What is parental burnout?
Parental burnout is a state of physical, emotional, and/or mental exhaustion suffered by parents (or caregivers) due to long term stress and the serious demands of raising children. It can manifest as feelings of overwhelm, irritability, detachment, and a sense of dread of being not able to meet parenting responsibilities. It’s important to seek support and self-care when experiencing parental burnout to maintain the well-being of both parents and children.

How do you know you have parental burnout?
Parental burnout symptoms can include
chronic exhaustion, meaning you’re feeling persistently tired, even after getting enough sleep. They can also take the form of emotional distress, meaning you’re experiencing feelings of irritability, frustration, sadness, or hopelessness related to your role as a parent. Parental burnout can also mean you’re finding it hard to connect emotionally with your children or feeling emotionally distant.

Are there different signs if you are a stay-at-home mom or a working mom?
The major difference between parental burnout for working moms and stay at home moms is that working moms have the time impositions and stressors of their professional life thrown into the mix. This can complicate things considerably as you can imagine. It means that working moms can get burned out from their work responsibilities and then have that burnout spread to their parental responsibilities, or visa versa.

What’s the difference between parental burnout and depression?
While parental burnout is a response to the stressors of parenting, depression is a more generalized mental health condition that can affect anyone, including parents. Both conditions may require professional intervention and treatment, but the underlying causes and symptoms can differ.

When should you seek the advice of a medical professional?
If you’re suffering in a serious way for more than a few weeks then it’s important to seek help from a medical professional to address your parental burnout. Sometimes people leave it later than they should and not only end up suffering more than they need to but also becoming sicker than they would have they’d addressed it earlier.

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