Being a working mother is challenging, particularly in balancing career, motherhood, and household responsibilities during the coronavirus pandemic that make people get stuck at home.
Despite some difficulties, some working mothers consider this period as an opportunity to spend more time with their children.
In an interview on the occasion of Mother's Day, three working mothers told Anadolu Agency about their experience as the virus has forced them to work remotely.
- 'Improving mom-child ties among advantages of this period'
Living in the western Izmir province, Kader Savluk, 28, has been working remotely as a teacher since Turkey's first case of coronavirus was confirmed in March 2020.
"Closer relationship with my son has been the biggest advantage of this period. Being at home allowed me to take care of his development one-on-one and to spend more quality time together as a mother who no longer felt exhausted compared to the pre-pandemic work routine."
The mother of a 3-year-old son, Savluk, said she has been working on managing her daily schedules to balance her career and motherhood.
Stressing positive aspects of that period, she said working from home has provided her to spare more time both for herself and her family.
"I've found the opportunity to make use of this process at home through online foreign language and personal development courses as well as book analysis classes."
However, she went on to say that in terms of her career, she has experienced job dissatisfaction.
"Lack of a school environment, one-on-one communication, and connection with students have caused job dissatisfaction."
The mother noted that thanks to her husband, also a teacher working from home during this process, she has experienced the disadvantages of working from home relatively less compared to other working mothers.
- 'This period also helps child development'
Ugurgul Caliskan, working in the banking sector in the Turkish metropolis Istanbul, finds the pandemic period helpful for the development of children whose mothers are working from home.
"Because children of working parents grow up longing especially for their mothers, this process is favorable for children and mothers.
"Spending time together actually means getting enough of each other, and fulfilling the longing of all those years," Caliskan, 38, who has been working remotely for nearly 14 months, said.
The mother of a 9-year-old boy, Caliskan, stressed how overwhelming is balancing work, parenthood, and chores amid the crisis.
She also highlighted that they get upset after her shift is over and the curfew begins as she cannot support her son socially by taking him outside such as a park.
Her housework burden has increased nearly three-fold compared to the pre-pandemic period, she added.
She also noted that the pandemic period has also added more responsibility in managing online education to help her son.
"There is no time to rest for mothers. After a shift, mothers do not have time to spare for themselves, because of spending time with children, household chores, and such."
"I often start working on other things at home right after my shift ends, without any rest."
- 'Despite all downsides, feels good to be together'
Another mother from Istanbul, Senem Yener, an accounting manager, said that despite all downsides of this process such as anxiety, uncertainty, confusion of work and home, being together with her 3-year-old daughter makes them happy.
"In general, she (her daughter) is happy to be with us as she got used to the process," Yener, 34, said.
She also said avoiding traffic problems and working in the comfort of home have been among the advantages of this period.
But the mother also stressed that her responsibilities such as housework and childcare had doubled in comparison to the pre-pandemic period.
Spending too much time working on the computer while working remotely makes it hard to take care of her daughter, which, she said, has been challenging.