Being a mom is overwhelming. It’s a journey that can leave you feeling like you’re walking a tightrope. On one hand, the love you feel for your child is a feeling like no other, but on the other hand, the weight of the responsibilities and the pressure to be perfect can be crushing.
The endless to-do lists, the constant demands on your time and energy, and the fear of not being enough can leave you feeling drained and exhausted.
- Tired of constant tantrums and fighting
- Tired of yelling and nagging
- As if your kids are pushing your buttons (only for you to explode and you don’t know what to do)
- Like you never have time for yourself
- Alone and isolated
- Tired of hearing ”mom!” for the zillionth time
Why being a mom is so overwhelming?
Being a mom is overwhelming for many reasons. After all, it is a 24/7 job with no breaks. The never-ending list of responsibilities can leave you feeling drained and burnt out, and the constant demand for your attention and energy can take a toll on your physical, emotional, and mental well-being.
The pressure to be a perfect parent can be suffocating, leaving you feeling like you’re constantly falling short.
Add to that the stress of managing a home, being a good wife, and all other responsibilities you may have, and it’s no wonder many moms feel overwhelmed.
Not to forget, you have to do it all alone, with no help or support. You’re a chef, a cleaner, a nurse, a driver, a playdate, a teacher, and many other things.
You might also like: being a mom isn’t easy quotes
Mom burnout: why moms are so overwhelmed?
Why do moms become overwhelmed?
Moms are tired. We face fatigue because of the multitude of jobs we have to juggle daily. From being a caregiver, cook, cleaner, and taxi driver, to managing household finances, teaching and playing with our children. We no longer live in times when kids played outside until it was dark, and went to their grandparent’s houses for the whole summer. Mothers are constantly in motion. There’s not a minute we’re awake and not thinking about what has to be done next.
The constant cycle of caregiving can be tiring. You’re looking after these little human beings, running a household, and perhaps even have a baby, meaning you’re not getting enough sleep. It’s no wonder that we, mothers are often exhausted, but despite the fatigue, we have to continue to show up for our families, day after day, with love and dedication.
You feel like you need a break but there’s just no way you can have one. You’re feeling exhausted, overwhelmed and perhaps even resentful.
Motherhood can be super lonely. You’re always busy and so are other moms. There’s very little time to make friends and even when you do, it’s difficult to see them on a regular basis.
More often than usual we live far away from our families and relatives too. Not only does it mean you have no outside help what so ever, but you’re also all alone.
Not having anyone to talk to, relate to, and laugh with can take a toll on your mental health, leaving you feeling isolated and lonely.
Clutter, dirt and chaos
Being a mom of small children is overwhelming and well, messy. The kitchen floor full of food bits, sink full of dishes, toys all over your living room floor, and messy cupboards wherein you can’t find anything. There’s very little time to clean up and even when you do, it gets messy pretty quickly again.
It feels like you can forget about dealing with the clutter itself. There’s just no way you can get to it with a crying baby and screaming toddler by your side.
Clutter can have a significant impact on our mental health and well-being. Studies have shown that a cluttered environment can lead to increased levels of stress and anxiety. The physical mess can also serve as a constant reminder of unfinished tasks or unresolved issues.
The clutter, dirt and chaos is making you feel overwhelmed, yet it seems like you can’t get out of the cycle and every day is the same.
Never ending to-do list
Eh, that never-ending to-do list that seems to follow us wherever we go. The daily responsibilities, household chores and other commitments, can leave us feeling like we’re constantly on the go, with no time to rest.
The pressure to be everything to everyone, to have everything under control, can be overwhelming and leave us feeling defeated. And it seems like there is just no end to it.
Not having any boundaries
Many of us don’t even know what healthy boundaries are. And those who do, still struggle to put them into practise.
As mothers, we are often so focused on taking care of our families and meeting the demands of others that we neglect setting boundaries for ourselves. We may say yes to every request, take on too many responsibilities, and overextend ourselves to the point of burnout.
Without healthy boundaries, it becomes easy to lose sight of our own needs and well-being, and we may find ourselves feeling overwhelmed and depleted. I’ll talk more about setting healthy boundaries later on in the post.
Being a mom is even more overwhelming and devastating when we fall into the trap of comparing ourselves to others. Seeing images of seemingly perfect families, homes, and lifestyles on social media can leave us feeling like we’re falling short and not measuring up.
The constant pressure to be the best, to have the best, and to do it all can be crushing. It can be easy to feel like we’re failing, like we’re not enough, and like we’ll never be able to keep up. This comparison is terrible for our mental- health and can leave us feeling isolated and inadequate.
No one wants to show you the bad parts of their lives. We’re seeing snippets of people’s lives when they’re at their best. No wonder, we often think we’re not good enough or not doing enough.
The pressure of societal expectations
The pressure to be perfect is real and many mothers struggle every day, trying to be the best at everything.
It can be a crushing weight. We are expected to be the perfect parent, the perfect wife, and the perfect cook, all while juggling the demands of daily life and somehow looking absolutely flawless ourselves.
We’re constantly being given advice, whether parenting or other matters related. One day you might feel like you’re doing a good job, next you’re being put down for giving your baby a pacifier.
What to do when feeling overwhelmed as a mom?
With so many responsibilities and demands, it’s easy to feel like you’re always falling behind, and never getting a break. I mean, you can’t even hear your own thoughts through all of the screaming and fighting that those little ones do. And when you think you’ve finally found a minute to yourself, here they are again, asking you another question.
Being a mom is overwhelming, but with the right strategies in place, we can reduce the stress and find the strength to keep going. And not just going (because we do not have any other choice) but moving with a bit less resentment, anger and unhappiness.
How to deal with mom burnout/what to do when being a mom is so overwhelming?
Let’s talk about the small steps you can take to deal with a mom burnout and being overwhelmed.
When being a mom becomes overwhelming set boundaries and know your limits.
I did not know this, like ever. So you know what I used to do? Say yes to every request my children made. I thought being a good mother meant, I play with my children whenever they want to, and read another and then another, and then another book before they fall asleep. Was I wrong.
I wanted to see my children happy, I mean at all times. But you know who was not happy at the end of the day? Me. I was not happy, I was exhausted, tired and angry.
And then I learned to… Set boundaries and on certain occasions, prioritize my own self. Will get to that later in the post.
Setting boundaries is essential when you find being a mom is too overwhelming. You see one of my children is really talkative, he can talk non-stop, and I mean it. And while I love my child very much, I can also get really over-stimulated and feel like the sensory overload is too much.
While the past me thought I have to listen to what my child has to say, at literally all times. The new me realised I actually can’t.
And in between all that I do and all the excessive talking that my child does, I need a break if I want to be the mom that I want to be. That break is usually drinking my coffee, and that’s the 10 minutes I need for myself in order to recharge.
What boundaries you might want to set? You’ll need to sit down and figure it out. Whether it’s teaching your child not to snatch from other children or explaining to your teenager why they can not open your phone/wallet (or whatever else that you’re not happy with them going through without asking). To help you set the boundaries, I recommend reading this post: How to set healthy boundaries with your child.
Finding time to unwind
Look, I know, it sounds cliché, you’ve heard this a million times, but… I can not emphasize how important this is and just how much you need to start doing it.
As mothers, we give so much of ourselves every day, and it’s easy to feel like there’s never a moment of rest. But taking time out is necessary if we want to recharge our batteries. You, mama, need a moment of escape from the demands of daily life.
And I know it’s difficult to get any time in for yourself, especially when you have little children but if you want to be a happier and less overwhelmed mom, you have to.
I know you want to get those dishes done while the baby is sleeping, and I know the laundry won’t do itself. But some days, you’re just going to have to forget about those things and let yourself rest.
And I know, you might not be able to do it every single time, let’s be honest, we, moms just can’t. There are tons of responsibilities that can not wait. But just some days, when your baby is asleep or your children are busy by themselves, sit down and ask yourself: is it a must that I get this thing done right now, or can it wait an hour or two. If you’re feeling exhausted, let yourself rest, you’ll get back to whatever it is that you have to do – later.
Stop comparing yourself
One of the biggest challenges for us moms is the urge to compare ourselves to other mothers. Whether it’s scrolling through social media, chatting with friends, or just having high expectations for ourselves.
Comparing ourselves to other moms can lead to feelings of inadequacy and self-doubt. It will surely add to being an even more overwhelmed mom.
I mean just a few clicks on our smartphones, and we’re facing moms who are baking with their kids, have the best Montessori equipment, and plan the most exciting outings. And then there’s you, having a bad day, a week or even a month. Perhaps your baby is not sleeping through the night just yet and your toddler is having the worst tantrums, your house is a mess and you’re feeling exhausted.
You start asking yourself ‘why can’t I be more like the other moms?’ and ‘how do they do it all and I am not capable of doing it’ ? Even worse, you’re facing thoughts of ‘I’m not good enough of a mother’ and ‘my kids deserve someone better‘. Here you go blaming yourself, fighting the guilt, but little did you know…
All of those moms are struggling in one way or the other. They all have problems.
Most of the time, however, we choose to share only the best parts of our lives with other people. Leaving the rest behind the closed doors. When I understood this, it changed my whole perspective.
I can not say this enough. Overwhelmed moms need to learn how to prioritize themselves at times. We put our children first all the time, and that’s only natural. However, if you never pay attention to your own needs and feelings, very soon you’ll find yourself to be an angry, frustrated mom, who is a ticking time bomb, ready to explode at a slightest louder noise.
Of course, if you have a clingy baby or a toddler and no help whatsoever, prioritizing yourself can be very difficult, if not impossible. But even then, take small steps to self-care, make sure you have a shower when you need one, ask your husband to look after the baby. We, moms, tend to feel like if we leave the baby with someone else even if it’s just for 10 minutes, something terrible is going to happen. Give it a try, your husband might actually surprise you.
If you have bigger children, prioritizing yourself when you need to do so is much easier. And not only is it better for your own mental health but in fact, it’s a win for your children too. You see, when you always put yourself last, you become resentful and angry. Whom does that help? Definitely not you or your children.
So the next time you’re setting some boundaries and take time to do something for yourself, remember, it’s not selfish, but rather you’re doing everyone in the house a favour.
When prioritizing yourself, don’t forget to:
Creating quality time with your children (even if it’s just 15 minutes a day)
Okay, so… You find being a mom is overwhelming already and now I’m telling you to create more time for your children? You might think, that doesn’t make sense, but let me explain.
Quiet often when we’re exhausted and run on an auto-pilot, we’re there for our children physically but we’re not actually there for them and with them. In fact, more often than we’d like to, we’re being present absent. We often fail to engage with our children and make time to have quality time with them. I mean that type of time, where we’re not looking at the phone or trying to complete a household chore.
Why should you spend quality time with your children when you’re going through a mom burnout? First of all, because once that mom guilt sets in, you’ll know that you’ve actually did dedicate a fraction of your time to your children. You did engage with them and gave them undivided attention, even if it was just for 15-20 minutes. Now, when you need to take time to prioritize and take care of yourself, you’re not beating yourself up.
Second of all, having quality time with your children, helps you connect with them and can actually help you forget your ”adult” problems, even if it’s just for a while. Quality time doesn’t have to be something you hate, if you’re just like me and hate pretend games, decide on something you all enjoy.
Asking for help
I know it’s easier said than done, I really do. You can’t afford a babysitter and you live far away from your family and relatives. It seems like there’s just no one to help and you’re all on your own. But if being a mom is becoming too overwhelming, you must seek help mama.
Sit down and think what can be done and who you could talk to. Perhaps your husband is working really long shifts, but could still take the kiddos out even if it’s just once in a while. Reach out to your family or your husbands family, even if they live far away. Who knows perhaps they would love to visit and offer a helping hand?
We live in times, where we often feel ashamed to ask for help and show we’re struggling. We also feel like no one will want to or have time to help us and we must do it all on our own, but you’d be surprised!
And even if it seems impossible at the moment, please do not brush of the idea permanently.
Can’t get rid of mom burnout. What is overwhelmed mothers depression?
Mom burnout is a real and all-consuming experience for many mothers.
When we feel overwhelmed and exhausted day in and day out, it can be easy to slip into a state of depression. This type of depression, sometimes referred to as “overwhelmed mothers depression,” can leave us feeling hopeless, helpless, and alone.
Is it normal to not enjoy being a mom?
It’s absolutely normal to not enjoy being a mom at times. However, If you feel like no matter what you do, you can’t shake off the feelings of sadness and overwhelm, then you might be depressed. And you, mama, need to seek help.
Reach out to anyone you trust, whether it’s a friend or a relative, but don’t suffer alone.