Motherhood Revisited and Reframed

photo credit: citron_smurf via photopin cc

I was chatting with a mom of four-month-old boy/girl twins who had just returned to work full time. She tearfully related that going back to work has not been what she had originally envisioned. She had hoped that she would be able to go home at lunchtime and see the babies; however, that has not been a feasible option. She feels somewhat relieved that her mom, who has helped take care of the twins since they were born, is living with the family. Nevertheless, this new living arrangement has not been an easy adjustment, especially for the young mother’s husband. She is grateful but worries that the babies are not going to realize that she is their mother. I reassured her that this is a common concern shared by many moms who work full time and have a caretaker. Some moms feel resentful that the babies seem to have a stronger connection to the caretaker than to them. I reiterated that spending alone time with each baby would help this young mother feel less guilty about “abandoning” her children. We discussed arranging the babies’ afternoon nap a bit later so that they will be awake longer after she gets home. This mom also is troubled because the needier baby gets more of her attention, while her more easygoing son gets left by himself. Again, alone time is the antidote to these emotional ups and downs that are part and parcel of parenting twins.

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