And You Thought She Just Liked Doing Laundry


Being a mom is hard work. What with child care, car pools, household chores, food prep, and the gazillion other jobs and duties they’ve got on their plate—not to mention their regular, out-of-the-house jobs that many have besides—how do they have time to relax and unwind? You know, have a little time for themselves? Or as Netflix would like, have time to sit down and binge a few TV shows?

With that question in mind, Netflix did a recent survey of 1,000 moms in the good ol’ U.S. of A., asking them just how they scrape together the time for their favorite shows. And the answer is: They do a whole lotta sneaking.

Almost all the women surveyed (97%) agreed that they sure had a lot more “me time” before the kids came along. And nearly three-quarters of the moms (71%) admitted that, after the young ‘uns showed up, the only way they could keep up with their favorite shows was by doing a little furtive sneak-and-watch—in creative ways and, sometimes, in surprising places.

A good 40%, for instance, found the “bathroom sneak” to be a good way of catching a quick show on their smartphone. I know you’re wondering how they could possibly have enough time to watch a show in there. Or, for that matter, how they keep other people from thinking that they might be in need of medical assistance … or a plumber. But sneaking away to the water closet was a very common choice. In fact, one of the only TV sneakaways that showed up more often was the “laundry sneak” at 57%.

Now, this one I get. I mean who’s gonna want to bother mom when she’s doing laundry? They’d be afraid she’d ask them to fold the socks.

Other popular sneaks? There was the “sitting-in-the-carpool-lane sneak” at 15%. The “running-errands sneak” at 19%. (Keep your eyes on the road, dear.) The “while-working-from-home sneak” was found useful by 22% of respondents. And the “extra-time-spent-on-a park-bench-while-exercising sneak” was applied by some 15% of moms. And here you thought her hour-long jogs were all about keeping fit.

That’s just a few of the many sneaks spoken of. Oh, and just for good measure, the survey also made note of the top shows that moms have called sneak-worthy. They were (in order):

  • The Walking Dead
  • Grey’s Anatomy
  • Orange is the New Black
  • Friends
  • 13 Reasons Why
  • Scandal
  • How to Get Away With Murder
  • Once Upon A Time
  • Fuller House
  • Gilmore Girls

On the face of things, it could be said that Netflix created this new study in an effort to keep us informed about the changing culture. To make us aware of the shifting family dynamic. To fill us in on our new age of TV streaming. Ain’t they swell?

But, I’ll tell you the truth, I’m thinking there’s a completely different reason at play, too. Hey, Netflix is a business, after all. And, like any business, they’re all about getting us hooked on their product. So I’m thinking that this little study is really intended to tell moms about some of the shows they ought to be watching—and the cool ways that they can do more of it.

Who wrote this?

Bob Hoose is a senior associate editor for Plugged In, a producer/writer for Focus on the Family’s Adventures in Odyssey, a writer of plays and musicals and one-half of the former comedy/drama duo Custer & Hoose. He is a husband, father of three and a relatively new granddad.

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