No wonder we’re so tired all the time.
A typical American work week falls between 40-50 hours on average, give or take, depending on your job and your commute. Overall, most of us spend a large chunk of our lives at work. Working moms, however, see your average American work week and raises it. By a lot. A recent study showed that when you factor in family duties, working moms pretty much never stop working unless they’re sleeping.
The study, commissioned by Welch’s, consisted of 2,000 American mothers of children ages five to 12. The moms shared the tools, resources, and techniques they use to manage and take care of their families. Moms everywhere know what it takes to keep everything running relatively smoothly and keep everyone happy and healthy is nothing short of a miracle.
Juggling schedules, grocery shopping, various organization tactics, delegating tasks, cooking, cleaning, and managing a household is a full-time job in itself. Add all of that in with working full time, and the Welch’s study concluded that the average working mother works 98 hours per week. The average working mom’s day typically begins at 6:23 a.m., and the average working mom doesn’t stop until 8:31 p.m. (Raise your hand if you just scoffed and said “8:30? Psshh, I wish!”)
98 HOURS. That’s almost triple digits, y’all. In one week. Of course, if you’re a working mom, none of this surprises you. But when you think about your family responsibilities in terms of hourly contribution, it’s hard to ignore such an exhausting number. Sure, many of us have partners who share in these duties, but let’s get real about The Mom Burden. As in, we shoulder all of it whether people are helping us or not.
Additionally, the study found the average mom says she only gets about an hour and seven minutes to herself each day. If you want to crunch some more numbers, that’s seven hours and 49 minutes of time “off.”
Mmm yep, sounds about right.
“The results of the survey highlight just how demanding the role of mom can be and the non-stop barrage of tasks it consists of,” Casey Lewis, MS, RD and Health & Nutrition Lead at Welch’s, told Yahoo! News. “Busy moms may identify with the list of ‘lifesavers’, which highlights not just a rigorous workload but a constant requirement to feed and fuel the family, week in and week out.”
Since we’ve got to make the most of those precious, paltry seven hours, we gotta cram in as much self-care as we can. The moms in the study ranked Netflix, wine, grandparents, reliable babysitters, and (duh) wine as must-haves to help keep them sane throughout the week.
If you’re a mom, you know you’re clocking in for every single minute of those 98 hours per week. None of this information is a surprise, per se, but it’s sure as hell useful. Because the next time someone comments on how “tired” we look, we can say we’ve got 98 reasons why.