Over the last few months since I’ve been back at work I’ve been coping with the dreaded Mummy guilt which inevitably has crept up on me. Before I had Little Mr, I very naively thought I’d be absolutely fine with dropping him off at his Grandparents and going to work. We are very lucky to be in a position where Little Mr is cared for by both sets of Grandparents during the week whilst me and hubby are at work. Realistically, we couldn’t afford for him to be in nursery and as sad as the fact is, we had to ensure we had childcare in place before we got pregnant.
Little Mr has settled really well into a routine of being with his Grandparents four days per week. I work Monday to Thursday having Fridays at home with him which I absolutely love. In an ideal world I wouldn’t go out to work at all but we have bills to pay so reality means I have no other choice. I’m desperately conscious of the fact that I only spend 3 hours a day with Little Mr and those precious 3 hours are often filled with the car journey home, cooking the dinner and our bath and bedtime routine. Therefore I’m always trying to ensure we spent quality time together on my day off and at weekends. I know it’s normal life but why do I feel so bloody guilty about not spending time with him. In all honesty, I’m insanely jealous that his Grandparents get to spend all the good hours with him when he’s at his best but then that’s my fault isn’t it for going to work.
On Sunday night, Little Mr had an awful nights sleep. He’s still teething and had been grouchy pretty much all day. He went to bed absolutely fine but come 2am he was crying and got very upset to the point where he was sobbing and couldn’t catch his breath. After applying all my usual techniques and 3 hours later, he was still awake and screaming. For the record, I don’t believe he wasn’t screaming in pain, he was overtired and didn’t know what to do with himself for the best. Knowing that I had to be up, showered, dressed and in work in just over 3 hours time, I picked him up, gritted my teeth and told him in my tired and frustrated state to go to sleep before putting him back into his cotbed. I’ve never done that before and boy did I feel guilty for it.
As I picked up Little Mr on Monday evening he cried as his Grandad tried to put his coat on him and he didn’t want to be passed to me on the doorstep as we do every night. I felt like the worse Mummy in the world that my baby didn’t want to come home with me. Of course, I’m totally relating the two events and I could be wrong but it just feels like an awful coincidence to me. So, yes I’ve been feeling incredibly guilty since Monday morning and I really hope he won’t remember it.
Have you experienced Mummy guilt? Why do we do it to ourselves when we’re clearly just trying to do the best for our little ones.