Supermoms Prone to Depression?

The kids can’t find their socks and they’re late for school. The husband is having a hard time organizing his things and he’s starting to hit his top. The food is not yet ready but they’re almost done. Do not fear, here’s supermom to the rescue! In a matter of seconds, everything will be in order, thanks to the all-powerful, multi-tasking, super-efficient, never-ever-tired supermom!

Truly, the supermom model has become all the rage these days. Many working mothers are striving to hit the perfect balance between home and work. They juggle their time in perfect sync to be able to perform all tasks expected of them. Most of these tasks seem too complicated and too varied for a normal human being. Thus, the term supermom was coined.

Just recently, a study was done on “supermoms”. It was found that while working mothers are less likely to go into depression than those who stay at home, those who have higher expectations of themselves are the ones most likely to be depressed.

Having a job is necessary to improve a mother’s overall mental health and well-being. It’s actually a good thing not only for the mother but for the entire family as well. This is according to the lead researcher Katrina Leupp from the University of Washington Sociology Department. However, those who wanted to be “perfect” at both their careers and home are more susceptible to depression.

The study, which analyzed data from the U.S. Department of Labor, included 1,600 married women whose average age was 40 in 2006. These women who were surveyed in 1987 while they were still in their 20s, gave their insights about working mothers. Those who supported combining career and motherhood had greater risk of depression than those who thought that women are meant to stay at home to raise the children.

Guilt Feeling
It’s not clear why but those who had expectations linked with the supermom myth are more prone to feeling guilty whenever they have to make sacrifices such as leaving work early to pick up the kids or miss the child’s program at school to attend an important meeting at the office. The feelings of guilt and sadness over these sacrifices can be considered the root of the depression that supermoms may experience.

The danger also lies in the fact that some of these women have too much expectations of themselves. It’s very important for every working mother to accept the reality that balancing work and family is a big challenge. That would lessen the possibility of feeling guilty or unsuccessful whenever you fail to devote as much time as you like to either of the two.

Time For Yourself
Moreover, it’s also crucial to include oneself in the picture. Many supermoms see their lives divided into two: family and career. They usually miss out on an important ingredient and that’s oneself. It’s a must to include some “me” time. Give yourself a break to do things that you enjoy. Go out with your friends once in a while. Invite your hubby for a dinner date. Enjoy a long warm bath. Never feel guilty about giving time for yourself. A happy mom is a much better mom than a supermom who’s not happy.

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