Today a comprehensive report has been published which claims it has analysed finally whether children of working mums are disadvantaged in any way.
Well I am not sure how much this research cost but these findings aimed at working mums seem just pure common sense.
The findings being that as long as the children receive high quality childcare and the mother is benefiting from “being out at work”, financially and emotionally, any impact on the mother baby relationship is “neutralised”. Hardly not rocket sicence. Neutralised being a word that cropped up a lot in the interview about this research.
The view is for some mums, the impact of being a stay at home mum, both financially, and emotionally is very stressful and therefore can neutralise the benefits of being at home with baby.
Generalisation Can Be Dangerous
The trouble is there are so many variables with jobs, personalities and just basic finances that it is difficult to make such generalisations.
Lets face it many mums return to work simply to pay the bills and maybe are in a job they hate but have no choice but to stay and stick it out.
Other Mums might like to work but their circumstances make it so difficult it would not cost effective or enjoyable anyway.
So does this research help Mums – which ever camp they happen to be in right now, or just add to the guilt?
Personally I think a little common sense applies.
Tips for Working Mums
If you are returning to work, spend time researching child care and get the best quality child care that will meet your personal circumstances. Be fussy and thorough in your research and do not be bamboozled into accepting compromises that you feel uncomfortable with.
Make sure you also give some thought to the location and flexibility of the childcare. If your commute to work is thirty minutes and you never finish work before 5:30pm and the nursery shuts promptly at 6. You need to look at the practicalities of this particular nursery, or find someone who is responsible for pick ups and drop offs. Otherwise your chosen high quality childcare is going to be neutralised by you arriving home exausted after a long day at work, followed by a stressful commute.
Whatever your Circumstances Invest In Yourself
Babies are flexible and robust and as long as their needs are met they will be happy. One of the child’sprimary needs though is of a mum who is happy and contented, whether she is out at work all day, every day or a stay at home mother.
This is the reason why it is so important that whatever your personal circumstances you “invest” in yourself. If you are a stay at home mum, this may mean making more friends, doing a night class, or even just glaming yourself up one day a week.
If you are a working mum, it may mean delegating more, compromising on your short term career goals, or just taking a days leave to recharge the batteries while baby is at the childminder, without you feeling guilty.
For most of us, life is not perfect all the time. But it is by appreciating what we have, not what we haven’t got going on in our lives, that will help us make the most of our personal and ever changing circumstances.
Remember Help for Busy Mums offer online courses supporting Mums debating whether or not they should return to work. You can find out more about how we can help by visiting our page on Coaching to Help Busy Mums.