A new survey by OnePoll found that mothers spend 97 hours a week parenting through such jobs as chef, teacher and chauffeur. Conducted this spring, the survey talked to American moms of school-aged children (between the ages of 5 and 18) about all the different tasks we tackle throughout our week.
Commissioned by Campbell’s Well Yes! Sipping Soups, the survey found that with all the time moms dedicate to their kids, they’re so busy that they give up everything from nutrition and sleep to the elusive “me time.”
To make time for their children, moms report not getting enough sleep (53%), missing out on date nights with a significant other (47%) and not having time for hobbies or going out with friends (47%). In fact, 62% don’t always have time to eat a sit-down meal, while 53% struggle to eat nutritious foods because of their hectic schedule.
But even with the sacrifices they’re making, two in three (69%) would like to spend even more time caring for their children. “It’s incredible how many jobs moms juggle in their everyday lives, so it’s no surprise that their personal nutrition isn’t their top priority,” said Diego Palmieri, chief marketing officer for meals and beverages at Campbell Soup Company, in a press release.
In one day, moms report spending 46 minutes cooking meals for their kids, 44 minutes doing their laundry and 29 minutes drawing and creating art projects with their little ones. This is in addition to the time spent as a cheerleader, supporting their kids at sports practice; a tutor, helping with homework and school projects; and as a therapist, helping their kids through life’s little challenges.
Seventy percent of moms surveyed also have a full- or part-time job too. But with as much as moms are able to do, there’s still only so much time in the day. After helping brush their children’s teeth, fixing their broken toys and calming them down after bad dreams, moms are left with less than an hour of “me time” per day.
While no mom is really surprised by these findings, isn’t it time we stopped the madness? Shouldn’t we say enough is enough is enough when it comes to doing so much for our kids?
I love my children, but I don’t sacrifice my sleep on a regular basis to do their laundry.
I love my children, but I’d rather teach them how to cook and clean rather than doing those tasks for them on a regular basis.
I say no to my children because I want them to have a better sense of their place in our family. I say no to activities sometimes because it’s not healthy for me for them to participate.
I dearly love my children, but I also know the importance of letting my kids see that my life doesn’t begin and end with them. That I’m my own person. That I have my own interests, hobbies and dreams. Because separating myself from them is one of the greatest acts of love I can do for my children.
I love my children, but I love my husband more. My children feel safe and secure knowing that they are not center of our household, and that their father loves their mother deeply.
This survey—and others like it—should serve as a wakeup call to moms everywhere that our families need us to do less and have a life of our own than that we should fall into bed exhausted every night. Our children do not need us to spend 97 hours a week parenting. Our children need to see us spending a good chunk of those hours being our own person. That’s how we raise adults—by acting like one ourselves.