Stay-at-Home Mom Depression [Causes, Signs & Solutions]

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Being a stay-at-home mom is one of the most challenging and rewarding jobs in the world. However, it can also be exhausting and depressing. Many women who stay at home with their children experience some form of depression. If you are feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or depressed, don’t worry – you are not alone!

In this article, we’ll discuss stay-at-home mom depression in detail, highlighting the causes, symptoms, and most importantly how to feel fulfilled as a stay-at-home mom!

Stay-at-Home Mom Depression: Causes and Symptoms

Having children is a major life change! While it is true for both parents, it can have a major impact on mothers who decide to become stay-at-home moms. They find it difficult to interact with people their age. They’re busy cooking, taking their kids to doctor’s appointments, and cleaning the house.

On top of this, a lot of them are not appreciated enough for the work they do. Doing so many tasks on a regular basis can eventually lead to stay-at-home mom burnout!

Many mothers used to have the opportunity of going out and interacting with other moms and their friends, but with the onset of the pandemic, this has reduced considerably. A survey highlights that there has been a substantial increase in the likelihood of maternal depression and anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic mainly due to a sense of danger and uncertainty the pandemic brought with itself.

If you too are experiencing challenges or struggling mentally, you’re not alone. We’ll offer you some of the best solutions to improve your mental health!

Depression Causes for Stay-at-Home Moms

Let’s first discuss some of the most common causes of depression for a stay-at-home mom.

Financial Stress

Most stay-at-home moms are not earning an income, which can lead to financial stress. Development of depression is common when mothers feel like they are not contributing to the family financially. Studies show that low-income stay-at-home moms experience a deeper sense of distress. Stay-at-home moms in families making less than $36,000 a year reported the highest level of depression.

Not Enough Support From Husband and Family

One of the most common complaints from stay-at-home moms is that they do not feel supported by their husbands or other family members. This lack of emotional, mental, or physical support can be extremely isolating and make them prone to depression.

Postpartum Depression

Stay-at-home mom postpartum depression is quite common amongst new mothers. It is a form of depression that happens after having a baby. This can be caused by hormonal changes, sleep deprivation, and the stress of caring for a new baby. It is more common among mothers who have a history of depression or those who are going through a major crisis like job loss or have twins or triplets.

Comparing Yourself With Other Moms

It is easy to compare yourself to other mothers. The age of social media has increased our tendency for comparison because we often see mom influencers managing their kids, work, and making elaborate aesthetic meals for their children! This can easily lead to feelings of jealousy and inadequacy.

You See Yourself as a Negative Person

It is common for an exhausted stay-at-home mom to see herself as a person with negative energy. Stay-at-home moms often feel like they are not doing enough, which can lead to a lack of self-worth. This can be exacerbated by the fact that many mothers feel like they are not contributing to the family financially.

Difficult Time Dealing With Your Kid/s

As a mother, you might feel guilty for wanting to take a break from full-time parenting. Many mothers also feel that they should find complete fulfillment in being a mom. You might feel like you’re not good enough or that you’re not cut out for this job, especially when you have a difficult time dealing with your kid/s.

DID YOU KNOW: A study found that around a third of parents feel social isolation. Thus, it’s important for parents to spend time outside their home with their friends or family.

Stay-at-Home Mom Depression Symptoms

Here are a few common depression symptoms experienced by mothers staying at home:

Lack of Energy

Feeling fatigued or exhausted most of the time is one of the most common symptoms of depression. It can even become difficult to get out of bed some days and face your day-to-day reality. Many moms also struggle to enjoy the things they used to, especially if they have to juggle a lot of different responsibilities. You can take vitamins that increase energy levels to help you feel better.

Mood Swings

Another common symptom of the stay-at-home mom’s depression signs is mood swings. You may find yourself feeling happy one minute and then angry or unhappy the next. Mood swings are often accompanied by feeling irritated for no apparent reason. You may snap at your kids, family, or husband for no reason. These mood swings can be overwhelming and frustrating for both you and your family.

You Have a Difficult Time Falling Asleep

Being around babies means you will have to get up at odd hours to feed them or change their diapers. While many parents are sleep-deprived, some stay-at-home moms struggle to fall asleep even when they have the time to take a nap. This can have mental ramifications and lack of sleep can further lead to depression.

Helpless Feeling

Stay-at-home mom depression and anxiety can also be caused by a feeling of helplessness and personal failure. It is heightened when you feel like no one can help you through this. Many moms also feel that nothing they do is good enough. These feelings can pose serious mental health challenges for stay-at-home moms.

The Contact List Is Small – Little to No Friends

Moms who stay at home tend to lose touch with their friends, former co-workers, and even family members. This is because they’re often too busy taking care of their children and managing the house. It can make you feel lonely, and your partner may not be able to compensate for this isolation and loneliness.

Suicidal Thoughts

If you are having thoughts about harming yourself or taking your own life, it is important to seek help immediately. This is a serious symptom of depression that should not be ignored. Remember, battling depression as a stay-at-home mom is possible with some help.

Appetite Changes

Depression can cause changes in appetite. You might begin to lose interest in food or find that you’re not hungry. In other cases, you might find yourself eating more than usual. These sudden changes can have an effect on your weight as well.

Weight Changes

As we mentioned above, appetite changes can lead to weight changes. Moreover, lack of exercise or medications can reflect on your weight. This can be difficult for stay-at-home moms, as they’re often worried about their physical appearance.

How to Deal With Stay at Home Mom Depression?

If you’re experiencing any of the real health concerns that we’ve mentioned above, don’t worry. Just like any other illness, depression can be cured. Here are some of the ways you can deal with it:

Acknowledge the Situation

The first step toward dealing with depression is to acknowledge that you are going through a tough time. It can be difficult for anyone who suffers from depression but is especially tough for moms. Remember that there is nothing to feel guilty or ashamed about. In fact, dealing with depression will help you enjoy your time with the kids better and help you be more present in their lives!

Try to Talk to Your Partner

Fighting depression as a stay-at-home mom can become easier if you talk to your partner about it. Try to communicate what you are going through. This can be difficult, but it is important to try to find a way to express how you are feeling. This will not only make you feel more acknowledged but will also help your partner understand your needs better.

Make Time for Yourself

Parents of young kids find it difficult to make time for themselves. You should work to get at least a few minutes as ‘me-time’ for yourself. It could be a long shower with quality essential oils or reading a book before going to sleep. You can also watch your favorite show or movie.

Find New Ways to Entertain Your Kids

A stay-at-home mom with depression can make it difficult to find joy in the things she used to like. This can be especially true when it comes to time with your kid/s. It is important to find new ways to entertain them so that you can still enjoy your time together.

Make Time for Exercise

Stay-at-home moms spend most of their time looking after their kids or organizing their homes. This can seem like a form of exercise as you feel tired afterward, but it is no substitution for a regular workout. Regular physical exercise is important for your mental health. Try to take out at least 20 minutes a day to focus on your body and mind. If you cannot go to a gym, look for a compact home gym or desk treadmill.

When to Seek Professional Help?

The depression of a stay-at-home mom can be improved by following the solutions above. If you do not see any improvement in your mental health even after trying them, you should consider seeking professional help from your healthcare providers.

If you’re experiencing any thoughts of suicide or harming yourself, it’s important to seek professional help right away. You can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) to speak with a trained crisis counselor who can help you through difficult times.

You can also talk to a therapist in person or try online therapy to help you through these tough times. Please remember, that help is available and you’re not alone.

DID YOU KNOW: 93% of adults in the US think that suicide can be prevented. It’s crucial that you seek help if you have any thoughts of harming yourself. A trained professional can help you.

How to Feel Fulfilled as a Stay-at-Home Mom

In order to prevent symptoms of depression as a stay at home mom, try the following tips:

Find Hobbies and Try to Monetize Them

Taking some time to pursue hobbies can make you feel more fulfilled. It can be anything from starting a blog to taking up painting. And if you’re able to find a hobby that makes money, even better! You’ll feel like you’re doing something productive with your time and skills.

Buy Yourself a Gift Every Now and Then

It’s easy to get caught up in taking care of everyone else and forgetting to take care of yourself. But it’s important to treat yourself every now and then so you don’t feel like a stay-at-home mom who is not appreciated. If you’re not sure what to buy, try to look for gifts for moms with a toddler or for a mom who doesn’t want anything. Even buying a small trinket or indulging in a dessert is worth it!

Dive Into the World of Spirituality

For some, spirituality can provide a sense of peace and belonging. If you’re feeling lost, consider exploring different spiritual practices and starting your spiritual journey. Being spiritual can take you from being a depressed stay-at-home mom with no friends to someone who is more confident and positive!

Spend Quality Time With Your Partner Whenever Possible

If you have a partner, make sure to spend quality time with them whenever possible. This can help you feel connected and loved, two things that are essential for combating depression.

Make a To-Do List but Do Not Include a Lot of Activities Otherwise You’ll Feel Overwhelmed

It can be helpful to make a to-do list of things you want to accomplish. But be careful not to be overwhelmed as a stay-at-home mom by adding too many items to the list. You don’t want to end up feeling like you can’t do anything right.

Key Takeaways

Depression amongst stay-at-home moms is common and has increased since the pandemic.
Some of the causes of depression may be financial stress, postpartum depression, stressful changes, and lack of self-worth.
Some symptoms of depression are lack of social interaction, mood swings, appetite changes, and even suicidal thoughts.
To deal with depression, acknowledge the situation, talk to your partner, and make time for yourself. Seek professional help if these strategies don’t work.
You can also find a hobby, buy yourself a gift, and spend quality time with your partner to feel fulfilled as a stay-at-home mom.

Wrap Up

If you’re struggling with stay-at-home mom guilt or depression, know that you’re not alone. Many mothers feel isolated and overwhelmed. If you need someone to talk to, tell how you feel to your partner. Or seek professional help. You can also try pursuing hobbies, spending quality time with your partner, or exploring spirituality. Whatever you do, don’t forget to take care of yourself. You deserve it!

FAQ

How can a stay at home mom make money and fight depression?

There are several ways a stay at home mom can make money and one of them is monetizing your hobby. This can help you feel more fulfilled and will help you fight depression.

How often should a stay at home mom get a break?

Stay at home moms should take at least three breaks each day. You can do this by establishing a routine and letting your family know that this is your break time so they don’t disturb you.

How to deal with kids as a stay at home mom with depression?

Stay at home mom depression can make it difficult to deal with your kids. But there are some things you can do to make it easier. Try to find ways to entertain them that don’t require a lot of energy from you and ask for help from your partner.

ABOUT AUTHOR

I've loved writing since I can remember, and back in high school, I started loving psychology as well. So I majored in it while dabbling in spirituality and yoga on the side.

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