Why are modern moms so burned out? What is the problem with modern motherhood that has us feeling overwhelmed, inadequate and guilty?
In this episode, I’m talking about the big picture and the expectations around motherhood to help you understand why you feel so overwhelmed.
Because it's not just that your kid is spitting out their food or not cleaning up their room or didn't put their shoes on or got a bad grade or hit their friend or did something wrong at school. That's not actually why we're so overwhelmed.
We have created a dynamic in our society where the expectations are too high on moms.
Guilt in MotherhoodI’ve had a few conversations recently with moms about guilt. May is a crazy month when it comes to kids. There are extra activities and school events that parents are expected to be at. Some of these pop up last minute or happen in the middle of the workday.
Of course, you get to feel sad if you’re missing something, but there’s this other layer of guilt that seems to come along with it.
And I think this is often where the burnout and overwhelm begin. Unrealistic expectations lead to sadness and guilt. Then, we criticize ourselves for feeling that way. And we don’t take the time to process any of those negative emotions, so they kinda hang around.
Our society has created an ideal mother and a dream of motherhood that has been presented to us primarily through social media. And the standards just keep getting more and more intense.
Unrealistic Expectations in MotherhoodIn modern society, as a mom, you're responsible for SO MUCH, and it wasn’t always this way.
Modern moms get the story that your child's education and academic achievement is on your plate. Parents have been told that there's an ideal standard that you should strive for. And if you don't strive for it, you aren't helping your kid reach their potential.
If you didn’t get them into the “right” school and you're not doing homework with them and reading with them every night and monitoring their schoolwork and checking their grades, then that means you're not a good mom.
Previous generations didn’t have access to most of this information. But now that we do have access, it becomes our responsibility to monitor it.
Most parents are not child development experts or teachers, but we’re expected to know and do all this stuff anyway.
You know the story…feed your kids healthy foods, watch their sugar, have family dinners, but also only feed your kids things they like.
We feel bad because our kids like junk food, but they’re offered it all the time. And then if you don’t want them to have junk, you get labeled as “that mom”.
It’s too much to manage. We can’t compete with our society all the time.
The same thing happens with screens. Everyone is telling you not to let your kids do too much screen time, but no one is telling us what is too much and there are all these other “rules” we’re supposed to follow when they do use screens.
Our kids love screens because they’re fun and interesting and great. And you know what? So do we.
Setting limits and boundaries around screens is a challenge on its own, and then they bring tablets and Chromebooks home from school anyway.
All the activities
We’re already trying to balance academics, education, diet and screen time. But they shouldn’t just do school! Kids should also…
Play sports to develop social skills and leadership and move their bodies.Do something creative, like art or music.Have some kind of religious education (if your family is religious).Learn another language, especially if you speak a language other than English in your family.
But then your kids...