How Parents Can Tackle Guilt When It’s Time to Go Back to Work

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It’s not unusual to feel guilt when it’s time for you to go back to work after being at home with your baby or young children. Maybe you feel like you’re abandoning your child when you should be with them, or perhaps you feel guilty because you’re looking forward to getting back to work. Wherever these feelings come from, there are ways you can face them and deal with them in a healthy way. It’s normal to feel guilty, but it’s also important to be able to examine and address where the guilt comes from and reach a healthier place.

Find a Child Care Option You’re Happy With

As well as feeling guilty, you can be pretty anxious about leaving your child with someone else. If you’ve spent months or even years with your child, handing the responsibility of their care to someone else is tough. But you can make sure you find a childcare option that you’re happy with, and take the time to learn more about the experience your child will have. You might opt for a childminder, nursery, or even a parent to take care of your child. Whichever option you pick, make sure it’s right for your family.

Be Prepared

Being well-prepared will help to make it easier when it’s time for you to go back to work. One idea you can try is to have a trial run to test out the plan you have put in place. It could just be for half a day when you have your child being cared for by someone else. You could be at home, running errands, or maybe you could go to work. Keeping in touch days can be perfect for this, and they can help to ease you back into work too. You can also ensure you have everything you and your child need to start your new routine.

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Carve Out Time Together

It can be hard being away from your baby when you’ve spent so much time together. But there are still more hours in the day once you get home, so you can still have plenty of time as a family. By prioritising time to cuddle or play at home, you get to enjoy some bonding and relax at the end of the day. You can also plan to do things together at the weekend or whenever you have time off.

Talk About How You Feel

Dealing with feelings of guilt can be tough, but you’re not the only one to feel that way. Talking about your feelings with other parents and with friends and family can help you to process and alleviate feelings of guilt. It can help you to realise that you’re not alone but also that you don’t need to feel guilty for going back to work. Talking can also just be therapeutic in itself, allowing you to release your emotions and deal with them in a healthy way.

You might feel guilty about going back to work, but it’s important to think about why you feel that way and how to be more positive.

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