Mothering in the modern day is not easy. The pressure to be perfect is enormous. Every mother I know is trying to do the best by her children. Every mother I know is under pressure. Every mother I know feels at times that she is failing in a certain area. And every mother I know suffers from guilt from time to time. No mother I know thinks she is perfect.
So, who is the perfect mum and what does she do? Let’s have a look at the “profile” of a perfect mum. You may also know her as “Supermum.”
The perfect mum starts off doing everything perfectly, of course. She:
Gives birth naturally, calmly refusing pain relief and you never hear her complain about childbirth scars.
Takes time off from work in the early years to dedicate herself entirely to the needs of her family, sacrificing her career without resentment.
Is a calm and confident mother and makes parenting look easy.
Breastfeeds her children until they are two and supplements with organic, home-made food.
Never misses kinder duty, gymnastics, Aus kick or music lessons, and attends every school concert and ballet performance.
Sits on the school and kinder committees and attends every fundraising event. In fact she is probably so good at it she’s President.
Enjoys reading the same book over and over and over to her children and never skips a reader. Ever.
Manages to look effortlessly good and maintains an impeccably organised home.
Is the queen of crafts, baking and creative-play with her children. She limits screen time to educational shows and never uses it as a babysitter.
Spends endless hours on the floor with her pre-schoolers without complaint. She doesn’t get bored of puzzles or blocks.
Gives equal time to each child, ensuring she has ‘one-on-one’ time with each child.
Devotes energy into exploring their unique talents; exposing them to wide range extra curricular activities, but not over-doing it.
Never shouts or raises her voice at the kids. She sees defiance as “exuberance” and tantrums as “frustration”.
Never bribes her children or resorts to threats or punishment.
Greets her husband warmly and affectionately when he arrives home from work. She’s never angry, tired or resentful.
Can bake, kick a footy and teaches her kids a musical instrument and a second language.
Never complains that half the sandpit is in her house; that the laundry pile is exploding; that she’s covered in milk and vomit; that she has to change ANOTHER nappy; that she’s only had 3 hours sleep; and she certainly never threats that if she doesn’t get a minute to herself she’s going to walk out….
Can you tick all these boxes? No? Good, because on a good day I’d be happy if I ticked two.
The ‘perfect’ mum does not exist. She is a myth. She is a figment of our imaginations and the messages and pressures we receive from the media.
The ‘wonderful’ mum does one thing, and one thing well.
She loves her family.
It’s that simple.
And I bet you all tick that box.
Do you feel under pressure to be the perfect mum? Do you ever feel like parenting/mothering has become a competitive sport?