Most people have heard of ‘mum guilt’. It stems from an anxious feeling that you may not be able to spend all your time with your child due to other commitments such as work.
For me this is very real and something that can cause me a great amount of upset and stress.
I always intended on being a working mum and the fact I worked and my child went to nursery for most of the week was something we quickly settled into. There were moments of guilt but for the most part it was a happy and healthy situation. I also had other concerns and fears during the time my child was at nursery, my addiction.
An easy metaphor can be drawn here between the emotion I feel generally through Mum Guilt and the emotions I feel gambling
My addiction took up so much of my worry and time that I was quite happy he was away in a productive environment, learning and really growing as a person. The main sources of guilt for me have been my ch
ild being one of the few attending after school clubs due to our work schedules. It would cause me to lose sleep and agonise over what he must be experiencing when he saw other kids being picked up by parents before him.
This also happened to coincide with my recovery, therefore, I generally felt guilt for a whole host of reasons and this just added to it.
My personality does mean that I pour over everything and go over it again and again which inevitably coils my anxiety into a spring like coping mechanism. However, I have come to realise that my emotions and perceptions do inevitably die down by the time the next morning has come and I am able to look at things a little more logically.
PLEASE NOTE: An easy metaphor can be drawn here between the emotion I feel generally through Mum Guilt and the emotions I feel gambling, strengthening the importance of creating time for logical thought between losing and hitting the ‘spin again’ button. Of course, betting firms work hard to reduce this time.
I am also then able to see that I am mixing my feelings of guilt together and not seeing the particular situation for what it actually is, but instead, falling back onto those guilty feelings associated with my addiction.
I am working hard to ensure I keep myself in check and to never react or respond to certain situations at the time and rather sit back and reflect, as otherwise those reactions would be completely blown out of proportion.
This has shown me that I am still a work in very early progress in terms of recovery. One of the first things I remember taking from GA was that you shouldn’t think too much about what you have done, you need to move on. That’s not to say you don’t take responsibility and understand your actions, but agonising again and again over things that cannot be changed is not healthy.
I don’t know whether this is an area of GA which is easier for males to embrace and put into action and whether as a female in recovery this is something which will come harder. Perhaps females are emotional and deal with a whole host of hormones which of course can play havoc with ones wellbeing. I personally am very emotional at times and it can most certainly affect my mood and actions.
This has shown me that I am still a work in very early progress in terms of recovery.
However, having come to this realisation I am now working hard to remind myself of this and when I find myself becoming stressed and bringing in other feelings when dealing with the ‘Mum Guilt’, I try and ensure I do not add to this by bringing in addiction, but remembering my recovery and the good and positive actions I have taken since then.
Focus on the positive when faced with the usual guilt that comes so frequently to women in family life. Take a moment for logical thought. So important.