January 22, 2024
Family, Finances and Funnies – Unpacking Australian Mums Biggest Regrets of 2023
From money matters, to juggling ‘me time’ with family obligations, the latest research by Mumpower, Australia’s leading agency involving Mums to shape tomorrow’s brands, reveals the personal reflections of 689 Australian Mums looking back over the year that was. Amidst primary themes of finances (10%), self-care (14%) and not spending enough time with their families (26%), many respondents injected a sense of relatable humour in their biggest regrets including disappointed Swifties, overindulging and questionable toilet training techniques.
These unfiltered insights are part of a larger ongoing study; Mumpower’s annual ‘Australian Mums Today’ research that explores what, how and why Mums are currently buying. The full results to be released in January will reflect sentiments of Mums that largely control an ever-tightening family budget as utilities, groceries and every day fixed spending continues to rise.
Some overall stats about the respondents:
- 83% are Millennial Mums
- 47% have 2 children (dependents living at home) (with 75% 2 or more children)
- 65% of Mums are working in some capacity outside the home
- 28% of Mums are deeply concerned about the future, with the pressures of cost of living causing significant personal stress.
While Mums were clearly consumed with incessant worrying, realising how easily life’s most valuable moments pass by and the immense consequences of neglecting herself, her often self-deprecating humour reaffirm Mum’s resilience and staying power in today’s turbulent world.
Aussie Mums’ biggest regrets of 2023 – in her words:
“Spending too much time worrying about the things I can’t change which has taken time away from being present with my family and friends. Missing out on quality, life enhancing experiences with loved ones.” Stephanie, Bentleigh East, VIC
“(Not) stopping to enjoy the moment. This year was a blur and I feel like I’ve blinked and my eldest has grown so much.” Sheree, Springfield, VIC
“Not getting out enough and doing things with our kids, I feel this year has been harder than most.” Samantha, Coomealla, NSW
“My biggest regret of 2023 is not being able to spend more or enough time with my children as I’ve had to focus more on work to afford everything we want and need.” Erin, Blue Haven, NSW
“I wish I took more videos and photos of my baby when she was born and was more present and not on my phone or computer all the time. She is now 1 and I will be going back to work soon!” Bessie, Balwyn, VIC
“My biggest regret is not taking more time to focus on me and my husband. It’s been a tough year and I wish we just made more time for each other and find that spark we once had pre kids and all the current life stresses.” Amy, Burpengary, QLD
“Biggest regret is worrying about what other people think! As Mums, we all try our best with the information we have at hand, we are only humans- trying our very best.” Mushka, Bondi, NSW
“I regret not taking care of myself and my body a bit more prior to having a baby (6 months ago). Now I feel sore and exhausted and worn down and I have a velcro baby which makes it difficult to dedicate any time for myself to improve.” Renee, Goulburn, NSW
“Having to withdraw from uni due to multiple life pressures and limited personal capacity.” Carlin, Murray Bridge, SA
“I regret not taking more time for myself to work on my own goals and health. I definitely didn’t have enough self care and took on other people’s stress. I also feel that I could of (sic) just enjoyed the moment a bit more!” Simone, Halloran, NSW
“It would be neglecting my own mental health, trying to push myself to be a “good mum and wife” whilst juggling with work and everything else that were going on. I felt so grumpy and burnt out that it ruined my relationship with my kids.” Silvia, Atwell, WA
“Not fixing interest rates sooner!! And not being more aware or our financial position and saving better.” Lucy, Evanston, SA
“Not sorting out my banking and finances sooner! I kept putting it off, and when I finally researched and set up my new savings accounts, I had missed out on a great rate.” Gia, Northcote, VIC
“Thinking that our hard work would make us comfortable financially going into 2024. This second half of the year has been horrible, the mental stresses, paying off an ever-growing mortgage. My daughter is paying the price because she doesn’t get as much.” Rebecca, Beenleigh, QLD
“Selling our car. We have to pay $750 a week in rent and to afford it we had to sell our only car due to illness. I can’t work and hubby looks after me we have to hire a car if I have an appointment and the kids are suffering.” Jessie, Narangba, QLD
“I regret not being prepared enough for the financial situation our country is in, and doing a better budget earlier in the year!” Sharon, Chatsworth, QLD
In addition to the earnest reflections captured in the survey, many respondents injected some humour with amusing regrets providing a unique perspective of the various challenges faced in 2023.
“Not buying comfortable underwear sooner!” Nicola, Karrinyup, WA
“Not using my LED face mask enough at night.” Jessica, Heathwood, VIC
“Not eating the chocolate I crave!” Shannel, Avonsleigh, VIC
“Dealing with Telstra over a warrant issue that had to go to the Ombudsman cause their customer service sux big ones.” Ria, Wodonga, VIC
“Buying a size 10 on St Frock, knowing I’d look like a strung ham.” Maree, Aldershot, QLD
“Not winning the X-lotto!” Bec, Hope Valley, SA
“Still not becoming a billionaire with my own private island.” Cassandra, Baldivis, WA
“Drinking too much at a sporting function. HANXIETY FOR DAYS.” Polly, MacLeod, VIC
“Not getting Taylor Swift tickets like the rest of Oz.” Melissa, Glenwood, NSW
“Making a donation to my local gym every fortnight and not visiting often enough to see if they’re coping without my presence.” Rangeeta, Heidelberg West, VIC
“Persuading my daughter to do her number twos in the potty by offering her a chocolate the first time she did….because now everyone she does one she says ‘now I get a chocolate!’” Nicole, Salisbury, QLD
“My biggest regret is whingeing to my son with autism about his Principal and having him tell her everything I said.” Jo, Beecroft, NSW
“I bought medical grade silicone patches to smooth out wrinkles. They didn’t stick to my face properly and just roll off. I go to bed looking like an alien with patches on and in the morning I have things dropping out of my hair and in my bed.” Leah, Peregian Beach, QLD
“I dyed my hair a bright purple- I looked a bit like Grimace!” Amy, Ormond, VIC
“Not getting a ice cream maker sooner.” Melisa, Chisholm, ACT
“Biggest regret was to let my mother in law believe I liked one of her meals, now she makes it everytime we are over and I absolutely hate it!” Nicole, Rossmore, NSW
“Not seeing Barbie at the movies more times.” Rochelle, Heathcote, NSW
Some Mums had no regrets about 2024 and are ready to take their positive attitude into the New Year.
“No regrets, 2023 has been a great year, bring on 2024!” Kate, Chelsea, VIC
“Honestly, I don’t have any regrets. I’m blessed with a beautiful family. When I stuff up, I apologize. Especially when I’ve let mum rage get the better of me. I always apologize to my kids. I think that is super important. Monkey see, monkey do!” Mel, Bonny Hills, NSW
“I don’t have any regrets as I have enjoyed every minute spend with my family. Life is too short to worry about things that can’t be changed.” Denise, Elimbah, QLD
“No regrets, happy with all my big choices….maybe regret not having as much patience as is sometimes needed with a family of button pushers but otherwise working on being comfortable with every choice and action. Home schooling a team of kids is stressy at times.” Naomi, Upper Coomera, QLD
“I don’t have any regrets for 2023 .. I feel like this year has brought my family closer and more forgiving.” Jacinta, Narre Warren, VIC
“Nothing. Cut my hair. Dyed it blonde. Toodles ex. Bring on my 50s.” Paula, Rockingham, WA
Australia’s leading agency shaping brands which speak to mums, Mumpower was founded in 2009. With a vast network of Mum Influencers, TikTok creators, Media and Market Research and Product Review Panellists, we keep the world’s most powerful consumers at the centre of the conversations and empower more Mums to know, love and trust your brand.
For more information about Mumpower and this research contact us HERE.
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