The Inner Voice - Mommy Guilt, Family, Work and You

Jan 13, 2010

#Life#Working Mom


Expectations are resentments under construction. - Anne Lamott

The Inner Voice. “Your son needs you. His eyes are so puffy. He needs sleep and your arms.”

The Inner Voice. “You better get your work done on time or you will disappoint. You don’t want to be THAT PERSON. We rail against THAT PERSON. Be a better person at work. What if you had no job? WHAT IF.”

The Inner Voice. “Look at those stay at home moms. They love their kids more than you do. Clearly.”

Logic has no chance. Has no foothold.

My mind is a neighborhood I try not go to alone. - Anne Lamott

The Inner Voice. “You can’t do it all.”

The Inner Voice. “You can do it all.”

The Inner Voice. “But you will fail.”

Reality says my son is here with me, “working” too. His medium is a coloring book, mine is a computer. Together we connect the dots, balancing the impossible.

Reality says we’re fine, the children know they’re loved.
Reality says it’s a constant struggle, a good struggle, a necessary struggle.
Reality says some days will be harder than others.

And in the end, it is all ok. Reality, history, logic, fact. Looking back, it all turned out ok.

It always does.

The most terrifying day of your life is the day the first one is born. Your life, as you know it… is gone, never to return. But they learn how to walk, and they learn how to talk and you want to be with them. And they turn out to be the most delightful people you will ever meet in your life. - Lost in Translation


  1. Sitting at my desk today, missing my babies, trying to ignore my inner voice… I needed to read this.  I’m not alone.  It will turn out OK.

    thank you.

    By T with Honey on 2010 01 13

  2. Awwwww. If you’re lucky, they turn out to be your best friends. wink

    By Al_Pal on 2010 01 13

  3. With ya. Love ya.

    By syd on 2010 01 13

  4. I hate those inner voices. When I’m at the computer typing furiously, trying to drift between conversations about story books and half finished articles. Some days I think there is no way to win.

    By Summer on 2010 01 13

  5. Well you know I am going to tell you I love this post! And for what it’s worth, when we researched mommy guilt, we found guilt levels are the same regardless of employment status, so this means everyone feels guilty at about the same level. Know what we also found? Despite the guilt, most moms are happy most of the time.  Guilt can ebb and flow, but you can always sing louder than that inner voice. Right?

    By ParentopiaDevra on 2010 01 13

  6. I know that inner voice well. There are times I work in the evening and that time should be for my girls.

    By pixielation on 2010 01 14

  7. Since I literally just 5 minutes ago accepted a full-time job (a work-from-home job, but still, one that expects at least 40 hours a week of my dedicated time & attention), THANK YOU for writing this. It’s nice to be reminded that we ALL struggle with this stuff.

    P.S. That line from “Lost in Translation”? One of my favorites. And sort of made me fall in love with Bill Murray, who up until then just kind of annoyed me.

    By cindy w on 2010 01 14