It seems like no matter what you want more information on, someone has written a book on it. There is no shortage of books that tell you what to do - but sometimes, moms don't want to be told what to do; they just want to feel understood.
Enter mom memoirs. These books have a little of the self-help format of parenting books, but they are also filled with stories of real moms who made it through the tough times and who are sharing what worked for them in the process. Parenting is not a science, every child is different, which is what can make it so frustrating. So, mom memoirs are there to make you feel like you're not alone, you're not doing everything wrong, and to help you learn a little something in the process.
10 Sparkly Green Earrings: Catching The Light At Every Turn - Melanie Shankle
Melanie Shankle is a blogger turned author whose daughter adorably started calling her "Big Mama", but much to Melanie's dismay, that nickname caught on and now people literally know her as "Big Mama". This is just one of the many stories Melanie tells in her book Sparkly Green Earrings: Catching The Light At Every Turn. The book is filled with stories of her and her only child, each of which is equal parts hilarious and touching. The overall theme of her book is that, when it comes to parenting, we have to roll with the punches and try to have some fun as we navigate the seemingly never-ending string of changes.
9 White Walls: A Memoir About Motherhood, Daughterhood, & The Mess In Between - Judy Batalion
Judy Batalion's book, White Walls: A Memoir About Motherhood, Daughterhood, & The Mess Inbetween, is the story of her learning to adjust to life's messes. She grew up in a home packed with clutter by her mom, so when she moved out on her own everything was clean, tidy, and basically a disaster waiting to happen when she decided to bring kids into the world (RIP to all the white furniture we've all lost). She then goes on a journey through generations in her family to learn about why her mother was the way she was, and what it actually means to be a mother. She learns to loosen up the reins and love where she came from.
8 Stretched Too Thin - Jessica N. Turner
This memoir/self-help book is basically the anthem of every working mom, everywhere. Stretched Too Thin looks at moms who are so overwhelmed by all of their responsibilities that they don't have time to take care of themselves.
She uses her own personal experience to provide guidance in parenting guilt-free, finding time for self-care, and feel like a good mom even when work feels overwhelming. This book is full of practical, and compassionate, advice for moms everywhere who feel like they can't catch up and like no matter what they do, it's still never enough (so, basically, every mom).
7 I Just Want To Pee Alone - A Collection Of Mommy Bloggers
I Just Want To Pee Alone (aside from being the single most recurring thought in every mom's mind) is a collection of mom stories written by 37 different mommy bloggers. It's full of hilarious content that will make any mom nod her head in agreement, and find the humor in those moments where all she really wants to do is curl up in a ball and disappear for a day. The best part about this book is that it's filled with real stories of motherhood, not carefully curated social-media-worthy stories. It's a reminder that none of us know what we're doing, and that everyone gets a cup of milk thrown at them because they put it in the wrong color cup once in a while.
6 Grace Not Perfection - Emily Ley
If you haven't heard of Emily Ley, you need to. One look at her social media page will have you envious of her all-white aesthetic with pops of bright colors and gold everywhere. Aside from her decor taste, Emily is a mom of three and an entrepreneur. In her book, Grace Not Perfection, she talks about all of the ways she struggled with trying to do it all and give 100% to everything only to end up with actual physical health problems because of it. She provides a story about how she learned to give herself the grace to make mistakes throughout this journey.
5 The Gift Of A Happy Mother: Letting Go Of Perfection And Embracing Everyday Joy - Rebecca Eanes
Rebecca Eanes is another popular mommy blogger-turned-author and her book, The Gift Of A Happy Mother: Letting Go Of Perfection And Embracing Everyday Joy, captures her journey as she discovers that her kids can either have a happy mother or a perfect one, but not both.
She looks at what it means to be a "happy" mom, particularly in the age of social media standards and Pinterest-perfect parenting. She goes through the process of rediscovering what makes her happy both in and outside of parenting and offers advice for other moms who'd like to do the same.
4 Bringing Up Bebe: One American Mother Discovers The Wisdom Of French Parenting - Pamela Druckerman
If you haven't heard of Bringing Up Bebe: One American Mother Discovers The Wisdom Of French Parenting, are you really even a parent? Seriously, though, this book is a bestseller and one that moms all over the world have read in hopes that it would provide some brilliant insight into motherhood. It's the story of an American mom who had a baby in Paris and how she discovered the French way of parenting seemed to work a little better than the American way. She spent three years observing and researching the difference in parenting styles and shares tips on how to take the best approaches from both cultures to raise a happy baby and be a happy mom.
3 Slow: Simple Living For A Frantic World - Brooke McAlary
If there's one word to describe culture today, it's "busy". We are always busy doing something, chasing something, or trying to be something that we're told we want. It's exhausting. Slow: Simple Living For A Frantic World, isn't necessarily meant only for moms, but its message of enjoying the small moments and no longer trying to keep up with what culture tells us to do is a message every mom should hear loud and clear. It's a reminder that it's the small moments that makeup a kid's lifetime, and that they'll always want the next big toy and end up even more exhausted than we are now if we don't put a stop to it.
2 All Joy And No Fun: The Paradox Of Modern Parenting - Jennifer Senior
While this book sounds like a depressing one, it's actually not. Jennifer Senior wrote this book after researching and examining the effects children have on their parents and their overall happiness. All Joy And No Fun: The Paradox Of Modern Parenting follows Jennifer's research and goes into the homes of a handful of families in the United States where she observes their everyday lives and the rewards or consequences they face from parenting. The overarching message in the book is that kids do bring joy into their parents' lives but parenting styles and methods play a big role in how the parents themselves feel on a daily basis.
1 A Life's Work: On Becoming A Mother - Rachel Cusk
Rachel Cusk's memoir, A Life's Work: On Becoming A Mother, has been added to the New York Times' "50 best memoirs of the past 50 years" list, so you know it's good. In it, Rachel grapples with the life-changing and contradictory aspects of becoming a mother like how it requires more love than we've ever known, but can ignite more anger than we've ever felt. She spends one year of her life documenting the changes and challenges she's facing, including stories from changing diapers to mommy and me groups. It is the best memoir out there for any mom who needs that reassurance that she's not alone in how she feels as she silently mourns her old life while trying to embrace her new one.