Workin' Moms has the uncanny ability to capture a huge range of maternal experiences. Each mom on the core cast of characters has her own unique trait and parenting style. They're a unique set of characters yet each one is universally relatable in some way. Every mother watching the show has felt the feelings these women experience. The show touches on the topics that affect women most. They challenge ideas about career and work/life balance. They stand up to harmful stereotypes and assumptions about motherhood and women in general and they face relationships head-on.
10 Enough Is Enough
It's generally unpopular to yell at other people's kids. Yelling is already a parenting tactic that not all people approve of. You run the risk of being incredibly offensive, but in some cases, you just might save a life. Every mom has been at her wit's end with her hands completely full. Imagine being that mom and having another mother on the street shut your kid's chaos down? "Shut it you little monster, your mother is an angel!" is the phrase we've all wanted to scream at least once. Maybe if all mothers had each other's back the world would be a better place.
9 Skin Deep
Postpartum depression is real. It affects a large number of women in varying degrees of intensity and for varying periods of time. This is an important issue that the show is unafraid to tackle. Frankie is forced to confront her mental health when she breaks down at a child's birthday party. "Just because we're dressed like princesses, that doesn't mean the darkness isn't creeping in.". Those who have faced postpartum depression know the feeling of wearing a costume all too well.
8 Cut The Crap
Parents are bombarded with activities to sign their kids up for. Even infants have full calendars of events from fitness classes to social occasions. Spending time with your kids is important, as is stimulating a child's mind, but some children's activities push the bounds of reason. "Can we all be brave adults and admit that babies don't need yoga?" Ann asks in the gang's mom group. There's a certain amount of ridiculousness in placing an infant into the downward facing dog.
Breastfeeding is a hot button issue when it comes to raising kids. There's so much pressure on mothers to produce a great supply and nurse their babies without complaint. Breast milk is incredible, and nursing can be a special bonding time, but there's one thing about it no one talks about: it sucks. Breastfeeding puts an enormous demand on a woman's mind, body, and schedule. It's a worthwhile sacrifice many make happily but the feeling of relief and freedom that come with your milk drying up are real. "I just quit (breastfeeding and I'm in heaven).".
6 An Awkward Audience
Privacy is hard to come by with a baby in the house. Many parents of young children keep their kids in their bed making intimacy complicated at best. Pair that with the physical changes that happen after pregnancy and birth as well as a healthy dose of postpartum depression, and you have a recipe for a sexual slump. Frankie and Gizelle have a growing emotional gap between them since the birth of their daughter. Frankie is determined to get her groove back. They choose to get to business with baby nearby in her crib. They toss a blanket over her crib for privacy but Gizelle can't relax. It's a mood eery mom can relate to. "Maybe she can't see us but she can definitely hear us."
Parents are judged constantly, and frankly, it can get really old. Every parent has hit a wall where they just can't take one more eye roll or whispered comment. When hospital staff tries to keep Kate from snuggling sick baby Charlie she's not afraid to tell them that mother knows best. "I don't know what I am, but I'm dam sure you're not the determining factor in that.". Medical professionals are an authority on diagnosis and treatment but when it comes to therapeutic snuggles, mother knows best. No one has the right to tell a mother when she can comfort her child.
4 Mea Culpa
Few scenes in this show make us yearn with hope as much as Frankie pleading with Gizelle. From the first episode, we see a relationship fractured by motherhood and mental illness. "I know something's wrong with me. Not wrong, broken.". Frankie takes ownership of her depression and how it's affecting her family. This open communication is the spark that reignites their relationship. Being able to face your own vulnerability and take responsibility for your behavior is an invaluable skill set for anyone, but especially parents. Modeling these skills in such a positive light makes his episode truly valuable.
3 Shut It Down
Many parents carry a lot of anxiety about their kids growing up. The mere idea of having "the talk" with kids sets many people's teeth on edge. Ann is a mental health professional. If anyone is prepared to deal with the emerging behaviors of a tweenager, it should be her. Ann is just as anxious as every mother out there when her daughter begins to push boundaries with boys. "I'm turning my house into a nunnery" she jokes as she vents to Kate. Ann has two daughters, and she's worried about both of their health and safety. Every mom knows what it feels like to recoil from our children reaching sexual maturity. It's easy to want to shut it down and board up the windows. She knows she has to embrace these changes and teach her daughter how to take care of herself but it's a daunting task.
Motherhood puts extraordinary demands on a person. Many mothers also have to find time for a career and a relationship too. It can begin to feel as if there will never be time for yourself again. Jenny struggles throughout the show with guilt over returning to work. There's so much pressure for mothers to spend as much time as possible with their children. Ann reminds the mom group "Nobody says we have to be connected to our kids all the time.". It's okay and healthy to make time for yourself. Prioritize getting your own needs met. It's a cornerstone of good parenting.
1 All Moms Matter
From the moment we meet her Jenny struggles. She doesn't feel the connection with her daughter is strong. She deals with resentment toward her husband Ian because of the time he gets to spend with their baby. Ian is a stay at home dad while Jenny returned to work. We watch Jenny struggle with guilt for returning to work and for enjoying time away from her family at the same time. We're reminded that "The maternal bond comes in all shapes and sizes.". Moms know we need support but we often have no idea what that looks like. this scene is a fantastic environment of the power of mom friends. They remind us that it's okay to be a mom our own way.