Most moms take a bit of time off from work after welcoming their baby to bond and take care of their newborn. Meanwhile, some never end up going back to work or wait years before re-entering the workforce. Regardless of how much time a mama takes off of work, it can be difficult adjusting to not having a job outside of the house and bringing in an income.
As much as you love spending time with your little one, it’s alright to still miss going to work and having a career of your own.
These moms all share the challenges they faced after not going back to work after having kids. Many of these moms were the breadwinners of their families, and their careers gave them an important sense of accomplishment and drive. Needless to say, going from a full-time job to staying at home with the baby all day has been a big adjustment for them.
From dealing with the jealousy of seeing their partner go off to work to having to face the financial realities of being a one-income household, you’d be surprised the difficulties these moms have faced post-baby. What story surprised you the most? Make sure to let us know in the comments!
20 Let Me Shop In Peace
Cecily* says that she had more financial freedom when she was also working and dislikes having to go through her husband if she wants to spend money nowadays.
“I used to make a ton of money as an interior designer, but I gave up my business when I got pregnant with twins. Nowadays, I have to ask my husband’s permission if I want to do any shopping for myself, and I honestly hate it. I feel like a kid asking her parents for allowance. When I worked I could spend what I wanted without feeling like I needed to justify it or ask if it’s okay.”
19 Friends Come and Go
Keira* was shocked when her friends were critical rather than supportive of her decision to work part-time after having a baby. In the end, she says she had to make new friends.
“My friends all judged me when I told them I was going to work part time not full time after having my baby. They thought I was putting my career on the backburner for the sake of my husband’s, even though this was fully my choice. It made staying friends really difficult because I felt judged. I’ve since had to make new friends who have kids so they get where I’m coming from.”
18 Rolling Up To The Club(s)
Kelly* recommends joining activities within your community if you’re struggling to adjust to not working as much after having a baby.
“It was tough adjusting to not working as much after becoming a mom. I wanted to make sure I still got out of the house and socialized, so I joined a ton of clubs at my local community center. I began taking my baby to ‘Mommy and Me’ classes where I made a lot of Mom friends, and also started taking painting and karate classes myself for some self-care. It’s a great way to adjust to the changes of being a stay-at-home mom.”
17 Kiss The Chef
Madeline* turned her passion into baking and cooking into a side hustle after having children.
“I started cooking and baking ridiculous amounts when I didn’t go back to work after having kids. At first, it was just a way to pass time and de-stress when the kids napped. But I ended up discovering a passion I never knew I had.
I started giving out food to friends and neighbours because I had so much when one suggested I open a business. Now I have a side business supplying local bakeries with yummy goods… and it sometimes pays better than my old job!”
16 Do What Dad Wants
Alison* feels her husband pushed her into giving up her career to look after their kids full-time, which she says contributed to their divorce.
“My husband pressured me into being a stay-at-home mom after we had our second child. He made me feel guilty for putting them in daycare when we can afford me staying home. It made me depressed and angry to be away from my job, which made me feel guilty for feeling that way towards my kids. We ended up getting a divorce, and this is 100% the reason why.”
How would you feel if your partner was pressuring you to give up your job?
15 It’s All About The Money, Money
Tania* admits that her family went through a difficult time financially after she left her job to take care of their children… so much so, that she had to get a part-time job during her maternity leave!
“We actually financially suffered when I took time off from working after having kids. We couldn’t afford childcare, but losing my income was really hard. To make ends meet, I had to waitress in evenings when I had a 3-month-old and a 2-year-old at home after my husband came home from work. I was so thankful when the kids started school and I could go back to my old field.”
14 When Things Don’t Feel Equal
Joy* says that she and her husband shifted fiscal responsibilities after welcoming a child, but it sounds like more than she bargained for.
“I always made more money than my husband, so I’d take care of the finances. But I decided to step back and take a couple years off from working when I got pregnant.
My husband assumed the role of taking care of finances, and it’s been so hard to adjust to. Sometimes he’s late on paying the bills, unlike me. He feels more entitled to spend money without consulting me because he’s the only one working and calculating things. I didn’t expect it to be like this.”
13 Mom Doesn’t Always Know Best
Hilary* says that the hardest thing about leaving her career after having kids was putting up with her mom’s judgemental comments.
“I didn’t feel like I had much adjusting to do… except getting used to what other people had to say! I always wanted to be a stay-at-home mom, so it wasn’t a big decision for me to leave my job when I had kids.
But my mom really disagreed with me. To this day, she continues to make comments about how disappointed she is that I left my career ‘because of a man’ and how I don’t believe you can be a career woman and have a family. That’s not what I believe at all, but she won’t listen to me.”
12 Fit And Fabulous
Stacia* says that getting into fitness helped her develop a routine after welcoming her daughter.
“It was really weird not to go back to work after my daughter was born. I was going stir-crazy just being cooped up in the house all day. Plus I was feeling down that my body was bouncing back like I wanted it to. That’s when I got into fitness!
My local gym has a daycare you can leave your kids at while you’re working out or going to a class. Plus, the cost is included in the gym membership. Having something to do kept me motivated and busy, so I didn’t feel strange about not having a 9-5 job anymore.”
11 Getting Back Into Business
Joanna* decided to put her creative skills to work after becoming a stay-at-home mom, and she opened her very own Etsy business. Now that’s what we call hustling!
“I stepped away from my marketing position after baby no.3 because child care was more expensive than what I was making. I felt like I lost confidence and passion after leaving the workforce. So, I started my own business selling my crafts on Etsy. I don’t make a huge profit, but it’s a great way to stay busy and still feel like I have my own career or hobby aside from taking care of the kids.”
10 The Reformed Workaholic
Before having kids, Callie* admits that she had an unhealthy relationship with work that was taking a toll on her. But becoming a mom made her shift her priorities, and now she’s luckily been able to find the balance she so badly wanted.
“Adopting a child was great for my work-life balance. Before, my whole life was consumed by my job and it always left me feeling stressed out and angry. Becoming a mom forced me to make work my second priority, and take a step back for the sake of me and my son. Best decision ever!”
9 This Is What Sisters Are For
Valerie’s* trick for getting used to staying home with the baby every day was to develop a routine with her sister, which inspired them to get active and helped save their sanity.
“I took 2 years off from working after having my son. It was hard getting used to not going to the office every morning, and just staying at home with the baby. My sister helped me adjust by getting us to go on early-morning walks with our kids, and then taking them to the park for the rest of the afternoon. It helped me develop a routine and get back into fitness!”
8 Bringing The Work Home
Deidre* says that figuring out a way to do her job from home meant she didn’t have to compromise her career to stay home with her kids.
“My best advice for adjusting if you’re not going back to work after a baby is to find a way to bring work home to you.
I used to be a teacher, but having a day job wasn’t possible with three toddlers. So, I ended up taking a part-time job as a virtual English teacher, communicating with students abroad to help them learn the language. It lets me stay home with the babies and still have a career that’s my own and that I love.”
7 Motherhood Isn’t A Vacation
Kayla* admits that her husband assumes staying home with the baby is less work than going to a job, and his comments are starting to really affect her.
“The worst thing is having to deal with comments from my husband implying that staying home with the baby is easier than going to work. He treats my maternity leave like a vacation, and says he would gladly do it if he could. Honestly, being a mom is harder than my 40+ hours/ week job, and I’m looking forward to getting a break when I start back at work soon.”
6 The Real Downside To Things
Cheryl* says she was happy when she didn’t return to work after giving birth… except for the fact that it means her partner has to pick up extra shifts!
“I was so happy when I didn’t have to go back to work after having a baby. I’d always hated my job and was looking forward to having a reason to leave it. I didn’t think it would happen because I got pregnant, though.
The only downside is my boyfriend has to work a lot more to support us, so I see him less. It definitely put a strain on our relationship. We’re more like roommates or friends than a couple anymore.”
5 Moms Just Want To Have Fun
Penelope* says she just wanted to enjoy herself during her maternity leave and go out with friends- but it sounds like it put a strain on her relationship.
“I had kids in my early 20s, and still wanted to experience a normal nightlife. So, when I was on my maternity leave, I often left my husband with the baby at night so I could go out with friends. I wasn’t irresponsible or anything; I just wanted to take advantage of not having work early in the mornings. I felt like it was a good way to take advantage of having this free time. He didn’t feel the same way.”
4 Time For Dad’s Turn
Summer* realized quickly that being a stay-at-home mom wasn’t for her. That’s when her family decided that Dad should be the one to stay home!
“I was never excited about the thought of taking time off of work to be with my kids. I went to school for over 10 years to become a lawyer, and had kids only a few years after. Needless to say, I got really depressed during the first few months of being a stay-at-home mom.
Eventually, I told my husband I couldn’t keep doing things like this. Our solution? We decided it would work if he stayed home with the kids instead of me, which he honestly prefers to go to his 9-5 job. I never would’ve expected things to work out this way, but it all did for the better.”
3 It Sounds Like Paradise
Sadie* says that she loves how low-key taking care of her kids are after having a bustling career- she even has time for TV now!
“I’d never taken a break from my career before having kids, so I was scared I would be too bored at home or miss the fast-paced environment at work.
Honestly, it’s the exact opposite! I love having slow mornings with the babies and spending the afternoon with Mom friends. The best part is that now I can watch all my TV shows whenever I want, and boy, have I found some new ones. Who knew all the good soaps were on in the afternoon?”
2 Losing A Part Of My Identity
Lola* admits that her work was a part of her identity so much that it really affected her when she took time off post-baby.
“I was really self-conscious when I took time off of work to stay home with my kids. I thought it would put me at a disadvantage when I went back to the workforce, and that it would look like we put my husband’s career over mine. I actually let it affect me so much that it put a rift in our relationship. Things got better when I sought counseling and eventually went back to work earlier than I anticipated.”
1 Missing The Pre-Baby Lavish Lifestyle
Carrie* admits that her family has had to make some changes since they’ve lost their second income. She says she’s looking forward to eventually going back to work so they won’t have to be so conscious about money.
“I definitely had to change my lifestyle when I quit my job to be a full-time mom. We weren’t making as much money as we used to, so I had to cut down on the shopping and going out. Plus, a kid is already so expensive. I’ll definitely go back to work in a few years so we can get our old lifestyle back.”
*Names have been changed.