A resource to inspire, inform and empower parents.

Dear Mama Friend

I am writing to you today because I can see that you have been crying. I know that you are struggling to keep your cool. You wonder how you can possibly get through the day. You doubt that you are capable of being a really good parent. Things aren’t going as planned. You tried so hard, but it’s falling apart. It seems like everyone has it together but you. Like you have failed yourself and your kids. Sometimes you want to run out of the house and never come back. Some days you feel like you don’t even like your own kids. Then you are flooded with guilt and anxiety that you could even think such a thing.

I know all of this because I feel it too. We all do. You wouldn’t know it because it’s common for us to only share the good times or to push these big feelings deep inside. We see everyone’s pictures on social media of their family’s laughing, their perfect behaving children, the healthy snacks, the exquisite pie they made from scratch and the completed household chores. Parenting pages share extraordinary stories of marathon breastfeeders, gentle parenting expert articles, incredible breastmilk donations and memes that highlight how to perfectly react when your buttons are pushed. All of these moms are amazing and we celebrate them and the special times because they deserve to be celebrated.

The grass always seems greener until we take a closer look. When we read between the lines we see that we all struggle. We might struggle with different things, but we all struggle. Everyday. It’s healing to share a beautiful moment from our day because so much of the rest of it was messy, chaotic and filled with big emotions. When we see other people sharing their victories we should congratulate them because they are showing you the results of finally getting it right after many attempts and fails. Or maybe she is lying in a heap on the floor grasping at anything that might make her feel like going on.

Abby Theuring, The Badass Breastfeeder's sons.

Beautiful photo, right? Well, don’t be fooled. This was just after the Getting Out-of-the-Door-Epic-Tantrum and just before the Fatigue-Induced-Need-Food-Meltdown. And don’t even get me started on what they were doing! 

You need permission to let it go. You need to decide right here, right now as you read this, to let yourself off the hook. You are a good mother. Your children are loved. You fuck up, who doesn’t? You’re not perfect, who is? Let’s talk about it and get it out in the open. We are all the same. We are all reaching for the same goal. We have different paths that merge together and veer apart, but we are all headed for the same place. Every single one of us just wants a healthy and happy family.

Let’s change the nature of the conversation from one that compares notes to one that commiserates, shares, bitches, consoles, exchanges, communicates, consults, gabs and chats. None of us can say anything that someone else hasn’t felt. So what are we afraid of? Being judged? Fuck that. Anyone that judges is struggling far deeper than anyone else. We should never silence ourselves because of the reactions of a few. What are you going to let go of?