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29Nov 13

Making sure a working mum’s children don’t feel neglected

Time flies when you are a busy working mum. We begin the week making promises to spend more time with family, but before we know it, the entire week has slipped by, and we’ve spent most of our time not with your children, but with work.

Whether you are working out of financial necessity or for your own well-being, the work-life balance can be challenging for mum and kids, who don’t see each other as often as they’d like. It’s easy to feel guilty, but there are certain things you can do to make sure your children don’t feel neglected because of your schedule.

Making sure a working mum's children don't feel neglected

Making sure a working mum’s children don’t feel neglected

Breakfast bonding and lunch box notes

I like to give my boys Jack and Rodger little reminders throughout the week that I love them so they never doubt it, even if I’m not around.

I find that the kids are most receptive in the morning than in the afternoon when they are tired and subdued, so I make a huge effort at breakfast time to not only keep them well-fed, but to make sure that they start the day off on the right foot. It turns out that this is a fantastic start to my own day because it helps me maintain a positive attitude amidst all the stress.

I try to always make them healthy packed lunches, which is not as time-consuming as it sounds, I promise! Sometimes, kids may not understand or fully appreciate the effort, no matter how much love is involved, so I also like to write them a little note which I attach to the occasional treat.

During the car journey to school, I always make it about them, asking them what the day has in store. Or, if they have something else on their mind that they want to talk about, I let them direct the conversation. The important thing is to show them that I care about the goings-on of their lives, no matter how busy I am.

Then, I always give them a massive hug and kiss before they jump out of the car and head into school.

Family time

We also make sure that the next family outing is never far away. Family time comes first, so if we have to miss a friend’s birthday, engagement party or house warming for it, so be it.

We also dedicate at least one night a week to sitting round the table together and playing games, doing an activity such as cooking or baking, or simply chatting.

Even when I do my best, that “working mum” guilt can be difficult to get rid of. If I start to feel like I am neglecting my kids, I try to look at the situation objectively by making a list of all these things, big or small, that I do. And of course, I’m always trying to think of new and interesting ways to remind my boys that I love them. There can never be enough!



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