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March 20, 2007

Working Mothers Doing A Better Job Than They Think

This Washington Post Article "Despite Mommy Guilt, Time With Kids Increasing" gives working mothers a pat on the back (as well as working fathers) stating that working parents are actually spending more quality time with their children then they did in the romanticized days of the 1950's when mothers were June Cleaver.

"That whisper of worry and regret is familiar to a generation of mothers who juggle homework and housework, sports practice and dance lessons, in days that often include paid jobs and traffic-snarled commutes.

But for all the rush of modern life, recent research suggests that mothers are actually doing a better job than they may think, at least by historical standards.

According to a University of Maryland study, today's mothers spend more hours focused on their children than their own mothers did 40 years ago, often imagined as the golden era of June Cleaver, television's ever-cheerful, cookie-baking mom."

No matter which way you twist it, being a parent is hard work.  Being a working parent is even more-challenging because you feel this guilt at a genetic level for not 'being home' and then it is exacerbated when you meet non-working parents who in some way will push your guilt buttons even if it is unconscious on their part.  And being a 'working at home' Mom has its challenges, too.  If my son is home and I need to work at an unscheduled time there is nothing more wrenching then being in the middle of a conference call and your three year old is yelling, "Mommyyyyyyy, I neeeeeeeeeed you!"  Yet in unguarded moments when you watch your child and see how happy he or she is, their unfiltered spontaneous expresssions of love....well, you have to let go of the guilt and say, "I must be doing something right." 

            

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