Does Being a Work at Home Mom Mean Your Children are Neglected?
Updated on: by Amy Kennedy
As a work at home mom, many of us first decided to work from home for the sake of our children. We want to be there for every milestone, be the one instilling their values and help to create who they are. We chose not to hand over those responsibilities to a family member or a stranger at a daycare. We are work at home MOMS.
Need Easy Extra $350+/Month For Free?
- SwagBucks: Watch videos, take surveys, shop and more to earn real money. Earn up to $35 per survey! No hidden fees and completely free. Join Swagbucks Now to Get $5 Free
- InboxDollars: Has so far paid its members over $40 Million. Watch videos, take surveys, shop and more. Join InboxDollars Now and Get Free $5
- SurveyJunkie: Make $5-$25 in your spare time from home to take online surveys, participating in a Focus Groups and trying new products. Join SurveyJunkie Now
- Branded Surveys: Complete online surveys. Collect points. Redeem your points for cash & gift cards. No hidden fees and completely free! Has so far paid its members over $18 Million. Join Branded Surveys Now
But most of us did not realize just how often we would be left with feelings of guilt. We worry we do not spend enough time with our children. Are we neglecting our kids because we work from home? Or is that just another thing, as a mother, we carry as a burden- always worrying we could do better?
Jessica Weaver, a work at home mother of two, believes,
“all mothers have what we like to call “mommy guilt.” It’s that nagging feeling we have all day…! Every day I wonder if I am doing something right. I think…am I better off taking them to daycare since I am not giving them my attention 100%. I nag at myself all day because I am trying to be the best mother possible but I am also trying to help bring in an income. I am a worrier by nature.”
Jessica’s view is probably pretty common of Work at Home Mothers. When I first began working from home I only worked when my daughter was napping or asleep for the night. Then, life changed, I had another baby and I began also working when my husband was home…things are always changing. Now my husband is gone a lot, my children are a bit older and I find myself working at all hours of the day…in spurts. I take advantage of every single time my children are busy or occupying themselves.
I realized recently, when I was concerned about my daily schedule being so erratic, that it is simply based on my children. They are my priority. However, I will admit there have been times I encourage them to watch a movie so I can get a little more work done. I am also no stranger to asking my kids to give me just a few more minutes so I can work just a little bit more.
If guilt comes nagging at your back- stop and evaluate your situation. If you find your kids are bored and constantly being pushed aside so you can work, maybe it is time to take a break and enjoy some time with them…they ARE the reason you are home anyway! But more likely than not you will probably be able to reassure yourself that you are simply balancing life.
I believe it is good for your children to have some alone time and be self-sufficient. Letting them fend for themselves, with guidance, is an important part of their growing up. But just as you find a balance between work-life and home-life, be sure to balance your one-on-one time with your children. They do still need your interaction and attention- no matter their age.
Nevertheless, here are some tips I feel can help take care of your kids while working at home:
- Establish a routine: A routine brings structure to the day for both you and your children. It provides a predictable pattern for your children, which can be comforting and stabilizing for them. Having set times for meals, play, and nap or quiet time can give you predictable slots of time in which you can work. This structure also ensures that your children’s needs are being met and can reduce disruptions when you need to focus.
- Set clear boundaries: Depending on the age of your children, it can be beneficial to set clear boundaries about when you are working. This could mean explaining to them that when the door to your office is closed, you should only be disturbed for important matters. For younger children, setting up a play area where they can safely explore and play while you work can be effective.
- Use child care when needed: Even though you’re working from home, there will be times when you need to focus entirely on your work. Child care options such as a babysitter, a daycare, or even swapping playdates with other parents can provide periods of uninterrupted work time. This also allows your children to socialize with others, which is important for their development.
- Keep kids engaged: If your children are engaged and occupied, they’re less likely to interrupt you. Use age-appropriate educational toys, crafts, and games, or consider educational websites and apps for older children. Rotate toys and activities to keep things fresh and interesting.
- Break down your work: Working from home with kids around often means you won’t get large uninterrupted blocks of work time. If possible, break your tasks into smaller pieces. This way you can make progress during short periods of quiet or independent play.
- Be flexible: Working from home with children requires flexibility. Some days might not go as planned due to a sick child or unexpected interruption. Being able to adapt your schedule or expectations on these days can reduce stress and keep you productive.
- Practice self-care: As a parent and a professional, it’s easy to overlook your own needs. Make sure you allocate time for yourself to relax and engage in activities that you enjoy. Whether it’s reading, exercising, or simply enjoying a quiet cup of coffee, self-care activities can help you stay balanced and refreshed.
- Seek support: Connect with other work-from-home parents who can relate to your experiences. They can offer advice, share strategies, and provide emotional support. Social media groups, local parenting groups, or work-at-home networks can be great resources.
Jessica Weaver reminded me that regardless of our choice to stay home or work outside of home, we would still carry guilt-
“When I was working full time I had mommy guilt and now that I am working at home I have mommy guilt. Whatever stage of life we are in- we will always have guilt. But it is our job to not let our kids see the worry in us. Someone BIGGER than ourselves wants us to let HIM do the worrying. After all…he created us and HE doesn’t have mommy guilt. My goal every day is to hand over my worries and frustrations because those burdens are too big for this mommy to carry on her own.”
How do you handle Work at Home Mom guilt? Does the guilt simply remind you to stop and enjoy the moment?
- Honest Advice From a Work at Home Mom
- What it Means to be a Work at Home Mom
- Work at Home Jobs are Not Always Good for Parents
- Internal Battles of a Work at Home Mom
- What are Your 2013 Work at Home Plans?
Earn Everything… nearly!
Join Ipsos iSay, one of the few Faithful and Honest survey panels and earn prizes, gift cards and donations. Stack your points and redeem them: Simple! No hidden fees and completely free!
Need Easy Extra Cash?
Pinecone Research, a leading name in online survey panel honesty, absolutely guarantees $3 cash for every survey you complete!
Take advantage of their time limited New Membership drive and register NOW. Join today: 100% free!