It’s no secret that moms tend to do more work in the home than dads. That distribution of work can be unfairly spread in a number of ways. Some moms may actually do more of the physical work required to keep the house running. Others take on more of the administrative duties needed to run the house even though the physical work is split pretty evenly. Studies have shown that most moms work the equivalent of 2.5 jobs, which is equal to about 14 hours a day, each and every day. That’s why moms everywhere knew that working from home just meant that the time that they got away from home when they didn’t have to multitask or answer the constant demands of their children would instantly vanish.
Single moms knew that aside from weekends away with dad, which also were subject to disappear, they’d lose all the time that they had to themselves. Simple actions that may have taken for granted before like drinking a cup of coffee on the commute to work was now gone.
Moms who were planners and decided to map out responsibilities with partners knew that these role assignments meant nothing to the kids. No matter who was responsible for snack time or homework, the kids would be more likely to yell mom when they needed something over dad.
Moms knew that they were more likely to take on the job of the teacher with homeschooling. If a child was having a difficult time with a particular subject, it would be mom who would be expected to come to the rescue. Mom would also have to step in as a friend during free time. When boredom set in moms knew that they would be asked to set everything they were working on aside to come and play.
With more cooking and cleaning needed to be done with everyone at home, moms also knew that they would mostly be in charge of making sure there was enough food in the house and that it was prepared. When crumbs fell on the ground or surfaces needed to be cleaned, moms knew they would most likely be the first to notice it and thus the first to clean it up.
So when moms complain about being at home right now, it's not because they’re ungrateful that they’re privileged enough to be at home or that they’re not happy for the time they get to spend with their kids. They’re just tired…and overwhelmed. They were tired and overwhelmed before and now their everyday workload has increased dramatically. They’re stressed out because they went into the whole situation thinking it would be a few weeks at most and now it looks as if there is no end date in sight.
In addition to trying to manage twice the work with the same amount of time in the day, moms are emotionally exhausted from being worried. They’re worried about their kids and how they’re handling the situation and they’re worried about the impact that quarantine is having on their mental health. Moms are notorious for being anxious about things they can’t control and this scenario is no different. Moms are breaking up inside because they want their kid's lives to get back to normal but there’s nothing they can do to fix it for them.
Moms are also worried about themselves. They worry about their jobs since they know they may not be giving as much as their male counterparts who are also working from home. They realize that their work-life has been sacrificed, As much as they know that this is happening to everyone in the country, they realize that moms are getting more of a bum deal than dads.
In the end, moms will get through this one day at a time just like they’ve gotten through every other crisis life has handed them. That doesn’t mean that as the days start to blur together and they wake up each day more tired than they were the day before that they aren’t constantly wondering how.