Serena Williams Shares Her Working Mothers' Guilt

Serena Williams is being extremely transparent on Instagram with the struggle experienced by a lot of working parents. Typically the most difficult decision for first time mother and any parents to make is the decision to return back to work after a short bonding period with your child. A decision that too often leaves you feeling remorseful and full of anxiety wondering if you're in fact making the best choice. The thought that you're missing milestones at such a pivotal stage in your child's life can be overwhelming. This can be especially the case here in the US with maternity leave being a gray area for to many employees where state laws vary drastically. I've worked for a global company and was shocked when I learned that Canada offers parents a full year off to bond with a child and that is a law enforced by the country. Same company in different countries had a drastic difference in laws that govern maternity leave.

Overwhelmingly the decision causes many mothers to put their careers on hold.  Although Serena has the luxury of entrusting her child to family and her husband during her absence many are left with no other option than to entrusting their children to a complete stranger. It's a horrible feeling and one that I and other moms have experienced first hand. Even in the care of someone you trust it still weighs heavily on your conscious leaving a parent extremely guilt-ridden at times.  When daycare is your only option, you can't help but to worry about scenarios that for many are real cause for concern. Is the childcare employee resentful of their job or having their own obstacles within their personal lives that can lead to neglect of your child/children? This sentiment is extremely prevalent when your child is too young to articulate the actions of their caregiver to you. It's a horrible feeling and one that I and other moms have experienced first hand. This is definitely a topic that is universal to working parents and I appreciate Serena's openness regarding how it has impacted her. Hopefully it can shed light on a taboo topic that a lot of parents battle internally and alone. Especially for women who work and wish to continue progressing within their careers. 

Last week was not easy for me. Not only was I accepting some tough personal stuff, but I just was in a funk. Mostly, I felt like I was not a good mom. I read several articles that said postpartum emotions can last up to 3 years if not dealt with. I like communication best. Talking things through with my mom, my sisters, my friends let me know that my feelings are totally normal. It’s totally normal to feel like I’m not doing enough for my baby. We have all been there. I work a lot, I train, and I’m trying to be the best athlete I can be. However, that means although I have been with her every day of her life, I’m not around as much as I would like to be. Most of you moms deal with the same thing. Whether stay-at-home or working, finding that balance with kids is a true art. You are the true heroes. I’m here to say: if you are having a rough day or week--it’s ok--I am, too!!! There’s always tomm!
A post shared by Serena Williams (@serenawilliams) on

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