Covid-19 benefits? If you’re a mother during the Coronavirus pandemic, you probably think this title is crazy. The pandemic has put a ton of stress on families as they struggle to work from home. It’s hard to keep children active and engaged at the best of times. Now, the entire family’s routines have to be adjusted so everyone can function together at home.
It’s true that this is a stressful time, but there is a silver lining.
A new survey done by Huggable found that there were Covid-19 benefits that most of us hadn’t considered before. Having everyone at home together can be stressful, but it’s also a positive thing.
Time that was eaten up previously by long work hours and commutes have been freed up for more family time. Even mothers who work from home have shown an increase in time spent with their children without necessarily seeing a decrease in their quality of life.
Benefit #1: Moms get to spend more time with their kids
Out of the 538 mothers surveyed, Huggable found that:
- Moms are spending an average of 49% more time with their children than they did before COVID-19
- Moms are now spending an additional 3.7 hours per weekday with their children
- 63% of moms say they have grown either significantly or slightly closer to their children
Moms who work full-time are the ones who’ve reported the highest level of Covid-19 benefits. Before the pandemic had us all social distancing from one another, there would have been an eight hour work day to contend with. Add a commute onto that and the time that working moms were able to spend with their children was an average 6.4 hours per weekday. Since the pandemic, the average has risen to over 10 hours per week. The pandemic has truly changed parents’ lives forever for some with many of us rethinking how we work.
Benefit #2: More time together means better relationships
No one wanted a pandemic to force us into family time, but regardless we’re being given time. Even if working from home can be stressful when you have to juggle family responsibilities with work ones, the Covid-19 benefits can’t be denied. According to Huggable: “63% of moms reported an improvement in their relationships with their children since COVID-19”. We’ve all seen the headlines about how social distancing and quarantines strain relationships. However, the opposite can be seen with moms and their children.
67% of moms who work full time found that they saw Covid-19 benefits with their children. They felt much closer to their kids thanks to getting to do household tasks together. Before moms would squeeze cooking, cleaning, and general play time into the end of a day. Instead of children getting to see their mothers at their most exhausted, they’re seeing them throughout the day.
According to Huggable’s results, moms who stayed at home before Covid-19 also saw increases. While the change wasn’t as large as moms who worked outside the home, “56% reported that their relationships with their children were either slightly improved or significantly improved.”
Benefit #3: More Dad Time
Whether they were working moms or not, having two parents at home was good for the family. Being at home means that dads can spend more time doing chores with the family and playing with their kids. One of the unexpected Covid-19 benefits has been that many mothers reported their relationships improving with their partners. The reason for this? Huggable states that “a lack of outside childcare has resulted in a more equitable split of household and child-related responsibilities.”
Benefit #4: Children are Making Developmental Gains
Huggable’s study outlines many silver linings both from their study and from anecdotal evidence. The biggest benefit to staying at home in our opinion? Your children get to grow from it. Beyond growing closer and getting to spend more time, there are developmental Covid-19 benefits that no one would have would have guessed at the beginning of the outbreak.
Huggable outlined some of the following gains in their study:
Independence – Parents have more responsibilities and fewer hours of childcare than ever before. As a result? Kids around the world are learning how to play independently. Independent play offers many benefits for small children, including better emotional regulation, higher self-confidence, and increased attention span.
Vocabulary and speech – It’s well established that vocabulary development among young children is directly correlated to the number of words they hear in their first three years of life. More time at home has meant more conversations for some families…and they’re seeing results! Two moms in our survey reported that their kids have picked up more words than ever during these months at home.
Creativity – If necessity is the mother of invention, boredom is the mother of creativity. Without the constant parade of activities offered by preschool, classes, or playdates, some kids are learning new ways to fill the time. Parents have reported that their children are taking more initiative, using their toys in new ways, and are spending more time in free play than prior to the COVID-19-related shutdowns.
There’s no denying that this is a stressful time and no one is saying that it’s ideal. These little silver linings simply help us see the bright side of a pandemic. We have lost or sacrificed many things, but there are things we’ve gained too. Massive changes to the world have meant new routines and even a possible change to the future of work.
I would like to thank Huggable for providing me with the research for this content. You can check out the full survey results here: https://huggable.com/blogs/insights/covid-19-survey
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