There’s enough jabber about how important a mother’s role is in the world – people ‘pin’ quotes about mums on Pinterest, they express how much they love their mothers on Instagram, but in reality, while a mother’s job may be the world’s most important, it is, however, often also the least respected and least valued.

Stress of Motherhood

Home vs. Work

It’s an age-old debate – the mother’s choice between working or staying at home to look after her children. There has been the debate for years as to which option is the “best” option; many agree that the best option is what is best for the mother and her family.

Social Life and Freedom

Other than the decision to work or to stay at home, something else that comes in the way is the loss of privacy and time that a mother endures once her child has been born.

In a perfect world, parents of a child would equally participate in the care of their child so that both could enjoy their fair share of entertainment outside of parental responsibility. However, in some cases, the father in the household must work longer hours or is unwilling to take over parental control when he can.

In other cases, a man may be willing to care for his children yet. Still, the ultimate responsibility falls on the shoulders of the mother. Many mothers complain of the lack of freedom and social life that they face after childbirth. The work of a mother is full-time, every day, all year – this makes it difficult to find time for yourself.

Help from family members may allow a mother to take some time off to focus on herself; however, many women do not have a steady support system and as such are forced to sacrifice their freedom for the sake of their children. While the need for a social life may not seem important, motherhood is filled with stressful moments and challenges.

There is no time off when you are a mother – this constant stress can take a toll on the body and the mind. It is necessary for everyone to have time to themselves to relax and unwind. Motherhood largely removes that comfort from a woman’s life.

Relationship Bonds

Couples with children will tell you that once the child arrives, it makes it so much harder for the connection and time spent together to occur as it did before they became parents. While parenthood will set you back a lot of money – pre-birth and post-birth expenses are high and only becoming higher –the relationship you and your partner too pays the price when the baby arrives.

There is less time to talk and experience each other as in the days when the relationship was child-free. A woman often spends so much time caring for her children that she in unable to focus on her relationship with her partner. Statistics have shown that persons with children say that their lowest relationship connection levels occur while the children are still in the home; as indicated in the details of this study on enduring love.

Financial Stress

Everybody with children can testify to how expensive it is to take care of a child, even when the items purchased are the cheapest available.

In the first year of a child’s life, a couple may spend over $20,000 on a combination of prenatal and postnatal appointments, any tests run, labour and delivery and all of the items needed for the child.

If a couple is not properly prepared for this financial commitment, a child’s care can strain the budget of the home so greatly that the couple slips into poverty or just above the poverty line.

As women, we are usually prone to worry more about issues that arise in the home – especially the finances. By having a child, a couple sacrifices not only their time but also often financial security.

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C.E.O @ The New Savvy
Anna Haotanto is passionate about finance, education, women empowerment and children’s issues. Anna has been featured in CNBC, Forbes, The Straits Times, Business Insider, INC and The Peak Singapore. She was nominated and selected for FORTUNE Most Powerful Women conference in 2016 (Asia) and 2015 (San Francisco, Next Gen). Anna has 10 years of experience in the financial sector and is currently a Director in Tera Capital. Her previous work experience includes positions at Citigroup, United Overseas Bank, a regional role in Business Monitor and a boutique private equity firm based in Shanghai. She graduated from Singapore Management University (Finance and Quantitative Finance).