Do You Feel Exhausted at the End of the Day?

Do You Feel Exhausted at the End of the Day?
Valeria Sabater

Reviewed and approved by the psychologist Valeria Sabater.

Written by Valeria Sabater

Last update: 22 December, 2021

“Why do you feel exhausted? All you do is care for your child!” If someone ever says this to you, defend yourself firmly, because according to experts, the exhaustion of mothers is justified and has a name: hyper-vigilance stress.

The situation, as we already know, gets much more complicated when we combine the responsibilities of work with those of parenting.

However, many mothers feel they cannot “complain” about their fatigue and stress if they choose to stay at home for a few months or years to focus on raising their children.

It is as if they have no right to feel exhausted. As if tending to, feeding, monitoring, guiding, teaching and educating was tremendously easy. As if mothers just have to be supervisors for their children.

It is not like this at all. At You Are Mom, we want to talk to you about this not very well-known aspect that shouldn’t go unnoticed: hyper-vigilance stress.

At the end of the day, you feel exhausted for good reason

We will begin by defining hyper-vigilance stress. It is a state of mental and sensory hypersensitivity caused by very specific things: detecting threats and dangers.

mother who feels exhausted

This psychological pressure causes people to run out of energy, feel more tired than usual and even behave more irritably than usual.

Now, the curious thing about all this is that, generally, hyper-vigilance stress is associated with “soldiers and warlike contexts.”

  • A soldier has to be aware of any possible threat that is unleashed around him. They have to observe, tend to, anticipate and always be alert in order to survive and keep their team safe.
  • When this state is maintained for weeks or months, it ends up generating a lot of stress, which also creates extreme tiredness and mental exhaustion.

You are not a soldier, but almost…

The same thing happens with parenting. It may seem ironic, but it is not at all. Mothers – and also fathers – should be alert in order to, for example, feed their baby every three hours.

  • We must comfort their cries at night, and sometimes mothers get up at night to “see if they are okay” or because they thought they heard a cry when there wasn’t one.
  • As children grow, dangers increase and a mother must be attentive to everything. She must ensure her child doesn’t swallow certain objects, that he doesn’t fall, doesn’t climb, doesn’t overturn the crib…

You’re exhausted because all your senses are deployed like a radar 24 hours a day. It is not just about taking care of your children’s needs like feeding and grooming.

We’re primarily referring to mental pressure, of the desire for everything to be well, for our children to be safe, happy, peaceful… Because sometimes, a little carelessness causes an accident or a fall, and that is something that causes us a lot of anxiety.

tired mother holding two babies

So if someone criticizes the fact that you feel exhausted at the end of the day, defend yourself. Your work is like that of a soldier on a battlefield: you have to guarantee the security of what is most precious to you: your child.

General tips for morning exhaustion

Being a mother is a task that goes beyond 24 hours a day. It’s something you’ve known for a long time. But you also know that the job of being a mother makes you happy and is the best thing that ever happened to you.

exhausted mother in the morning with a coffee

Now, it is necessary for you to be able to give your best to your children. Here are some tips worth following:

  • Delegate tasks. Child-rearing is the responsibility of a couple. If you are a single parent, do not hesitate to ask your family for help whenever you can.
  • Don’t overestimate dangers. Do not imagine the worst thing to the point of not being able to sleep at night thinking about your child falling out of the crib or suffocating from his blanket. Focus on calm things.
  • Do not spend all day at home. Go out with your child whenever possible, meet up with friends or even sign up for activities you can do with your baby (such as yoga with children)
  • Try to take good care of yourself. Take the opportunity to rest when your child naps. A few minutes of rest on the sofa will revive you and clear your mind quite a bit.

Do not be affected by what others may tell you. You have the right to complain and even ask for help if at any time you feel overwhelmed.

Try to do something throughout the day that will please you and relax you: read a book, take a walk… you will not be a bad mother for resting half an hour a day.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.