Goodbye Working Mom Guilt

Every working mother has been there. That horrible, gut-wrenching, panicked moment when your maternity leave ends and you have to return to work.  I sat in my office, sobbing with guilt, thinking of how I left my sweet boy, with whom I had spent every second of the last four months for… this? Work had managed just fine without me for my entire leave, yet somehow I had chosen it, over my beautiful boy. What kind of monster was I?

Fast forward to my oldest turning five and my youngest turning three. The guilt is gone. I love the parent that I’ve become. I don’t feel guilty about working and I don’t question my decision to work outside the home. Are there days that I wish I could stay home and snuggle with them? You bet. Are there days where the exhaustion of being a business owner and a mom catches up to me? Of course. Are there days where the to-do list at home is so long, I wish I could put on a movie for the boys and get started. Always!! The stress is still there, but the guilt is gone. It took a long time to let it go, but it is gone and I’m not looking back.

I don’t feel guilty for working because I accept that working makes me a better mom. Once I recognized and accepted that me going to work was better for everyone, the guilt slid out and fulfillment crept in.

I know that, just like you, I am a good mom. Is there room for improvement? Always. Part of improving is recognizing what you need to do to make yourself better. I need to work outside of the home (I also need wine…but that’s a different post.) But here is the important part – only you can judge what makes you a better mom. Only you know what you need to be a better mom.

Working outside the home makes me a better mom because it gives me a different sense of pride, which is reflected in my actions with my kids. For others I know, working makes them a better mom because it literally gives them the money they need to feed or house their family. And some moms I know work outside the home because it gives them adult interaction and a mental break that they need.

The truth is, if you’re a working mom, you work for a reason. Whatever that reason may be, it is valid because it is yours. And you should never feel guilty if working makes you a better mom.


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