Yes, mothers get jealous and how could they not? In a culture which thrives on competition, mothers are constantly facing comparisons. Motherhood is supposed to be the most amazing time in one's life but being consumed with the achievements of other children and/or mothers can severely diminish one's chances for happiness. Although the comparison is a common approach to ascertain the performance of your child, the inherent logic is to instigate your child to be motivated to excel. On the contrary, kids should be taught to better themselves with each day, not to be better than their counterparts. Vying against other mothers has also dominated our sense of self. Instead of feeling proud of our accomplishments, we feel threatened if we have not achieved the same as others or worse that we have neglected to rise to our own personal standards. Social media has certainly amplified the gravity of the situation as it offers a platform to expose only select aspects of our lives, mere snippets that suggest, to a certain extent - perfection. It’s crucial to stay focused on absoluteness, not perceptions. There is an overwhelming correlation between jealousy and one's self-worth. You encompass a unique set of circumstances, experiences, knowledge, and ideals that make you the mother you are and understanding you have different priorities, different support systems and different to-do lists should relinquish some resentment. You may often find yourself admiring other mothers, wishing you could be more like them, but the reality is - they too are thinking the very same about you. There needs to be a shift in perception from competition to collaboration as all moms long for value, the need to decisively unite and honor one another.
24 The mom with the perfect everything
For a copious amount of moms, struggling to lose baby pounds is an uphill battle. After all, it’s not just about being disciplined and determined but also being able to find the time to put fitness goals in motion. Another obstacle is the misconception of time. Moms who get discouraged when the pounds are not being shed quickly become discouraged and fall off course. Whatever the deterrent, seeing new moms looking fit and fabulous can motivate a jealousy that a physically draining.
23 The mom whose kid is a genius
When a mother is jealous of another child being academically more successful, odds are she is clearly not making the grade in anyone's good books, her own included. However, is this mode of thinking truly unreasonable? After all, feeling threatened by the accomplishments of others is not uncommon especially within a culture indicative of competition. Furthermore, we are raising children in a society contending for greatness and kids are being raised on the principle that they must always be the best. Not even parents with the best of intentions can compete with that.
22 The mom who is naturally zen
There are certain moms who always manage to keep their cool and remain emotionally level-headed. Moms feeling overwhelmed and exhausted in their new role as parents can find it difficult to manage fluctuating emotions. Struggling to maintain a positive disposition while surrounded by seemingly perfect mothers can ignite a jealousy that is anything but representative of being in control. Losing one's sense of calm can create an insensibility that is anything but natural or healthy for both mom and baby.
21 The Nanny
It’s definitely a sensitive topic, but it is quite spontaneous for moms to develop uncomfortable feelings towards their nanny. Thinking about a caregiver comforting and bonding with your child can easily lead to alarming feelings of jealousy that are not so easy to mitigate. Missing intimate moments and milestones may even create a sense of guilt, worrying that every moment at work is a missed opportunity to connect with baby despite how crucial “me time” for mom is.
20 The mom whose children are neat and tidy
It’s pretty much a wonder how kids could ever manage to keep themselves dirt free or how parents can triumphantly get each little rascal out of the house with matching shoes amid the unruliness of life. Messy hair, dirty faces and untucked shirts happen and yet candidly moms are subject to scrutiny for kids simply being kids. Consequently, the sight of perfect ponytails pressed clothing and shiny shoes may evoke some jealousy - it’s not a dirty secret.
19 The mom whose kid eats anything
It really is quite a sight to see miniature foodies savoring everything from sushi with extra wasabi to Quinoa Salad with Goat Cheese while other kids follow a strict diet of chicken nuggets or mac and cheese. For many moms, getting their kids to eat more than just a select number of foods is tough, but feelings of resentment for non-picky eaters absolutely comes easy. After all, it’s hard to digest the idea that your kids may never outgrow their phase of trying new foods.
18 The mom with notable success
Caught in the day to day madness of mothering it can be quite challenging to accept that other moms are reveling in the merits of their dedication to their careers. Their successes can elicit a jealousy that ultimately stems from putting their professional goals on hold. Despite the value of being able to stay at home to bond with baby and experience wonderful milestones first hand, a large part of who you are becomes lost even if it is only temporary. It’s only natural that resigning your power in the workplace may lead to a feeling of being powerless.
17 The mom who is impeccably groomed
New moms can so get so immersed in their newfound roles as a caregiver that meeting their own basic needs can become a challenge. The gift of a little free time for mom is usually allocated to catching up on precious sleep rather than booking a manicure or a hair appointment. As deserving as they may be, for so many moms time for any type of personal indulgence is not possible nor fathomable. Coming face to face with moms who are looking fabulous can really trigger one's insecurities, creating feelings of jealousy that make then look and feel anything but beautiful.
16 The mom with a spotless home
Being a mom is exhausting and keeping up with tasks around the home requires super strength. For many moms, the chaos of the day is often reflected by the lack of order in their home and no matter how much they try they can’t seem to perfect the perfect home. Jealousy towards moms who never leave clothes in the dryer, dishes piled in the sink or a ring in the bathtub seems imminent. After all, how do they do it?
15 The mom with the supportive husband
One's support system, specifically a husband can certainly make the difference in both a mother's physical and mental state. Being a mom becomes even more incredible when given a chance to step of out of role even for just a little while. Hearing boastful recounts about hubbies who take on late night diaper duty, prep meals for the week and give great foot massages can create a jealousy you can certainly do without.
14 The mom with super strength and abilities
It appears that some moms have the extraordinary power to do it all and then some. Notable careers, gourmet dinners, PTA meetings, science projects and fitness guru, all while raising seemingly perfect children. There is no denying the value and wonder of such women who spawn a jealousy in moms supersedes any confidence they may have. A mothers perception of herself is genuinely skewed by natural insecurities and if expending energy to stop and compare oneself to other moms only magnifies these unwanted feelings.
13 The mom whose child surpasses milestones a record speed
Mothers keeping track of developmental milestones can be crippling on the spirit especially if they feel their children are comparably late bloomers. Mothers preoccupied with benchmarks of normalcy neglect to focus on the uniqueness of their child as they strive for developmental perfection in their little ones. Jealousy instinctively follows as resentment develops for children who seem to be leaving your child in the proverbial dust. Looking at what your child is not doing only causes you to lose out on all the amazing stuff they are doing.
12 Believe you are beautiful
While enduring early motherhood it seems trivial to stop and take a moment to give yourself a once over before facing the day. Any effort in your appearance may be set aside, allowing for more pressing elements in your physical world to determine the fate of your day. But a little effort in your appearance doesn't have to mean that you are robbing yourself of valuable time - you see, even the smallest of feats can make you feel beautiful. Lipstick, a stylish ponytail, your favorite sweater (without jelly stains), a run with the stroller outdoors, a heartfelt movie for your inner smile. Because after all, you are indeed beautiful - time to take a moment and see for yourself!
11 Identify that obsessing over the IQ of your child is arbitrary
Comparing your child's level of genius to that of other children is purely void of reason. Aside from the fact that we continue to encourage pitting between our children nothing positive can come from pressuring children to supersede their peers. According to Brain scientist and molecular biologist John Medina, "making learning and playtime stressful is counterproductive. The more stress hormones swarm children’s brains, the less likely they are to succeed intellectually. Proof, we need to allow children to naturally discover what is in their academic powerhouse and continually inspire their distinct cognitive abilities."
10 Take a breath and realize you too can find your calm
Motherhood has an uncanny way of unleashing a spectrum of emotions and rarely are they ever serene. In truth, nothing can ever prepare you for just how challenging or stressful the experience is. Aside from taking a deep breath, growing your inner strength requires some trial and error in the search for your perfect zen. It may be exercise, healthy food choices, reading, solitude, even something as veracious as walking away. Engaging in some genuine soul searching can also offer a few hints to help you shine.
9 Create meaningful mother-only tasks
The seemingly impeccable nanny will always have a slight hold over mothers as they wrestle with the conflicting emotions which seem too attach themselves to working moms. When feeling this way it’s helpful to give in to your feelings, they are warranted - they are yours and they are real. Now, after that create exactly what you are want, a deep attachment between you and your child. Set up activities that are exclusive to you and your little one; rituals that will stay in your hearts and minds forever. Most importantly, come to accept that your child has so much love to share and you will always be their one and only mom.
8 Realize that even supermoms need to recharge
Supermoms are adept at refusing those friends, relatives and coworkers who take advantage of them and eat up their time and energy. They know the time they gain by saying "no" is used to complete the tasks they feel are important to them and to their children. Moms need to recognize that in order to take care of their family they need to first take care of themselves. You must instinctively learn to identify the challenges of your life and develop strategies to manage them. It's also crucial to determine what best refuels you emotionally and physically to help you go the distance you need to as a mom. Take note, it's imperative that you take time to recharge but it's equally significant to understand that it's ok.
7 Grasp that neat and tidy children are mythical
Most kids are fascinated with dirt and in this day and age it’s actually a plus! Despite the envy you have for well groomed children, dirty hands and torn blue jeans may actually be an authentic picture of youthful exploration and adventure. Further more, bacteria does wonders for their immune systems! A venture outdoors to jump in puddles, chase lizards, pick up frogs and dig for worms in our tech savvy generation of kids (although rare) is still a mainstay of childhood. Kids will always need to get dirty to experience discovery in all it’s natural form.
6 Digest that children are finicky about food, but the problem is not finite
Picky eating is a normal rite of passage, however when a child refuses to eat anything on their plate moms will generally offer healthy staples they actually enjoy eating - desperate to ensure that their child receives substance. Moms can stop feeding their insecurities about their child being a picky eater. It can take up to 15 attempts for a child to accept new food, so patience is key. Food for thought, presenting is more effective than pushing so keep it fun!
5 Discern that children do not learn on a time-table
Milestones seem to dictate the progress of a child’s development which have created inflexible expectations among parents - creating a level of competition that is unrelenting in our culture. Children play, learn, speak and move entirely at their own pace yet often milestones feel more like mountains to parents who are consumed with the progress of other children. Consider milestones general patterns of development while recognizing that there exists a wide variation between kids. If you ultimately feel concerned it's better to approach any issues with your pediatrician sooner rather than later. In the meantime, acknowledge and celebrate the daily wonders of your child.
4 Admit that a perfect home comes with compromises
For so many moms the new baby trumps everything especially when it's crying for food, comfort or attention. An impeccable home is not a priority but at some point chores need to tackled, with or without zeal. It’s important to be organized, clean and functional for the sake of the health and well being of your entire family - it’s also pleasantly Feng Shui. However, consuming yourself with a clean house can lead to an unhappy home. Giving yourself permission to stray from your perfect tendencies allows you time for yourself that has been compromised.
3 Define caregiving expectations with your husband
Ambiguity in the division of responsibilities between parents often results in ongoing negotiations, resentment and tension. Husbands who share the responsibilities of child-rearing and household duties help working moms in their quest for work-life balance and for stay at home moms, it gives them a chance to recharge. Being clear about what you need from your partner is the first step to effective change. Instead of wondering about how things are going to get done - defining clear tasks will put the wheels in motion. Furthermore, It also helps build a stronger, more equal marriage and respectfully, a deeper understanding of each others roles.
2 Recognize that success defined by motherhood is significant
Feeling worthy as a mother can be complicated, investing in oneself is crucial to being a happy, healthy and amazing mom. Nevertheless, motherhood is challenging and often leads to little time for taking care of oneself. The struggle is real. Moms need and procure to believe that what they do is powerful and on some days even remarkable. Dr. Brenda Hunter's book The Power of Mother Love casts a vision for moms, "...their love and emotional availability are vital to their children's well-being, many of us do not understand the profound and long-lasting impact we have in developing our young children's brains, teaching them first lessons of love, shaping their consciences". At a time when society urges women to seek their worth and personal fulfillment in things that take them away from their families and intimate bonds, Hunter invites women to come home — to their children, their best selves, their hearts.
1 No mother is an expert
It’s easy to compare our less than perfect lives to other moms who seem to have it all together. We want to be the best at everything and being unable to live up to our own lofty expectations can trigger a guilt that is unrelenting. The truth is we do not need to be expert mothers - we need to be the best mothers we can be. Jealousy does not allow us to explore our positive emotions, to grant honest introspection, to be mindful. Focusing the unique strength within yourself and your children allows a genuine connection to what is real, true and beautiful.