They find solidarity with other weak women online or in articles and justify feeling sorry for themselves. You are amazing, Beth! You wrote the article that has been writing itself in my brain for the past ten years that I have been a mother. Thank you thank you thank you for putting into words the modern mothering experience that so many of us encounter once we have children.
Sending love, appreciation and positive energy to you- and to all the mothers and fathers out there changing the world for the better with our love!!! A gentle suggestion that I hope you will take with an open mind and heart: please include some intersectional feminism in your writing. In this article there is so much beauty that resonates with me as a mother, but there are some things that I know my friends of color would see missing.
It was not easier for people of color who were fighting for civil rights. Now they must worry about their black sons being killed by law enforcement. For the last 70 years, families of color have had an uphill battle due to redlining, segregation, systemic discrimination, and the prison industrial complex.
I would recommend reading The New Jim Crow to get an idea of this part of our history. I would be thrilled to see a nod to some of this in your future writing. So all your points resonated with me, ALL! I work full time with two small kids. At work I am the mom that obviously cannot perform as well as the guys because I cannot work late every night…actually I do but from home and they are doing office presence , my male colleagues get a very different level of appreciation and I am fighting for acceptance every day. At home the husband helps but actually believes he knows everything and anything better when it comes to the kids.
I had post partum depressions but had to go back to work quickly and my husband helped with taking care of the kids. I was so lost. Sometimes I wish he would not help but leave alone with my kids because I can do it. Yes he helps, but now he thinks he is the better mother. Fighting at work for my place and at home is just so extremely exhausting! This is the best article I read all week. Many points resonate with me, especially the fact that we do not have enough support from our own families. Also, the point about asking for help is seen as a form of weakness, I wonder what we can do collectively to change that view?
Motherhood can be such a lonely experience. I just wanted to say that I came across your blog unexpectedly and read all your posts because I enjoyed the writing so much. I wish I could write like you. I could write a blog about the trials, tribulations and celebrations of that. Anyway, the point is that you are an inspiration and you should know that people feel that way — you can take that strength glow like the candle, the light at the end of the tunnel, that you are. Everything you listed is what I am going through and frankly I am just tired.
I am giving too much of energy that I now longer store. Modern motherhood sucks! This post said everything I feel. My life is a constand blur of guilt and fatigue. My stomach is always in knots. I yell. I believe in a tribe but avoid my parents who are willing to help but gave me cronic anxiety as a child with their fighting. I think of moving to a village and buying a farm. And giving them those is such a rediculous struggle. These days we pay for our kids to be in a place where they can play with sand or walk along a ledge.
My needs? Mum mum mum mum mum mum MUM!!!!!!!! Thank you for sharing! A big one for me is failed expectations from family members. As a result, being a new parent and feeling all alone when my spouse is working long irregular shifts. Hello Beth thank you for sharing a wonderfully-written and thoughtful piece. Through your writing and insights I see, and feel hope. May you continually be blessed in your pursuit, and may more women and men feel empowered from the light and wisdom you bring.
My children are now 31 and I have spent the last ten years recovering from the years I spent raising my kids. I loved being a mom. I love my kids. When my younger child left for college I realized there was a closet inside my head where I had put 25 years worth of pain, emptiness, sorrow, need, ambition, emotion, self-compassion.
That door burst open and out it all came. It buried me in a profound depression that lifted only after I had processed everything that had been left unprocessed. I hope those who come after me find a better way. They wear a mask of understanding,emphathy.. At the very same time modern mother — hats of to you to put the right emotions, right problems into limelight. Thankyou from all modern day mothers. There is an inherent amount of frustation that seems quite natural when it comes to managing chaos, […].
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Mental Health Problems in Parents of Children with Congenital Heart Disease.
Culture Family Home Self. What am I doing wrong? And most heartbreaking of all: What is wrong with me? Or, more simply stated: Why does modern-day motherhood feel so frustrating? To reach more mothers with this message: The frustration, stress, anxiety, self-doubt and overwhelmedness you feel are not reflections of your inadequacy. Mothers feel this pressure most.
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Motherhood is all-consuming, yet often inadequate for the job of cultivating a whole sense of self. Motherhood heavily engages some aspects of who we are, while leaving almost no room for the growth of other, equally essential parts. Marketing and image crafting are everywhere , and mess with our sense of self more than we even realize. Our instincts are being minimized. We live in a culture that teaches us to look to experts and Google for answers, which means that our intuition receives very little of the validation and engagement that it needs in order to be strengthened.
Those of us who are able to hear the voice of wisdom within, often feel that we have to justify it to the many rule followers and skeptics around us and within us. Today, in addition to being homemakers, we are expected to simultaneously build careers, be exceptional parents, stay fit, practice self-care, and hold the awareness of so many things that our mothers never even thought about, such as food sensitivities, school options, internet safety, emotional wellness, and sustainability, to name a few.
Never before have we expected so many different things of mothers or of ourselves. We know more, and feel the need to do more with that knowledge.
We have no villages or tribes to support us , which means we either go it alone, or attempt to create a tribe during seasons of our life when we have the least time and energy to do so. Postpartum care is entirely inadequate in our culture , which sets us up to feel like failures right from the start. In the absence of a village, and with such short maternity and paternity leave at most workplaces, many women begin their journey into motherhood in survival mode, which all too often becomes their norm from that point on.
Our energy is already limited. Sleepless nights, constant kid chaos, infrequent breaks, and the mental load we carry exacerbate already frustrating circumstances. And neither do the aunts, cousins, or sisters who used to help share the load. Even if we do live near our extended family, our value systems and parenting practices are often misaligned. Without the necessity of interdependence for survival, these differences in values are often enough to keep us from investing in these relationships.
Car culture is especially hard on children, and mothers as a result. Part-time jobs with benefits are few and far between. Finding a full-time job that provides affordable healthcare for the whole family is challenging already. The stress that comes from having to choose between going uninsured or putting babies and young children in full-time childcare is immense and widespread. I have a theory based on my observations and personal experience that mothers are so evolutionarily accustomed to survival mode that we actually gravitate toward it, and unconsciously keep ourselves stuck, even when thriving becomes possible.
Rewiring our minds for thriving takes patience, support, and self-awareness, but it is possible. Neighborhood kids are nowhere to be found. Thanks to technological temptations, extra-protective parents, and climate control to name a few factors , neighborhoods that once served as giant playgrounds to roaming packs of kids, are now seemingly childless. This means that the pressure is on us to keep them engaged in healthy ways lest they become even more addicted to their screens than they already are.
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Though there are exceptions, many mothers are forced to act as if they are not mothers, or risk losing their jobs. This means constantly choosing between the sick kid or the disgruntled boss, etc.
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Thankfully, more and more fathers are playing an active role in child rearing and housework. Our culture celebrates and rewards independence, rather than interdependence, which has led many of us to believe that asking for help and needing support makes us weak. Our souls are starving. We have more stuff than ever, but less of what our souls hunger for most, such as inner peace, nourishing connections, quiet, easy access to nature, and harmony within our homes. Marriages and partnerships are severely stressed.
Related Mommy Overwhelm: A Holistic Approach to Parental Stress and Depression
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