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Motherhood and Work: The “Mom Tax” No One Talked To Me About 

baby drinking water while mom works

Saw a great article on about how to find fulfillment as a working mom. I wanted to expand on a few things, because some of us are working and/or single and struggling and I wanted to go deeper.

Don’t just get clear on your ‘why’ but also, ‘who’ you are now that you are also a mom. 

Something I don’t think many people talked to me about or maybe I had just spent 20 years building up being a ‘mom’ in my head, is how lost I would ultimately feeling in my own skin after giving birth.

Yes it is important to be aligned with your work. Yes it is important to understand what motivates you and drives you and your ‘why’, but sometimes, we lose our ‘why’ because life is no longer just about 'us' and our marriages. We grew a life for 9 months, sustain that life daily, and now work just doesn't feel the same.

It took me a long time to realize that I needed to change my thinking. My drive and passion in life never changed, but who I was did. I needed to fall in love with myself again. Rediscover who I was now that I carry the badge of ‘mom’ proudly on my chest. I am not just a mom. I am still Brittany, who is a mom. The tax we carry as mom’s is the loss of self tax. We give SO much to our children, but we also need to give ourselves space to be just that, ourselves. 

I am a single working mom, this is very hard to do and I very rarely get ‘me’ time, so please know I say all of this with the deepest levels of empathy

Motherhood and work impact each other (no way around it)

You work more hours = less time with your kids.

Less effort at work to be with your kids = potentially at risk of slow career growth or losing your job. 

You will feel guilty for working, not working, enjoy work, not enjoying can be exhausting but just know, you aren't alone!

It doesn’t need to be all bad, so let’s spin this 'mom tax' into a positive. It is okay to slow your career if you want more time with your kids. And it is also okay to love to work and be the breadwinner. The point is, we don’t talk about how this burden falls really heavily on moms who are also carrying a lot of responsibilities dads instinctively don’t. 

One thing I like to talk to my clients about before they go back to work is have they made a transition plan? Have they prepared for how motherhood is going to impact work and vise versa?

Side note: if you are a single working mom, you might also feel resentful towards your ex when it comes to work and lack of balance in responsibilities. I just want you to know, I see you, I feel you, but that resentment will only hurt you. Focus on finding ways to fill your own cup and be present with your kids. Not how 'easy' they seem to have it.

So, if work is just to pay the bills, thats fine! If you are passionate about your job and it brings you immense joy, amazing! Just learn to love YOU again.

It is easy to see yourself only as “a mom”, but you are more than just a mom. 

Yes, we are mothers. Yes, I believe it is the most important job I have, but I also am alone so work also has to be important because it takes me away from my daughter and if I feel empty all day, I will be empty at home too. 

Peace and contentment need to come from within. Do the hard work of therapy and increased self-awareness so you can better understand who you are, what you want your home to be like, so you have the capacity to create it. 

I think we think our children are supposed to be our source of fulfillment, but it isn’t their responsibility to emotionally sustain us. 

You are a woman, with needs, a personality, passions, and dreams. It is okay to have those and be a mom. 

This could mean a new hobby, a new career, a new mindset, I don’t know what it will look like for you, but please, do the work to reorient yourself with new identity as ‘mom’. 

We live in a society that is very much obsessed with ‘self’ and seeing others live their lives. We have lost our sense of self, personal responsibility, and close knit community. Add the mom tax on top of that and it seems to have made women feel more alone and anxious than ever. 

Social media is not real life. It is not a substitute for real, interpersonal communication. We are constantly bombarded with messages, emails, content, etc. I feel like it has made being a mom the most overwhelming job I have had because I am constantly tapped out, not just by the everyday life stuff, but also the world sucking the energy from me.

So Schedule a free consult and we can talk through a plan to bring you back to a place of genuine peace and more authentic relationships and a transition plan for work to set yourself up for success! 

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