Whether it’s the green-eyed monster of jealousy or a perpetually judging mother-in-law, there are very few parents that have avoided the backhanded comments and not-so-subtle shaming that comes along around the same time your baby does.
Regardless of whether your home is spotless or a sty, you stay at home or work until six, someone will always have something to say about the way you live your life once you become a parent.
It’s disappointing that in 2021, new research finds that almost one in five (17%) parents have been shamed for having a professional cleaner while a quarter (24%) have been shamed for having a messy house!
There’s really no disputing that being a mum is a full-time job, and for many – whether working or stay at home – the pressures to be the perfect cook, cleaner, worker or stay at home mum, is a judgement felt by far too many.
The research conducted by Fantastic Services Group further reveals that a third (30%) of mums have been shamed for choosing to stay-at-home with their children, while one in five (20%) have been shamed for having a job.
Whether this judgment comes from a place of jealousy, social conditioning or outdated sexist stigmas, mums across the nation are struggling to make it through each day under the weight of their busy schedules.
Psychologist Jemma Doley attributes this pressure on mums to traditional societal expectations, which we often learn through modelling from our parents from a very young age.
“Women, especially mums, often place this expectation on themselves to be able to do it all. Cook, clean, look after the kids, work, manage everyone’s schedules – it’s a never-ending list.”
“There are certainly societal pressures that fuel this expectation, but behaviour shaping of women to be the perfect homemaker can begin from infancy. Typically, boys and girls grow up watching mum run the house, do the cooking, cleaning etcetera, planting the expectation. Add work and everything else that comes with being a modern-day mum, and it’s just not a realistic expectation.”
Ms Doley adds that in order to start shifting these norms is to actively encourage dads to contribute to running the household and to share the weight of the household tasks. Given the increasing demands on women’s plates, looking at alternative options, such as outsourcing, can also be a great strategy to reduce demands on women.
Illustrating Doley’s point, the research reveals that half (52%) of Australian women are the only one who cleans their home, and a third (34%) of mums are too busy to keep on top of the cleaning.
“While lots of parents feel pressure and guilt that they aren’t ‘doing it right’, there are far more important aspects to parenting like spending quality time together, that matter so much more than the superficial things like being the perfect chef or cleaner! There’s no shame in getting help around the house with those things so that you can spend more time being a mum and in pursuing other important values,” says Ms Doley.
With more than enough on their plates and no time for pandering to ancient gender expectations, Fantastic Services Group is encouraging Aussie mums rise above societal pressures and ditch the ‘shame’ of having help at home.
Fantastic Services Group offers everything Aussies on the move might need from removalists, to carpet cleaning and even pest control. They’re encouraging Aussies moving homes this summer to enjoy a little peace of mind on moving day knowing their new home has been professionally cleaned.