Moms are the rocks of the family. I know there are a few exceptions where fathers are the rocks. The truth is in our society families are lacking extended family support. But, without regular extra help, if mom is ok the family unit is ok.
I wish it was like the good old days where grandparents were right down the street. When the children were driving their parents nuts they both could/would get a respite by going to grandmas. The families I work with most extended relatives are out of state, so the parents are left on their own or they eventually create a family of choice. When parents cannot readily get extended family support, we need to help mothers out.
First, I empower moms to ask their spouses for support. I encourage them to sort out what would make their loads lighter and I encourage them to tell their husband specifically what they need. For example, “Can you please take over doing the laundry?” I remind women that their husbands are not mind readers, but they too want a wife that is happy and less overwhelmed.
After their load is lightened I invite them to re-discover what they used to love to do before they had children. “What recharges you or fills your bucket?” One mom wanted to bring back reading novels and another mother wanted time with girlfriends. When mother’s engage in things that they love, moms are able to find parts of themselves they have forgotten existed; important parts that bring them joy separate from being a mother.
Another common theme is connecting with fellow mothers to talk openly about the trials and tribulations of being a parent. The friends whom moms can be real with, not just the Facebook- my life is perfect friends. It is wonderful when moms can be themselves and feel safe that they are not going to be judged by a parenting blunder or two.
They say if you get it 80% right you are doing great! Here’s to moms, the rocks of our society! What fills your bucket? What can you delegate? Who can you be real with?