Moms Not Supporting Moms
Like most hatred, I learned my disgust was rooted in jealousy.
I have a terrible confession. One that will make you want to unfriend me as a fellow mom immediately. It is not something I am proud of.
I loathe star-struck mothers.
You know the ones. Those baby-obsessed moms who appear incapable of having a single thought independent from the subject of parenting. The ones who coo over every milestone. Bask in the sunlight that radiates from their child’s smile. And cry as reminisce on the days their infant needed them the most.
Yes, I know…we should be ‘women-supporting-women.’ ‘Moms-supporting-moms.’ But I didn’t understand this type of mom.
I’d sit in a room with what felt like a sea of mothers — basically any mommy-and-me class — and they’d all be having the same experience.
Each mother would look into their newborn’s eyes, and an easy love-struck smile appeared beaming with pride. Then each woman’s voice would raise an octave as they slipped into a reflexive, repetitive, beaming baby talk.
It was predictable. And it should have been endearing. But instead, I found it… confusing.
Because the baby in front of me — in front of all of us — is a literal stranger.
It’s not just that I don’t know this person — YOU don’t know that person. Why are we supposed to be in love with them? How could you be in love with them?
Furthermore, how could anyone feel happy when you are holding the physical representation of the life that has been stolen from you. I’m sitting here screaming in my head, in a room full of mothers cooing sweet nothings into their baby’s ear.
So that explains my confusion. But why did it need to turn into disgust?
Because… like any hatred, my disgust was rooted in jealousy.
Others were able to make the transition to motherhood with such joy. And I, well, did not. It was as simple as that. These mothers had done something as natural as loving their own child. Nothing else. They were living in their own world. Not bothering me.
So, why do I need to scoff at them?
I loathed these other moms because they were constant reminders of how uncomfortable I constantly felt cloaking myself in the title of ‘mother.’
No matter how I tried, I did not fit into every single one of their norms. Including what I thought was the foundation of being a mother — an all-consuming love for your child. Actively rejecting this way of life became my defensive mechanism for what I unconsciously thought was my shortcomings.
So it’s time I redirect this energy spent to reevaluating my own attitude. Not just on motherhood, but on anything I scoff at. There is no reason to be a thief of someone else’s joy.
Instead, I should celebrate the happiness we do have. All of it. In any size, shape, or form. Thiers. Mine. Ours.
And since I have tried to swap out my scowl with a smile, my resentment with celebration — my happiness has only compounded.
So go ahead mama, love that child to pieces.
I may not always understand it, but I’m happy for you. Really.