhausted and stressed.
My partner works outside of the home all day. So I desperately feel the need to pick up the slack and make sure that he has time to relax when he gets home from work. But I need a break too! I wish I could have some time to myself. But I spend all day caring for our child and taking care of our home, all before collapsing into bed shortly after my little one goes down for the night. I never feel like what I am doing is enough: for me, for my child, for my husband, for my house, for my dogs . . . the list goes on and on. All of these thoughts lead me to feel burnt out all the time.
I feel like I should have a job outside of the home to be valued.
Adjusting from a career woman to a stay-at-home mom was such a mental challenge. Although, thankfully, we could make it work financially, it still feels very different not earning my own income. Although deep down, I know that I am doing the most important job for my family, not financially providing for my family is a mental struggle. I feel like hired help many days, except I am not earning a salary. Most days, I do not even hear a simple “thank you.”
I am tired of the same routine every day.
As a stay-at-home mom, it can easily feel like every day is Groundhog Day. There would be weeks when I had no idea what day it was since it made no difference. Literally, every single day is the same! This hit its peak when we were in quarantine at home, and all we could do was play with toys, watch cartoons, and go for walks. I think I experience the “Sunday Scaries” more as a stay-at-home mom than when I had a job outside of the home because I would just be preparing to face another week where everything was exactly the same. I specifically remember once thinking, “If I have to heat up pancakes one more time this week, I will go insane!” But every morning, I heat up those pancakes because they are my son’s favorite breakfast.
I love my job.
Despite all the challenges, I would never trade my time as a stay-at-home mom to my son for anything in the entire world!
If you are a stay-at-home mom and have these thoughts, they are 100% normal, and your feelings are valid. You have the hardest and most important job in the world. Please remember that there is nothing else more important than raising your children. While it may not always feel this way, you have the best job to have ever existed.