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  • This Mom's Post Why It's Difficult and Tiring to Be a Mom Today Will Make You Go 'Amen'

    We're exhausted and frustrated. Here's why, says this working mom of three.
    by Rachel Perez .
This Mom's Post Why It's Difficult and Tiring to Be a Mom Today Will Make You Go 'Amen'
PHOTO BY iStock
  • Each mom has her reason for choosing to work at an office, stay at home, or work from home. But she certainly wears many hats, and whatever she wears, it comes with high expectations.

    Mom of three Sarah Buckley Friedberg from Massachusetts, the U.S., who is a microbiology manager for a medical device company, listed the nearly impossible expectations of all mothers, as if to say "moms can have it all" can be misleading. Her post, which switches between irony and exasperation, highlighted why it is difficult — and stressful — to be a mom today.

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    Take going back to work after maternity leave as an example. In the United States, paid maternity leave is dependent on the company. The risk of losing a job is high for working moms if they don't go back immediately. And they need to prove themselves more and show having a baby doesn't affect how their job. 

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    As Sarah wrote, "Go back to work before you have finished healing or have had time to bond with your baby. Keep your mind on work, and not your tiny, helpless baby that is being watched and cared for by someone other than you."

    You also have to breastfeed "for at least a year." But since you're back at work, you'll need lactation breaks to pump breast milk, but don't let it affect your focus. As Sarah reflects, "Make sure to break the glass ceiling and excel at your job — you can do anything a man can do!" Show the world women can do it all."

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    Sarah also discusses the invisible or emotional load, which encompasses the effort moms put in to make sure everything is running smoothly.

    "You also need to clean the house and get life ready for the next day, and you know, sleep," Sarah said. Mom is in charge to keep tabs on the family's schedule, from well-baby check-ups and doctor appointments to school conferences. Who takes over the Easter Bunny and Tooth Fairy duties? Who plans the family vacation itinerary? Who breaks up sibling fights, the finder of lost things?

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    And don't forget, mom has to be on top of your child's development, which means they're "learning to swim, play an instrument, read, ride a bike, be a good human being, eat vegetables, wear sunscreen, drink enough water, say please and thank you."

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    Sarah also pokes fun on the pieces of advice you read every day on self-care ("surely, there is an hour or two left in the week after all of the working, appointments, exercising, cooking, scheduling, cleaning, imparting lifelong morals and learning on the kids") and quality time with the spouse ("try to go out one to two times a month. Good kid-free time"). 

    If you feel exhausted just reading through her post, you got the point Sarah wanted to make: moms are expected to fulfill so much, and that equals pressure and anxiety. Sarah ended her post with "I don't know about you, but I'm ready to lean OUT."

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    Speaking with Mother.ly, Sarah said, "I also think that as a society we do not talk about this enough —which makes those of us struggling feel isolated since it seems like everyone else has everything together so perfectly. I think it resonated with many other moms who do not feel like they have everything together at all times."

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    While dads today are getting more and more involved in home chores and childcare, and moms appreciate the extra pair of hands, mothers still do most of the work as many dads admitted in a recent survey and as shown in a study published in the Journal of Family and Economic Issues.

    Moms want the best for their kids and family, but we can't please everybody, and we can't do everything. Prioritize, ask or pay for help, delegate, and maybe just turn a blind eye to what you can't accommodate on your plate for now. If your family is happy and healthy, then that's enough. You've done enough.

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