Sybil Shaibu column: Ever heard of SAHMD?


I once heard someone say married women were among the loneliest group of people. And I remember making a face on hearing that because from where I sit, that’s the opposite of the picture society has painted.

Usually it’s the single woman like myself who are made to feel like we’ve failed in life because we’re unmarried. But well, it turns out that might not be the case after all, anyway that’s a topic for another day. Out of curiosity, I enquired from a number of married women if this assertion carried any truth at all.

It would interest you to know that a greater number of them denied it, but the few that agreed opened up an entirely different angle.

So yes there’s some degree of truth to it, however it turns out that it’s rather “Stay At Home” Moms that have it worse. This means that it’s safe to say that stay at home moms are among the group of most depressed people.

Listening to these women share their views with me, I conclusion. Stay At Home Mom Depression is that elephant in the room nobody dares talk about. Make no mistake, this situation exits and no, this isn’t postpartum depression. In this part of our world, being a house wife isn’t seen as an issue. How much more Stay At Home Mom’s?

Whereas many tend to think that being a mother is a blessing, ‘it’s not so in its entirety. Trust me when I say I’m no feminist, but being a woman, I can emphatically say it takes a lot to live a day as a woman. Based on that, I can honestly say that without much Intel into the lives of these women, it shouldn’t be rocket science to understand their plight.

In as much as each person has to live with the consequences of their decisions, there’s the need to cut stay at home moms some needed slack. That’s because they’re plagued with various struggles with many things that no one seems not to care about. No one talks about the isolation they feel, their loss of identity, the loneliness, self-neglect (loss of sense of self) and the immense feeling of being overwhelmed.

Some days SAHM’s end up crying in the shower (the only place they can afford to be alone by themselves without any interruptions), because of sheer overwhelming days they have back to back with no respite in sight.

SAHM’s struggle with the fact that no one understands why they’re tired, and constantly irritable. Or why they need a mental break despite spending their days being at home. Neither do people understand how SAHM’s can be home all day yet the home is in a mess. What even adds salt to injury is when people pass comments such as, SAHM’s have no “real job”. What’s a real job any ways?

I personally find it very distasteful when some husbands fail to understand why they’re wives have no sex drive. Well…who will? When they persistently feel overwhelmed, leaving them with little or no energy to even do the very basic things.

Many a time people tend to forget that these women were once working women but now have to deal with being stay at home moms. Till you find yourself in this situation, you won’t understand how the time spent being at work, away from the people you live with, works wonders for the mental state of moms.

Yes! Each one of us have our own struggles…..after all such is life. However if ever you come in contact with a SAHM, if you can’t empathize with her or commend her for her efforts, desist from making them feel like their challenges are invalid. And if all she wants to do is vent, please allow her, one way or the other she needs an outlet for the built up frustrations.

Now more than ever SAHM’s need all the love and support they can get, from Adults not crying babies and toddlers. They need to be reminded that they’re loved and appreciated, and shown that their efforts aren’t in vain. And yes though they might know this, they need to be reminded as often as possible.

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