Confession: Yesterday afternoon, under the guise of Marie Kondo-ing my wardrobe, I hid in my closet and watched the first episode of The Crown.
While I was indulging in the drama and romance of Elizabeth and Philip, my children were drawing on walls and using my couch as a trampoline. But, as far as I’m concerned, that’s a small price to pay for 56 minutes of uninterrupted “me time.” I was feeling (kind of) guilty about ignoring my children and sneaking in some TV, but then the interwebs brought me the news that 71 percent of moms admit to sneak-watching TV—and now I feel so much better.
According to a study done by my old friend Netflix, moms admit to sneaking in TV time while simultaneously doing all the stuff moms do—or lying about it, in my case. It looks as though quite a few mamas have taken a page from their spouse’s playbooks and learned to utilize their time in the loo: That’s where 40 percent of those polled admitted to catching up on their favorite shows.
Other prime opportunities for sneak-watching include: while getting ready in the morning, hiding in a closet or pantry (ahem), spending an extra 30 minutes at the gym and while waiting on the school pick-up line. I fully admit to all of the above—except the gym, because I’m lazy—as well as tuning into Stranger Things while doing the dishes and when I’m supposed to be working. (What can I say, as a child of the 80s that show really got me, plus #winonaforever.)
As crazy as it may seem to have to hide from one’s children to watch TV, busy mothers don’t really have an option if they want to keep up with the newest shows. By the time the kids are in bed, the dishes cleaned up and any last bits of work are finished, most moms can barely keep their eyes open. Personally, I always have grand plans to watch the hot new TV show that everyone’s been talking about, but most nights I’m dead asleep by 8:30 p.m.
If one has any prayer of staying current with what’s happening and therefore be able to converse with other adults, the only option is to find moments during the day when it’s possible to secretly stream shows. If you think about, moms watching shows while simultaneously doing all the other stuff moms have to do makes perfect sense. Wanna know how to spell “multitasker”? M-O-M.
Here’s even more good news: Moms who made time to watch their favorite shows—even in secret—reported that it helped them be better parents.
Streaming a TV show, and escaping from the day-to-day grind of motherhood, can be a form of self-care.
Even the most devoted moms need a break from time-to-time, and having the opportunity to watch just 10 minutes of a non-animated show can make a stressed-out mom feel more refreshed and like her old self. Now, go ahead and sneak one of these mom-favorite shows…