Being a parent is one of the hardest roles you will ever have in your life. Parenthood brings along several happy and exciting moments in the family life. However, being a parent is also very challenging which can make a person doubt themselves on whether they are doing a good job in being a parent or not. Usually mothers have a very active role in the upbringing of their children. When a mother also works outside of the household, the challenges increase even further because the time to manage all the different responsibilities decreases.
No matter how old your children are, as a mother you want to give them the best possible life that you can, thus, you might want to act as the perfect mother. However, we all know that perfection does not exist. At some point or another in your journey as a mother, you are bound to make mistakes. This is absolutely okay. Children need to learn to deal with disappointments, being told no and not to always have it their way. Although children might feel sad or angry at that moment, they would be learning that life itself is not perfect and that they need to learn to deal with their emotions. When they do, they become resilient children which means that they learn that when life gets hard, they can face it and bounce back becoming even stronger.
As a mother, you may find yourself trying to attend to all of your child’s needs. When they are babies, as soon as they cry you try to feed them, change their diapers or lift them. Being attuned to your child’s needs is important however, being constantly there for them can become quite an impossible task. Thus, failing your child occasionally in ways which will not harm them, teaches them to live in a world which is not perfect at all.
The way society constructs the role of motherhood has a great impact on how mothers believe that they should be. If they do not fit such a construct, they believe that they are not good mothers and that they are not doing enough for their child. As a mother, you should avoid comparing yourself to other mothers. Everyone has their own circumstances, background and life story. Thus, no mother can live the exact same life as another mother. Some mothers might need to work for financial reasons but would prefer raising their children full time. Other mothers might feel that being with their children 24/7 is too much and therefore would seek opportunities to work or to engage in activities without their child. We should be careful not to be too quick in passing our judgements on how a mother is raising her children.
Being a mother is very hard, so it is important to acknowledge that you are trying the best that you can and that you have your limitations too. Putting yourself under extra pressure and having high expectations for yourself will make you feel even more stressed. Taking care of your well-being is essential as this will enable you to enjoy motherhood even more.
Dr Marilyn Muscat is registered as an Educational Psychologist with the Health and Care Professions Council in the United Kingdom where she trained. She works with children, adolescents and their families to understand more about educational, social and emotional well-being concerns that they have and to help them improve upon their difficulties. She can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 79291817.