The Internet has brought me so many new friends: bloggers, people with similar interests, etc. But, it also has a way of making me feel “less than” especially as a mother. Every day, there’s a new list or headline about things that you SHOULD be doing for your kids, or SHOULD NOT be doing for them. And behind the cloak of social media, it’s easy to be judged by other mothers (or non-mothers) who read something, out of context, and think they could be doing it (parenting your kids) better. Or, only sharing the good stuff and neglecting to mention the “real stuff”, making it seem as though they have it all together. Because of all of this, I was thrilled to open up The Good Mother Myth, because reading the book, I instantly felt like I was “good enough” as a mom….there were others just like me, sometimes struggling to get through the day and successfully past bedtime.
The Good Mother Myth is a collection of essays that takes a “realistic look at motherhood” and provides “a platform for diverse voices and raw stories.” They are meant to take apart the idea of this fairy tale “good mother”….reflecting on “stereotypes and expectations and offers some truth about what it means to be a mother today.”
One area that is hot with contention is food allergies….parents whose kids don’t have them sometimes think that they shouldn’t have to work around the kids that do. Parents whose kids do have them feel like their kids aren’t safe at school during parties, or are exhausted from making sure that their kids do have safe foods there. One story, called Parenting Without A Rope, is told by a mom whose daughter has a severe milk allergy and almost died from her mistakes more than once. It shows just how stressful, exhausting, and precarious an allergy like that can be.
No More Fakebook shows a real Saturday in the life of a mother vs a “Facebook Saturday”… a hilarious play by play of real life not seen in Facebook statuses. My favorite line from the essay “Instead of pretending that everything is hunky-freaking-dory, let’s be real: Parenting is ridiculously hard.” Amen to that…it’s easy to wrap up your life in a happy little bow for all of your “friends” online, but it’s another to show what’s really going on.
Failure To Launch tells the story of the first days with a newborn without that blissful bonding feeling, an effect of postpartum depression, and a mother’s struggle to claw her way out of it and really see her sweet son for the deliciously lovable bundle that he really was.
The book, compiled and edited by Avital Norman Nathman, also shares stories from single mothers, lesbian mothers, teen mothers, adoptive mothers, mentally ill mothers, and the one thing they all have in common is that they are, in fact, good mothers.
Pick up a copy of The Good Mother Myth: Redefining Motherhood to Fit Reality on Amazon, or check out more information on goodmothermyth.com.
Amazon link is an affiliate. I was given a copy of the book to review but received no other compensation. All opinions are 100% my own.