Question of the Day: Do You Feel Like a “Bad” Mommy?

People get burned out working at jobs sometimes (even jobs they love and are passionate about), so they take a day, weekend, or vacation to refresh, rest, and re-energize. Do you think women who are stay-at-home moms are viewed as “bad mommies” when they need a little vacation from their day-to-day grind?

Do you feel guilty when you take a “break”? How does your significant other fit into the equation?

I would love to hear your thoughts on this!

P.S. This is a picture from a vacation gone bust several years ago. There was a wild-fire and we were literally smoked out of our vacation. My youngest and I ended up sick with severe sinus infections. My first sinus infection of many to come…I needed a vacation after that vacation, but that’s a different topic for another day.

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10 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Grumpyish Mum
    Feb 28, 2011 @ 14:19:44

    Oh how lovely it would be to take a true ‘break’! To be honest though, I don’t think that we, as parents, ever get a break really. On the rare occasion I have my Inlaws looking after the boys I seem to spend the evening worrying about them and what small part of the morning they’re not there pining for them. (then the rest of the day wishing I’d let them stay a bit longer!)

    The only other time they’re not with me is when I’m at the office. It’s a never ending cycle of work!

    Mr works away 4 days each week and then complains when my nerves are frayed or I complain about the huge dark rings of fatigue around my eyes – I’m not sure he has any idea!

    X

    Reply

  2. Sandra
    Feb 28, 2011 @ 18:35:16

    I do not feel guilty at first, but then after a few hours I do. I am a single mom and still not quite final on my divorce. Since it is not going well and my signficant other and I can not seem to get along at all, sadly, the kids get in the middle of things. It seems that he constantly can not have the kids long enough, something always comes up, so I have pretty much succumbed to the thought that I am mommy all the time, and if I do get a break, try not to feel guilty and realize that Mom’s need breaks too. It is not a bad thing, it is a good thing, makes us better mom’s to have a bit of time to ourselves to refresh!

    I love my kids, and even kids need a break from mom at times too.

    Reply

  3. adoptivemom2two
    Mar 01, 2011 @ 08:32:00

    I look forward to my break every other weekend, when my kids are with their father. I work full-time, and my daughter is ADHD and bipolar. That means I pretty much have TWO full-time jobs. It’s nice when I have two whole days of nobody calling me Mommy. I do miss them when they’re gone and worry about them being with their father. And, I have to “deprogram” them when they get home. But, it’s worth it to have a couple days of peace. And, it’s nice to be able to spend some alone time with my husband that isn’t a stolen moment here and there. These breaks help me recharge, so that I can do it all over again for the next two weeks.

    Reply

  4. Myra Elwell
    Mar 01, 2011 @ 08:41:08

    Hmm. Well, my youngest is 16 now and I often feel like I have failed with her *because* I was the one working long hours and my husband was home with her for a few years after he retired. Now, I’m home (permanently disabled. grr!) and he’s working part time. After 2 years, trying to get her to do her chores, homework and, well, everything else is like going to battle. I find myself secretly yearning to escape for a weekend and drive to see my mom, WITHOUT her or my husband. It’s hard sometimes to be a stay at home mom no matter what the age of your children. There are no written instructions or standard operating procedures when it comes to being a “house-wife and mom”. I think it is important to remember to take the time to yourself to “get away” and just be YOU, not the “housewife/mommy”. This means establishing routine breaks for yourself alone. Even if it’s just 30 minutes to walk outside or take a bubble bath while SOMEONE ELSE watches the kids and the kids obey the rule of “No, you can’t bug mom right now”.
    Easier said than done.
    I love my daughter and would die for her. Just, sometimes, when her stubborn streak kicks in and I feel like I’m battling a mule, I really want a vacation.
    I wish for her to have a daughter AND a son just exactly like her when she grows up instead and deal with it. :-)
    ME

    Reply

  5. Mary the OINKteller
    Mar 01, 2011 @ 10:26:56

    I agree with Sandra and Myra. In all the hubbub of everyday life, it’s easy to lose sight of myself. It’s like I forget that being “Mom” is only a part of being “Mary.” It’s hard not to feel guilty about taking a break from our kids but we Moms absolutely need them and I believe, we need them on a regular basis. Whether you’re a mom with a career or a career mom, you have to make time to recharge your batteries and remember all the things that make you, you. If you don’t, you’re doing your kids and yourself a disservice.

    Reply

  6. Liz
    Mar 01, 2011 @ 11:58:09

    I feel guilty all the time and I don’t like it! I even feel guilty on the weekends when my husband is at home and I go for a thirty minute run or a quick run to the grocery store. I don’t know where it comes from, but I struggle to get over the “guilt”.

    Reply

  7. Trackback: guilty mama | tumbledweeds
  8. Amber
    Mar 06, 2011 @ 14:54:55

    My children, hubby and I coexist very peacefully together. I’ve never felt the need for a break. I shouldn’t need a break if life is peaceful. I am a mommy, that’s who I am. I don’t feel I need to get away from who I am and choose to become. When I became a mom, I BECAME a mom. It’s not a job, it’s a choice. I’ve been a mommy for 6 years, maybe this view will change later on but it’s the way I was raised and it worked then too.

    Reply

    • Liz
      Mar 09, 2011 @ 12:13:33

      Hi Amber, I think moms can coexist with their families peacefully and still need/want a break from the day-to-day grind. That may mean a few minutes, a few hours, or whatever it takes to feel refreshed. Sometimes I want alone time (break time) so that I can focus on my writing, which is a passion of mine. Sometimes I want to go for a walk or jog by myself to think. In my opinion, it’s pretty healthy to take time out for ourselves. :)
      Thanks for the comment.

      Reply

  9. Amanda
    Apr 30, 2011 @ 19:55:04

    Hi all,

    I am a full time, stay at home Mom who left a great job to stay home with my son. I love my son, but admit that parenting was a big adjustment for me and sometimes requires an exhausting level of patience. My son is 20 months old, early into the terrible twos, and has never had a babysitter. The last time myself and my husband went out together was seriously about three months ago at which time my son stayed with his grandparents.

    Tonight, my husband took my son to his parent’s place for the night so my husband and his father could watch hockey (they live almost an hour away). I feel guilty, but am trying to embrace this greatly appreciated “me time”.

    I would never change my “choice” to be a stay at home Mom for the world, but I do believe that every woman needs a break. Unless you are Mother Theresa or surrounded by a lot of support from family and friends, it is easy to lose a sense of self when trying so hard to care for everyone else. Women need to support other women and be open about the demands of parenting. I know for me, parenting is the best thing I ever did with my life and I haven’t been an idle individual, but it can be challenging at times. My advice is simple: At the end of the day, if you need a break, take it when it is available. Children need to adjust to interacting with different people and family and you as Mom need to take some time to take care of you. Just my thoughts. Good luck to all.

    Reply

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