How to Look at a Working Mom

When you think of a ‘working mom’ perhaps a few images comes to mind.  These images that you see are based on your own perceptions of what a working mom is to you.  Perhaps these pictures come from your own personal experiences, film, or ads. When looking at the photo below you can see the mom who looks like she has it all.  This looks like a successful office job type woman, who at the end of the day, comes home to happy children awaiting her arrival. 

“10 Ways to Transition From Working Mom to Stay-at-Home Mom”. Published November 13, 2019. Retrieved January 31, 2020.

When looking at this picture we associate this woman as being successful based off of several factors.   Not only because of her clothing, but her facial expression and the expression on her kids’ faces. The messy background of her home features a scattered array of children’s toys, which is prominent in the photo, but not prominent enough to spark anxiety.  This displays a content and active family life of the modern twenty-first century woman.  

This photo is a specific representation of the social issue surrounding the life of the working mom in twenty-first century society.  Images of working moms are displayed in this positive light to show off what successful women should look like, in order to encourage other women to strive for the same ideals.  However, the reality is quite the opposite. The average working mom has a lot on her plate and her life does not look as glamorous or as enjoyable as the one in the picture. Looking specifically at the grooming and hygiene practices of the working mom in the photo, she appears impeccable.  Her clothes look professional, she is wearing stilettos, her hair is nearly done, and her makeup is done in a professional manner. Nothing about this woman’s appearance displays any notion of a hectic life. Working mothers do not always have the time to do both their hair and makeup or cannot wear stilettos because they are running around all day taking care of their children, as well as trying to thrive in the professional workplace.  

This picture represents the dichotomy between work and home life. It makes it seem like the happiness of the family is an effortless achievement with little to no consequences for those involved.  When you see this working mom you assume because of her expression, appearance, and relationship with her children that she is successful. However, that type of information is a superficial selling factor marketed towards a particular lifestyle that is only meant to be aspired to, or to make other working moms feel inadequate in comparison.  This picture is selling a lifestyle, not a reality. Looking at the intricacies of this photo unravels several realities that can seem unrealistic in contrast to how working mothers actually live their lives. The outside reveals a sometimes unachievable selling factor aimed towards working mothers, but the reality behind a photo can be deceiving. 

Works Cited

Elkins, James. How to Use Your Eyes. Routledge, 2009.



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