'I needed to cut myself some serious slack' How one mum overcame the dreaded mum guilt

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BISS mum guilt
Katie from Mummy In A Tutu won our BISS November competition and in her guest blog reveals how (and why) she finally managed to overcome her mum guilt...

Picture it. I hear a shrill shout of 'mum' down the baby monitor alerting me to the fact that my darling daughter was awake for the day - this was shrill shout number five from the last 12 hours as my 18 month old had suddenly decided that the sleeping patterns of a newborn are much better than her previous ones.

So, like the mombie that I am I trudged into her room, wished her good morning and went to the dresser to retrieve her clothes for the day. Opening a drawer, I saw it was empty. Glancing over to her wash basket, I noticed the pile of washing I was meant to do yesterday - still sat there - meaning I had no vests to put my daughter in on this cold day, and had to supplement with a long-sleeved t-shirt and an extra pair of leggings. I suppose now is where I should begin feeling that fabulous mummy guilt...

But I don't. Yes, it's not an ideal situation that I've run out of vests and have a mountain of washing to do, but it isn't the end of the world, is it?! By adding an extra t-shirt and pair of leggings she'll be just as warm, if not warmer, and it's not like we're going anywhere today anyway (wait, does that also mean I should feel mummy guilty because I don't have a meticulous plan of learning and adventure activities arranged?!) NO!

Don't get me wrong, I used to be all about the mummy guilt. When our babies are born it's like we receive an injection of it and it runs free in our veins forever more! However, it occurred to me randomly one day that I needed to cut myself some serious slack.

Take a look at your child – if, like mine, they're happy, clean, healthy, fed and loved then guess what?! You're doing a brilliant job. IF you manage to do some painting with them, or take them to the park, or have every item of their clothing wash, dried, ironed and back in their drawers five minutes after they have taken them off then that's brilliant too, but it's not a necessity. So if you're going to kill yourself doing all that then stop, take a breath, and remember that in the long run if the washing isn't done that day, it doesn't matter.

Reading back, I swear the me from three or four months ago wouldn't have recognised the person writing this now. I used to suffer hugely from mummy guilt for the tiniest thing. Then I realised that the energy I was wasting worrying and feeling bad could be spent getting the things done I was worried about in the first place, and if they didn't get done, well, there was always tomorrow.

So before you let the mummy guilt close in next time have a think – you're doing your best and that's all that matters!

Continued below...

Katie was selected as a BISS guest blogger after entering our November linky. For your chance to write for GoodtoKnow, check out our Because I Said So platform.

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Katie Davis

Exactly this. We do what we have to do to provide the best x

Katie Davis

Great to be featured x

Suzanne Treharne

Yes to this! It seems I'm always being told that I should feel guilty about going to work but I don't; what's the point? We do what we have to do.


Ev.ery..Day :-o Some days are worse than others mind you ;-)


I suffer from mum guilt so often when I have to go to work - thank you for writing this, it makes me realise I'm not alone in feeling this way :-) it's so important not to beat yourself up too much. Beautiful piece xxx

Mindful Mummy Mission

I needed to read this right now - intermittently I have very bad bouts of mum guilt and I am at the moment - you're right they're happy and healthy - that is all that matters xx

Rachel Bustin

I have suffered from mum guilt since I went back to work. I start work very early in the mornings so I'm not the one to give her breaskfast, my mum does that. But I suppose I'm always there for tea-time and bedtime. I wouldn't miss that for the world! Thanks Katie for this wonderful piece. We must learn to be a bit easier on ourselves.

Frances Taylor

I've never been one for mum guilt...It's very time intensive ;)

Katie Davis

Ha ha ha oh no!! Thanks for reading x

Katie Davis

Thank you x

Katie Davis

Thanks so much. Of course this counts for dad guilt too!

Katie Davis

oh bless you lovely. Having read your blog I can see you are a wonderful mum. big hugs xx

Katie Davis

Thanks so much - I'm sure youre an amazing mum xx

Laura Light

I suffer with mum guilt too. wish i didn't but can't seem to shake it! Great piece!

White Camellias

I wish mum guilt had no space in my life and as much as I try to keep it at bay I often can't and end up feeling like utter crap. Thank you Katie Davies for your article. I needed to read this

Peter Geilern

A great, completely agree with what you said!

Kerrie Louise Davis

I couldn't agree more! So true x

Jane Lockyear

Let me tell you all it doesn't end even when your children are grown lol.

Katie Davis

Oh bless you - thank you for such kind words and you do need to cut yourself some slack. I'm sure you are a great mum xx

Katie Davis

Oh bless you.I bet you are a terrific mum - cut yourself some slack x

Katie Davis

Exactly - we do as much as we can do and we should NOT feel bad about that! Thanks for reading

Katie Davis

exactly!! They are totally oblivious!! Thanks for reading x

Lucy occupation: (m)other

Oh so true! And the children don't notice half the things we feel guilty you say, as long as they are happy and fed and cared for and loved that is a pretty good starting point.

Babies, biscuits and booze

This is great, mummy guilt is such a waste of time and I swear half the time I only feel guilty because I think other people think I should - does that make sense?! I personally don't feel bad that we don't go to five different groups in a week, but when I tell other people that I start to worry about it. I know my son gets plenty of interaction and time with friends and family so if we only make it to one toddler group a week he really isn't missing out on much, but I feel like I should be ashamed of it. Ridiculous!! So glad you've shaken it off. Ellen x

Island Living 365

I needed to read this! I torture myself with mum guilt! Katie is right, I need to make sure that I don't let the mum guilt close in next time!

Leanne Norman

Katie has such a way with words! It's as if she's in my mind some days! Mummy guilt hits me hard some days. I need to take a leaf out of Katie's book and not let it take control. Great article!

Katie Davis

Good for you. I'm sure you are a wonderful mummy x

Laura Brittain

So true! I do get the mummy guilt in phases but most of the time I too try to cut myself some slack. Great article!

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