Tuesday, 26 May 2009

I'm always amazed when women describe themselves as being 'just a mother'. Where did this trend for self belittling come from? This idea that being a full time mother is the kind of mindless activity that anyone can do well. When was the last time you heard someone describe themselves as 'just a secretary,' or 'just a taxi driver'? Have you ever heard anyone say 'I'm only a personal assistant'?
Being a mother requires all kinds of skills and patience, and mothers are on duty 24 hours a day. Good mothering is something that has to be worked at. It doesn't come naturally to most women, and it's a job that is although rewarding, exhausting and often thankless.
Mothering is a minefield of guilt, joy and fulfilment, and women who do it deserve our respect and admiration. Plus a break from it now and again. Try www.deborahdooleyjournalist/mummymetime.html


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  2. You didn't tell me you had a blog, Deb! Love it! Mine's at http://deborah-durbin.blogspot.com/
    In reply to this particular post, I personally think a lot of this self-belittling is instigated by the media and other women. We're constantly told that we can 'have it all' and that we should all aspire to be Superwoman with high-flying careers and still be there to read the bedtime story at the end of the day. It's little wonder that if we don't all aspire to this myth of 'you can't possibly be happy unless you are Superwoman' it makes us feel worthless in the eyes of others. Being a mum is the most important role a woman will ever have to do in her life. There's no such thing as 'just a mother' in my view. Plus, you will never please everyone: if you don't work, you're considered by soicety to be 'just a mother' and a bit of an under acheiver, if you are a working mother, you're wrong to want to put your career first and if you decide to not have children, well, you must be a lesbian or a heartless cow. Ladies, you just can't win.