Figures show that 3 out of 4 working mothers continue to work after giving birth, but their absence most of the day, burdens them and leads them to feel guilty, fall short, question their abilities, and consider that their children would be in a better position if they stayed at home.

How much does the professional life of mothers affect their children? Is this impact limited to the first years of children's life or extends beyond that?

Enhances children's independence and self-confidence

Lara Bazillon, a law professor and author of "Ambitious as a Mother: Why Is Your Career Success Important for Your Children?" A mother's work is a source of pride for her and her children, and it can also inspire children, as they develop different skills such as independence, self-sufficiency, responsibility and self-confidence.

Bazilon advises working mothers to stop feeling guilty and not get carried away by stereotypes that women's ambition and professional success are often at the expense of their children.

Bazillon cites her interviews with children of ambitious mothers and how they showed admiration for their mothers' career success, and expressed their reliance on them, their wisdom and resourcefulness.

Research & Studies

Several recent research and studies have discussed the positive impact of a mother's exit to work, and in this context, a British study conducted by University College London in 2011 and published by the magazine "Economist", based on a statistic of more than 19,2000 working mothers and housewives who gave birth to their children between 2002 and <> to determine the extent to which the mother's work affects the child's behavior in the early years of life.

Contrary to the common belief that children benefit from the mother's stay at home, the study indicated that the presence of a mother around the clock, seven days a week, is not ideal for her children, and that the children of working mothers adapt to different circumstances faster, which positively affects the formation of their personality and behavior.

The study stated that the children of mothers who work as housewives were more likely to have behavioral problems compared to other children, and the study also reported that depriving the mother of work makes her more prone to depression, which increases the difficulty and hardship of raising children.

Children of working mothers adapt to different conditions faster (Shutterstock)

Better academic achievement

In a Danish study published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, researchers led by Cornell University professor Rachel Donifon found that the academic achievement of children of working mothers at the secondary level is better than that of non-working mothers.

The researchers examined data from 135,15 Danish students from birth to age <> and compared their academic results in the ninth grade, and after a comprehensive analysis, the research team concluded that maternal work has a positive impact on children's academic achievement, even for those whose mothers worked during their first three years.

Financial stability

Donevon attributed these results to the additional financial resources that the mother earns from her work, which contributes to the financial stability of the family and provides additional resources for spending on education and enrolling children in many activities, such as music lessons, various sports, trips and others.

Donifon added that improving the mental health of working mothers, especially if their jobs are satisfactory and bring them psychological and social benefits, benefits their children.

Daughters of working mothers are more successful

Researchers from Harvard Business School analyzed data from 50,24 women from 2015 countries across the International Social Survey program, and the study, published in June <>, found that working mothers' daughters are not inclined to traditional roles and do not aspire to work as housewives, and that they are more likely to get a job than staying at home.

The study indicated that 33 percent of them hold supervisory and advanced positions, compared to only 25 percent of girls who grew up with mothers who work as housewives, and that they earn more annual income and earn 23 percent higher wages in the United States equivalent to $5200,<>.

Daughters of working mothers do not tend to work housewives (Shutterstock)

More stable marriages

The study also found that adult men who grew up with working mothers revere their role as fathers, spend 7.5 extra hours a week caring for their children and are concerned with the division of household responsibilities, and are more likely to have working wives as well.

Harvard professor and author of the study, Dr. Catherine McGin, commented that societies have sought for decades to socialize women in the belief that they should stay at home to take care of their children, but what the study concluded confirms that working mothers are good role models for their children, and that they create a home environment that enhances the skills necessary to manage work, domestic responsibilities and respect for the role of women, whether at home or in the work environment.

Stop feeling guilty

With the recent childcare policies adopted by many countries, experts advise working mothers to give up their feelings of guilt and negligence against their children because their work reflects positively on their families, and contributes to making their children:

  • More responsible, because they are self-reliant from a young age.
  • They learn to prioritize and balance the demands of life at an early age.
  • They value time, and focus on qualitative rather than quantitative time, as their mothers spend less time with them but more exploited and useful.
  • They quickly adapt to changes and make decisions that work in their favor because from a young age they are accustomed to sudden business meetings of the mother or an ill-considered absence of the maid.
  • They look impartially on issues of gender-based discrimination and respect the role of women in society.