Being a mom today seems super different from the way that it used to be. There are so many things that you have to think about today, from whether your kid is eating enough kale and quinoa to how much technology is too much. Moms just didn't have to consider those things before. Parenting today also means parenting along with the Internet, and there is no shortage of information on how to be the best mom ever (and no shortage of opinions about ways to be the worst mom ever).
You may be a mom yourself but you'll never stop needing your own mom and wanting her advice. Sometimes you might think that she's overstepping boundaries or trying to tell you something that you don't feel is that relevant. Other times, you're really grateful for her help and opinions, and you want to know how she feels about the situation.
It's interesting to take a look at motherhood today and compare it to the way that our own parents dealt with everything that came up while raising us. While we can learn a lot from our mothers, we also are pretty confident that there are some things that we've got a good handle on. Read on to find out 10 tips modern moms could stand to learn from their parents, along with 10 things they're doing better today.
Let's start with the 10 times our own parents were on to something...
20 Could Learn: Setting Boundaries
Another lesson that we can learn from our own parents is that boundaries and rules are a good thing.
Today, we parent differently and we don't want to be too strict with our children. Many of us feel that we were raised a bit on the stricter side, even though we still had wonderful childhoods, and we vowed to do things a bit more our way when we started our own families.
We can learn that we're not being mean or unfair to our kids when we set a few ground or house rules. We're teaching them right from wrong and those are important lessons.
19 Could Learn: Playing Outside
When we think about childhoods of the past, we think about little kids playing outdoors. Whether summertime, fall, winter, or spring, children were running around with their friends or neighbors and having the greatest time.
It's safe to say that kids today spend a lot of time engaging with technology and playing indoors, mostly on screens like iPads. It seems like our moms can teach us the beauty and value of playing outside, and we can make an effort to have our kids have fun outdoors and get some fresh air. Playing outside feels old-fashioned but it's still a really good thing for kids.
18 Could Learn: Dinner Is Served
Family dinners are an important part of the routine and should always be a priority. This might seem old-fashioned since families are always running around today and kids have so many different activities. The day can feel so long and there are always so many things to do that a sit-down dinner might not feel possible.
If your mom tells you that sitting down at least a few evenings each week to have dinner as a family is a good idea, it's definitely something to consider.
We remember the dinners that we had around our family table and these really are important, special, and lovely memories to create.
17 Could Learn: Calm Down
Chances are, we remember our moms being pretty calm, no matter what they were dealing with. They always felt that any problem could be solved and they had good ideas about everything.
Our moms would tell us to calm down and not worry so much since we tend to worry about every little thing when it comes to our children. We can't help it, this is just the way that we are, and it's what we see with other parents and when we go online or on social media.
Our moms are right: we don't have to worry about everything and it's not going to help anyone or anything.
16 Could Learn: No Such Thing As Perfection
Today, moms feel pressure to be "the perfect mom." It comes from everywhere, from the Internet to the media to movies and TV shows and other moms. It's a lot for sure but that pressure wasn't always a thing.
If we think about it, we'll realize that our moms were more chill about many things. Maybe it's because they came from a big family themselves so they knew that they could handle anything and they saw their own parents not freaking out about anything that their kids did. Our moms are always telling us that everything is going to be okay, and that's a tip to take to heart and remember.
15 Could Learn: Forget About Doing This
Today, we feel pressure to keep up with our neighbors and mom friends and make sure that our lives look like those of people that we know.
Our own moms weren't so big on that and they were more focused on their own family. We play the comparison game now, thanks to social media, and that wasn't such a big thing before.
It does sound like it was more peaceful back then. Maybe that's why they call them "the good old days"... Yes, we love our family life and we're doing the best that we can for our kids, but that pressure is hard to get away from. We could learn from our parents that we shouldn't put so much pressure on ourselves to be like everyone else.
14 Could Learn: Big Picture Vs. Small Stuff
Moms today "sweat the small stuff" and our moms definitely focused on the big picture more.
This is a tough thing to learn. It's not easy to switch our mindset around and stop worrying so much. But at the end of the day, we know that if our kid wanted a grilled cheese for lunch and we were out of cheese so we made them a turkey sandwich instead, everything is going to be okay. Moms make so many decisions every day and we can't let ourselves think that we're always messing up. It's just not true. We're doing a great job. We have to remember the big picture and what's important (aka that we're raising kids who are healthy and doing well).
13 Could Learn: Listen Up
Our parents have amazing advice on how to get our kids to listen and behave.
While of course we're amazing parents and we know what we're doing, everyone can use a bit of advice sometimes.
Anytime that you get together with your family and your parents and/or siblings are there, too, whether it's Thanksgiving or Christmas or just a nice weekend visit, you can probably agree that your parents are awesome when it comes to helping out. If your kids are crying or asking for dessert before dinner or doing anything at all, your mom always has the right words and knows the exact right thing to do, and your dad helps out, too.
12 Could Learn: Sometimes Too Much Advice Is A Bad Idea
If your parents tell you that you should slow down and that sometimes there is such a thing as too many opinions, that's something that you should listen to. They're right on this point, too.
We're used to getting advice from anywhere and everywhere. It's overwhelming to hear so many different opinions all of the time. We can think about anything that has to do with raising kids, from food to doctors' visits to toys and education, and we'll hear the opposite from different people. The best thing to do is cut out the noise and follow our hearts and what makes the most sense to us.
11 Could Learn: Focus On The Moment
Our parents would also tell us to forget taking so many photos of our kids to post on social media and to focus on living in the moment.
We need to make memories, and that can be easy to forget when we're trying to get the perfect picture or are looking at all of the filters that we could use.
Living in the moment is always good advice. We can take this to heart, too, and remember it all of the time.
And now for the 10 things the modern mom is doing better...
10 Doing Better: Healthy Food
It's safe to say that we know more about health, wellness, and nutrition today than moms of decades past did.
If we think about the foods that we ate as kids and what our own kids eat today, we can see a huge difference. It's no one's fault, it's just what people talk about, and it just so happens that today, moms would rather give their kids kale and homemade mac and cheese that has hidden cauliflower in it than the boxed stuff.
We have more resources and information today, and we have a different idea of what healthy food is.
Our own parents might have cooked us amazing, delicious homemade meals, but maybe veggies weren't as big a thing as they are today.
9 Doing Better: Kids And Friends
Today, moms treat their kids as friends. It's a modern thing for sure and it might not be what our own parents did. Our parents thought of kids as, well, kids.
Many moms think that this is a nice way to bring up children since it creates a bond and a sense that the parents respect their kids and gives them some agency and independence. Parenting changes throughout the years and it's part of modern motherhood to want to have this kind of relationship with your children. It's something that we see our friends doing, too, and it makes a lot of sense to us.
8 Doing Better: Open-Minded
Parents today seem more open-minded to the different paths that children can take. For example, some kids don't go to a traditional four-year college. They choose another kind of program or start working and don't go to college at all. Other kids want to follow their dreams and have non-traditional career paths.
We have different ideas of what work is since these days, we're all doing different things.
Some people freelance and work from home, others create their own businesses, others work full-time or part-time in an office environment, some work in a co-sharing workspace, and so on and so on.
7 Doing Better: Work/Life Balance
We have a better idea of work/life balance and self-care today, so that's something that modern moms are doing better.
Of course, if self-care was more of a hot topic and something that people talked about more often when our moms were raising us, they would have thought more about it. But it just wasn't part of the general discussion about how to raise kids. It's awesome that we know that moms need to look after themselves and that you can't chase perfection and try to do everything all at once. Taking care of yourself helps you so much and is always a good idea.
6 Doing Better: Career Woman
It seems like today, there are more opportunities for women to be both moms and have careers, too. We see so many different ways of being a mom: freelancing from home while raising kids, going to a full-time office job, working part-time in an office, and even more options.
While some of us had moms who worked either at home or outside of the home, others were raised by stay-at-home moms.
There is no right or wrong way to be a mom, but it's great that we have the choice today.
We don't feel so much family or societal pressure and we can make the right decision for ourselves and our family.
5 Doing Better: Shared Interests
Moms make an effort to understand the things that their kids are into and they don't want to feel left out. This definitely seems to be something that modern motherhood is all about.
We can all remember having various interests and hobbies during our own childhood and while our parents were great, they might not have asked that many questions about a video game we were into or a TV show that our friends loved. These days, parents want to be really involved with what their kids are doing, and maybe our kids think that we ask too many questions, but we can't help but want to know everything that they love.
4 Doing Better: Mental Health, Too
Moms have a better understanding of mental health today because we talk about it much more often and are more open.
We all struggle with different things, and we're all on our own personal journeys. When we get together and talk about what we're dealing with, we learn that we have a lot in common. Raising babies and children isn't easy and it's awesome that we can be open about what we go through and talk about it with each other.
While many of us feel that we still have more to do as a society and culture when it comes to mental health, the awareness is there, and that is always the first step.
3 Doing Better: Pregnancy Story
It seems like we have more information about pregnancy today. We have the Internet which is an unlimited resource, and no matter what symptom we have or what we're going through, we can Google and find so much information. Yes, sometimes it might feel like too much and it can be hard to know what is fact and fiction, but it's still a great resource.
We also have a better understanding of health concerns, what to eat while pregnant, and so on. While our moms and female relatives will always be an amazing resource and sense of help and comfort for us during pregnancy, we also have more information in general.
2 Doing Better: More Involved
Moms today are more involved in their kids lives in general.
You want to know who your kids are friends with and meet their parents. You want to know what they're learning in school and who they sit with at lunch and basically anything that your kid can tell you, you're excited to hear about.
This isn't to say that our own parents didn't ask us questions or weren't involved in our lives because of course they were, but these days, it seems like parents are a bit more involved. Maybe it's because we feel like we have more things to worry about.
1 Doing Better: Gender And Cultural Ideas
Moms today are more open to kids being gender neutral and having discussions about traditional gender roles.
These things just weren't talked about in the past, so if our moms weren't discussing them, we can understand why. Many of us would agree that moms are doing better today when it comes to making sure that boys and girls have equal opportunities to play with whatever toys they want and that we're moving away from "blue for boys and pink for girls" and thoughts like that.
While we can learn so much from our parents, there are other things about this parenting journey that we have down pat. It's a balance and it's good to remember that we're all doing an awesome job.
Sources: Babble.com, ScaryMommy.com, Parenting.com, TodaysParent.com