A sense of humor is a major defence against minor troubles.

~ Mignon McLaughlin ~

Hands Up if You Want to Quit Motherhood

February 10th, 2012 ~ Est. reading time: 1 min, 15 secs

Motherhood is just a part of my busy life.

This is tricky. Motherhood is meant to be about endless patience, applying sticky plasters and kissing things better, and then running through tall grass in slow motion, giving a laughing grin to your kids. Actually that last one is the image advertisers keep trucking out for anything womanly. They’ve reduced you to some slow-moving bovine, deliriously jumping in the sun. It’s complete drivel. But it sticks.

Aside from the exhaustion of running through grassy fields in “slo mo”, there’s something unsettling about this image of motherhood. What about when you are too tired to cook, yell at your kids, get fed up with mess, and flake into bed? Aren’t they parts of motherhood too? Real motherhood is rarely romantic. Instead, it’s often hard yards.

I can understand if you are sick of this cliché motherhood stuff. It only feeds guilt. Aside from growing grass high enough to hide a tribe in (that’s for the slow motion running bit), the rest of motherhood can be quite hard.

Having mostly worked with women throughout my career I have a soft spot for anyone feeling pressured by the motherhood charade. Yes, motherhood is wonderful, and yes, it can be beautiful. But it’s no bed of roses waking for two hourly feeds. Or, running a whole house cleaning service for nix and no thanks. Then there’s beds and meals to make, school stuff to sort, discipline issues, carting, coordinating, and keeping everything going. And that, as you know, is just for starters.

It’s about time motherhood got a new image. One which lets women be real, and not have to carry all that perfect slow motion grass stepping stuff. Time for a slice of reality to knock maternal guilt on the head.


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